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In 2006, the world witnessed many extraordinary events. The Davinci Code hit the theaters, social media sites like Twitter had just launched their platforms, and the UN was celebrating just the second Global Day of Action as part of the Global Climate Campaign. It was also the same year that Enterprise Rent-A-Car and the Arbor Day Foundation had established one of the most ambitious tree-planting partnerships in history: the Enterprise 50 Million Tree Pledge.
As part Enterprise’s 50th anniversary, the company set out on a 50-year journey to plant 1 million trees each year, totaling in at 50 million trees to be planted around the world by 2056. Enterprise has even helped engage their employees in many of their tree planting efforts, projects that have made an impact in more than 20 countries and counting! As we celebrate all these historical impacts we’ve made together and the adversity we overcame in 2020, we now move into the 16th year of this pledge — a resilient symbol of perseverance and hope for so many people who enjoy Earth’s global forests.
Commitment to Rebuild
One of the key goals of this partnership is to restore forested ecosystems that have been destroyed by natural disasters such as wildfires and hurricanes. Reforestation efforts are so important because not only does it help fill the voids created by a massive decline in Earth’s overall tree population, but also reestablishing forested environments helps protect the well-being of our drinking water, wildlife habitats, ocean life, and so much more.
In this partnership’s 15th year, 200,000 trees were planted in the Klamath National Forest in California after multiple fires had torn through the area over the span of five years, providing relief for both land and aquatic wildlife. In the same year, an additional 200,000 trees were planted in the Econfina Creek Wildlife Management Area in Florida, an area that is now in desperate need of trees to protect and preserve the land’s water quality. Also, for the 13th year, Enterprise planted 50,000 trees in the United Kingdom, bringing their total number of trees planted in the country to more than 950,000. Here, Enterprise was able to help actively engage local private landowners to participate in agroforestry on some of the least-forested lands in all of Europe.
Commitment to Positive Impact
The lasting impact that 50 million trees can have on our planet is truly remarkable. In relation to our air quality, those trees will have the ability to absorb 50 million pounds of carbon dioxide from our atmosphere, as well as produce enough breathable oxygen for upwards of 200 million people each day. These trees will also provide a huge relief in establishing watersheds as they capture a significant amount of storm water runoff and filter out many major pollutants that flow into local streams, rivers, and lakes.
Commitment to the Future
In 2021, Enterprise continues this commitment with planting projects in nine U.S. states as well as six other countries, including Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Spain, and the United Kingdom. The Arbor Day Foundation is looking forward to plant another 1 million trees with Enterprise this year. Each year this pledge offers us a chance to both reflect on the previous plantings and all they’ve accomplished, as well as look forward to future projects and continue to inspire future generations to protect, preserve, and restore our planet’s forests.
When this visionary partnership was created, it was truly ahead of it’s time, and the positive impact it has made on our world and those who seek to protect it is sure to spark positive change for many years to come.
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