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How I see it: Can’t See the Trees For the Forest

How I see it: Can’t See the Trees For the Forest

English Oak Tree in field of Buttercups
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Thankfully with the launch of the final TNFD recommendations at NYC climate week we  have a route that allows us to bring climate strategy and disclosure, and nature together, helping us to focus on issues around trees that truly matter. 

Trees are a life-long love of mine. They are fascinating; complex, beautiful, and so useful. Around 3,700 species of tree are used in construction, one way or another. 1,951 species contribute to medicines. Horticulture, fuel, food, and household goods are all not far behind. But if you think that already sounds like more species of tree than you can name then you’ll be as amazed as I was to learn that there are over 58,000 species of tree globally.* 

Trees aren’t limited to life as a woodland. They are found across our habitats in ecosystems as varied as deserts, wetlands and cities. Our oldest trees are nearly 5000 years old and are found on mountainsides, just below the treeline. However even trees that stand alone are not loners, an oft quoted piece of research in the UK (where I’m from) found that 2,300 other species are associated with just the mighty oak.* Trees form the hearts of immense ecosystems and it is this kind of important contribution to diversity that we risk losing if we don’t mind both our carbon holding woodland and our biodiverse trees wherever they grow.

Related Article: How I see it: No Joy in Mudville.

We are starting to really understand that the big picture, that forests contain about 50% of the world’s terrestrial carbon, and over 75% of accessible freshwater drains from them.* That’s important, but remember to take a step forward from time to time:Our woodland and so many other ecosystems are comprised of trees. Let’s be sure we really see them. * “State of the World’s Trees” 

This article is contributed by Andromeda Wood. Every week ESG News delivers smart commentary from ESG practitioners and experts to unpack issues of the day. Submit an article for editorial consideration for the ESG Unpacked series here: [email protected]


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