Carbon Offset

Carbon offsetting is one of the ways you can reduce your carbon footprint and support local trees in your community.

The carbon offset market is a complicated space that we want to help simplify. Our goal with Tree Trust is to give consumers a trusted and local solution they can use to offset the approximate carbon generated by flying, driving, and heating their homes.

Carbon sequestration refers to the annual rate of carbon (CO2) uptake during photosynthesis over one growing season. How much CO2 does a tree take up? It depends on several factors like growth rate, species, age and location. Carbon storage refers to the amount of carbon bound up in woody material above and below the ground.

This great article from Vox.com summarizes the rewards and challenges of carbon offset programs. We are proud that TreeTrust.ca checks all their boxes for a useful carbon offset:

  • Additionality: Does this purchase lead to work that otherwise wouldn’t be completed?
    Our answer: Yes. Without your support, these legacy trees would not be attended to. 
  • Permanent: Is this solution protected?
    Our answer: By the very nature of the care from qualified arborists, we are helping ensure these legacy trees are around for a long time. 
  • Double-counted: Is this offset being counted elsewhere?
    Our answer: No. Each TreeTrust tree is a unique purchase by an individual traveller or a group of travellers.
  • Leakage: Is this worsening any other climate problems?
    Our answer: No, in fact, strengthening legacy trees builds an urban canopy that helps water, other plants and animals and soil quality. Click here to learn more about the environmental, social and economic benefits of large trees.

Of course, we also know that keeping trees healthy and well also supports the many other economic, social and environmental benefits that big trees provide. This article from Wired shows the real-time carbon impact that forests with large trees have as compared to new growth.

By extending the life of these large mature trees we are securing their value storing and sequestering carbon until younger trees are mature enough to grow into their role as carbon capture heroes. (In this role, big trees are often called, charmingly, nurse trees). A report from Ohio State University cites it takes 250 saplings to equal the carbon storage ability of one large, healthy mature tree.

All too often we take our trees for granted. But just like everything else in our homes (the roof, paint and other routine maintenance) big trees need upkeep every once in a while. Certified Arborists are usually happy to come and take a look to see if your tree would benefit from some professional attention. If you are lucky enough to have a big tree growing on your property, you probably know that it’s a significant asset for you and when you are reselling. Large trees even lower your energy bill in the summer by providing shade letting us use less expensive, energy-intensive air conditioning.

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