One of the most important things that living trees do for us is to convert Carbon Dioxide into Oxygen, in counterpoint to the way we convert Oxygen into Carbon Dioxide as we breathe.  Trees are not the only thing that does that, but they have perhaps been the most significant.  The Amazon Rainforest, “the lungs of the Earth” is on fire in so many places today that the G-7 has held a conference to discuss any remedial action that could be taken, a clear indication of the seriousness of the situation.  Offers of help have been made to the Brazilian Government, but none have been accepted.  The fires rage on.
Current estimates tell us that there are about 3.04 trillion trees on the planet, sounds like a nice big number doesn’t it?  Also note that the current estimate of the annual human tree harvest is 15 billion, we also plant 5 billion.  That’s a nominal loss of about 10 billion trees a year but bear in mind that trees can take many years to grow to a significant size.  At the rate we’re going, there will be no trees left on earth in 300 years.
So, what can we do?   Simple answer, plant more trees and shrubs.

Helpful Hint: plant a tree now
This fall we can look to see if we can add a tree or shrub. 
  • Shrubs provide protection around the house. 
  • Deciduous trees provide shade in the summer and allow the sun’s heat to warm our homes in winter. 
  • Evergreen trees are good wind protectors. 
  • Trees can reduce cooling costs by 30% in summer and heating bills by 20-50% in the winter. 
  • Many local nurseries and Lowes and Home Depot are having sales. 
Note: For fall planting, it is advised to plant about 3 weeks before a hard frost which essentially means before the mid-October.  Check with nurseries in the area to confirm what is appropriate for your particular tree or shrub.