WORDS: JOSHUA GREENWOOD
FEATURE IMAGE: VIA ECOSIA INSTAGRAM
Ecosia is transforming the way we use the internet, funding the planting of new trees roughly every second. Like Google, Bing, and Yahoo, Ecosia is just like your standard search engine, however, with one big difference – every search made through Ecosia contributes to the planting of a new tree – on average it takes around 45 searches to plant a tree and since its launch, they have already planted over 54 million. In addition, as you continue to use Ecosia, it counts each search you make through the site allowing you to keep track of your own individual efforts.
Like other search engines, ads generate revenue which is paid by the advertiser. However, unlike the aforementioned competitors, Ecosia uses at least 80% of its monthly profits to plant trees where they are needed most – in Burkina Faso, Madagascar, Peru, Indonesia, Morocco, Brazil, Nicaragua, Ethiopia, Tanzania, and many more countries.
42- year-old Sara from Mechisho, Ethiopia stated, “We plant native acacia trees because they make the soil more fertile. With our earnings, we started a communal savings account, which allows women to start their own businesses.”
Ecosia was founded in 2009 after CEO, Christian Kroll took a trip around the world. It helped him to understand the problems of deforestation. It taught him a lot about the connection between globalization and climate change and how planting new trees could actually neutralize CO2 emissions on a big scale. This is when Christian realized he wanted to engage in forest preservation to help the environment and thus Ecosia was born.
You can follow Ecosia’s journey through their designated blog that features regular updates overviewing the progress they have made. One of their latest articles talks about their work with the restoration of the Leuser National Park. They are helping to protect the Sumatran orangutan and save the badly damaged ecosystem by planting diverse tree species to help restore degraded land and introduce liveable habitats for the local wildlife.