Devon quest to plant one billion trees in fight against climate change

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A new project has started in Devon with an ambitious target of planting one billion trees to help fight climate change.

It is signing up local businesses to help plant the trees and offset carbon emissions, while also helping them to attract a new wave of green-minded consumers. 

The Billion Trees Project was the idea of Exeter businessman Chris Collins.

He said many companies, particularly smaller independent firms, want to reduce their carbon footprint in line with the values of their customers who are increasingly searching for brands with green values.

Exeter businessman Chris Collins came up with the idea Credit: ITV WESTCOUNTRY

But Chris said many companies find it hard to know where to begin.

"What we are is a step in the right direction for businesses who don't know how to get involved but want to start making an effort," he said.

"It's very easy for the big companies to throw a load of money at a problem and hope that solves it but we're lowering the barrier of entry to every business owner or even consumers if they want to come along and offset their daily commute or their cup of coffee.

"We're making it really simple for anybody, whether you are a business owner or a consumer to come along and make a contribution towards planting these trees."

The ambitious name also reflects Chris's determination to tackle climate change.

He said they are called the 'Billion Trees' project because "we didn't want the task to be too easy."

"If you're setting goals that are too easy, they are not goals, they are a to-do list," he added.

The Billion Trees Project helps grow trees in places like Madagascar, with each tree costing around 15p to plant.

The planting scheme also creates employment and a sustainable community for people living in some of the most impoverished areas.

More information about the environmental mission can be found at The Billion Trees Project.