Ethiopia has broken the world record by planting 350 million trees in the space of just 12 hours

Approximately 350 million trees are thought to have been planted on Monday in Ethiopia, according to a government minister. Part of the ‘Green Legacy’ initiative, the country plans to grow 4 billion trees this summer. Each citizen is encouraged to plant at least 40 seedlings to help support the effort.

The Green Legacy initiative hopes to counter the effects of deforestation and climate change in Ethiopia where, according to United Nations figures, forest coverage fell to just 4% during the 00s, down from 35% in the early 20th century.

Getahun Mekuria, Minister of Innovation and Technology in Ethiopia, shared the good news earlier this week. The official World Record for planting trees in a single day is currently held by India. In 2016, over 800,000 volunteers planted more than 50 million trees in a single day. Ken Chaplin still holds the record for the most trees planted by a single person within a day, where in 2001, he planted over 15,000 seedlings near Prince Albert, Canada.

A 2016 study revealed that we have seen at least a 1% decrease in the amount of forest coverage globally since the 90s. Just 13% of Britain is classified as a forest. Countries with the sharpest decline in forests include Brazil (down to 58.9% from 65.4%), Colombia (falling to 52.7% from 58.1%), and Honduras (40% from 72.7%).

Ethiopia isn’t the only country looking to increase their forests. Since the 90s, China has increased their forest areas from 16.7% to 22.5%, France has risen from 26.3% to 31.2%, with the UK rising from 11.5% to 13.1%.

This latest news just goes to show that each of us can make an impact on the environment - even the smallest idea or change can make a huge difference.

Discover easy environment-saving ideas and sustainable food swaps that you can try right now to help tackle climate change and build a healthier, happier community.