One Life One Tree

Giant sequoias are the oldest trees in the world. They're the fastest growing coniferous species and can live anywhere from 250 to 3,000 years. They grow very tall and very wide too, with the widest sequoia measuring over 9.5 metres (31ft). But crucially, when it comes to nature’s carbon capture, no other tree comes close. Sequoias sequester more carbon than any other species.


Meet Henry Emson. Rather than sending money off to some questionable and unconfirmable carbon-capture forest, he decided he would plant his own trees so he could look into the face of society and say “my carbon footprint is accounted for.”


Henry Emson standing in front of a giant sequoia tree

Emson figured out that it was better to go big, and so planted a giant sequoia sapling for each member of his family. Now, he can plant a giant sequoia for you and yours as well, with his business of growing small sequoia groves across Great Britain seeing 700 saplings already in the ground.


One Tree One Life buys land where these giants can grow in safety, and for that each tree costs around $450. The benefit however is knowing that throughout the hundreds, potentially thousands of years the tree is alive, it will be pulling CO2 from the atmosphere and burying it in its root system. Furthermore, Britain will be populated with what may be the emperor of all trees.


Henry now dedicates his life to buying land in regions optimal for sequoia trees to flourish, from Buckinghamshire in England to Brecon in Wales. Individuals pay for their own sapling and either come and plant it themselves, or Henry and his team will plant it for them.


General Sherman sequoia tree

The oldest living giant sequoia is called General Sherman. He lives in the Giant Forest of Sequoia National Park in California and is estimated to be 2,200 to 2,700 years old.


General Sherman will suck up around 1,400 tons of CO2 in his lifetime. An average person in the developed world generates about 520 tons in 80 or so years, so this one tree is offsetting the footprints of nearly three people.


Trees are the ultimate carbon capture and storage machines. They absorb carbon and lock it up for centuries - and giant sequoias are our best chance to sequester as much of the stuff as possible.


“Climate change is upon us, we need to communicate the gravity to the world - and this is a scalable solution,” says Henry. Wherever you live, why not sign up to One Tree One Life and relax in the knowledge that your lifetime's carbon emissions are also accounted for?


As the Chinese proverb says: “The best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago. The second best time is now.”

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