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Co-Chair North, Ruth’s Blog: 12th February 2024

Co-Chair North, Ruth’s Blog: 12th February 2024
February 11, 2024 Ruth Parrott

Co-Chair North, Ruth’s Blog: 12th February 2024


As I look outside my study window, I can see a most magnificent pair of Birch trees in my neighbours’ garden. The delicate branches sway in the breeze and the two trees look as though they are one. As I look, I can see that the buds are showing a delicate shade of green hinting of the spring to come. In summer they are covered with millions of tiny green leaves and in autumn the whole tree turns golden in the sunlight. However, the trees are a mixed blessing as in the strong winds their long twigs are strewn all over the gardens and the road; to say nothing of the leaves and seeds which carpet our paths! But it is worth the constant sweeping as we gaze upon these trees in all their glory! It is hard to image a world without trees.

I have been reading ‘The Overstory’ by Richard Powers, a book based on the theme of ‘trees’. His love of trees emanates from every page and raises awareness of their mysteries and complex interactions we might overlook in daily life. It is also about fallible human beings with poor judgement who cut down trees without considering their importance for the planet and our lives.

Here is a quote from the book:

She remembers the Buddah’s words:

‘A tree is a wonderous thing that shelters, feeds and protects all living things. It even offers shade to the axemen who destroy it.’

Trees are vital to humanity’s existence. The more the world’s population grows, the more trees are felled to accommodate us and our consumption increases! We need to do something about the situation. We cannot live without trees. They absorb the carbon dioxide we produce and emit oxygen to give us clean air to breathe.

On 14th November 2023, Kenyans were given a special holiday to plant 100 million trees as part of the government’s goal to plant 15 billion trees in 10 years. Each person was asked to plant at least two seedlings on their own land in an effort to reverse climate change. The Great Green Wall project in Africa was conceived on the basis of warnings from scientists about the risks of deserts spreading and land degradation. This project has been struggling through a lack of funding and was severely affected by covid.

The Future Forest Company is on a mission to plant enough trees to remove 1 million tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere by 2030 by planting native trees in Britain. The Northern Forest is planning to plant 50 million trees in and around the cities in the north of England.

Trees are precious and life giving, a gift from God. I thank God for the beauty of our trees. As we struggle with the concept of climate change, we are able to plant trees and we can pray that the tree planting projects of the world will succeed and make a better world for us all, for wild life and for those still to be born.