The Furthr app allows users to pick a monthly subscription to support tree-planting projects in exchange for feedback on the impact of their contribution
Spotted: Tree planting is all the rage. From corporations to philanthropists, pledges to plant trees are coming from all angles. Governments of all flavours have been at it too. Back in 2019, the Turkish Government backed an initiative called ‘Breathe for the Future’ that put volunteers to work planting 11 million trees. And that same year the US joined the ‘Trillion Trees Initiative’ – a World Economic Forum programme to plant a trillion trees by 2030. This year, the Chinese government has pledged to re-forest an area the size of Belgium annually.
But what can we as individuals do to be part of the global tree-planting effort? Environmental conservation organisation Furthr has developed a user-friendly app that applies a subscription model to harness the power of collective action. App users have the option to pay a monthly amount—ranging from £4 to £24—to support tree-planting and renewable energy projects. In exchange, they are entered into a prize draw, and receive feedback on the impact of their contribution. This feedback is made accessible by converting the amount of carbon reduced into easily understandable metrics, such as the number of steaks, car trips, and plane journeys saved. Project updates are also provided through the app.
To plant the actual trees, Furthr partners with charity Eden Reforestation Projects, the same organisation used by eco-friendly search engine Ecosia. The trees are all planted by communities indigenous to the projects, and part of the cost of each tree goes towards providing paid employment for community members. Furthr is also aware of the importance of transparency, providing a clear breakdown of where the subscription money goes. Its invoices and receipts from Eden are also publicly available.
Speaking at a recent Re_Set and Springwise sponsored event on innovation and climate action, Furthr co-founder Henry Bishop commented, “People want to support with their wallet, with their finance, initiatives that really build natural growth as well as economic growth.”
With tree-planting such a hot topic, Springwise has spotted numerous tree-related innovations. These include robot forest rangers and an Urban Forest just outside the Springwise offices in Somerset House, London.
Written by: Matthew Hempstead