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What role can art play in envisioning a sustainable future for our planet?

Planting Trees While Searching the Web: It's Possible

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Here’s some quick facts about Imagine 2020's humble blogger:

 

1) I’m the current Creative Europe Placement at LIFT and needless to say, I’m pretty stoked about it.

2)I’m a theatre person. I’m so much of a theatre person that I’m currently getting a Masters in Theatre Criticism and Dramaturgy. Don’t know what that is? That’s fine. I don’t either.

 

I’m a busy person but I’d argue that the majority of us are. It’s a busy world. I’d also argue that most of us spend our time being busy in front of a screen. I know spend the majority of my time in the library or on the web, reading and writing until it feels like my eyes might just pop out of my head.

 

And another fact:

 

In another life, I would have studied Environmental Science and Climate Change. I was very close to doing just that, having been extraordinarily concerned with our Earth’s wellbeing since, well, before I can remember. I distinctly remember sobbing profusely after stepping on a ladybug when I was five. It was traumatic.

 

I often find that, with my hectic schedule and my university student budget, it is frustratingly difficult to be as environmentally conscious as I would ideally like to be. It’s a bit of a helpless feeling, wishing to do more and not knowing how because of x, y, and z. I want to contribute. I want to go plant some trees, for goodness’ sake.

 

Well, the truth is, you can plant trees. You can plant all the trees you like. All it takes is a click.

 

No, I’m not joking.

 

About two months ago, I stumbled upon Ecosia, a search engine that plants trees with its ad revenue. It works as a Chrome extension and, as of today, over 6.5 million trees have been planted worldwide by its over 3 million active users. Let me tell you how important and, quite frankly, astonishing this is. Trees encourage biodiversity, absorb CO2 (one of the main components of climate change), help prevent soil erosion thus creating a fertile land, regulate water cycles, and on and on and on. The benefits are endless.

 

A click. A web search. Is your mind blown yet?

 

Ecosia also keeps a little marker at the top of your search engine page, telling you just how many trees you’ve planted. In a month, I personally have planted 247 by just doing my homework for university. If you’re on the internet all the time anyway (and, let’s be honest, we are), why not simultaneously help out our Earth? You can get your work done and fight deforestation all at the same time. It’s a win-win for everyone.

 

If you want to learn more about Ecosia, check out their website: https://www.ecosia.org/. You can also take a peek at their most recent blog post where they discuss where exactly they plant their trees here: http://blog.ecosia.org/post/157569052785/how-do-we-decide-where-to-plant-trees-watch-the

 

Happy planting!

Meagan Mulgrew, Creative Europe Placement at LIFT 

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