The Need for Trees

By: Kiera Kofkin-Hansen

Trees are one of nature’s greatest gifts: they provide beautiful scenery, act as an incredibly accurate what’s-the-season-meter, regulate and supply oxygen for our very lungs to enjoy, as well as being vital members of ecosystems across the globe. 

If you’ve ever spoken to an adult who’s lived in Cary for at least twenty years, they’d probably tell you how this area used to be “all dirt roads and trees”… or something along those lines. Due to the booming population of Cary, it is no longer a string of dirt roads stretching for miles, but more like hundreds of neighborhoods strung between outdoor shopping malls and schools. Although the economy of Cary is surely grateful, how does the ecosystem of Cary feel about the constant development? 

On average, 15.3 billion trees are cut down worldwide, and Cary is no exception in regards to the slaughter of these large barky, leafy delights. Trees should be so much more important to us than building new infrastructure, and here’s why: 

-They produce oxygen… you know… the air we breathe… to survive.

-Trees are vital to the survival of various ecosystems: providing housing, food, nutrients, shade (which I’m sure you all enjoy on a hot, North Carolinian summers’ day), and improves and enriches the soil which it is planted in (which in turns allows us to plant crops/other aesthetically pleasing plants as well).  

-They single-handedly can fight off climate change. Well, maybe not single handedly per say, however they play huge roles in cooling down the planet to ensure it takes a couple hundred thousand more trips around the sun, healthily! 

-+100’s of more fan-tree-stic things! 

I’m not naive enough to think that development will ever halt worldwide in order to protect the trees. However, there are things you can do yourself that will do a lot more good than you probably realize. Saving paper, for example, is the simplest way to protect trees. Paper is made from the bark and wood of trees that have been chopped down for that purpose among others; therefore, if you used a little less paper in your daily life (which I’m sure will be such a struggle considering we now attend school on our computers), it could go a long way in the future of keeping more trees tied to their roots. Another simple tree-saving idea many probably don’t think about is to plant a tree! Depending on the species of course, growth rates will be drastically different, but if you go out and plant a tree seed in the ground today, I promise the world will be better off for it. 

Trees are very important, and collectively as a human race we should treat them as such. There are many other ways you can effectively help to protect the trees, so go and research everything YOU can do for the good of our beloved planet and make a difference within your personal ecosystem!

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