BIR, INDIA: The Earthville Network is pleased to announce the launch of the Earthville Orchards, a win-win-win-win opportunity for conscientious global citizens and responsible businesses to offset their carbon footprints for the year while creating green jobs for Indian villagers, helping to limit erosion of precious mountain topsoil, preserving biodiversity, and contributing to a harvest of a variety of organic fruits.
It is estimated that the average citizen of industrialized countries has a carbon footprint of around 50,000 pounds (22,680 kilograms) of CO2. per year. These emissions can be reduced through lifestyle changes (such as reducing air travel, taking public transportation, using LED lightbulbs and more efficient appliances, and so on), but in our modern world it is virtually impossible to eliminate our carbon footprints completely, and that’s where carbon offset programs come in. By planting trees, we can help the earth manage the carbon we create as the trees breathe in the carbon and store it, releasing oxygen into the atmosphere in exchange.
Starting now, we’ll be planting hundreds (and, with your help, thousands) of trees in and around our new campus in the Indian Himalayas, where we’re currently building the Dharmalaya Institute.
How many trees will we plant? That’s where you (and your friends and family) come in! Now is the perfect time for all of us to offset our carbon emissions for 2010, and planting trees in India is a very cost-efficient way to do it that also brings added benefits. You can sponsor tree plantings in the Earthville Orchards for just $2 US per tree – just a fraction of the cost of many other carbon-offset programs. And not only do you get more bark for the buck, but also the benefit of your contribution will be multiplied through the synergies of our related projects.
For example, your contribution to the Earthville Orchards will:
- Plant trees, one of the best ways to sequester (capture and store) carbon from the air
- Create green jobs for Himalayan villagers hired to plant the trees
- Help prevent landslides and loss of precious topsoil through erosion
- Preserve biodiversity
- Generate an ever-growing bounty of organic fruits that will be used in Dharmalaya’s program to create additional green cottage industries such as a village women’s cooperative making organic fruit chutneys, jams, and more.
For a modern earthling with an average carbon footprint to achieve a net-zero carbon footprint requires the planting of approximately 1042 trees per year. Those of us who travel often have carbon footprints that are significantly higher than the average. In fact, US frequent fliers have some of the largest carbon footprints in the world. It is up to each of us — every individual and business — to reduce our carbon footprints as much as we can through lifestyle changes and then offset the rest by planting trees.
Please consider making a charitable contribution to the Earthville Orchards as a way of offsetting your carbon footprint for the year, and ask your family, friends, and employers to do the same. We have a large group of Himalayan villagers who need the winter work, and the more trees we plant, the more green jobs we create, and the more we support the health of the planet’s ecosystems. The Earthville Network is a 501(c)(3) public charity and Dharmalaya is a registered charity in India, so your contributions are tax-deductible in either country, and of course our friends in other countries are most welcome to donate too. 100% of funds donated to Earthville Orchards will be used for the plantings.
To donate by check, please make your checks payable to “Earthville Network,” write “orchards” on the memo line, and mail to:
The Earthville Network
PO Box 9232
Berkeley CA 94709
Or, if you prefer to donate securely online, you can do so at www.earthville.org/give .
We envision the Earthville Orchards as a long-term, ever-growing project, and with your support we can sustain it and provide a cost-effective and benefit-rich way to offset our carbon footprints in the years to come. You can read more about Earthville Orchards on our website at www.earthville.org/orchards .