What if the answers to humanity’s biggest problems were Hidden in Plain Sight? Each episode explores the people, teams, and technologies that are solving society’s most serious problems.

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Season 2 / Episode 22

Stop Talking and Start Planting with Felix Finkbeiner

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Every year the Earth is estimated to lose about 15 billion trees. That’s 15 billion from the planet’s estimated three trillion trees that encompass it’s soil. But what happens when those 15 billion continuously cut-in to the planet’s supply? How do we go about replenishing that stock? Or can we?

Felix Finkbeiner was nine years old when he began to ponder that same question. Inspired by the story of Wangari Maathai, Felix rolled-up his sleeves and began planting trees. A lot of trees in fact. 

Today, Finkbeiner and his team at Plant for the Planet — a company he pioneered as a preteen with the simple idea that children around the world could promote climate justice by planting a million trees in every country — have planted 14 billion trees. 

And while 14 billion trees is indeed a lot of trees, it still doesn’t make-up for the yearly deficit. But according to Finkbeiner, we don’t necessarily have to plant 15 billion trees every year to bridge that gap. Using data, technology, and biology we can plant a lot less and still get the same results.

On this episode, Felix joines Chad to  discuss the importance of reforestation efforts occurring around the world, how Planet for the Planet by working under the moniker of, “Stop talking and start planting,” is making an impact felt around the world, and how data collection is helping target segments of the Earth that need attention most.

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Hidden in plain sight is sponsored by our friends at Splunk, the Data-to-Everything Platform. Splunk helps organizations worldwide turn data into doing. Learn more at Splunk.com.

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