Over 3 trillion trees on Earth

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There are over 3 trillion trees on Earth, 7.5x more than we previously thought

by Michael Graham Richard

Humans cutting 15 billion trees per year

How many trees are on the planet? That’s not an easy question to answer. Nobody’s going to go out and count them one by one, so other methods must be devised to get decent estimates. Until recently, the best number we had was around 400 billion, which any way you slice it is a lot of trees. But that was apparently undershooting by a wide margin. The latest estimate, which is based on mass of ground survey data and satellite pictures compiled by researchers at Yale University, is closer to 3 trillion trees, or about 7.5x more than we thought. Of these trees, approximately 1.39 trillion are located in tropical and subtropical forests, 0.74 trillion in boreal regions, and 0.61 trillion in temperate regions.

This is an important number because it’ll be used in all kinds of other research, such as climate models, studies on animal and plant habitats and biodiversity, etc. But be careful, the trees are not “new”, they were there before even if we were undercounting them:

Read the full article: Treehugger



Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.