TeamTrees is a fundraiser started by YouTubers James “MrBeast” Donaldson and Mark Rober, who teamed up with the Arbor Day Foundation to raise awareness of Climate Change. The initiative aims to raise twenty million dollars by planting a tree for every dollar donated. TeamTrees’ goal is to plant native tree species on all continents except Antarctica; they mention that there are “a variety of forests on public and private lands in areas of great need. Many of these forests will be public forestlands managed by government agencies.” The trees are planned to be planted starting in January with a deadline of December 2022. 

Mark Rober, a former NASA engineer, in a video said, “The point here is to end the decade on a super strong note. It’s a constructive way to send a message to the politicians that it’s freaking time to do something about climate change. Plus, we just really love trees, so this is like a fist bump to Mother Earth. She takes care of us, and now we need to return the favor.”

Concord Academy, over the past year, has continued to be active in the movement towards sustainability. CA sets out to complete most of its four main goals before the centennial in 2022: reduce greenhouse gas emissions, implement sustainable food, operate buildings sustainably, and create institutional strategies to support these changes. On top of this, the school plans to be carbon-neutral by 2050.

On September 20, 2019, close to three hundred CA students and faculty traveled to Boston, joining thousands in a protest to call for action to address climate change. CA alum Audrey Lin ’19 was one of the Sunrise Movement’s lead organizers for this climate strike.

Kiley Remiszewski, CA’s Environmental and Earth Systems teacher, joined 99 other teachers from 30 countries to attend the Nobel Prize Teacher Summit on Climate Change in Stockholm on October 11, 2019. The conference had an empowering theme: “Climate change changes everything.” During the summit, Remiszewski and the other teachers explored how educators can fulfill their duty to educate about climate change without creating anxiety and fear.

In a recent interview, Remiszewski said, “I left with a renewed sense that I don’t have to sugarcoat the climate crisis for students. I can help them process it constructively and feel empowered to take a stand for a path forward. We have the science. We have a plan. Now we need the will to take action.”

Currently, 18.4 million dollars have been donated to the TeamTrees fundraiser. That’s a lot of trees. I propose that in celebration of CA’s ongoing efforts, maybe we, as a community, can set a goal to donate 400 trees (representing each one of us) to end this decade strong. If you are interested in this effort, donate at teamtrees.org!