What is the right tree in the right place?

BGCI’s approach is to focus on the right trees in the right place – encouraging the preservation of indigenous species in their natural habitats, rather than replacing them with exotic (non-native) species.

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Currently, vast areas of fast-growing exotic trees are being planted to sequester carbon or to provide short rotation wood crops, displacing natural habitats and indigenous tree species. In many countries ten times as many exotic trees are being planted as indigenous trees. 

Natural habitats are not only better refuges for biodiversity, they are also better at sequestering carbon and providing ecosystem services than exotic monocultures.

Tree species planted in the right place provide habitats and life support to hundreds of other species, including pollinators, seed disperser birds and animals, soil micro-organisms, and other useful species.

The right trees provide a range of ecosystem benefits such as carbon-capture, soil fertility, erosion control, water retention, flood mitigation and oxygen production without over-utilising resources or disrupting natural systems.
The right trees provide a range of ecosystem benefits such as carbon-capture, soil fertility, erosion control, water retention, flood mitigation and oxygen production without over-utilising resources or disrupting natural systems.
Non-native tree species, in contrast, can create sterile environments and little benefit to other species (e.g. food, habitat, shelter). Fast growing exotic species can extract too much water from the soil, outcompete indigenous species, cause erosion and be detrimental to soil fertility.

The right tree species help us to address our greatest challenges

The Biodiversity Crisis

Millions of species of plants, animals, insects, and bacteria depend on the right species of trees to survive.

The Climate Crisis

The right trees can address issues of carbon emissions, soil stability, water scarcity, and energy.

The Poverty Crisis

Nature provides benefits for people and the planet – once extinct, species can never be replaced.