Planting Trees to Lower CO2

The Environmental Action Club has made a bold initiative to plant trees around the school to offset the carbon emissions of Morris Hills High School. The club, advised by Mr. Maloupis, partnered with Tree-Plenish, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping students create more sustainable schools.

After gathering information about the energy usage at our school, Mr. Maloupis calculated that it would take approximately 1250 saplings to counteract 1500 tons of carbon. Each participating student paid a small fee of $5 for a sapling. Among the sapling varieties were Eastern Redbud, Flowering Dogwood, and Maple. 

Co-Presidents Amelia Wong and Sofia Castano led this initiative with not only a want to reduce the Morris Hills carbon footprint but to demonstrate the value of trees. Sofia has a passion for environmental advocacy and is even majoring in Environmental Science in college this Fall. “Events like this are important because they help educate students about what they can do to help their environment,” said Sofia. “We need to take care of our communities, and one way is to plant as many trees as possible.”

Mr. Maloupis reports that only 91 saplings were bought within the club’s designated buying period, March 15 to April 15. This is far less than their 800 sapling goal to reach carbon neutrality and the even more ambitious 1250 goal for a net positive result. Mr. Maloupis believes that if EAC hosted this event again, it can be more successful if they use sponsors, a longer buying window, and better advertising strategies. 

While EAC is no longer selling trees, they encourage students to continue buying and planting trees from local garden centers. Watching a small sapling grow throughout the years is a heartwarming reminder that one small action can contribute to the much larger cause of mitigating climate change.