You can now plant trees while you search the web!
It sounds hard to believe, but a young German entrepreneur made this a reality.
Ecosia is like any other search engine, with one major difference: they use their profits to plant trees.
Find out all about how Ecosia works below!
How Ecosia Works
It´s pretty simple. Ecosia uses the ad revenue from your searches to plant trees where they are needed the most.
Like any other search engine, Ecosia earns money from clicks on the advertisements that appear above and beside the search results. The advertisements on Ecosia are clearly labeled as Ads and are text links to websites that pay for each click by users.
Ecosia earns a few cents for every click on an ad – or a portion of the purchase price made through an affiliate link. Ecosia then gives the profits from this ad revenue to planting projects.
For every 45 searches, Ecosia earns enough money to plant a tree.
The company currently has tree-planting projects in 15 countries with strong forest ecosystems, including Brazil, Nicaragua, Haiti, Uganda and Indonesia. They partner with local organizations that have the expertise to plant and foster healthy new trees in their respective environments, helping to ensure the trees’ survival, improve biodiversity, and create employment opportunities in impoverished agricultural regions.
At the time of writing this article, Ecosia had planted over 87.5 million trees!
The Story Behind Ecosia
Ecosia was founded by Christian in 2009 after a trip around the world which helped him understand the problems of deforestation. It is now an award-winning company.
Christian learnt about the connection between globalization and climate change and how planting new trees could actually neutralize CO2 emissions on a big scale. This is when he realized he wanted to engage in forest preservation to help the environment. He came up with the idea of a search engine that helped finance planting and restoration projects.
The business model is a hybrid between a non-profit and full-profit business: a social business. Their goal is to scale their project and make it as high-performing and profitable as possible. But instead of using these profits to pay their CEO a huge salary, or pay out dividends to shareholders, they use them to fund reforestation projects. So they’re a for-profit company, but their interests are closer to those of a non-profit organization.
They also publish their monthly financial reports and tree planting receipts, so that we can hold them accountable as we follow their journey to a reforested world. Pretty great right?
The environmental benefits of using Ecosia
Did you know that the CO2 footprint of an average search is estimated at 0.2 grams? Not so with Ecosia. They build their own solar plants so that they can supply enough clean energy to power their searches. This is even better than buying renewable energy from existing plants, as the plant can deliver clean energy to the grid and replace electricity derived from fossil fuels.
Also, by planting trees and offsetting its energy use with renewables, each search with Ecosia actually removes 1 kg of CO2 from the air, which makes Ecosia a carbon-negative search engine.
Here’s the math: an average search generates around 0.005 € of revenue. It costs roughly 0.25 € to plant a tree, which means that Ecosia can plant one tree every 50 searches. On average, these trees will each remove 50 kg of CO2 during an expected 15 year lifetime.
This means that if Ecosia were as big as Google, it could absorb 15% of all global CO2 emissions! That’s enough to offset vehicle emissions worldwide.
So before you do anything else, click here to make Ecosia your new search engine and plant trees with your searches – for free!
(We have no commercial relationship with them, we just think it´s such a great idea that we wanted to share it!)
What do you think of the Ecosia idea? We would love to hear from you in the Comments section below!
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[…] Source: Urnabios […]
Thank you from Wales!
Diolch I chi o Gymru!
Bios Urn says
Thank you for your message Annie! We are happy to know that our article is reaching people from all over the world 🙂