Wisconsin plants 9.3 million trees in 2021 as state eyes goal of 75 million by end of 2030, report says

MADISON, Wis. — Wisconsin planted more than 9.3 million trees last year after Gov. Tony Evers signed the Trillion Trees Pledge last Earth Day, the governor’s office said Friday.

The pledge is designed to provide habitat for wildlife while also supporting communities and removing tens of millions of metric tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere over the next 50 years.

As part of the executive order Evers signed, he pledged the state would, in partnership with public, private and non-governmental groups, plant 75 million trees and preserve 125,000 acres of forests by the end of 2030.

‘We value our forests for clean water, wildlife habitat, recreational opportunities and wood products,” Evers said in a news release. “Wisconsin’s 17 million acres of forests are also a crucial tool in our fight to slow climate change if they remain as healthy, working forests. Our climate is changing at a pace faster than at any time known in history. Sustainably managing Wisconsin forests will not only generate climate change mitigation benefits, but also contributes $24.4 billion annually to Wisconsin’s economy, supports the health of our citizens and helps maintain the high quality of life that defines our state.”

RELATED: Groups plant 75 trees at Devil’s Lake State Park for Arbor Day

A report from the state’s Department of Natural Resources found 2.7 million seedlings were planted on private lands and another 1.1 million were planted on DNR lands. More than 42,000 seedlings were planted on school forests, and more than half a million were planted on county forests.

Friday’s update coincides with Arbor Day. Numerous other state and local governments and corporations have signed similar pledges.