U-Haul®, the largest do-it-yourself moving company in North America, and The Conservation Fund®, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing conservation solutions that deliver both economic and environmental benefits, are celebrating a meaningful milestone: 1 million trees planted across the U.S. thanks to donations from U-Haul and its customers.
Beginning in 2007, U-Haul partnered with The Conservation Fund to offer its truck-sharing patrons the opportunity to plant trees and offset their moving-related emissions. This collaboration has grown to include urban conservation and green economy opportunities — which are creating green jobs, reducing neighborhood flooding and providing safe places to play in underserved communities.
Millions of U-Haul customers have chosen to give back during the last 14-plus years, resulting in the planting of 1 million trees and the restoration of over 2,500 acres of wildlife habitat — an area more than twice the size of Chicago’s Lincoln Park — across 11 national wildlife refuges and four national forests in the U.S.
“Planting one million trees is a wonderful accomplishment and representative of the strong, continued collaboration between U-Haul, our customers, The Conservation Fund and their team,” stated John “JT” Taylor, President of U-Haul International. “We are committed to furthering these types of environmental initiatives to solve and support progress on climate solutions. Investment in America’s forests is one way to positively impact on our environmental ecosystems.”
In addition to planting trees, ensuring the permanent conservation and sustainable management of forests is one of the most effective strategies available now to combat climate change. U-Haul customer support has also helped in part to protect more than 60,000 acres of working forests across the country that provide timber products and jobs in rural communities, support water quality, maintain critical wildlife habitat, combat climate change and offer recreational access.
“U-Haul’s ongoing commitment to advancing positive outcomes for conservation and communities is a model for corporate social responsibility programs,” said Larry Selzer, president and CEO of The Conservation Fund. “By engaging customers and inspiring employees, U-Haul continues to create lasing benefits for people and the environment. Forests are one of the most important climate change solutions we have available right now because of the trees’ ability to absorb carbon dioxide. We are honored to partner with U-Haul and celebrate this significant milestone together.”
U-Haul customers have the opportunity to support tree-planting efforts during checkout at more than 23,000 truck-sharing locations. Every dollar that U-Haul customers donate to The Conservation Fund goes directly to important conservation efforts.
The partnership has helped build “Parks with Purpose” in Georgia, Illinois, Michigan, California, Missouri, and North Carolina. U-Haul and its customers are also supporting sustainable economic development in West Virginia that is adding more green jobs, revitalizing downtowns and supporting locally-owned enterprises, including local food and tourism.