SMEA Professor and Director Nives Dolšak and UW Director of the Center for Environmental Politics Aseem Prakash recently wrote an article for Forbes encouraging consumers to rethink their usual gift giving this holiday season and consider giving back to nature. Rampant consumerism contributes to overconsumption which shows up in groundwater depletion, deforestation, and river and ocean pollution. People should buy less, but buying less is not enough, according to Dolšak and Prakash “We should also buy right, especially when buying is geared towards gift giving. This is where tree certificates can be helpful.” Many organizations offer tree planting programs, but Dolšak and Prakash encourage those considering purchasing tree certificates to do their homework. Do your research and use tools such as Charity Navigator, an online tool that assesses the internal governance of charities. They also suggest “supporting organizations that plant native species and recognize that trees are a part of ecosystems and communities. Ideally, these organizations involve local communities in their decision making.”
Read their complete article here.