Lloyds Banking Group planted 1 million trees over the last year as part of its ambition to help finance a green recovery and reduce the impact of climate change across the UK.
Working alongside the Woodland Trust, the 10 year partnership focuses on planting new woodlands, expanding local community volunteering and providing support for the farming and agriculture sector.
The partnership will significantly help towards the reforestation of the UK, increase the UK carbon sink and ultimately improve access to nature for people across the UK.
It is estimated that the 1 million trees planted in 2020 could absorb 250,000 tonnes of carbon in their lifetime. This is the equivalent to absorbing the average carbon emissions of 31,000 homes in the UK.
The partnership also includes the creation of 10 new ‘woods within woods’ at existing Woodland Trust sites across the UK. For example last year 23,235 trees were planted at the Woodland Trust’s 12.5 hectare Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Wood in Leicestershire. The rollout of the Woodland Trust Community Tree Pack scheme will also allow people to plant their own trees in areas such as schools and local parks.
The creation of native woods and trees are at the heart of this partnership. This includes, where needed, planting a diversity of locally-sourced native tree and shrub species which are well adapted to their environment. Our woodland management systems are closer to nature such as protecting undisturbed forest soils and wood decay.
Support for agriculture
As part of Lloyds Banking Group’s overall investment in creating a cleaner, greener UK it will also help farmers and landowners transition to a low carbon future. The National Farmers Union (NFU) has set an ambitious target to reach net zero by 2040 and we are offering preferential funding offering farmers preferential funding for individual new woodland areas of more than 0.5 hectares.
As well as the trees absorbing carbon from the atmosphere, they also help farmers and landowners to protect their land from flooding and offer habitats for wildlife
Fiona Cannon, Lloyds Banking Group, Group Sustainable Business Director said:
“Achieving our 1 million tree planting ambition over the last year, despite the impact of the global pandemic, puts us well on our way to meet our target to significantly reduce carbon in the atmosphere by the end of the decade.
We know we still need to do to more help our customers and clients reduce their carbon footprint, that’s why last year we announced our ambition to work with customers, government and the markets to help reduce emissions we finance by more than 50% by 2030 and we will continue to accelerate our support throughout 2021 to help finance a greener cleaner, recovery for the UK.”
Darren Moore, Woodland Trust, Chief Executive Officer, said: “I’m delighted that Lloyds Banking Group and the Woodland Trust have achieved our target of planting 1 million trees together in the first year of our partnership. This is a phenomenal result and I have to thank those Woodland Trust and Lloyds Banking Group colleagues for all their hard work in making this possible. These trees could store at least 250,000 tonnes of carbon over their lifetime, improve the air in our towns and cities and help reconnect our fragmented landscapes, encouraging nature to thrive. The Woodland Trust has an ambition to establish 50 million trees over the next 5 years and our partnership with Lloyds Banking Group will make a significant contribution towards this target.”