Search engine uses ad revenue to plant trees

Ecosia is a search engine and social initiative that uses income generated from search ads to fight global deforestation.

Ecosia was born out of a need to address the issue of global deforestation around the world. It is a social business based in Berlin that came up with a smart way to grow more trees across the globe. Back in 2009, the team created the Ecosia search engine, which plants trees using the advertising revenue it receives. Today, it has planted over four million trees around the world and generated over 2.5 million Euros for forestry programmes.

The system is very simple. People use Ecosia to search the web, search ads generate income, and this income is used to plant trees. 

With over two million active users, the group is currently planting trees in Burkina Faso with the aim of restoring water, plants and animals in its drought-stricken areas. These basic resources have a positive ripple effect on the agricultural land, local employment and health, and community economies. Ecosia is also involved in the international initiative to grow a 14 kilometre wide Great Green Wall across Africa. The focus of the green belt is to tackle desertification and help improve the environmental, social and economic situations of the African countries involved.

Ecosia believe that trees can rejuvenate the water cycle in desert areas as communities are taught to maintain and harvest new forests in a sustainable way. In addition to this, trees attract more vegetation which results in more food to breed healthier livestock. The revived land also brings jobs to locals by improving local agriculture.