Is it really okay to cut a tree down to use as an ornament?
Many consumers will be asking themselves that question this holiday season.
In this age of environmental awareness, it is appropriate to know a favorite family holiday tradition of choosing a real Christmas tree over an artificial one is still the environmentally sound choice. It is also a good economical choice.
Firstly, Christmas tree farms stabilize soil, protect water supplies and provide refuge for wildlife while creating scenic green belts. Also, many Christmas trees are grown on soils that could not support other crops.
Secondly, Christmas trees benefit the atmosphere. A real Christmas tree absorbs carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, emitting fresh oxygen. This helps prevent the earth-warming greenhouse effect. One acre of Christmas trees produces the daily oxygen requirement for 18 people, and with more than one million acres producing Christmas trees in North America that translates into oxygen for 18 million people everyday. For every real Christmas tree harvested, three seedlings are planted in its place.
Thirdly, real Christmas trees are a locally-grown, recyclable resource. These farms employ local labour and use local services, benefiting the economy of the area. A real tree captures carbon from the atmosphere and holds it in the wood of the tree, eventually turning into black soil. Most cities now chip real trees into useful mulches for the city’s flowerbeds and gardens. Artificial trees, however, are usually manufactured in Korea, Taiwan or Hong Kong and are made of plastics and metals that aren’t biodegradable. When disposed of, the artificial trees will never deteriorate. Their effects on our environment are evident and will remain for countless generations.
Over the years, the Christmas tree has come to symbolize the faith and hope of harmony among all mankind. This spirit is REAL and a REAL Christmas tree, when brought inside our homes, projects this feeling through its pleasant scent and natural warm beauty.
Information complements of the National Christmas Tree Growers Association.