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Rebooting the Earth

By Nicola Acutt, Vice President of Sustainability Strategy, VMware

VMware is on a mission to ensure a net positive effect across our products, people and planet. This Earth Day, we are taking action to inspire a ripple effect through our collective impact. For every employee that pledges to take sustainability-related actions at home or at work, VMware will plant a tree on their behalf through Restore the Earth (REF) Foundation.

But why is a digital transformation company that puts data in the cloud, also putting trees in the ground?

As part of an ongoing partnership with REF, we’re supporting a transformative vision to restore one million acres of degraded land in an area referred to as North America’s Amazon. VMware is championing this project because we believe that ecosystems are the operating system of Earth. They allow all life to flourish and are the foundation on which we build everything else. Today, Earth’s operating system is damaged, but we are convinced that with a solutions-focused, engineering mindset, we can be part of the solution to repair and reboot it using a transformative piece of technology – trees.

Trees are an incredible innovation capable of providing clean air, sequestering CO2, providing habitat for wildlife, preventing erosion of soil, protecting communities from storms and creating recreational areas for us to rejuvenate. In order for us to reboot Earth’s OS, we’ll need to plant quite a few new trees. In this case, a million acres worth, which at scale have the potential to reduce carbon emissions in the U.S. by 2%. What’s more, our partners at REF have created the EcoMetrics Model, an analytics platform that is compliant with global standards for ecosystem services. This model translates the environmental, social and economic value created by ecosystem restoration into monetary terms. For example, this innovative approach to valuation demonstrates that it’s possible to drive $168.3M of integrated value from an initial investment of $5M. The business case for cleaner air, cleaner water and environmental resiliency couldn’t be more compelling.

The EcoMetrics Model provides a transparent and verifiable way for us to not only offset a portion of our carbon footprint, but to also better understand and document the integrated value of our investments in terms of financial, social and environmental outcomes. Our mission is to leave ahead a better future—to put back more into the environment, society and the global economy than we take—and to inspire our employees, customers and partners to do the same.

This Earth Day, join us in celebrating the transformative power that trees have to reboot the earth. Watch this short video about the value of natural capital and how trees are the multiplier effect of landscape-scale restoration.

 

This article was originally published on VMware’s website.