- A selection of more than 600 influencers joined with the nonprofit Arbor Day Foundation to launch a replanting of plantings kicked by a Reddit meme.
- The YouTuber Jimmy Donaldson, aka MrBeast, first started #TeamTrees when a fan challenged him to plant 20 million trees to celebrate reaching the 20 million subscriber's milestone.
- In less than a week, the campaign has raised over $ 8 million, mostly thanks to small individual donations from fans and a few larger contributions such as $ 1 million from Elon Musk.
- Visit the Business Insider website for more stories. [19659005Thisisthestartofsomeinternationalmovementforestry
When YouTube star Jimmy Donaldson aka AliBeast hit ̵
"Invitation to MrBeast to plant 20 million trees for special 20 million subscribers," read a Lisa Simpson presentation meme posted to Reddit.
Donaldson noticed then connected with fellow YouTuber and former NASA engineer Mark Rober to come up with a plan to complete the challenge, Reed Duchscher, Donaldson's manager and president of talent management company Night Media said.
"They wouldn't let it go," Donaldson said in a statement. "All my video comments were about trees!"
Rober envisioned enlisting the help of the nonprofit conservation organization Arbor Day Foundation, and five months later the partnership known as #TeamTrees has grown to include "basically any digital creator you can think of," according to Duchscher.
The Arbor Day Foundation will use its international partnership network to plant 20 million trees in a year
Each dollar donated – over $ 8 million since its official launch on Friday, including a $ 1 million donation from Elon Musk – funds the planting of a tree around the world, a process organized by the Arbor Day Foundation as part of its forest planting program.
"It's right up our alley," Deputy Director of Arbor Day Foundation Woody Nelson told Business Insider. "We work with partners across the globe and try to align these funds with projects that really need help."
Local partner organizations, as well as those from as far as South America, Europe and Australia, submit proposals to the foundation outlining their plans for planting. The foundation chooses the ones most in need of receiving gifts, Nelson said.
The collection will continue through December, then the first of the trees will be planted in January, starting in warmer climates such as Florida and Texas, Nelson said, and eventually reaching every continent except Antarctica. Not all trees will survive, but the Arbor Day Foundation only predicts a 3% mortality rate.
The foundation usually makes large donations from other large organizations, but Nelson said working with the YouTube community means #TeamTrees generates small contributions from a massive audience.
"This is by far the fastest increase to $ 8 million in single donations that the Arbor Day Foundation has ever seen," Nelson said. "Just to make it go viral and get so many small donations from individuals … it's just to make so many people feel really good."
& # 39; This Is Like the Avengers of YouTube & # 39 ;: Hundreds of influencers have joined the movement  Nelson endorsed the success of the YouTubers campaign, starting with Donaldson, who personally broadcast content creators he knew – many from his YouTuber Battle Royale, Duchscher said – to explain the initiative and get them on board. , Marshmello, Jeffree Star and Joey Graceffa have already announced their involvement in the project, and Duchscher said that hundreds more will soon follow to keep the conversation going.
"This is like the Avengers of YouTube, if the Avengers planted trees," Rober said in a statement.
While the move began as a "totally random" Reddit post, Duchscher said, #TeamTrees hopes it will continue to spark larger conversations on global issues such as climate change.
"We know that planting 20 million trees is not going to save the environment, but it is a step in the right direction," Duchscher said.