Today’s Solutions: January 31, 2023

The Optimist Daily has shared several stories about the popular Swedish furniture company IKEA and its environmentally friendly initiatives such as its buyback and resell program, its pledge to stop using plastic packaging, its zero-waste vegetable cookbook, and its effort to sell renewable energy directly to customers, so its no surprise that the green-minded Ingka Group, the owner of most IKEA furniture stores around the world, is at it again.

The Ingka Group announced late last week that it has bought 1,321 hectares (3,264 acres) of land in Florida to dedicate exclusively to tree planting. The purchase is part of the entity’s long-term commitment to responsible forest management and will be the new home of mainly longleaf pine seedlings.

“The new forests will support increased biodiversity, help ensure sustainable timber production from responsibly managed forests, and recover land damaged by Hurricane Michael in October 2018,” it declared.

Including the land acquired in Florida, the Ingka Group now owns around 250,000 hectares of land in the United States, New Zealand, and Europe that they are transforming into forests.

“The afforestation business… is a long-term investment that consolidates our business while also positively impacting the climate through the absorption of CO2 during the forests’ growth,” says Krister Mattsson, head of Ingka Group’s investment arm Ingka Investments.

The Ingka Group decided to primarily plant longleaf pine because it is relatively resilient to the effects of climate change, demonstrates resistance to forest fires, and supports habitat for endangered plants and animals like the gopher tortoises, dusky gopher frogs, pine snakes, and red-cockaded woodpeckers.

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