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Native trees and CO₂

We’ve partnered with our friends Tāne’s Tree Trust, a non-profit charity who loves native trees as much as we do, to share access to their easy-to-use carbon calculator.

The Tāne’s Tree Trust National Carbon Calculator helps you work out how many native shrubs and trees you’ll need to plant to mitigate your carbon footprint from today as your trees or forest grows over time. 

You can also work out how much carbon dioxide your planted trees would help remove from the atmosphere if they thrive for a minimum life span of 50 years.

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Using the calculator

The amount of CO2 your trees are capable of absorbing is based on a 50-year timeframe of continuous growth. 

Remember, if you are calculating based on annual emissions, such as the use of your car or household activities, trees will need to be planted each year based on your annual carbon emissions — not just as a one-off. 

How many planted native trees would have the potential to balance my CO2 emissions?

How much CO2 would my planted native trees remove after 50 years of growing?

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Carbon emissions and timeframe

Please enter number of emissions

Please enter an age of stand in year

Warning, your stand age is very young. Trees do not sequester much carbon in the first few years after planting. Suggest you increase age to at least 20 years.

Carbon emissions

Find out how much CO2 you may be emitting using the Tāne’s Tree Trust calculator. There are also many other carbon footprint calculators out there to use to get an estimate of your CO2 footprint.

Age of stand or timeframes

Trees take some time from planting before they are large enough to make full use of sunlight, moisture and soil. The basis for all calculations are typically on a period of several decades. The standard timeframe is 50 years to balance emissions for one year.

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Planting mix

Planting mix

Trees are species which grow into tall trees such as totara, kauri, and rimu. Shrubs are smaller tree species that grow only 6-10m in height, such as mānuka. It is common practise when establishing native plantations to grow a mixture of trees and shrubs. The fast-growing shrubs provide shelter and protection for the tree species.

We have added the default mix of 25% for trees and 75% for shrubs. You can change the mix if you have the information.

 

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Do you have your own measurements?

This section is for planters who want to add measurements from their own plantings to calculate their emissions. If you’re a business or funder wanting to work out how many trees you need to plant to mitigate your emissions as your trees grow over time just ignore this section.

Please enter an age of stand when measured

Trees

Shrubs

Including your own measurements

A calibration measurement involves collecting data from a specific stand to allow a more accurate prediction of carbon sequestered by that stand at the time of measurement survival = the percentage of planted trees of shrubs still living.

Height = mean height of sterns

DBH = Diameter at Breast Height (diameter taken at 1.4m above ground)

RCD = Root Collar Diameter (diameter taken at 10 cm above ground)

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The carbon calculator we provide access to is owned, developed and offered for use free-of-charge by not-for-profit charity, Tāne’s Tree Trust

This carbon calculator is not for use to determine an official CO2 offset, nor to determine benefits or liabilities under the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme, or to make any claims of carbon neutrality. The calculations only show the potential of CO2 absorption based on a default setting of trees growing continuously for 50 years.

See more info about the CO2 calculator, and the calculations derived from it below.

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Common scenarios you could try

Below are some common examples of the number of native trees you would need to plant to mitigate your CO2 emissions from today over 50 years.

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A return flight from Auckland to Wellington

1 NATIVE TREE
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A return flight from Christchurch to Auckland

2 NATIVE TREE S
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A return flight from Queenstown to Wellington

1 NATIVE TREE
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A return flight from Auckland to Sydney

4 NATIVE TREE S
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A return flight from Auckland to London

34 NATIVE TREE S
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Use of medium-sized car, 10,000 km

9 NATIVE TREE S
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Household electricity use for 1 year (8,000 kWh)

3 NATIVE TREE S
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Avg household of 2 adults & 2 children emissions per year

32 NATIVE TREE S

You can find more examples on the Tāne’s Tree Trust calculator.

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More native trees in the ground means greater biodiversity, cleaner waterways, thriving industries and stronger communities.

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