In an effort to balance out the harsh effects of deforestation around the world, certified “social business” Ecosia was born. Ecosia is a search engine that benefits the environment with just a click. For every 45 searches, a tree is planted.
Evan Gamman, HSU environmental science and management major, thinks using this search engine is an easy way to help save the planet while browsing the web.
“I heard about this site a while ago and it makes me feel productive while I’m searching,” Gamman said. “I do hella searches. It’s sick to see my number go up and know that there are trees being planted somewhere.”
Since its inception in 2009, over 20 million trees have been planted. Their goal is to reach 20 billion by 2020. The revenue from advertisements are then donated to non-profit tree-planting organizations. The company publishes their monthly financial reports so users can hold them accountable and see where the profits are actually going.
Lyla Godfryd, HSU senior studying international studies, believes there are multi-faceted advantages in using a search engine that isn’t facilitated by a large corporation.
“It feels good not supporting a monopoly, like Google,” Godfryd said. “At the same time, you’re supporting reforestation on a global scale.”
The website encourages users to consciously consume the internet.
Their mission statement states that they, “believe in everyone’s power to do good.”
They want to empower people to end deforestation in a way that suits anyone’s lifestyle.
According to Google, over five billion searches happen each day. Imagine how many trees could be planted if Ecosia was as large as Google.
Arcata artist Xenia Robles, 21, likes that this website is a way to subconsciously benefit the environment.
“In a time of complete selfishness, it is refreshing to find an organization that chooses to run in a way that benefits the greater good,” Robles said. “This site in particular is really easy to use and easy to understand what they are doing. We get to see real results from our participation.”