Goal 10 – Reduced Inequality In and Among Countries

Adrienne Porter
sustainable development

Reduced Inequality In and Among Countries

Around the world, people face inequality. It comes in many forms, and affects millions.

Inequality comes in the form of wealth and income.

The United Nations reports that those who make up the lower 40% in terms of wealth only take in less than 25% of the world’s income. Even as income increases, so does the gap between the rich and the poor.

Inequality comes in the form of global power.

Countries with less wealth as a whole do not have equal voting power to wealthier countries.

Inequality comes in the form of access to resources.

There are millions who do not have access to formal schooling, water, or a steady supply of food.

There are many inequalities in the world, and they will require many solutions.

There is no one answer, yet there are many. Trees are just a way to start.

How Trees Can Help

Although they may not be able to fix the inequalities that exist between countries, or completely solve wage gaps, trees can start somewhere else where divide exists. Between people of different income groups, living in the same city.

Curious, researchers took to space to see if there was a green difference between low and high income areas in cities.

The results were striking. Showing that across countries, areas with less income, had less trees.

From a financial perspective, trees help lessen inequality. More trees help keep areas cooler, costing people less money on ac units.

Trees also increase the worth of properties, helping out those who are selling their homes.

Some ways to plant trees, such as through urban development jobs, can help alleviate income gaps. Especially, if the people hired were previously unemployed or in an unfriendly job.

Yet that’s not all they do.

Trees are more than just potential income. They increase quality of life.

Trees have been shown to decrease stress levels. Psychologists have even done studies that link increased green space to increased positive mental health.

Even physical health can be helped with trees. Since trees help clean up air pollution, it lowers the amount of unhealthy air that the people around it breathe in.

Access to greenery, clean air, and a less stressful life should not be limited to certain areas.

Planting trees, even through volunteer planting, in urban areas helps to decrease the inequality people in cities face.

Trees may not solve all of the inequality of the world, but they are an easy way to help start.

See how trees support all sustainable development goals here.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay.

Adrienne Porter
Adrienne is an undergrad in International Relations and Communication at SUNY Geneseo, New York. Outside of school, she can be found doing extracurriculars, hiking, or enjoying the sun. Adrienne has always prioritized giving back to the environment, and has found ways to do so both abroad and in her home town. She hopes to be able to continue helping the Earth with ForestNation.

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