Turn Your Footsteps Into a New Forest to Help Fight Climate Change

Throughout January, people can turn their footsteps into a new forest to help fight climate change for the planet, as well as reaping the personal benefits.

For National Dog Walking Month, Asda Money has partnered with Treekly to encourage dog walkers to count their footsteps and turn them into trees to help protect the environment, including local dog walking spots. All people need to do is walk 5,000 steps for 5 out of 7 days each week and they’ll earn new trees to be planted to help offset carbon emissions, as well as create new habitats for other animals to roam. Just by joining the Asda Money Forest a new tree will be planted for free.

In addition to a tree being planted when joining, reaching the steps each week means further Mangrove trees will be planted in Madagascar, an important biodiversity hotspot that is home to 22 million people. The trees have been recognised as a key player in the fight against climate change as they are able to absorb carbon at a rate of 3 to 4 times more effectively than rainforests and are home to a variety of species. In the last 50 years in Madagascar, an island where 90% of the animal and plant life is unique to it, 90% has been deforested. One of the most effective ways to tackle climate change is through rebuilding areas that have undergone deforestation to help lower carbon emissions and rebuild natural habitats. Additionally through trees being planted, local villagers are employed to help lift them out of poverty previously created by deforestation and create livelihoods through restoring healthy fisheries and farming.

As well as benefits to the wellbeing of the environment, taking part also has huge health benefits to anyone, or any dog, doing the steps. Someone who walks less than 5,000 steps a day is considered to have a sedentary lifestyle, but with busy day-to-day lives and more people working from home without a commute, it can be a struggle to achieve the steps needed to stay healthy. By completing this challenge people can adopt a daily walking habit, boosting both physical and mental health.

From increasing heart health to strengthening bones and joints, walking is a great form of low-impact exercise that can help with being fit and healthy. It can also help creativity and mental health, as shown through a study from The Journal of Psychiatric Research, revealing that patients with depression experienced an improvement just by walking 30-45 minutes for 5 days a week – proving a great way to get healthy and help with any January blues! 

Daily steps are also important for dogs, with vets recommending 30-120 minutes of outdoor walking per day. This can help stave off obesity, improve cardiovascular fitness, strengthen muscles and bones, and help improve dog’s moods.

How to take part

Being involved can help fight climate change through restoring forests on a vast scale and is easy to do. It just involves downloading the Treekly app for free and joining the Asda Money Group using the code ‘ASDA’, and the app automatically starts counting daily steps. For a step-by-step guide of how to get started take a look at the Asda Money blog.

Just by counting steps on daily dog walks, this can benefit people’s personal and mental health, their dog’s health, and also contribute to the wellbeing of the planet and sustaining many well-loved environments.

Neil Foster, Senior Commercial and Product Manager at Asda Money, commented, “This is such a positive way to celebrate National Dog Walking Month, by making something we’re doing already with dog walking, help preserve the environment and so many of our favourite dog walking spots. We know outdoor spaces are so important to pets and their owners, so it’s great to be able to directly contribute to protecting them for now and for future use.”

To find out more about the challenge and how to get involved, take a look at the Asda Money blog for full details.

Anabel Cooper

Anabel is a graduate of King’s College London and upon graduating, she set out on a journey to inspire and empower women through her words. Besides working as a digital marketing expert, Anabel is a freelance copywriter.