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Snapshot

Big Number: The Climate Change Challenge

Young ethiopian girls take part in a national tree-planting drive in the capital Addis Ababa, on July 28.
Young ethiopian girls take part in a national tree-planting drive in the capital Addis Ababa, on July 28.(MICHAEL TEWELDE/AFP/Getty Images)

353,633,660

Ethiopia set a new world record last Monday when they planted more than 350 million tree seedlings in 12 hours, according to officials.

The challenge, a part of Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s “Green Legacy” campaign, originally encouraged residents of the African nation to plant 200 million trees in one day. After the 12-hour-mark, Getahun Mekuria, the country’s minister for innovation and technology, announced on Twitter that a total of 353,633,660 tree seedlings had been planted.

India had set the previous world record in 2017, when 1.5 million volunteers planted 66 million trees in the same time span.

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The “Green Legacy” campaign, which seeks to combat the consequences of climate change, has a lofty goal of 4 billion tree seedlings planted during the nation’s “rainy season” between May and October.

While critics say the green initiative serves as a distraction from the other challenges the Ethiopian government is facing, this budding woodland comes in light of a recent study which found that reforestation could remove two-thirds of carbon that’s been pumped in by humans.


Aimee Ortiz can be reached at aimee.ortiz@globe.com. Follow her on twitter @aimee_ortiz.