# Study: World has 8x the number of trees we thought

Maybe I just havenât had enough coffee, but whatâs the takeaway here? We have more trees than we thought, so we are further in deficit than we thought? (To be clear, I am vehemently pro-tree; I just donât understand what this post is saying.)

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Something like âWe know weâve removed N trees out of T, which is P percent of themâ. Oops, T is 10 T, so weâve got to replace 10N to keep P constant. (The original natural attrition was also 10 times lower than we thought). I guess. [ED: deleted ârateâ]

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Except I think the study only found T, and inferred P. Therefore the only way âitâs not good newsâ is if they are some kind of malevolent hell-trees.

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Wait, we have more trees than we thought? Should we start cutting them down to make the numbers add up better?

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No, it makes sense. We can estimate P because we know the rough areas of forest that have been cut down.

So if there were a hundred and fifty million acres of forest, and now we only have 75 million acres left*, then we know we have cut 50% of the forests.

If we thought there were only 400 billion tress in those remaining forests, then we might have to plant in the order of 400 billion to recuperate.

But it turns out there are 3 trillion trees in those 75 million acres, so we have to plant eight times the number to recuperate.

Obviously these are all estimates, but 8x is almost an order of magnitude, and so significant even when youâre just estimating.

* Actual estimates, from http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/urgentissues/rainforests/rainforests-facts.xml

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Clear, concise, comprehensible. Thank you!

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(Maybe throw a fave then.)

ETA: YAY!

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