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Why We're Planting Trees in Alabama and Mississippi

Trees help clean the air we breathe and the water we drink. Plus, trees prevent the loss of precious species—but first, it’s our job to plant them.

Leaves, planting trees 

Why We Got Involved

 

Healthy trees mean a healthy ecosystem. Without them, we wouldn’t have habitats for animals or clean air to breathe. Because trees are so vital, we decided to do our part to save them.  

 

Last year, we realized we were printing more than 600,000 statements each month to mail to our members. To reduce this number, we introduced a Go Paperless campaign—for every member who opted in, we pledged to plant a tree.  

 

As a result of the Go Paperless campaign, we planted more than 5,800 trees in Alabama last fall. And we wanted to continue helping restore a habitat, so we decided to continue our efforts this year.

 

Why We Chose to Plant Trees in the Southeast

 

We’ve partnered with the Arbor Day Foundation to identify areas in the country that have the most immediate needs for planting trees. In 2017, that area was the Bibb Country Preserve in Brierfield, Alabama. The planting in Bibb County will restore longleaf pine trees to the area, which is home to many endangered species. The long-term goal of the project is to create a habitat and refuge that will benefit a wide range of bird and animal life.  

 

This year, we’ll contribute to the Mississippi River Valley project that will plant 500,000 trees along 828 acres of wetlands. This area—in Mississippi and Arkansas—is one of the most critical wetland resources in North America. It was once covered with 25 million acres of forestland, and today, less than 5 million acres remain.  

 

This has contributed to a decrease in water quality, a decline in wildlife, and decreased availability of vital nutrients to marine life in the Gulf of Mexico. The reforestation project in this area will directly improve water quality by filtering out pollutants in the Mississippi River and the Gulf of Mexico, and it will bring sustainable and flourishing life back to these lands.  

 

Related: Reasons Why Volunteering Is Important  

 

How You Can Help

 

You can get involved with tree planting, even on an individual level and in urban areas. There may be volunteer opportunities near you to plant trees and to help with tree care.  

 

Most consumer organizations have an option to receive monthly statements in an electronic format—we encourage you to sign up for these when available. You’ll be part of the effort to save trees while enjoying the convenience of fewer papers and less clutter around the house.  

 

If you’re a SelectHealth member, visit selecthealth.org/trees and log in to My Health to opt for paperless statements. While you're at it, see how easy it is to view your claims online. Going paperless really does make a difference—we promise, you won't miss the extra mail!    

 

 

SelectHealth may link to other websites for your convenience. SelectHealth does not expressly or implicitly recommend or endorse the views, opinions, specific services, or products referenced at other websites linked to the SelectHealth site, unless explicitly stated.

 

The content presented here is for your information only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, and it should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns.

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Post Author

Sandy Patton

Sandy is a Marketing Communications Specialist and has been with SelectHealth for 15 years. Her prior roles include health education and wellness coaching.