The scheme will provide woodland grants. It focuses on planting or improving woodland under the expert care of RFS and RSFS members.
This means train travellers can be sure that for every booking made through Trainhugger new trees will be planted across the UK.
80,000 trees will be planted in an initial pilot of the Trainhugger Grants for Resilient Woodlands and Treescapes. Hundreds of thousands more planned in an ongoing multi-year partnership.
To apply for the grants, woodland owners must be RFS or RSFS members. They must be able to show that the species, or the planting methods, will maximise the woodland’s survival.
Restock and small woodland schemes will be considered alongside new woodland creation.
RFS Development Manager Jen Turner said:
“This is a pioneering project.
“We are all looking to a time when it is safe to travel again. The lockdowns have made many of us more aware than ever of opportunities to cut our climate impact and improve local air quality. Trainhugger delivers so many benefits in these areas.
“Ticket prices are the same price as competitors. But every booking made through Trainhugger means a tree will be planted through the RFS and RSFS.
“Train travel also produces less CO2 than traditional car travel so this is a win-win for conscientious travellers and for the environment.”
RSFS President Simon MacGillivray said:
“One of the positives from this past year has been a growing awareness of the benefits of our forests.
“We’ve seen a huge desire from people to plant more trees. Through this partnership with our members and those of RFS, this initiative by Trainhugger allows everyone who travels by train a chance to be part of creating a new generation of woodlands.”
Trainhugger’s Director of Sustainability Nellie de Goguel says:
“We’re excited to harness the power of sustainable public transport to plant a network of healthy, resilient woodlands across the UK.
“Almost two billion train trips were taken in 2019. If less than one percent of those trips were purchased through Trainhugger, we could plant millions of trees in one year.”
Under the pilot project, RFS and RSFS members will be able to apply for grants worth 50p per tree planted. Decisions will be made on applications within six weeks.
Grant applications will open on 24 May.
A free webinar is being held for RFS and RSFS members on 24 May to explain how to apply for tree-planting grants.
Tree planting will begin during the 2021-2021 planting season and complete in 2023 at the latest.
More on the grants and application here.
Or watch RFS and Trainhugger partnership on You Tube here.