Marc Benioff, Chairman and CEO of Salesforce.com speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Jan. 23, 2020.
Adam Galica | CNBC
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff, whose known for badgering tech executives to be more civic-minded, said Thursday that over 300 companies have joined his latest initiative to plant one trillion trees by the end of the decade.
It remains unclear what responsibilities, if any, the initiative will hold members to.
1t.org launched at the World Economic Forum on Tuesday to provide governmental and corporate support to the Trillion Trees Campaign, which hopes to plant, restore, or conserve one trillion trees by 2050. The World Economic Forum initiative hopes to accomplish that goal by the end of the decade.
“I think everybody realizes we’re in a planetary emergency and we need to make changes, and business is the greatest platform for change,” Benioff said. “If you ask what the narrative has been here at Davos, there has been a tremendous narrative around what can we do to improve the state of the world.”
Benioff and his wife, Lynne, will provide the platform with initial financial backing, though the amount of the investment was not disclosed. Benioff, who is a trustee of the WEF, said that the additional trees will sequester substantial amounts of carbon in the atmosphere, mitigating the effects of climate change.
President Donald Trump announced U.S. government support for the initiative on Tuesday.
“The Chinese government also is supporting it. The European government is supporting it,” Benioff added on Thursday. “The president of Colombia, President Duque, announced that he is supporting it and over 300 companies have come forward here in Davos to say they’re going to participate.”
Environmental activist Greta Thunberg criticized the initiative in her keynote speech at the WEF on Tuesday for not doing enough to counter climate change.
“Planting trees is very good of course, but it is nowhere near enough,” she said.