by Xion Abiodun
We are finally starting to see the detrimental effects of climate change, extreme weather, poor air quality and more. Not to mention that botanical sexism gets worse every year and eventually, we will all have terrible allergies if we don’t do something about it. The environment is getting sicker, the weather is changing and pollution is at an all-time high. Sometimes it can feel like we are living in the last days.
Luckily we still have time to save the planet, and there are multiple ways that we can do that. Since saving the environment is near and dear to me, I have decided to take things into my own hands and start improving the environment in my community. My environmental conservation group, Gloww Green, is planting up to seven fruit trees on East Oakland residents’ property for free. This will help combat botanical sexism, which is the reason why allergies get worse every year, and help to improve air quality.
Oakland has the lowest life expectancy in Alameda county, due to the poor air quality. This is because of the ports in Jack London and the I-880 freeway in West Oakland. The I-880 freeway has a variety of automobiles that cross it every day, and some of these release black carbon and nitrogen dioxide, which is detrimental to human health. Some of the health effects that stem from bad air quality are allergies, asthma, heart problems, back problems, nose bleeds, lower life expectancies and more. The air is a major problem for us in our City.
I started Gloww Green’s tree planting initiative to improve the air for Oakland residents. Trees help clean the air because their leaves’ pores inhale toxic pollutants. Trees can absorb as much as 48 pounds of carbon dioxide a year, and most trees live to be hundreds of years, which means they can potentially absorb thousands of pounds of pollutants throughout their lives. Oxygen is also produced by trees, and we need oxygen to survive.
We chose to plant fruit trees specifically to help balance the female-to-male tree ratio, and to help combat botanical sexism. It was also important to me that free fresh fruit was accessible to residents, therefore helping to improve their health in multiple ways.
If you would like to be one of the seven residents to receive a free fruit tree you can go to our Instagram at Gloww.Green and click the link in our bio to fill out the Google Form. If you can not participate at this time we understand. Some other simple ways that everyday people can help save the environment is by neutering or spaying their animals, and by making sure that their garbage is sorted out into the right places (trash, recycling, compost etc).
Xion Abiodun is a graduate of the SF Bay View’s Community Journalism Program and also a dancer. She can be reached at Xion.firstname.lastname@example.org.