© New Zealand Broadcasting School 2021

Kiwi ingenuity is taking on a climate change denier - Donald Trump

A Kiwi entrepreneur is planting hundreds of thousands of trees to fight US president Donald Trump and protect the environment.

Adrien Taylor's non-profit organisation, Trump Forest, has almost 700,000 trees planted - but is it enough?

Taylor founded Trump Forest in March 2017 with British climate scientist Dr Dan Price and American PhD candidate Jeff Willis.

Trump Forest aims to plant enough trees to combat the negative affects of the US president's climate change denial policies. 

To do this, they will need to plant enough trees to cover the North Island.

The organisation was founded after the trio became frustrated that only a small percentage of the world's population voted Trump in, but everyone will feel the consequences.

The first 1000 trees were donated by Taylor's sustainable cap company Offcut.

Trump Forest

Adrien Taylor and Jeff WIllis

The organisation is now responsible for the planting of almost 700,000 trees - which equates to $88,500 USD.

Taylor said it's frustrating that the world's most powerful, democratically elected man doesn't believe in climate change.

"It's fundamental simple science... the world's known about climate change for over 100 years now."

He said the worst part is how we were finally making steps in the right direction to combat climate change.

"The people who stand to lose, the oil and gas companies, paid billions of dollars to PR companies to try and distort the science - but the world was finally starting to move towards a collective action on climate change."

Taylor said that seeing Trump pull out of the Paris Agreement was incredibly demoralising.

From this came a plan to take on Trump so that New Zealand would not be "left powerless".

He said he wanted to inspire a collective protest.


Taylor isn't the only one who is taking to planting trees to help the environment, with huge international companies pitching in such as 'PlantABillion' and 'OneTreePlanted'.

But in our backyard we have 'Trees For Canterbury'.

Trees For Canterbury Manager Steve Bush said they're in it to "just make a difference".

Bush said everyone has to get involved for these projects to work.

"Groups are starting to network more and we are starting to make a real difference"

He says that he will have to wait and see what political parties do after the elections, as anyone can make promises before the elections and not go through with them.

Labour and National have both released extensive plans  for the environment, but Bush is waiting to see results before he believes them.

Both Bush and Taylor believe that the movement needs to be taken up by the government and companies in order to have the best affect.

Taylor says that if everyone contributes, then ultimately, the world wins.