How many trees are needed to produce enough oxygen for one person?

Breathe in, you’re in for a big surprise when you find out how many trees we need to provide oxygen for our lungs.

You’ve probably heard that trees produce oxygen, but have you ever wondered how much oxygen that is?


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You’ll hear a range of numbers and ways of presenting them because the amount of oxygen produced by a tree depends on the species of tree, its age, its health, and also on the tree’s surroundings.

The bigger the tree the more total oxygen it produces and more is its own requirement for oxygen for survival. Yes a 59 year old Neem tree produces more oxygen than a 1 year old Neem tree.

According to the Arbor Day Foundation, “a mature leafy tree produces as much oxygen in a season as 10 people inhale in a year.


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Here are some other quoted figures regarding the amount of oxygen produced by a tree:

A single mature tree can absorb carbon dioxide at a rate of 48 lbs./year and release enough oxygen back into the atmosphere to support 2 human beings.

–McAliney, Mike. Arguments for Land Conservation: Documentation and Information Sources for Land Resources Protection, Trust for Public Land, Sacramento, CA, December 1993

"One acre of trees annually consumes the amount of carbon dioxide equivalent to that produced by driving an average car for 26,000 miles. That same acre of trees also produces enough oxygen for 18 people to breathe for a year."​

– New York Times

" A 100-ft tree, 18" diameter at its base, produces 6,000 pounds of oxygen."

  • Northwest Territories Forest Management

On average, one tree produces nearly 260 pounds of oxygen each year. Two mature trees can provide enough oxygen for a family of four.”

  • Environment Canada, Canada’s national environmental agency

Mean net annual oxygen production (after accounting for decomposition) per hectare of trees (100% tree canopy) offsets oxygen consumption of 19 people per year (eight people per acre of tree cover), but ranges from nine people per hectare of canopy cover (four people/ac cover) in Minneapolis, Minnesota, to 28 people/ha cover (12 people/ac cover) in Calgary, Alberta.

  • U.S. Forest Service and International Society of Arboriculture joint publication


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Just FYI to all of us.

Mature trees that do not add oxygen into the atmosphere is not a problem. Adding CO2 to the atmosphere from the respiration of these old trees is not a problem as stated above.

We do not need to cut old trees to prevent CO2 increase. Increase in CO2 levels aids to accelerate growth of young tree saplings, other plants and grass.

To summarise:

  • We need at least 1 mature trees or 4 to 5 small trees to make enough oxygen for 1 person.
  • The bigger and older the tree is, the more oxygen we will get.


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