Why do urban trees matter?
Canberra’s urban areas have over 750,000 ACT Government managed trees and there are many hundreds-of-thousands more in peoples’ gardens. These trees are highly valued by the community and have many benefits. Critically, they have an important role in reducing the impact of hot weather in urban areas, which will only become more extreme as our climate warms. The temperature difference between pavements in sun and shade can be over 12⁰C.
While many suburbs have good tree canopy cover, others do not and our existing tree canopy cover is being reduced by development and aging trees. The Government has committed to deliver a Living Infrastructure Plan, but it’s not clear how the plan will be implemented.
What are the Greens doing to protect them?
In late 2017, I introduced a motion in the Assembly setting out a clear action plan to ensure that the Government’s targets are met and our canopy cover increases as our climate warms. In a major win, this was passed and the Government will now have to increase our tree cover. You can watch my motion here.