Ottawa (May 8, 2007)- Mayor Larry O’Brien, Councillor Peter Hume, and Neil Pratt from the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity of the United Nations Environment Programme, planted the Ottawa Tree at City Hall to launch the City’s new Tree, Reforestation and Environmental Enhancement (TREE) Program, challenging other Canadian municipalities to follow Ottawa’s lead as part of the United Nations Plant for the Planet: Billion Tree Campaign.
The United Nations Plant for the Planet: Billion Tree Campaign is a global call to plant 1 billion trees in 2007. Ottawa City Council has answered the call and has committed to planting 100,000 trees over the next four years in Ottawa.
“Today, we planted the Ottawa Tree, the first tree of our City’s new TREE Program,” said Mayor O’Brien. “As Mayor of Ottawa, I am issuing a National Tree Planting Challenge, challenging other Canadian municipalities to join us in committing to plant trees in an effort to sustain a healthy environment for future generations.”
The TREE Program supports the City’s commitment to be a green and environmentally sensitive city by enhancing Ottawa’s urban and rural forests through the provision of trees for Ottawa residents to plant on their own property. The Program will also plant trees in parks and along streets, provide tree planting grants to community groups for community planting projects, and provide outreach to assist rural landowners with the protection and management of their woodlots.
“The TREE Program empowers all of Ottawa – residents, businesses, community groups and schools to do their part to enhance and maintain our urban forest cover and combat climate change,” said Councillor Hume. “Every tree planted makes a difference. We have started with one today, and we encourage everyone to a plant a tree and act locally for a global cause. It’s planting a living legacy today that casts hope for the future of our City, country, and planet.”
Tree distributions to residents will take place each spring and fall over the next four years. The first tree distribution of a variety of small and large growing trees (subject to availability) will take place this fall.
To register to receive a tree, or for more information on the TREE Program, the National Tree Planting Challenge, and Forestry Services’ initiatives visit the City of Ottawa.
City of Ottawa