Date

Friday, 28 September 2018

Release

Over 100,000 new trees planted on Council land, an iconic tree register and tools to encourage more trees on private property are key actions in Council’s first draft Urban Tree Canopy Plan now on public exhibition.

The draft Plan outlines the strategic directions and guiding principles for the management of trees across the Northern Beaches over the next five years.

Northern Beaches Mayor, Michael Regan said the four strategic directions of the draft Plan provide a comprehensive and cohesive approach to sustaining the future of our urban trees over the next five years by:

  • protecting existing urban trees;
  • maintaining the Northern Beaches’ existing urban tree canopy cover;
  • improving tree diversity and health; and
  • by motivating, inspiring and supporting the community to protect and enhance our urban trees.

“It’s very exciting to have this plan fast tracked and ready for community comment. Similar strategies had been in development under the former Councils but what a great outcome of amalgamation that our tree canopy can now be managed in a coordinated way across the whole of the Northern Beaches area,” said Mayor Regan.

“We are in an enviable position of being one of the few areas within the Sydney Metropolitan area with canopy coverage greater than 50 percent, at 64.2 percent. Many council areas in Sydney have less than 20 percent urban canopy.

“There are, however, increased demands upon the Northern Beaches environment as more residents and businesses seek to call the Northern Beaches home.

“The plan details how we will implement an aggressive tree planting program on council owned land of at least 5,000 new trees annually, which would mean 100,000 over the next twenty years.

“We’ll introduce an iconic tree register and ensure that any mature tree that has to be removed due to poor health or for unavoidable operation reasons will be offset by planting at least two more.

“The immediate focus will be on collating accurate baseline data to allow us to monitor the actions of the plan and ultimately measure how successful we are in protecting and maintaining a healthy and diverse canopy cover.

“Engaging our community in protecting and enhancing our urban trees will also be a critical factor in achieving the objectives of the Urban Tree Canopy Plan.

“I encourage community feedback on the draft Plan and look forward to more ideas from the community,” Mayor Regan said.

The success and progress of the all the actions listed in the plan will be reviewed annually.

The draft Northern Beaches Urban Tree Canopy Plan is available at northernbeaches.nsw.gov.au

Media Enquiries: media@northernbeaches.nsw.gov.au 9942 2678