On this last day of the Urban Tree Festival, we are looking towards the future. Planting more trees won’t solve all of our environmental problems, but planting the right number of trees in the right places, alongside re-wilding and other regenerative practices, can help ecosystems to become more resilient, enabling human and animal populations to cope better with the changes to come.
‘Trees help cool the planet by sucking in and storing harmful greenhouse gases, like carbon dioxide, into their trunks, branches, and leaves, and releasing oxygen back into the atmosphere. In cities, trees can reduce overall temperature by up to eight degrees Celsius. With more than 50% of the world’s population living in cities—a number expected to increase to 66% by the year 2050—pollution and overheating are becoming a real threat. Fortunately, a mature tree can absorb an average of 48 lbs of carbon dioxide per year, making cities a healthier, safer place to live.’
This post brings together different sources of funding and support to help you plant and protect trees in your area.
Now might not be the best time of year to plant a tree but it’s a great time to start planning. What organisations and community groups exist near you that you could support with time, or donations? Do you have a garden, an allotment, or other community space with room for a tree?
If you or your group would like to plant trees locally, the Tree Council has a list of funders who can provide funding to support you. These include support for planting an orchard in your school with the Tree Angel Orchards Fund, and The Tree Council Tree Futures Grant Scheme – a fund to get young people under the age of 16 involved in tree planting and care. The Woodland Trust also offers free trees to schools and community groups.
As well as planting new trees, we need to look after and protect the ones we already have. If you would like to get involved in protecting your local trees, The Woodland Trust have a number of useful resources to help you:
- For examples of how people are taking action for street trees have a look at their feature on Street Tree Heroes.
- See here for advice on how to set up your own group.
- If you are concerned about a threat to a tree or woodland you can report it here.
Finally, if you need to find out more about the legal situation regarding trees, including the role of Tree Preservation Orders, Conservation Areas etc, The Arboricultural Association publishes ‘A Brief Guide to Legislation For Trees’.
We hope that this week of sharing Acts of Tree Kindness has helped you to connect with, care for and learn more about your own local trees. If so then we would love to hear from you. Remember to share your own #ActsOfTreeKindness on social media.
If this week has been your first experience of Climate Museum UK, please do keep in touch, and follow our work in the future. Today may be the last day of the Urban Tree Festival, but the need for Tree Kindness and wider action on Climate and Ecological Breakdown continues.