WA releases Urban Forest guide

Perth’s urban tree canopy is set to be further protected under the new Better Urban Forest Planning Guide, co-released by the Western Australian Local Government Association (WALGA) and State Government.

The guide is set to assist councils, developers and government agencies in planning and policy creation around urban greening, tree retention and replacement.

WALGA President Lynne Craigie said collaboration with the State in developing the Guide reflected the level of concern across all spheres of government about the loss of trees in urban areas. “The benefits of maintaining an urban tree canopy across Perth are numerous: lowering surface temperatures, increasing air quality, adding to the amenity of a local area and in some cases fostering a greater sense of well-being amongst residents in the community,” Cr Craigie said. “Balancing this with the needs of a growing population and meeting infill and development targets is a challenge and despite planting and greening programs, many Local Governments are struggling to keep up with the ever-increasing canopy loss – much of which is occurring on private land. “The Guide provides advice, tools and case studies information to support Local Governments in their efforts to maintain and grow their urban forests. It also showcases the good work that Local Government are already undertaking and provides examples of other approaches that can be used to increase urban tree canopy cover.” Cr Craigie said many Local Governments were already implementing plans to reduce tree loss, with significant investment in planting programs on public lands and policies to encourage and require developers and homeowners to retain and plant trees on their properties.

The report can be found here.

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