City of Vancouver seeks community input on plan to enhance its urban forest

The City of Vancouver wants the community's engagement as it develops a plan to protect its trees.
Published: Jan. 25, 2023 at 11:09 AM PST
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VANCOUVER, Wash. (KPTV) - Did you know Vancouver has earned the title of “Tree City USA” for the last 33 years? The national recognition comes as the city works to preserve and enhance its urban forest.

Right now, Vancouver’s tree canopy currently covers 19% of the city. Their goal is to grow that and get to 28%, and that’s why the city is now developing an Urban Forestry Management Plan.

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The management plan will serve as a roadmap for the future of the city’s tree canopy, and will help identify neighborhoods that have fewer trees than others while developing strategies to grow more trees in those areas. That will also play a big role in reducing heat island effects during summer months.

A healthy urban forest plays many key roles, like reducing electricity bills, improving air quality, reducing stormwater runoff, and flood damage. The city says these benefits help to save an estimated $44 million annually in reduced healthcare, emergency response and energy costs.

The city says its urban forest helps to mitigate more than 240-million gallons of stormwater runoff each year and removes more than 290,000 pounds of pollutants from the air each year.

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If you’d like to learn more about Vancouver’s tree goals for 2023, or share your own ideas, two virtual workshops called “Let’s Talk Trees” take place Wednesday, January 25. The first is at 12 p.m., the other one is at 6 p.m. If you would like to join, click here.