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BI3Plant 4,000 Trees in Stevenage by 2030

Progress

On time
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  • Initial scoping
  • Planning stage
  • Underway
  • Completed
Stevenage Borough Council aims to increase the town's tree canopy cover to 19%, in line with the recommendation produced by the Woodland Trust in their Emergency Tree Plan for the UK (2020). Increased tree canopy will support the UK becoming carbon neutral by 2050.

Description


Trees are great additions to the places we live, work, play and visit. They provide multiple benefits including:

Standard Tree Planted

1) Helping to combat climate change: through photosynthesis trees take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen. A single tree can absorb as much as 22kg of carbon each year, potentially keeping it locked up in their wood and roots for decades or even centuries to come. On average, one tree produces almost 118kg of oxygen every year.(Earthwatch)

2) Providing homes and food for wildlife: oak trees can support up to 2,300 species with over 300 of these entirely dependent on oaks for their survival. Many birds and several small mammals, such as dormice and bats, use trees for nesting and shelter. Bees will benefit from the nectar and pollen of flowering trees. Lots of invertebrate species including spiders, snails, beetles and butterflies, rely on woodland habitats.

3)Help to improve mental and physical wellbeing: while improving air quality, there is also evidence to show that a walk in a wood, or among trees, enhances our mood, reduces stress and improves our mental wellbeing. Trees have also been shown to boost our immune system.

4) Trees improve our local area: trees help improve soils, prevent flooding and soil erosion. They also provide a cooling effect by reflecting sunlight and providing shade.

SBC will continue to work with local communities to plant the right trees in the right locations and develop larger woodland areas, extending existing woodlands where possible.


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Tasks

What's left to do?

  • Todo31/12/2024

    Create new micro woods

    Miyawaki Woods: plant 4,500 tree saplings from varying species. Species will include: Beech, Cherry, Elder, Hawthorn, Hazel, Holly, Hornbeam, Lime, Field Maple and Oak. The 3 micro sites will be at St Nicholas Park, Hampson Park and Shephalbury park. We are aiming to start planting in December 2024.

What has been done?

  • Done31/12/2023

    Orchard Creation

    Between 2021 and 2023, the creation of community orchards in Stevenage resulted in 36 trees being planted.

  • Done24/02/2023

    Create a new community woodland in Fairlands Valley Park

    During January and February 2023 schools and local residents helped plant 3,500 tree saplings to create a new community woodland in the South Field of Fairlands Valley Park named Fairlane Wood. Tree saplings are usually 2-3ft tall and will establish within 8-10 years. In reasonable weather conditions (not too hot and dry) and in the absence of pests and diseases, we are expecting a survivability of 80% of the trees planted in the first few years. By the time the woodland gets to 20-25 years old, we expect 50% of the planted trees to be still growing.

Summary and contacts

Timeline

31/10/2022 → 01/01/2030

Portfolio Holder

Strategic Themes

Engagement type

Information updated 10/06/2024

How this action contributes to the outcome