The council’s tree planting project proposals will be presented for Cabinet’s consideration at their next meeting on Wednesday 23 September.
The report seeks approval for the project to receive £385,000 in one-off investments for 2020/21, to plant a minimum of 10,000 trees across the borough. This project will work with Yorkshire Wildlife Trust and employees in the council’s place directorate.
The project is part of the council’s commitment to protecting Barnsley’s beautiful borough for future generations. Currently, the council is responsible for some 215,000 trees which reside on public land, the overwhelming majority of which are strong, healthy and have been at the heart of communities for decades.
Barnsley has declared a Climate Emergency to encourage actions to reduce carbon emissions. The focus of activities to achieve the Zero45 ambition will be the reduction of carbon emissions which will be achieved by a variety of interventions including a programme of tree planting.
The council has worked with partners at Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, Yorkshire Water, Woodland Trust, Highways England and Sheffield and Rotherham Wildlife Trust, to review the current approach to tree planting and woodland creation and to propose a new way forward. This includes future engagement with communities, schools and other stakeholders to plant more trees within our Urban Parks, Country Parks and Open Spaces.
Cllr Chris Lamb, Cabinet Spokesperson for Environment and Transport, said: “Trees decrease pollution levels and enhance local spaces and if there’s one thing we’ve learned from the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s that nature and access to green spaces really does benefit our health and wellbeing. The project also presents a great opportunity to engage with local communities and educate on the benefit of taking care of our environment and the ways we can all help.”