Municipality giving away 500 trees as part of climate program


  • <p>SOURCE: WIKIMEDIA COMMONS</p><p>A red maple tree in autumn. This one of the types of species the Municipality of the District of Lunenburg is giving away as part of a tree-planting program.</p>

DAYSPRING - Residents of the Municipality of the District of Lunenburg (MODL) can get a couple of free trees, picking from the red maple, red oak, red spruce or white pine choices available, during a giveaway event this month at the Municipal Activity and Recreation Complex (MARC).

Officials are distributing 500 trees, measuring about a half-metre in size, to MODL property owners at the Leary Fraser Road site between 2 and 7 p.m. on Sept. 9. The rain date is Sept. 10 with people able to collect their trees between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Each household gets a maximum of two trees and must provide their assessment account number (AAN).

Having the AAN allows MODL to track the health and status of the trees and offer assistance if there are issues with the planting, said Abhimanyu Jain, MODL's climate change and sustainability manager, who's overseeing the program. "That is also, I think, an innovative approach the municipality is taking to ensure the trees survive in the long run," Jain said in a phone interview.

The giveaway is part of MODL's locally-focused climate change action, which includes pledging to planting up to 10,000 trees by 2030. The commitment is listed under the category of natural environment protection and conservation.

"Tree planting is one of the most engaging environmental activities that community members can take part in to better the environment," reads part of the plan, approved in November 2022. "Trees provide many benefits including carbon sequestration, improving air quality, improving water retention, and reducing the risk of flooding."

People have a choice of four species to take home, options "best likely to survive and not harm existing trees in any way," Jain explained.

MODL earmarked $7,000 for the tree program, which he said, will be well under budget. Officials sourced the trees from Antigonish County-based Scott and Stewart Forestry. The cost was about $1,500.

A combination of short notice and tree size capacity meant seeking inventory from outside Lunenburg County this time for what will be an annual event.

"In the future, as we learn from this experience, we plan to be more proactive and try to get (trees) from more local sources," Jain said.

The program works toward MODL's long-term climate goals and the event encourages the public's active contribution toward attaining valuable environmental conservation steps, Jain indicated.

"I think it's a meaningful effort and the beginning of a long-term initiative."

Last year, MODL committed to becoming a low carbon community, setting targets to becoming more self-sufficient and, by 2050, achieving net-zero emissions.

To learn more about MODL's climate plan, go to https://engage.modl.ca/local-climate-change-action-plan-2030 on the internet.

To find out details concerning the tree planting program, visit: https://engage.modl.ca/tree-planting on the internet.

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