TREE PLANTING FALLS SHORT

Dec 13, 2021

By Steve Kee

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The Federal Government has planted less than half a per cent of the two billion trees it pledged to put in the ground across Canada by 2030.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made the pledge during the 2019 election campaign, and the goal was repeated during the government’s 2020 throne speech setting out policy objectives.

But the Ministry of Natural Resources said the program isn’t falling behind.

They say about 30 million new trees will be planted by year end and the Government is calling on new partners to the project to plant an extra 250 to 350 million trees annually.

The slowdown is based on a slow start on sourcing seedlings, which can take two years to grow.

In an effort to give the program a boost, the government is poised to announce a multi-million dollar push to plant up to 350 million trees a year, including investment in growing seedlings. It is planning to call for proposals to grow trees throughout Canada by the end of the month. Targeted areas include forests, parks, suburban and urban areas, coastal regions, farms and ranches.

The pledge to plant an extra two billion trees by 2030 means that an extra 200 million should be planted every year, over and above the usual 500 million seedlings planted annually, including by the forestry industry.

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