LINCOLN, Nebraska and AUCKLAND, New Zealand (May 26, 2022) – The Arbor Day Foundation is partnering with Auckland Council as part of its local government's urban ngahere (forest) strategy. This strategy will increase the urban tree canopy by planting trees in areas of greatest need in the Auckland region.
"Auckland has previously been awarded a Tree Cities of the World designation for its creativity and sustainability in creating healthier urban spaces," said Dan Lambe, chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation. "We could not be more excited for this partnership with Auckland Council who has a deep understanding of the importance urban forests play in our everyday lives.”
Auckland Council prioritizes the care and upkeep of its urban ngahere (forest) as it cools the city, cleans the air and water and enhances biodiversity. The council will source thousands of native trees and shrubs to be planted this year from local nurseries run by local iwi (tribal people) and community organizations.
“I welcome Auckland Council’s partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation, which will progress our goal of increasing Auckland’s tree canopy coverage to create a greener and more beautiful city, provide shade in public areas and absorb carbon emissions,” said Phil Goff, mayor of Auckland. “If our proposed Climate Action Targeted Rate is supported by Auckland councillors this year, we will also plant an additional 15,000 large native trees in low-income areas that currently have low canopy coverage, addressing a long-standing inequity in our city.”
Auckland Council’s Million Trees project was initiated by Mayor Goff in 2016 and successfully planted more than one million trees across the region by the end of the first mayoral term. Having exceeded the initial target, Mayor Goff set the next goal of planting an additional 1.5 million native trees and shrubs during the 2019 to 2022 council term. Trees will be planted in areas of greatest need, and the current goal is to increase the urban tree cover from 18 percent to 30 percent.
The planting of trees and the wellbeing of the environment is strongly connected to Matariki, which signals the M?ori New Year and is a time of renewal and rest in New Zealand that begins with the rising of the Matariki (Pleiades) constellation. The four main planting events have been planned to coincide with this and will take place on May 28, June 18, July 2 and July 30 of this year.
About the Arbor Day Foundation
Founded in Nebraska, USA in 1972 in the centennial year of the first Arbor Day observance, the Arbor Day Foundation has grown to become the largest nonprofit membership organization dedicated to planting trees, with more than one million members, supporters and valued partners. Since 1972, almost 500 million Arbor Day Foundation trees have been planted in neighborhoods, communities, cities and forests throughout the world. Our vision is to lead toward a world where trees are used to solve issues critical to survival.
As one of the world's largest operating conservation foundations, the Arbor Day Foundation, through its members, partners and programs, educates and engages stakeholders and communities across the globe to involve themselves in its mission of planting, nurturing and celebrating trees. More information is available at arborday.org.
About Auckland Council
Auckland Council is Aotearoa New Zealand’s largest local government authority, uniting more than 1.5 million Aucklanders and looking after essential services and policy setting for the region. T?maki Makaurau, the Auckland region, is home to a diverse population and is characterised by native forests, four harbours, volcanic cones and islands, and a vibrant city that is a gateway for international visitors.
We are guardians of more than 80,000 hectares of public open space, which includes two significant rainforest ranges, and 4,500-plus parks. The council’s vision to increase urban forest canopy cover is driven by our Urban Ngahere (Forest) Strategy.
Find out more about us at aucklandcouncil.govt.nz.
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