OTTAWA, October 5, 2019 – Catherine McKenna, Liberal candidate in Ottawa Centre, today announced that she will work to launch a new tree planting program in Ottawa to increase the city’s forest cover. She made the announcement at Hampton Park.
“A re-elected Liberal government will work with Canadians to plant two billion trees by 2030, and that commitment includes growing Canada’s urban forests,” said McKenna. “Ottawa’s trees are a huge asset, providing shade and cooling, increasing our resilience to climate change, and cleaning the air we breathe. Speeding up tree planting in our city will give more residents access to those benefits in their daily lives.”
If re-elected, Catherine McKenna will work with the City of Ottawa and partner organizations to launch a new tree planting program that supports planting on both public land and residential properties. In Ottawa Centre, many of the opportunities for planting new trees are on private land across the city’s neighbourhoods. This program would help grow Ottawa’s tree canopy, which cools the city on hot days, stores carbon, and improves peoples’ physical and mental health.
“While Ottawa’s tree canopy is in good shape overall, recent research shows that some neighbourhoods aren’t faring as well as others,” McKenna added. “Our party’s commitment to tree planting is an opportunity to get more trees planted where they’re needed most.”
Ottawa’s current plans include planting 500,000 trees during this term of council. A re-elected Liberal government would help communities create urban and regional forest plans and undertake studies and pilot projects, as well as supporting research and providing funding so municipalities have access to domestic sources of climate-resilient and genetically diverse trees that will increase the resilience of Canada’s urban forests.
“One of my campaign’s themes is making Ottawa the world’s greenest capital,” McKenna concluded, “Initiatives such as the Flora Footbridge, our LRT investments and the new Low Carbon Cities centre in Ottawa show how we can work together to build the green city we want. Planting more trees in backyards, around apartment and condo towers and in the parks families use every day will help make Ottawa a greener and healthier place to live.”