York Region takes a ‘bough’ with 2013 Greening Strategy achievements

Efforts to increase and protect forest areas for a healthier environment proving successful

 The Regional Municipality of York demonstrates its commitment to improving the environment with multiple achievements last year as a result of the Greening Strategy. The Strategy, first created in 2001 and enhanced in 2012, was designed among other things, to increase forest cover in the Region to 25 per cent.

 “Increasing and enhancing York Region’s urban and rural forest area is a vital part of creating sustainable communities,” said York Region Chairman and CEO Bill Fisch. “The positive progress made in 2013 proves the Greening Strategy is leading us to a greener future.”

 Significant achievements made in 2013 include:

  • Protecting 120 hectares of additional forest land through securement
  • Leveraging partnerships and project funds, including collaborating with Local Enhancement and Appreciation of Forests (LEAF), and leveraging almost $1 million in additional funds
  • Planting more than 45,000 trees and shrubs including 24 hectares of new forest
  • Celebrating the significant milestone of planting the one millionth tree at the Maple Health Centre on National Tree Day
  • Increasing resident participation in forest environmental education programs

 “These achievements reflect the environmental efforts that York Region and its local municipal partners committed for improving our forests,” said Town of Richmond Hill Regional Councillor Vito Spatafora, Chair of York Region’s Environmental Services. “Since the adoption of this strategy in 2001, more than 1,100 hectares of conservation lands have been protected.”

 The four Action Areas of the Greening Strategy are environmental land protection and preservation, enhancement and rehabilitation, leadership, innovation and knowledge and stewardship and education. Specific initiatives within the Action Areas include acquiring key conversation lands, planting in wetland and prairie areas, facilitating research, science and technology transfer and environment education throughout the community.

 York Region is continuing its efforts in creating a sustainable natural environment into the future with emphasis on reforestation efforts. To find out more information on York Region’s greening initiatives, please visit www.york.ca/forest

 The full 2013 Greening Strategy Report is available online.