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Tree–planting target…

Tree–planting target… 14 June 2019

Tree–planting in England falls 71% short of government target (via The Guardian)

By Fiona Harvey

Tree–planting in England fell well short of targets in the past year new figures show, despite government promises to restore and plant new woodland across the country to combat the climate change crisis.

Only 1,420 hectares (3,507 acres) of trees were planted in England in the year to March 2019, against the government’s target of 5,000 hectares in the period, with smaller areas in Wales and Northern Ireland, at 500 hectares and 240 hectares respectively. The total tree cover of the UK is unchanged at 10% in England, 15% in Wales, 19% in Scotland and 8% in Northern Ireland.

However Scotland did far better, with 11,200 hectares planted, taking the UK’s total to 13,400 hectares, the highest level overall in the last decade.

Michael Gove, the environment secretary, has promised a national campaign of tree–planting, with pledges from the government of £50m for 10m new rural trees and £10m for 130,000 urban trees by 2022. Setting out measures the UK will need to implement to achieve the net–zero carbon target, which is shortly to be enshrined in legislation, the Committee on Climate Change said 1.5bn trees would be needed by 2050, equivalent to an area of 30,000 hectares every year, with 15% of crop land turned to tree–planting and growing plants for fuel.

Read more via The Guardian…