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City of Delta aiming at more tree cover

Committee members suggested replanting trees within the same neighbourhood from which they were removed
delta, bc tree bylaw changes
Staff will be exploring options for planting trees on private property through tree bylaw changes and tree replacement.

The City of Delta wants to improve its tree cover.

Planning staff are continuing work on revising the current tree bylaw and the urban forestation project.

The goal of the strategy is to significantly increase tree planting in the city.

The Climate Action and Community Livability Advisory Committee recently discussed the strategy and was told a survey of the urban canopy coverage by Dr. David Nowak of the U.S. Forest Service will be completed this month.

The committee was told staff are working toward a goal of 40 per cent tree canopy cover in all three communities in Delta.

The most recent analysis from 2016 shows North Delta has 31.5 per cent tree canopy cover, which includes Watershed Park, but not Burns Bog or the Delta Nature Reserve.

Ladner has 19.4 per cent tree canopy cover and Tsawwassen has 25.2 per cent cover.

Among the other actions already in place by the city is the Trees for Tomorrow program.

That program invites homeowners to request one or two trees to be planted on municipal property, immediately adjacent to the side or front of one’s property.

Trees planted on boulevards are watered by homeowners for three years to establish the trees.

The committee was told there has not been a strong uptake of that program, possibly due to lack of awareness.

As far as the upcoming new tree bylaw, it proposes increased protection for larger trees and significant trees, increased penalties to discourage illegal tree cutting, increased requirements for tree replacement and special requirements for pruning large trees and significant trees.

Delta’s current bylaw requires a minimum two-for-one replacement of trees that are removed under a tree cutting permit. When more than one tree will be removed within 24 months, a tree replacement plan must be submitted by a qualified person.

The new bylaw is to come back to council for consideration sometime later this year.