Ontario is partnering with families, community organizations and businesses across the province to reach its goal of planting six million trees this year to promote cleaner air and help fight climate change.
Ontario’s Green Leaf Challenge launching this spring calls on the public to get involved in making the province a greener, cleaner place to live. The initiative is supported by Forests Ontario and the province, and honours Ontario’s 150th anniversary. Each year, Ontario plants approximately three million trees under its 50 Million Tree Program (50MTP), and the government is now challenging the public to match its target in 2017 for a total of six million trees.
Individuals, organizations and businesses can participate by planting a tree, participating in a community tree planting event or making a donation to have a tree planted on their behalf, and can track their progress at greenleafchallenge.ca. The website allows people to register their trees on an interactive map and access resources, support and events in their communities.
The best time to plant trees in Ontario is in the spring, between April and June so it’s time to get planting! In the southwest region of Ontario, plant indigenous trees like balsam, black oak, maple, birch, pine, ash and spruce trees. So far, 19 trees have been planted in Ontario as part of this challenge.
Our local community has already made huge efforts to improve our tree canopy. The Brant Tree Coalition, which includes conservation and environmental groups, is looking to plant 14,000 native trees and shrubs on Kraemer's Way in the city's new industrial park. The location is adjacent to the Trans Canada Trail that runs between Brantford and Paris at the Hardy-Oak Park roads intersection. The Coalition is doing this to improve water quality of the nearby pond, reduce erosion and provide a naturalized habitat for animals in the area. Many volunteer hours have been spent planting trees. Young and old have come together and we thank them for their efforts.
The Green Leaf Challenge and 50MTP are part of Ontario’s efforts to improve air quality across the province by planting new trees to remove approximately 6.6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere by 2050 – the equivalent of taking 1.1 million cars off the road for an entire year.
The Green Leaf Challenge is an exciting opportunity to get involved in making our province greener by planting a tree, making a donation or taking part in an event in your local community. By working together and each doing our part, we can all build a green future for our children and grandchildren.
If you would like to know more about the Green Leaf Challenge and how you can become involved, please contact the constituency office at 519-759-0361 or drop by in person at 96 Nelson Street in Brantford.