Council’s ambitious initiative to plant 80,000 trees by 2024
Published on 16 November 2021
Frankston City Councillors have given the ‘green light’ to an ambitious initiative to plant 80,000 trees by 2024.
Mayor Kris Bolam said Council will plant 20,000 trees per year over four years as part of the Urban Forest Action Plan 2020 – 2040.
“Frankston City’s Urban Forest Action Plan is working to transform the City’s urban forest into a highly-valued, well-resourced and thriving asset. In 2020/21, we planted 10,000 trees and Council has now doubled this annually to 20,000 trees from 2021/22 for four years.
“Our goal is to grow our tree canopy cover from 17 per cent to 20 per cent by 2040 as part of our commitment to enhance and protect Frankston City’s precious environment,” the Mayor said.
Mayor Bolam said that the increased tree planting program is thanks to an investment of $200,000 in additional funding in the latest Council Budget. Trees planted will be a mix of sizes ranges of tubes to semi advanced depending on site specific requirements.
The Mayor said the Urban Forest Action Plan will deliver huge benefits for residents and visitors, adding: “The urban forest creates shade and cooling around our homes and shapes public spaces where we gather together as a community. The trees clean the air we breathe, improve social cohesion, and improve the health and wellbeing of Frankston residents.”
Areas of focus in the Urban Forest Plan include Carrum Downs, Skye and Seaford, which were determined by criteria including low canopy cover and high community vulnerability to urban heat.
Mayor Bolam said: “Trees support a living ecosystem, improving water quality and providing food and habitat for mammals, birds, and insects. Trees improve the visual amenity of urban environments, and make a significant contribution to the character of our neighbourhoods. They can simulate economic activity in retail strips and attract visitors to the City.”
South Ward Cr Claire Harvey added: “This will complement other major greening projects, including the Jubilee Park Stadium redevelopment, which includes the planting of a minimum of 300 trees.
“In January, Council also funded the development of the Urban Forest Precinct Plan, which focuses on allocating tree plantings in areas of low tree canopy cover, high pedestrian activity and high heat vulnerable communities, in Carrum Downs and Seaford.
“These ambitious planting targets should place Frankston City among the top municipalities for tree plantings in Australia,” Cr Harvey said.
Cr Harvey added that residents can request trees on Council land outside their properties by clicking here and selecting ‘New Tree Request’. Council officers will conduct an assessment as part of the request.
For more information about the Urban Forest Action Plan, please visit https://www.frankston.vic.gov.au/Environment-and-Waste/Environment/Trees/Urban-Forest-Action-Plan-2020%E2%80%932040
Earlier this year, the Municipal Association of Victoria’s State Council Meeting adopted a motion advanced by Frankston City Council that the MAV advocate to the State Government to review the Native Vegetation Offset requirements to make it more feasible for both councils and private property owners to establish offset sites on their land, particularly with regards to revegetation.
Council is currently working with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning on the establishment of the Native Vegetation Offsets Reserve Program and looks forward to sharing information with residents as this important Program progresses.
Council declared a climate emergency in November 2019 and is committed to delivering projects and planning for a future with reduced emissions and a thriving environment in Frankston City.
Some of Council’s recent climate actions include:
• Since 1 January, all street lights on residential roads have been powered by 100 per cent renewable energy through GreenPower™
• In March, Council secured $300,000 from the Victorian Government (Sustainable Infrastructure Fund) to use recycled materials in footpath and road infrastructure works.
• In May, Council successfully advocated to the Municipal Association of Victoria to seek funding from the Federal and State governments for enabling major road lighting upgrades.
• In August, Council joined Councillors from across Melbourne’s south east to call on the Government to support their communities to take urgent action and protect them from the impacts of climate change.
• Council has set aside funding in 2021-22 for large-scale roof top solar on Peninsula Aquatic Recreation Centre and the Frankston Civic Centre, as well as lighting efficiency upgrades in Council community-use facilities. For more information visit https://www.frankston.vic.gov.au/Environment-and-Waste/Environment/Energy-and-Climate
To receive the latest updates on Council’s climate emergency response, sign up to EnviroNews, Council’s environment e-newsletter via https://www.frankston.vic.gov.au/