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'We must fight for our street trees,' says Grantham Journal reader

Further to the coverage in your newspaper of the drastic tree-felling by Network Rail, readers might be interested that in the year to March 2019, our Government fell short of its target to plant 5,000 hectares of trees by 71 per cent (Guardian, June 13).

Michael Gove, then Environment Secretary, has pledged funding for a further 10 million rural trees and 130,000 urban trees by 2022.

To meet our legally binding climate change targets, the Committee on Climate Changes estimates that we need to plant 1.5billion trees by 2050. These figures don’t add up!

Grantham trackside (13682834)
Grantham trackside (13682834)

In our own town we see established trees removed all the time, orchards and allotments built on instead of using brownfield sites, which lie empty.

The value of trees to our wellbeing is sacrificed for short-term financial gain. As well as absorbing carbon-dioxide, trees provide shade and the water that evaporates from them cools the environment. This reduces the so-called “heat island effect” in towns and cities, which with the recent heatwave has given us a taste of what might be to come.

The presence of trees also adds to our feeling of wellbeing.

We should fight for our street trees and pressure council planners to permit building on brownfield sites before we use our valuable green belt.

Anne Gayfer, Member of the South Lincolnshire Green Party

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