It is totally reprehensible and repugnant that HRM council cut tree-planting funding to zero for 2008-09, as reported by Tim Bousquet last week ("Nothing going"). Sheila Fougere and John Simmons are right---trees are valuable in so many ways to our city's social, ecological and economic sustainability. It's time council valued trees for their real contributions. Forests can regenerate naturally, but not street trees. We need a vigorous and well-planned program to ensure as many trees as possible---big ones---are beside our streets and sidewalks. Council, please be forward-looking and green (for which you will be heaped with praise), and double last year's tree-planting budget to a million dollars a year (for starters)! Citizens of HRM, don't forget to plant trees---native ones---on your own properties.
By Peter Duinker, professor, Resource and Environmental Studies, Dalhousie