Making News
Council digs deep to get Urban Forest Action Plan up and growing
by Mornington Peninsula Magazine

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The Urban Forest Action Plan forms part of Frankston City Council’s commitment to addressing the impacts of climate change.

Frankston City Council has allocated a further $60,000 – in addition to the $65,000 already committed this financial year – to implement its Urban Forest Action Plan as part of its response to the challenges of climate change.

The plan will guide the council’s efforts over the next two decades to create a healthy and well-maintained urban forest – the sum of all trees across the municipality. These include tea-trees and banksias along the coast; Norfolk Island pines, yellow gums and bottlebrushes along the streets; and remnant river red gums and manna gums in the reserves.

Cr Claire Harvey said increasing tree coverage and green space within the municipality must be a priority for the council. “Our aim is that within 20 years the tree canopy cover across all areas of Frankston City will have increased from 17 to 20 per cent, and Frankston City will look a lot greener and be a lot cooler,” Cr Harvey said.

To achieve this, the council will concentrate on planting in areas where heat impacts are high and tree canopy cover is low; in places of high pedestrian activity such as around schools, playgrounds, shopping strips, public transport stops and shared user paths; and within the Frankston Metropolitan Activity Centre, Cr Harvey said. The council will also prioritise planting indigenous trees and understorey vegetation to increase the habitat value of streets and open spaces recognised for their important role as wildlife corridors, and increasing tree and vegetation cover to mitigate localised flooding from stormwater run-off.

Frankston Environmental Friends Network chairman David Cross said his organisation welcomed the extra allocation of money. “Trees are an extremely valuable part of our environment – not only from an environmental perspective, but also for community well-being,” Mr Cross said.  “It’s essential that people have as many opportunities as possible to commune with nature.”

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