• treesmatterfrederi

Plant a trillion trees!

Updated: Apr 12

We are killing the soil fungi that support trees everywhere. The good news? We know how to fix this. Plant a trillion trees!

It turns out that the mycorrhizal fungi that underpin much of life on land, are a lot like human gut bacteria. There’s the good and the bad. And it turns out that, just like a diet heavy in refined sugars plays havoc with human probiota, climate change is encouraging the bad fungi in the world’s “gut”.

Sixty percent of trees in the world depend on the good fungi (em). But as temperatures rise because we are cutting trees and burning more fossil fuels (not less) each year, these fungi are dying out and so are the tree species associated with them. And of course that means all of the flora & fauna go too. That’s MOST of the other plants, birds, insects, amphibians and other critters.

This is not an “out there” somewhere else problem. In NB, David Palmer, the co-author of The Great Trees of NB says we are going to lose a substantial percentage of our current species as temperatures continue to climb.

But the good news is we absolutely know how to fix this!

Globally, we need to stop cutting trees, and plant a lot more.

In Canada’s urban centres, we need to stop cutting trees, and plant a lot more.

In Fredericton, you’ve got it! We need to protect and restore and increase our public and urban forest.

That means prioritizing city decisions that increase the number of trees and quality of canopy overhead, even when that competes with another value, like bulldozing down a tract of land because it’s more convenient than building around trees; or investing in saving significant and mature trees, even when the urban plan calls for more concrete; and putting budget into expanding park spaces and replanting unused city land, even though there is no immediately obvious recreational or other human “payback.”

And all of us need to plant trees - individually, as neighbourhoods, through organizations like Nashwaak Watershed Association, and by increasing our city Parks and Trees budget so that they can do this for us and our grandchildren’s grandchildren...

AND, it’s election time! So, tell your candidates for council and mayor that you want a long-term commitment to an expanded urban forest budget in keeping with other cities our size - to protect, restore and increase our tree canopy.

Let us know what they said!

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