Telford named a 'Tree City of the World' by the UN

Telford has been praised globally alongside New York – for its love of trees.

Telford named a 'Tree City of the World' by the UN

The Shropshire town has been named as a 'Tree City of the World' by the United Nations (UN).

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN along with the Arbor Day Foundation have recognised the Shropshire town for its forestry practices.

Telford now joins the likes of New York, Buenos Aires and Canberra as an international network of towns and cities dedicated to fostering best urban forestry practices.

In total, 168 cities across the globe were recognised this year, including 21 in the UK, with Telford among 50 worldwide towns or cities to receive the accolade for the first time.

Central Park in New York is known for its trees

The Arbor Day Foundation is the world's largest non-profit membership organisation dedicated to planting trees. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is a specialised agency of the United Nations that leads international efforts to defeat hunger. Both organisations came together in 2019 to found Tree Cities of the World.

Dan Lambe, chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation, said: “Trees are important to people, no matter what country they are from or what language they speak. We all want to live in a city that is healthy, resilient, and beautiful – trees serve as a common language to make that possible.

“Being recognised in the Tree Cities of the World programme means that your town or city is committing to go above and beyond to define trees as critical green infrastructure for your citizens.”

Telford has earned recognition as a Tree City in the programme’s third year.

To earn the status, Telford demonstrated its commitment by meeting programme standards, including establishing the responsibility for the care of trees, setting rules to govern the management of forests and trees, maintaining an updated inventory or assessment of local tree resources, allocating resources for a tree management plan, and holding an annual celebration of trees to educate residents.

Councillor Carolyn Healy, Telford & Wrekin Council's cabinet member for climate action, green spaces, heritage and leisure, said: “This is wonderful recognition of the work put in by many of our teams including our dedicated tree officers, ecologists and locality officers.

"Our thanks also go to the ‘Friends of’ groups who are pivotal in new tree plantings and their aftercare in our Local Nature Reserves, and to the many local organisations and individuals who have used their own land to plant trees.

“We’re so lucky in Telford and Wrekin to have the benefits of both urban and rural life right on our doorstep, and our new status as one of the world’s ‘tree cities’ sums that up nicely.

“As a council, we have prioritised protecting our natural environment and, through habitat restoration projects, wildlife support, green space investment and skilful tree management, we are doing more than ever to support biodiversity, capture carbon and make our local environment even more attractive and enjoyable.

“I’m delighted Telford has achieved Tree City of the World status, but this isn’t the end – there’s always more to be done. So we will continue to care, protect and invest in our green infrastructure for everyone’s benefit.”

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