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Source: Auckland Council

Trees may take a long time to grow but Manurewa Local Board wants residents to live in leafy suburbs.

It has adopted the Manurewa Urban Ngahere Analysis Report detailing land in the area with tree cover.

In 2018 about 13 per cent of Manurewa had urban tree cover, one per cent up on 2013 but lower than the city’s average and well under the 15 per cent minimum target set in Auckland Council’s Urban Ngahere strategy.

In adopting the report, the board asked that it include a table with the amount of private land in Manurewa, its public parks and other land and road reserves, and their tree cover.

The city’s Urban Ngahere programme aims to increase the area of land with tree cover in a bid to help with environmental concerns and climate change.

Board chair Joseph Allan says the plan has a target of increasing tree canopy cover across all local board areas to 30 per cent by 2050.

“We have provided funding for this ‘Knowing’ phase so that we can understand where we are and how we get to where we want to be.

“Early work has involved analysis of our urban tree cover using data from many sources. It gets studied alongside growth statistics and projections and staff are now developing a long-term plan to direct planting.”

“We are seeing development pressure, diseases such as kauri dieback, and changing tree protection rules, so we have to do what we can to ensure we protect, and better still improve, the urban environment for the generations to come,” Allan says.

The Urban Ngahere strategy has three phases – Knowing, Growing and Protecting.

Manurewa’s Growing stage will involve activities including annual plantings and developing a long-term action plan, which will be brought to the board later this year.

Trees will cut greenhouse gas emissions to help fight climate change, provide shading while reducing stormwater run-off, improve air quality and increase bird habitat.

“One of the board’s outcomes states that we value our natural environment and do what we can to protect and enhance it,” Allan says. “More trees in our area can only benefit the entire Manurewa community.”

MIL OSI