CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

Trees are so important to our wellbeing

11 April, 2019

• LIKE Councillor Oliver Cooper, I cannot agree with the statement that trees are bad for air quality, (Trees bad for air quality? Well, no!, April 4); they have contributed to it since the cretaceous period, enabling us to evolve and survive on Earth.

I have read the latest Camden planning guidance on trees, which came into force on March 15 in response to the public consultation on Camden’s Clean Air Action Plan.

It emphasises the positive outcome of trees and vegetation to physical and mental health, states that trees are a key component in the adaptation and mitigation of climate change, reduce the effects of the “urban heat island”, help to screen noise pollution and maintain connectivity between open spaces.

On Monday night’s BBC news we saw a playground in one of south London’s most polluted areas being screened from vehicle pollution by growing climbing plants on its railings.

However I cannot agree with Cllr Cooper on Camden’s poor record on tree maintenance. Camden manages more than 28,000 trees in the borough and it’s Green Action for Change, includes the objective of planting approximately 400 street trees.

I live in the Dartmouth Park Conservation Area and over the past 25 years have found the tree officers and planners most helpful, although I cannot always agree with their decisions.

They have been especially supportive in the creation of new TPOs, tree protection orders, when owners have applied to fell them.

Indeed one of the most important feature Dartmouth Park, according to its draft neighbourhood plan, is its green and leafy character. I cannot stress how important trees are to our health and wellbeing.

EILEEN WILLMOTT
NW5

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