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The Welsh government has come up with a plan to add up to roughly 1.3 million new trees planted. Basically, people can choose a native tree to plant on their property. If a household doesn’t want to or doesn’t have the space to grow their tree, Coed Cadw, which is the Woodland Trust in Wales, plants those trees in woodland areas for the household.
Lee Waters, the country’s deputy climate change minister, explains that the country must plant 86 million trees to meet its climate target. Even though many more trees will need to be planted, this project is a step in the right direction.
Tree planting has several benefits besides capturing carbon. Waters agrees with scientists that there is an urgent need to innovate new solutions.
“We are in a climate emergency and that word emergency is really important,” Waters says to BBC. “We can’t wait for a perfect solution, and we have got to try stuff and we’ve got to do it fast.”
“We know trees help deal with flooding, they help your well-being, there’s very good evidence that being around trees reduces your stress and your blood pressure. There’s evidence to show that areas with lots of trees have a lower crime rate,” he adds.
Jenny Langford from Coed Cadw is confident people will be able to care for the trees they plant and watch them grow tall.
“Trees are tough actually,” he says, “You’ve got to treat them pretty badly to kill a tree. So just a bit of tender loving care, and it will be fine.
“They need a supply of water, and they need to make sure they don’t get swamped by competing vegetation.”
In March 2022, residents can start to pick up their trees from five hubs around the area, and 20 more will open up during the fall.