A global pandemic has opened our eyes to the value of engaging with nature and having local green spaces. On top of the environmental benefits of soaking up CO2 emissions, having ample tree cover in urban spaces is connected to lower rates of obesity, asthma, and diabetes as well as improved mental health.
Based on these links between urban forests and public health, as well as the worldwide interest in protecting biodiversity and boosting nature’s resilience, the Scottish port city of Glasgow has pledged to plant 18 million saplings as part of an urban forest initiative—that’s the equivalent of 10 trees per resident.
Right now, the Greater Glasgow area boasts 29,000 hectares of broadleaf woodland that have been separated due to urban development. The reforestation project, dubbed the Clyde Climate Forest (CCF), will span the region to connect fragmented woodland areas and provide corridors for urban wildlife.
The CCF project team is intentional about planting saplings in deprived areas, as well as on former coal mining sites, and plans to include a fifth of the city’s outlying rural landscape in their reforestation measures. When all is said and done, the project will boost tree cover in the Greater Glasgow region from 17 to 20 percent.