Trees and woods are extremely important – they provide clean air, absorb pollution, create a habitat for wildlife, improve mental well-being, are natural flood defences, are scientifically valuable… the list goes on. Sadly though, with numerous threats including infrastructure development, lack of protection for ancient woodland in planning policy (only 2% cover in the UK) and increasing pests and diseases, there are just not enough trees in the UK and we are currently not planting enough to replace those that are lost each year.
However, on 6 November this year, which will be the 800th anniversary of the influential 1217 Charter of the Forest, the Charter for Trees, Woods and People will be launched! “The Tree Charter will set out how people and trees should be able to benefit each other. The guidelines and principles it contains will be applicable to policy, business practice and individual action”.
The Tree Charter Principles cover:
- Thriving habitats for diverse species
- Planting for the future
- Celebrating the cultural impact of trees
- A thriving forestry sector that delivers for the UK
- Better protection for important trees and woods
- Enhancing new developments with trees
- Understanding and using the natural health benefits of trees
- Access to trees for everyone
- Addressing threats to woods and trees through good management
- Strengthening landscapes with woods and trees
Over 70 organisations from various sectors are working together with the Woodland Trust to create a future in which trees and people can stand together… and you can be part of it too. Simply sign the Tree Charter and a tree will be planted! The more signatures, the more trees!