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Community vision for cleaner, greener suburbs a step closer

The Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale has taken a significant step towards cleaner, greener and more sustainable...

9 October 2018
Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale Trees

The Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale has taken a significant step towards cleaner, greener and more sustainable future neighbourhoods following the adoption of its first Urban and Rural Forest Strategy.

Developed in consultation with residents, the strategy was endorsed by Council last month and promotes cool, shady and liveable suburbs where healthy trees are retained and new ones planted.

Specifically, the strategy seeks to:

  • Retain current level of canopy cover, and increase where possible
  • Maintain the rural character of the Shire
  • Increase community support for trees
  • Enhance community wellbeing and health
  • Promote environmental sustainability

Shire President Cr Michelle Rich said the Urban and Rural Forest Strategy formalised the shire’s commitment to managing, protecting and retaining trees and native flora.

“What residents value most about living in the shire is the relaxed country lifestyle and our connection to nature - two things this strategy seeks to protect and enhance,” Cr Rich said.

“The Urban and Rural Tree Strategy represents the community’s vision for greener neighbourhoods and acknowledges the peri-urban nature of the Shire. Whereas many councils focus on urban forest strategies alone, our plan takes into account the vastly different natural environment that exists between some suburbs. 

“Responsible environmental management is something we feel very strongly about and the strategy reflects our commitment in this area.”

Cr Rich said there were many economic, environmental and social benefits to tree canopy cover.  

“Trees are an incredibly important natural asset that provide shade, reduce air temperature and control storm water flow,” she said.

“They also offer economic value by helping reduce energy costs and increasing property values. Studies have also shown greenspace to have a positive impact on mental health.”

The strategy was informed by feedback gathered at community workshops and via online surveys. A draft was advertised for public comment from June 29 to July 23. 

The draft strategy can be viewed on the shire’s website, with a final version to be made public in the coming weeks.