Carbon-absorbing micro-forests will be sprouting up in each of the 12 Parishes over the next two years in a bid to help fight climate change and speed up the island’s journey to carbon neutrality before 2030.
A Tiny Forest is made up of densely packed native trees, the size of a tennis court and is planted in urban areas where space is limited.
According to experts, they create an ecosystem complex perfectly suited to local conditions that can grow 10 times faster, generate 100 times more biodiversity and absorb up to 40 times more carbon than traditional planting.
The Tiny Forests also help improve air quality, reduce noise from busy roads and create a space for people to connect with nature.
Video: Planting is already underway for the first Tiny Forest.
The Government has partnered with the charity Earthwatch Europe to plant the first Tiny Forest at the end of the month, with the help of Jersey Electricity and Jersey Trees for Life.
“We all recognise the important role of trees in off-setting carbon emissions and contributing to biodiversity and a cleaner, healthier environment for all,” Jane Burns, Eco Active Programme Manager, said.
“The initiative will provide more trees in dense areas supporting wildlife corridors and air quality making this joint project a winner on many levels.”
Jersey Electricity has pledged £60,000 to the scheme which will see micro-forests planted in all 12 Parishes. All Constables have backed the project and are currently looking for suitable sites in their respective parishes.
The aim is for Tiny Forests to be rolled out to each Parish in the 2021/22 planting season.
Pictured: The beginning of a Tiny Forest in Tychwood.
Once all forests planted, Earthwatch Europe will lead an ongoing programme of scientific research to monitor their benefits.
“Micro-forests have been proven to have a positive impact on carbon sequestration and biodiversity in other countries and planting projects are powerful ways of rallying the community to get involved and take action to restore the environment at a local level,” Jersey Electricity CEO Chris Ambler said.
“We hope that all members of the community will get involved in planting, including children, families and pensioners working alongside Parish officials, Jersey Electricity employees and planting experts, Jersey Trees for Life.”
The Chairman of the Comité des Connétables, St Lawrence Constable Deidre Mezbourian, added: “The Connétables are enthusiastic about this project and see this as promoting all that is beneficial about the Parishes and the Island community working together. Micro-forests will help to meet public concerns about climate change and could have a very meaningful impact on the island ecology.”
Pictured: The States Assembly backed proposals for Jersey to become carbon neutral by 2030.
The project comes after the States Assembly adopted the Carbon Neutral Strategy, which sets out how the island will tackle the climate emergency and identifies the importance of activities such as tree planting in a move towards absorbing carbon from the atmosphere.
“We have been looking forward to seeing the first planting of a Tiny Forest on the Island and we are confident that the impressive results seen elsewhere from this new way of planting woodlands can be replicated here,” Gerard Farnham Chairman of Jersey Tress for Life said.
“There are significant benefits to the environment, biodiversity and to our community all of which are in alignment with our charity’s aims and objectives.”
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