The City of Mississauga has been given the Tree Cities of the World designation from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Arbor Day Foundation. Mississauga joins a number of international cities that have taken steps toward investing in maintaining, preserving and creating robust and healthy city forests.
“We are a city that values the environment and the endless benefits trees provide to our community,” Mississauga Mayor Crombie said. “Through receiving the Tree Cities of the World designation, we’ve joined a global network of cities who are building a more resilient and sustainable city by creating a greener and healthier community that benefits everyone. It is a major priority that we continue to preserve and invest in the health and well-being of our trees, especially in our diverse forests, woodlots, parks, trails and boulevards. Trees play a critical role in fighting climate change and making Mississauga a livable city by cleaning our air and water, providing shade and beautifying the places we live and work in.”
Mississauga is among 10 Canadian municipalities to receive the designation. The city met five core standards in order to receive the designation, which included establishing responsibility, setting rules, knowing what you have, allocating resources and celebrating achievements.
“We currently have more than 2.1 million trees planted in Mississauga and we’re working to plant one million more by 2032 through the One Million Trees program,” said Jodi Robillos, Director, Parks, Forestry and Environment. “We’re focused on maintaining and enhancing tree diversity around the city – choosing trees based on species and function while planting them in areas where they will thrive. With the help of our staff, partners and volunteers, we’ve been able to plant over 380,000 trees since starting the program in 2013. Having more trees in Mississauga will help conserve and enhance our open spaces and forested areas for future generations to enjoy.”
The international program celebrates cities across all continents that meet core standards for the care and planning of urban trees and forests.
“Through our Urban Forest Management Plan, we are ensuring that Mississauga trees are well cared for,” Robillos added. “We are addressing and alleviating some of the pressures our tree canopies face, like weather events stemming from climate change, mitigating invasive pests and diseases and managing urban redevelopment.”
Mississauga now joins Toronto, Auckland, Paris and New York City as Tree Cities of the World. In 2019, 68 cities internationally earned the designation.
For more information about the City’s One Million Trees program, visit onemilliontrees.ca.
Photo: Mississauga Mayor Crombie at a tree planting event.