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Sunday feature & Photo: For Mayor Romero, 1 million planted trees in city admittedly a ‘big effort’

Posted by   /  February 16, 2020  /  No Comments

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New stormwater infrastructure will allow the city to plant trees “all over town” in a way that doesn’t use large amounts of potable water, says James MacAdam of Tucson Water.
/Ron Medvescek / Arizona Daily Star 2019

By Justin Sayers | Arizona Daily Star

As part of her promise to create an aggressive citywide climate resiliency plan, new Tucson Mayor Regina Romero has set the wheels in motion on one of its most-ambitious components — the planting of a million trees in Tucson over the next decade.

While several specifics of the initiative remain undetermined, including the costs, net water use of additional trees, and locations where the greenery will be planted, Romero told the Arizona Daily Star last week that she hopes to officially launch the effort in time for Earth Day, April 22.

Romero acknowledged those concerns but said she’s hoping to offset costs through public-private partnerships with nonprofits and local companies, limiting water use by using captured rainwater, including from the city’s upcoming stormwater infrastructure program, and planting trees in areas that need them, including schools.

She said she’s looking forward to working with the city’s million-trees coordinator — a position that was established this month by City Council vote — when that person is hired to hammer out the specifics.

“It’s a big effort — it’s huge. Planting trees is not easy as people would think,” Romero said.

Support for tree planting initiatives as a way to mitigate the rise in carbon dioxide levels has reached as far as the White House. President Trump recently pledged his support for the 1 Trillion Tree Initiative, a global tree-planting effort aimed at uniting governments and private companies.

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