In accordance with a Council resolution in May 2022, the City of Pickering is updating its Tree Protection Bylaw to provide greater protection to more trees in Pickering. At this time, the City’s Tree Protection By-law only covers trees within “Environmentally Sensitive Areas,” identified as the Tree Protection Area in Schedule A of By-law 6108/03.
As a result, trees within Shorelines and Stream Corridors, Wetlands Oak Ridges Moraine Area and Environmentally Significant Areas measuring 25 millimetres (approximately 1 inch) or greater are regulated. The City’s current Tree Protection By-law Screening Areas cover approximately 38% of the total land area of the City. This leaves approximately 62% of the City’s land area outside of the Tree Protection By-law Screening Areas that are not protected.
The tree canopy and urban forest improve air quality by intercepting and absorbing airborne pollutants. Trees also reduce local air temperature due to the shading effects and in turn lower temperatures within the City and reduce the urban heat island effect. A few other benefits associated with protecting trees are to decrease the volume of storm water run-off and soil erosion, and they contribute to the visual appearance and character of a place.
As part of this project, the City would like to engage with a wide range of stakeholders to better understand how well the current Tree Protection By-law is working, what their experiences have been in applying the current by-law, and to receive feedback on how to improve the by-law. This is an important opportunity for communities, organizations, businesses and professionals to discuss protecting the City’s tree canopy and urban forest.
You are invited to join their Virtual Meeting on Thursday April 13th from 6:00 pm to 7:30pm.
For more information on the City’s Tree Protection By-law and a number of upcoming engagement opportunities provided during Earth Month, please visit the project website at: letstalkpickering.ca/trees.
An on-line survey is also active on the project website from April 3rd – 30th, 2023 to garner more feedback.