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September 25, 2008
City of Toronto and private sector join efforts to double the urban forest through Trees Across Toronto
Today Mayor David Miller, Councillor Paula Fletcher, Chair of the Parks and Environment Committee (Ward 30 Toronto - Danforth) and General Manager of Parks, Forestry and Recreation, Brenda Patterson recognized the sponsors of Trees Across Toronto at special ceremony at Toronto City Council.

“To continue to build a liveable city, we must take responsibility for its natural features,” said Mayor Miller. “Trees Across Toronto reminds us all that we are stewards of our urban forest and that our trees help create a more beautiful and healthy Toronto.”

Toronto's environmental plan, Change is in the Air, calls for government, residents and businesses to work together to double Toronto’s tree canopy from 17 per cent to 34 per cent by 2050. Trees Across Toronto brings together government, residents and the private sector to grow our urban forest by planting trees in the parks and along roadways of Toronto. The program was started in 1999 by Deputy Mayor Joe Pantalone who was the City’s first Tree Advocate.

“Trees Across Toronto is an amazing opportunity for individual citizens and organizations to help contribute to the replenishment of the urban forest,” said Councillor Fletcher. “We should be quite proud that since the start of the program in 1999, we have received over $1.5 million in cash and in-kind support and over 400,000 native trees and shrubs have been planted across the city.”

“Trees Across Toronto is a great example of how Parks, Forestry and Recreation staff have been able to work with community organizations and the business community to ensure that our environmental heritage is protected, restored and maintained so that our parks can be enjoyed for generations to come,” noted Brenda Patterson.

This year’s Urban Forest sponsors are: CFRB Newstalk 1010, Canadian National Exhibition, Enbridge Gas Distribution, HSBC Bank Canada, Lomco, Standard Life, Sunshine Landscape, Toronto Hydro and the Toronto Parking Authority.

As a new sponsor, Standard Life chose to support Trees Across Toronto and include a tree planting activity for its employees at Evergreen Brick Works, as part of its 175th anniversary celebrations in 2008. “We wanted to develop a number of exciting initiatives to carry us forward beyond this landmark year for our company and our employees. This is an excellent opportunity for Standard Life to make its mark in a community that is so significant for us by planting 175 trees, and help improve the environment,” said Joseph Iannicelli, President and CEO of Standard Life in Canada.

To learn more about Trees Across Toronto, volunteer at a planting event or make a donation, please visit Donations to the program are gratefully accepted all year.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. In the past three years, Toronto has won numerous awards for quality, innovation and efficiency in delivering public services. Toronto’s government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Media contact: Toronto Parks, Forestry and Recreation media hotline, 416-560-8726,



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