For Immediate Release: April 28, 2017
Contact: Jan Thornburg, Sr. Communications Manager 941-954-2613
Sarasota, FL: As part of its Arbor Day celebration this morning, the City of Sarasota announced a new environmental initiative to give away trees to City residents to help expand the urban canopy while reducing energy bills.
Known as the Community Canopy program, the City of Sarasota in conjunction with the Arbor Day Foundation, will provide 125 trees to residents at no cost. City residents can reserve their free tree at www.ArborDay.org/Sarasota. On the website, residents can use a calculator tool to estimate the annual energy savings from planting a tree in the most strategic location on their property. One tree per household can be reserved. The tree will be delivered to the house in a one gallon container. Participants are expected to care for the tree and plant it in the location specified by the online tool.
Four types of trees will be offered: dahoon holly, red maple, wax myrtle and yaupon holly. All are native, locally sourced trees.
“This program benefits the environment and can help community members save money on their energy bills through deliberately planting trees for maximum shading,” said Sustainability Manager Stevie Freeman-Montes. “The Community Canopy program is a simple idea and helps meet residents’ requests for more trees while simultaneously helping with our climate mitigation and adaptation efforts.”
To see a flyer on the Community Canopy program click here.
The program is financed by the City’s recently adopted tree replacement fund, which collects a portion of tree removal permit dollars to be used for urban canopy protection programs.
The Community Canopy online tool was created by the Arbor Day Foundation and the Davey Institute, a division of the Davey Tree Expert Co., and uses peer reviewed scientific research from the USDA Forest Services’ i-Tree software to calculate estimated benefits. In addition to providing approximate energy savings, the calculator also estimates other advantages, including cleaner air, reduced carbon dioxide emissions and improved stormwater management.
For more information about the Sarasota Community Canopy program, contact Stevie Freeman-Montes, Sustainability Manager: 941-365-2200 ext. 6202.
About the Arbor Day Foundation: The Arbor Day Foundation is a nonprofit conservation and education organization one million members strong, with the mission to inspire people to plant, nurture and celebrate trees. More information can be found at www.ArborDay.org.
About the City of Sarasota: Distinguished by Google as a Digital Capital in the U.S., the City of Sarasota is a diverse community located on Florida’s Suncoast with 53,000 year round residents, several internationally recognized cultural arts venues, stunning sunsets along Lido Beach, a 45-hole municipal golf course at the historic Bobby Jones Golf Club, and Major League spring training baseball with the Baltimore Orioles. Learn more about us at www.SarasotaGov.com