Potential cuts to city's tree maintenance budget has Calgary councillor in knots - 660 CITYNEWS
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Potential cuts to city's tree maintenance budget has Calgary councillor in knots

The weight of September snow on branches still covered in leaves damaged 50 per cent of the Calgary's trees in 2014. (660 NEWS)

As flakes fly in Calgary Thursday, many are recalling the weight of Snowtember four years ago.

And, Ward 7 Councillor Druh Farrell is worried as City Hall talks cuts to the tree maintenance budget.

Farrell said we’re still recovering from that event that put tremendous stress on trees in Calgary.

“We knew that there would be a delay in a lot of tree deaths, and the canopy is stressed. We had a very hot summer. And, so to meet our targets — our canopy targets — we need to have significant more investment in trees,” she said.

But, she said it goes beyond even that.

“We hear from established communities as they go through re-development that we’re losing a lot of established trees,” she said.

“The vast majority of Calgarians really want us to bolster our urban canopy.”

She said there are many benefits to planting those elms, maples, birches, or poplars.

“It helps with quality of life, health, air quality, and certainly, temperature and it absorbs greenhouse gases,” Farrell said.

But, it’s not just trees that could be getting the axe.

“Every department has been asked to look at areas to cut, so they recognize this is a hold-the-line and a cut budget,” Farrell said.

Talks continue this week, but the full four-year budget comes before city council in November.

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