Britain to treble tree planting by 2024 to fight climate change

·1 min read
FILE PHOTO: Local youngsters Bella and Daisy walk through a forest covered in bluebells near Marlborough in southern England

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain said it planned to treble tree planting rates over the next three years to help reach its target of net zero carbon emissions by 2050, as part of efforts to fight climate change.

The UK wants to push ahead with its environmental plans and encourage other nations to do the same ahead of its hosting of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, known as COP26, in November.

George Eustice, UK environment secretary, is set to announce on Tuesday that woodland creation rates will treble by May 2024, with around 7,000 hectares of woodlands planted per year.

"We will make sure that the right trees are planted in the right places and that more green jobs are created in the forestry sector," Eustice is due to say, according to a government statement published on Sunday.

The statement gave no other details of the plan and did not say how many trees would be planted or where, and did not say how much the planting scheme would cost or how it would be funded. It also did not give a comparison figure for how many hectares of woodland had been planted previously.

Britain's climate tsar and COP26 President Alok Sharma warned on Friday that world leaders must agree to end coal use at the November summit to prevent a climate catastrophe.

Ahead of COP26, the UK government said it was focused on four goals: securing global net zero, protecting communities and natural habitats from the impacts of climate change, mobilising finance, and nations working together to accelerate action.

(Reporting by Sarah Young; Editing by David Holmes)

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