The multi-authored study, “Neighbourhood Greenspace and Health in a Large Urban Centre study illustrated that, within cities, urban tree lines often follow the fault lines of health, economic and political disparity.
The study revealed that while trees are “the great equalizers” in terms of health outcomes, there is “great inequality” in terms of nature access in the city. Poorer neighbourhoods are impoverished not only economically, but also ecologically. They often lack green space and tree canopy, leading to diminished health and quality of life for their residents.
According to studies more investment in trees in disadvantaged neighbourhoods must go hand in hand with poverty-elimination policies, such as a guaranteed living wage. This tree study underscores how city policies around tree planting can help address such imbalances.
Healthy communities are associated with healthy tree populations for all the social, economic and ecological benefits they provide. For these reasons, the City and its partners strive to ensure that areas with less tree canopy are prioritized for tree planting. This will increase equitable distribution of the urban tree canopy and benefits for all communities