The City has been mapping and monitoring tree canopy cover for the past seven years which has informed the development the Urban Forest Plan. Using high-resolution airborne multispectral imagery, a canopy area is analysed to calculate changes to 'significant canopy'. Significant canopy is defined as tree canopy cover that's taller than three metres and has an area larger than 20m².
To increase urban canopy cover, the City's Council set a target of an average of 18 per cent canopy cover across the City by 2040.
- Over the past seven years, tree canopy cover has fallen by nearly 1.5 million m². Two-thirds of this loss has occurred on residential land, mostly as a result of development
- Although the City plants 10,000 new trees each year, this is not enough to replace the canopy being lost
- If we do not act now, canopy cover will be reduced by up to 50 per cent in suburbs with high rates of development
- An Urban Forest Plan will help us to develop solutions to slow down canopy loss and increase the number of new trees being planted
- Extensive mapping and monitoring indicates the City has 12.4 per cent average tree canopy cover across all land types
- Mapping and monitoring reveal canopy loss rates have increased over the past seven years with a combined total of over 1.5 million m² of tree canopy lost
- 68 per cent loss from residential land and 12 per cent loss from verges.
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