June 4, 2021 Ottawa, Ontario Natural Resources Canada
Canada’s forests clean our air and water, capture and store carbon from the atmosphere, and provide a home for our wildlife. Nature-based climate solutions, including planting trees, also create good, green jobs and more natural spaces for Canadians to enjoy.
With the 2021 tree planting season underway, the Minister of Natural Resources, the Honourable Seamus O’Regan Jr., and the Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, today provided an update on how Canada will meet the commitment to plant two billion additional trees over the next 10 years, and create 4,300 new jobs in the process.
Following a call for Expressions of Interest through its Early Start Projects stream this past February, which received 120 applications for early tree planting in 2021, NRCan is now finalizing agreements that will support the planting of over 30 million trees across the country, in both urban and rural areas.
NRCan has also launched a Request for Information through its Future Participants stream, which is identifying organizations that can contribute to large and multi-year tree-planting projects across Canada, providing the foundation to ramp up tree-planting capacity across the country.
Taken together, these efforts mean that Canada is on track to meet its target of planting two billion additional trees over the next decade. These new trees represent a 40 percent annual increase in the number of trees already being planted in Canada, and will enlarge Canada’s forest cover by 1.1 million hectares, an area twice the size of Prince Edward Island.
Planting two billion trees is an integral part of Canada’s strengthened climate plan, A Healthy Environment and A Healthy Economy. It will help Canada meet its climate goals and will lower emissions by up to 12 megatonnes annually by 2050 by removing carbon from the atmosphere. It also builds on Canada’s commitment to invest $3.9 billion over 10 years to support the implementation of nature-based climate solutions, including protecting and restoring Canada’s grasslands, wetlands, peatlands, and farmlands.
The government will continue to work collaboratively with provinces, territories, municipalities, Indigenous organizations, and other partners to reach our two billion target.