The existing idea (https://engage.parliament.scot/post/57420 ) just mentions green spaces. This goes further. Require appropriate consent to cut down established trees in gardens, open spaces Requesting the government to: Enact legislation requiring legal authority and an substantive reason to fell established trees in gardens or public open spaces Background: Following the legislative changes arising from the The Felling (Scotland) Regulations 2019 it remains the case that no permission to fell a tree is required in the following cases: the trees in a garden, orchard, church yard, or public open space Whilst we welcome the Scottish Government's initiative to plant 12,000 hectares of trees per year and will rise to 18,000 hectares in 2024/25, it remains the case that these trees will take many years before they help to make a substantial contribution towards addressing climate change. A mature tree absorbs carbon dioxide at a rate of 48 pounds per year. In one year, an acre of forest can absorb twice the CO2 produced by the average car's annual mileage. Aside from the climate change impact of cutting down mature trees, there is the broader impact on the aspect of an area and the mixed message it sends out that whilst we criticise Brazil for cutting down the Amazon, we have people cutting down trees for cosmetic or trivial reasons with no checks or balances in Scotland. We would be living in a better, greener country as well as contributing to city fresh air and the aspect of local communities if arbitrary tree felling in gardens and open spaces was to cease. We see comments from professional organisations such as the Woodland trust that "Urban trees and woods, have a huge value. They are beneficial to our mental and physical health, can reduce flooding, provide habitats for wildlife, lower noise pollution and combat air pollution, increase property values, reduce temperatures in towns and cities." Trees, which bring multiple environments to nature, health, soil, birds and aspect should not be so easy to cut down when we should be doing more to protect the environment and our health.
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