Delta updating tree bylaw

Delta is asking residents for their input on proposed changes to the city's tree bylaw.

Council this summer approved moving ahead with an urban forest strategy and also directed staff to report back on options to amend the tree protection bylaw.

“While it is important to ensure that trees are planted to replace those that are removed, planting two small trees does not necessarily make up for the loss of a mature tree with a large diameter tree canopy (e.g. young cherry trees vs. an 80-year-old Douglas-fir). It is proposed to review and update the bylaw to ensure that tree protection and replacement regulations are more reflective of the financial and environmental value of the trees being removed. It is also proposed to develop a program to conserve heritage trees and other significant trees in the community, and to ensure that the bylaw takes these trees into account,” a staff report notes.

The new bylaw proposes increased protection for larger trees and significant trees, increased penalties to discourage illegal tree cutting, increased requirements for tree replacement and special requirements for pruning large trees and significant trees.

Delta’s current bylaw requires a minimum two-for-one replacement of trees that are removed under a tree cutting permit. When more than one tree will be removed within 24 months, a tree replacement plan must be submitted by a qualified person.

Feedback is being gathered until Oct. 9.

Check the city’s website or call city hall for more information.

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