Federal government gives 50 MTP new lease on life
By Ellen Cools
The 50 Million Tree Program (50 MTP), administered by Forests Ontario, has a new lease on life thanks to funding from the federal government.
The Ontario government had cut the program earlier this year to save on costs. But now the federal government has pledged $15 million over four years to the 50 MTP.
According to CBC News, the new funding will support the planting and growth of 10 million trees. The initial cut by the Ontario government had left 7.5 million saplings grown at nurseries in limbo. To read the full story, click here
“Forests Ontario, and the citizens of Ontario, greatly appreciate the federal government’s recognition of the importance of tree planting and the environmental and climate change related benefits that trees provide,” said Rob Keen, CEO of Forests Ontario, in a statement issued this afternoon. “A successful program of this scale requires years of complex planning and financial commitments. This federal funding ensures that the 50 MTP is uninterrupted – we need to plant seeds now in order have seedlings in 2023.”
“I want to sincerely thank Minister McKenna and Minister Sohi for demonstrating the leadership and wisdom to support tree planting as a very practical response to climate change,” Keen added. “I would also like to thank Forests Ontario’s loyal partners and the citizens across Canada (including the more than 92,000 people who signed Sambath Kumaar’s petition) for their overwhelming support after the 50 MTP was cancelled. This demonstrates that people value and recognize the importance of trees and the benefits they provide – carbon sequestration, protection against flooding and drought, wildlife habitat, and the many other vital services that trees and forests provide.”