We are in the thick of year-end craziness here at the Green Cities office, but a really exciting report was released recently and we couldn’t just say nothing. A few of our staff members were even lucky enough to be present at the unveiling last month in Orlando, Florida, at the national Partners in Community Forestry conference. The report is a call to action created by the Vibrant Cities & Urban Forests Task Force: a group of 25 leaders in urban and community forestry “experts and innovators” from across the country.
Here is what the Alliance for Community Trees has to say:
“Bringing together the observations and recommendations of 25 experts across multiple disciplines, the Vibrant Cities Report presents a new framework for understanding the benefits of urban and community forestry.”
The report issues 12 recommendations for action across the country:
1. Create a national education and awareness campaign.
2. Foster urban forestry and natural resources stewardship and volunteerism.
3. Create sustainable jobs in urban forestry and green infrastructure.
4. Cultivate partnerships between public and private sectors.
5. Develop new public administration models for urban ecosystems.
6. Create comprehensive multi-jurisdictional Urban Regional Natural Resource Plans.
7. Integrate federal agencies’ green infrastructure goals.
8. Establish energy efficiency programs that emphasize the use of trees.
9. Ensure equal access to urban forestry and green infrastructure resources.
10. Support urban ecosystem-focused, collaborative research.
11. Encourage open access to and use of social assessment tools
12. Establish national Vibrant Cities Standards.
Take a look at the report and let us know what you think! We are excited to see how these recommendations play out in the future of leveraging the importance of healthy urban environments and community involvement in programs like Green Cities.