Support for tree planting to be part of Gove's "Green Brexit"

Planting millions more trees will mitigate flooding as well as store carbon and benefit wildlife, Defra secretary Michael Gove has said in a major speech outlining his department's priorities post-Brexit.

Image: DEFRA
Image: DEFRA

In a speech to the Worldwide Fund for Nature's (WWF) Living Planet Centre in Surrey today, Gove said: "There is a growing appetite for a new system of agricultural support which puts environmental protection and enhancement first.

"That means support for woodland creation and tree planting as we seek to meet our aim of 11 million more trees. Because trees are not only a source of beauty and wonder, living evidence of our investment for future generations, they are also a carbon sink, a way to manage flood risk and a habitat for precious species."

Welcoming the speech, Woodland Trust chief executive Beccy Speight said: "Farm payments which reward environmental protection and enhancement can only nurture more integrated land management, in which trees play a crucial role.

"Whether for flood alleviation, improving soil quality or enhancing animal welfare an increase in trees planted, in the right way, can support measures which benefit the public, farming and the economy."


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