Press Releases
City of New Westminster receives $1.005M in provincial funding for urban reforestation
Posted On:
March 25, 2024

New Westminster, B.C. – The Union of BC Municipalities has granted the City of New Westminster $1,005,300 from the Province of B.C.'s Disaster Risk Reductions – Climate Adaptation funding stream of the Community Emergency Preparedness Fund for phase two of the City's Urban Reforestation and Biodiversity Enhancement Initiative (URBEI). This phase will see the installation of 532 trees on streets and boulevards, bolstering community resilience to the impacts of climate change and moving the City closer to its goal of planting 8,500 trees on City property by 2030.

“This grant funding is a big boost to the City's ongoing efforts to build community resilience and combat local impacts of climate change,” said Mayor Patrick Johnstone. “I’m grateful to the Province of B.C. and the Union of BC Municipalities for their investment in the City of New Westminster’s expanding urban forest.”

New Westminster suffered substantial fatalities during the extreme heat event in June 2021, underscoring the urgent need for action. URBEI’s phase two, “Urban Reforestation to Save Lives and Mitigate the Impacts of Climate Change in New Westminster,” prioritizes tree planting in high-risk neighbourhoods where social vulnerability and current lower canopy coverage overlap. At maturity, these 532 trees will contribute up to 46,000 m2 of additional canopy, providing shade and evapo-transpirative cooling that will help reduce the urban heat island effect in the targeted areas, lowering temperatures by up to three degrees.

“The extreme heat that enveloped B.C. in June 2021 brought the realities of our changing climate to the forefront,” said Bowinn Ma, Minister of Emergency Management and Climate Readiness. “We’re partnering with the City of New Westminster in taking proactive steps to protect at-risk residents through its urban reforestation program to provide cooling shade in hot weather.”

More information about the Urban Reforestation and Biodiversity Enhancement Initiative can be found on the City’s website.

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Media Contact:

Melissa Nilan
Communications Coordinator
City of New Westminster
604-515-3808 |