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New Greening Sydney Plan on the cards::

More street trees, green walls and community gardens are part of a new plan by the City of Sydney for a greener city, improved air quality and more habitat for wildlife.

The projects, contained in the City's draft Greening Sydney Plan, include six new key programs to encourage people to make green lifestyle choices such as greening shared gardens, verges and median strips and getting involved in, community gardens, junior rangers and land care groups.

The Lord Mayor of Sydney Clover Moore said a greener city brought not only social, ecological and environmental benefits, but economic advantages.

"Trees make cities healthier and more beautiful. They bring more people into parks and gardens, they make us cooler on a hot summer day and create places for natives wildlife to live.

"A greener city makes financial sense - by reducing cooling costs and improving the viability of retail activity."

University of Technology urban ecologist, Dr Jane Tarran, said that increasing urbanisation had meant a steady decline in contact with nature and a loss of connecting with birds and wildlife.

'Nature and urban forest are critical to human wellbeing," she said.

'They have a restorative power which has profound effects on human behaviour and functioning, providing recovery from mental fatigue and information overload.

Greening Sydney Plan focuses on:

URBAN CANOPY:   Developing and protectingthe City's urban forest
URBAN ECOLOGY: Enhancing habitat to promote biodiversity
COMMUNITY EMPOWERMENT: Encouraging community participation
PUBLIC DOMAIN: Improving streetscapes and public places
NEW DEVELOPMENT: Enabling private sector greening
WATER SENSITIVE URBAN DESIGN: Native species & stormwater treatment                          

The draft Greening Sydney Plan will go to Council for consideration next week. If accepted by Council, the draft Greening Sydney Plan will be released for public viewing and further community consultation.

19th August 2011