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Redwood trees will be planted in neighborhoods across Boston. Here’s why

BOSTON — Mayor Michelle Wu on Wednesday unveiled a plan to plant redwood trees in neighborhoods across Boston in an effort to fight climate change.

While speaking at the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, Wu announced that the botanical research institution had gifted 10 dawn redwood trees to help the city bolster its tree canopy in a push to enhance livability and public health.

“Trees are our best green technology to fight climate change and build healthy, beautiful communities, especially as heat and storms intensify,” Wu said.

Wu also launched a new Forestry Division within the Boston Parks and Recreation Department that will be tasked with maintaining existing and planting new trees.

“Dedicating staff and resources to our new Forestry Division will empower the City of Boston to strengthen our tree canopy citywide so every community benefits from these treasured resources,” Wu added.

Redwoods are the tallest trees on Earth and can live for thousands of years. The tallest living redwood on record is said to be about 365 feet.

City officials stressed that tree canopy is a critical part of Boston’s infrastructure, noting a thriving urban forest reduces heat levels while removing pollutants from the air. It also supports water quality and reduces the impact of flooding by intercepting large quantities of water during and after rain storms.

A 2020 study indicated that lower-income neighborhoods were about five degrees hotter in the summer, in part due to fewer trees and parks and more dark pavement.

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