SF Meets Goal of 25,000 Trees

(March 11, 2009)

Mayor Newsom announced today that the City has exceeded his 2004 pledge to

plant 25,000 trees in San Francisco. At a ceremonial tree planting this morning at South Van Ness and Howard

streets, the Mayor announced that 26,408 trees have been added to San Francisco since 2005 and then kicked

off this year's Arbor Week celebrations.

"Five years ago, I made a commitment to plant 25,000 trees across the City to boost the quality of life for all

San Franciscans and provide a cleaner and greener environment," said Mayor Newsom. "Today, I'm proud to say we have met that goal."

On Saturday, March 14, 2009, hundreds of San Franciscans will celebrate Arbor Day by planting an additional

400 trees in a major reforestation effort along Sunset Boulevard. The day's events focus on the importance of

tree care and future maintenance and include a Green Resource Fair and tree-themed children's activities.

"We are especially proud that DPW helped surpass Mayor Newsom's tree planting goal and we will be

partnering with our many communities to ensure that these trees continue to thrive," said Ed Reiskin, Director

of the Department of Public Works. "Let's begin that partnership this Saturday at Arbor Day."

The Trees for Tomorrow program began in 2004 when Mayor Newsom challenged City departments to plant 25,000 trees over a five-year period. The program provides a healthier and more environmentally sustainable

City by improving air and water quality, increasing storm water diversion, providing energy savings, improving wildlife habitat, and increasing property values. DPW is the coordinating agency for the Trees for Tomorrow program and partnered with the Recreation and Park Department, Friends of the Urban Forest, SF Unified

School District, SF Public Utilities Commission, SF Environment, Housing Authority, and SF International

Airport. Arbor Day sponsors and partners also include Walgreens, AAA, Local 261, Clear Channel, A. Ruiz

Construction, Norcal Waste Systems, Inc., American Express, and the San Francisco Parks Trust. The public

can support the City's Urban Forest in many ways, including contributions to the City's Adopt-A-Tree Fund,

which was established to support planting and maintenance efforts.

"These efforts have greatly improved the landscape of San Francisco, greening and beautifying its sidewalks,

medians, parks and neighborhoods," said Mohammed Nuru, DPW Deputy Director for Operations. "And by no means is the task complete. We must care for our new trees and sustain the urban forest."

An Ornamental Pear Tree was planted on a newly greened median at the intersection and dedicated to the late

Dr. Ellen Wolfe, a highly respected San Francisco registered nurse and Doctor of Public Health. Ms. Wolfe

dedicated her life to the care and well-being of underserved children and their families and was an early pioneer

of child abuse prevention programs, creating the Child Protection Center at San Francisco General Hospital.

Arbor Day is a nationally celebrated observance, established in 1872, that encourages tree planting and care. It

is celebrated every year by states and cities at different parts of the year according to the region's best treeplanting season. California celebrates Arbor Day between March 7th and March 14th.

Activities are scheduled throughout the week. Those interested in learning more about planting trees or caring

for trees in their neighborhood can call 3-1-1 or go to www.sfarborday.org