The Independent recently condemned Boris Johnson's tree-planting pledge as an "utterly humiliating" failure as the government managed to plant just 14% of the trees they committed to planting in their 2019 manifesto pledge.
The plan was to plant more than 30,000 hectares each year by 2024. Figures released by DEFRA show that under 2,200 hectares of trees were planted in 2020/21 in England, down from 2,340 hectares the year before. It would be laughable if it wasn't so serious.
Nick Rau, nature campaigner at Friends of the Earth, said there was “no excuse” for the Government failing to hit its targets.
“Nature-based solutions like tree planting are a big and vital part of curbing both climate change and the biodiversity crisis. Clearly, these will only work if the government delivers though, and it’s obvious that even very low targets aren’t being met,” he said.
From a personal, Carbon Aware Productions, point of view, this reinforces how important it is for the private sector to step up to the challenge of tree planting in order to compensate for the government's failure to do so.