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LETTER: Do we need to plant shade trees in Mission?

This proposed council action absolutely stuns me. Has the public lost any sense of self-education?

Sun damage to the skin is well-publicized and accepted. It is taught in pre-pregnancy clinics and in schools.

Are people no longer considered capable of doing anything on their own initiative and have to be directed by public officials?

According to this article, Mission is a heavily treed city, although council is doing a great job in allowing the cutting down of as many trees as it can to build houses.

The “heavily treed” parts of Mission are those on the outskirts of the city, whereas downtown Mission is very much short of trees, council having cut down the mature trees that lined First Avenue.

On the outskirts of the city, developers are cutting trees down with abandon for the sake of big dollars. For example, Polygon’s development on Nelson Street has led to the removal of 200 to 300 huge trees. I thought that developers were required, when they cut down a tree, to replace it with a tree in another place on the development. This has most certainly not happened with Polygon.

The benefit to the environment of having trees, and especially mature trees, has long been ignored by every level of local authority and by developers, and to provide shade trees is really a rather frivolous frippery, considering that shade trees will only offer benefits for a short period each year, whereas more mature trees will not only give shade in the summer – assuming we actually have a summer – they will also offer a degree of protection in bad weather.

To even suggest putting sunscreen dispensers and signs in public parks is beyond belief. Putting them up and taking them down is just providing more union jobs and another burden on the taxpayer.

What is a three-inch tree calliper? Perhaps the public would like to know.

It is not as though there are no other and more essential uses for taxpayers’ money, such as fixing potholes, of which there are many in Mission. Is council looking for ways to spend public money?

Ralph Smith

Mission