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Saturday, April 27, 2013
No. 31

New York City Grows Greener By 20,000 Trees

Today NYC Parks Commissioner Veronica M. White joined NYS Assemblyman Edward C. Braunstein, Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Carter Strickland, Department of Citywide Administrative Services Commissioner Edna Wells Handy, Human Resources Administration Commissioner Robert Doar, NYC Service’s Chief Service Officer Diahann Billings-Burford, and more than 500 volunteers at Alley Pond Park in Queens to plant 7,405 trees and 1,950 shrubs at the MillionTreesNYC Spring Planting Day. Other parks hosting planting events today were: Idlewild Park in Queens; Pelham Bay Park in the Bronx; and Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn. Clove Lakes Park will host a planting event on Sunday. Over the course of the weekend, 20,000 trees will be planted citywide.

“We are enormously grateful to the thousands of volunteers and sponsors who donated time, energy, and funding to make MillionTreesNYC Spring 2013 Planting Day a success,” said Commissioner White. “The 20,000 trees planted today will transform acres of parkland into new, ecologically healthy, multi-story forests, increasing the host of environmental benefits already provided by our urban forest.”

“Spring is finally upon us and it’s great to have so many wonderful people out here giving their time, moving us closer to our goal,” said NYC Service’s Chief Service Officer Diahann Billings-Burford. “These planting days really highlight New Yorkers working together for the greater good of our city and are another great example of the impact that volunteers are having in and around our communities every day.”

"Thank you to all the volunteers who joined us at Alley Pond Park today, for donating their time and energy to the MillionTreesNYC Planting Day,” said Assemblyman Braunstein. “Thank you to the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation for its commitment to restoring our parkland and creating a healthier environment for our community."

"Trees help our environment in many ways - they clean the air, provide shade during the warm months, and improve the health of our waterways by absorbing stormwater," said DEP Commissioner Carter Strickland. "I'm proud to join with all the volunteers and our partners in city government today as we plant 20,000 trees here at Alley Pond Park and around the city that will help improve the quality of life for all New Yorkers."

Volunteers were recruited to plant trees through MillionTreesNYC and with the help of NYC Service, and this year MillionTreesNYC partnered with corporate sponsors Verizon, who brought along Verizon Wireless NY Metro Green Team volunteers, and the NYC League of Hotel Concierges. Participating volunteer groups citywide included volunteers from our other corporate sponsors Bloomberg LP, Con Edison, and BNP Paribas, as well as the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, Department of Youth and Community Development’s “Young Men’s Initiative,” Eastern Queens Alliance, Friends of Pelham Bay Park, among others.

MillionTreesNYC Spring Planting Day was supported by NYC Service and the Department of Citywide Administrative Services, which delivered food and supplies citywide throughout the day. Green Apple Cleaners donated cleaning services so that we could reuse all of the gloves after the event. BIG!Compost and the Department of Sanitation’s Local Organics Recovery Program composted all food waste and worked to make sure this was a zero waste event.

MillionTreesNYC, a cornerstone of Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC vision to establish a healthier, more sustainable New York City, is a public-private partnership between the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation and Bette Midler’s New York Restoration Project, through which one million trees will be planted and cared for throughout the five boroughs. As part of MillionTreesNYC Parks is reforesting 2,000 acres of parkland into new, ecologically healthy, multi-story forests. New forests help expand canopy cover in New York City, increasing the myriad environmental benefits already provided by our urban forest. Since MillionTreesNYC was launched in October 2007, the initiative has surpassed its halfway mark with 662,111 trees planted prior to Saturday’s plantings. For more information, visit

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