WIRRAL Council is set to comprehensively miss its tree planting target for this season.
The authority has a target to plant 200,000 trees in 10 years, a rate of 20,000 per year.
But Mike Cockburn, Wirral Council’s head of service for environment and climate change, confirmed that around 10,000 trees have been planted so far this season, approximately half of that target.
The council plants trees between November and March every year, meaning it has just a couple of weeks to go until the season is at an end.
Mr Cockburn said the pandemic was responsible for the shortfall and that given the restrictions the figure of 10,000 was a significant achievement.
Green Party councillor Chris Cooke asked Mr Cockburn if the authority will plant 30,000 trees next year to catch up.
Mr Cockburn said there were a number of opportunities to catch up next year.
One way of doing this was for garden waste subscribers to be offered a tree as part of their subscription.
The council officer said this was being trialled and is currently going well.
He added that the authority was recruiting a tree landscape manager who will coordinate the authority’s planting and drive it forwards.
Liberal Democrat councillor Allan Brame asked the officer where the 200,000 trees will be placed over the next 10 years, asking if areas of forestation will be created.
Mr Cockburn said that the majority of the target will be achieved through creating forest areas in land the council owns and other land as well where people are willing to cooperate.