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The Importance of Trees

Trees are a vital economic, environmental and social resource and are integral to the character of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown. They form a key element of the county’s infrastructure and are amongst the most important features in our towns, villages and rural landscapes. Trees help make the county a more desirable place to live, work, study and spend leisure time.

For thousands of years, trees have been grown and cultivated for shelter, food, timber, medicine, and for their intrinsic beauty. They are integral to our cultural heritage and have been worshipped, celebrated and revered in Irish folklore. The ancient Celts of Ireland centred their culture and laws around trees, and some of the letters of the Ogham alphabet, the first known written language in Ireland, were based on Ireland’s native trees.

In modern times, there has been a resurgence of interest in tree culture and the many varied benefits that trees offer.
 

SUMMARY OF TREE BENEFITS

 

1. Social/Community Benefits           

  • Contribution to cultural and linguistic heritage
  • Visual amenity and local distinctiveness
  • Sense of place and local landmarks
  • Soften the urban landscape
  • Outline the changing seasons
  • Local recreation
  • Improve road safety
  • Mental and physical health and well-being

2. Environmental Benefits

  • Mitigation of air pollution
  • Improvement in air quality
  • Reduce storm-water flows and flooding
  • Improvement in water quality
  • Noise abatement
  • Carbon sequestration
  • Reduce urban ‘heat island’ effect
  • Reduce local wind speeds
  • Provision of shade and shelter

3. Biodiversity

  • Shelter and food for wildlife
  • Wildlife micro-climates
  • Habitat linkages

4. Economic Benefits

  • Increase residential & commercial property values
  • Reduce heating/cooling costs
  • Commercial benefits to businesses
  • Health savings
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