Goal 2: Environmental Science

10 months ago
CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.

The objective of  environmental science is to support the operational activities with science-based decisions. To achieve this, the following actions are proposed:

  1. Work with UWA developing strategies for improving the condition of the City’s tree stock and the aquifer
  2. Source updates of the CSIRO infra-red aerial photography demonstrating canopy growth when available
  3. Develop a plant pathogen management plan
  4. Expand and formalise the tree health management program
  5. Work with Arbor Carbon with respect to native tree health

What are your thoughts on these actions?
Relates to Relates to document: Urban Forest Strategy 2018-2023

Consultation has concluded

  • TreeDR 11 months ago
    Supporting operational activities with science-based decisions is definitely the correct approach. Some thoughts on the proposed actions:1. Work with UWA developing strategies for improving the condition of the City's tree stock and the aquifer. Thoughts: Not sure why only UWA is listed as being able to provide strategies for improving the condition of the City's tree stock. Different universities and consultants throughout Perth outside of UWA have proven expertise in improving tree condition, particularly urban tree condition. Examples include Murdoch University who have extensive expertise in tree health management, along with ArborCarbon who are world-leaders in this space. Can the City please clarify what is meant by the City's 'tree stock'? Is it the nursery stock that the City will use for planting, or is the existing tree population? Why is UWA only listed as being able to develop strategies for improving the condition? Can the City please clarify what is meant by 'improving the condition of the aquifer'? There is also expertise outside of UWA in hydrology and other fields related to vegetation and aquifer management. It would be advisable for the City not to lock itself into any one particular organisation for this action.2. Source updates of the CSIRO infra-red aerial photography demonstrating canopy growth when available. Thoughts: Other airborne datasets exist for the WESROC region through ArborCarbon including the City of Nedlands that can provide more frequent intervals of canopy change and in addition precise measure of change in canopy and vegetation condition. Please refer to neighbouring councils such as the City of Subiaco for their methods of measurement used for their recently produced Draft Urban Forest Strategy 2018. Also refer to the Town of Cambridge who are precisely measuring change in canopy cover and condition over 5 intervals between 2012 and 2018. Their approach is more precise than the CSIRO infra-red aerial photography and has the added benefit of its use for early detection of decline in tree condition. This early detection tool has been used by the City of Joondalup since 2012 to aid in their Pathogen Management Plan who are considered Australian leaders in this space. The same method has been selected by the Cities of Sydney and North Sydney. 3. Develop a plant pathogen management plan. Thoughts: This is essential given serious pathogens such as Phytophthora and Armillaria have been found in many parks and reserves within the City of Nedlands. There are several different species associated with premature decline in condition of trees and the development of a Management Plan is essential to minimise the spread and impact of such pathogens on the City's urban forest condition. 4. Expand and formalise the tree health management program. Thoughts: This is a very useful action and essential for the management of tree condition. Many councils focus on tree number, canopy cover, and management of tree risk but fail to allocate sufficient resources to managing tree health. Can the City be more specific about how it proposes to 'expand and formalise' the program and by when and to what extent from its existing program? Management of tree health must be based on a sound understanding of the impacts to current tree health. How does the City propose to develop a sound understanding of these impacts?5. Work with Arbor Carbon with respect to native tree health. Thoughts: ArborCarbon are considered leaders in native tree health management but this action should not be confined simply to ArborCarbon. Universities, consultants and friend groups can assist with native tree health management once the specific causes of decline in native tree health are understood. Can the City please explain what is meant by the words 'work with' and 'with respect to native tree health'. Can the City please be more specific? In closing, it is excellent to see the City focusing on tree health with these actions, but it would be good to see the City develop some methods for measuring annual change in tree health/condition, and then set some targets. For example, some City councils list within their Urban Forest Strategies and Plans that they will maintain a certain % of their tree population as healthy (e.g. City of Melbourne). Others like the City of Joondalup have developed KPIs for the vegetation condition of their natural areas and use ArborCarbon to measure the condition of their vegetation biennially using remote sensing methods. Many councils use tree audit data to categorise the condition of their tree population...but this is usually confined to street and park trees only and is very subjective in nature. Remote sensing methods have the advantage of measuring every single tree in the council (public and private) and if the data is collected and analysed correctly, can be used to precisely measure change in condition over time.
  • Lesley Shaw 11 months ago
    Yes I think it is important to work cooperatively with scientists and experts to get up-to-date information to monitor and guide treating ailing trees in parks and bushland areas.Campaigns to reduce dumping in bushland areas may assist in the control of the transfer of pathogens.