Volunteers gathered at Big Finn Hill Park in Kirkland on Feb. 27 for the ceremonial tree planting day. King County Executive Dow Constantine thanked the county employees and partners who contributed to the the One Million Trees initiative.
In 2015, Executive Constantine launched a partnership to plant 1 million trees throughout King County by the end of 2020. And with the help of a growing coalition of cities, schools, nonprofits and volunteers, King County has planted more than 700,000 trees.
“We’re here to celebrate a milestone in our [ambitious goal] to plant 1 million trees by the end of 2020,” Executive Constantine said on Feb. 27. “We’re closing in on our goal… We’re particularly grateful to the people of King County who volunteer their time, effort and muddy boots.”
By planting trees, King County is helping reduce carbon pollution and improving the health of neighborhoods and habitats. So far, the growing alliance has planted 705,840 trees. King County will continue to offer volunteer opportunities to plant the remaining 425,000 trees to complete the 1 million trees goal.
Executive Constantine noted how critical it is to join together as a community to “steward, care for, build and pass on” the natural legacy that everyone cares for in the Pacific Northwest.
Since the One Million Trees initiative launch, the King County Department of Natural Resources and Parks volunteer program has seen an increase in the number of volunteers.
Making it easy to participate, the county’s volunteer coordinators provide organization volunteers with equipment, resources and educational opportunities that meet their specific needs.
“We empower the people of King County to take action right here, right now in our community that has impact across the globe,” he said. “Thank you to each of you contributing to the progress we’ve made so far.”
In his recent proposal to renew the King County Parks Levy , Executive Constantine included funding for forest stewardship and tree planting. Both are essential in improving the environmental conditions across the county. The current parks levy will expire Dec. 31.
Through the King County-Cities Climate Collaboration (K4C), the city of Bellevue has partnered with the county to coordinate and enhance the effectiveness of local government climate and sustainability action. Overall, the city has contributed by planting more than 55,000 trees toward the 1 million trees goal.