Urban Tree Cover

A commitment to preservation

Through the establishment of a tree canopy target, the City of St. Albert is committed to preserving and managing urban forest. 

The Urban Forest Management Plan defines urban tree canopy as the amount and distribution of leaf area in a community and is a useful way to assess an urban forest. 

St. Albert's current overall canopy cover is approximately 13 per cent, which includes fully developed, developing, and undeveloped lands. A target of 20 per cent within 20 years (2037) has been established and requires existing trees to be retained, maintained and allowed to mature, and trees lost are replaced. 

Benefits of increasing urban tree canopy include:

  • climate control and energy savings;
  • improvement of air, soil and water quality;
  • mitigation of stormwater runoff;
  • provision of wildlife habitat;
  • increased real estate value; and
  • community vitality. 

Ash Tree Health

Tree health is important to maintain St. Albert’s urban forest and the benefits that come with a large urban tree canopy. Part of the city’s canopy includes 26,000 ash trees. 

As of summer 2020, these trees have been impacted by ash plant bug (Tropidosteptes spp). Ash plant bugs feed on leaves leaving holes or discolored sections; however, damage is rarely severe enough to cause defoliation or need intervention/control. Ash plant bugs are cyclical in nature and when the population has peaked, it will naturally start to reduce.

ash tree

The City will continue to monitor ash tree health and ash plant bug effects throughout the seasons to determine if any actions are necessary based on the rate of growth for the ash bug population over multiple years. 

Resources


Urban Forest Management Plan

Urban Forest Management Council Policy 


Related Pages

Last edited: September 17, 2020