Just in Time for Fall Planting – Free Trees Available Soon

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) is teaming up with the Arbor Day Foundation, the RI Tree Council, and the RI Nursery and Landscape Association to give away 1,000 trees as part of the State’s Energy-Saving Trees Program.

Now in its ninth season, the program helps Rhode Islanders save energy and lower their utility bills by strategically planting trees on their property.

“We’re pleased to again be offering free trees to Rhode Islanders this fall,” said DEM Director Janet Coit. “Planting a tree in the right place can improve air quality, sequester carbon, and help manage stormwater runoff. It’s a terrific way for residents to reduce their energy costs today and in the years to come, and a tangible way to stand up to climate change. Most trees are spoken for quickly, so be sure to register early!”

Trees play an important role in cooling streets and homes, filtering air, and reducing stormwater pollution. The trees distributed under the Energy-Saving Trees Program are approximately four to six feet tall and will be distributed in three-gallon containers for easy transport. The Rhode Island Tree Council will provide planting and care instruction to homeowners – as well as guidance on how to maximize energy-savings. When planted properly, a single mature tree can save $30 annually in heating and cooling costs.

Registration opens on Tuesday, Sept. 3, and is required in order to reserve a tree. Recipients must be Rhode Island residents.

Trees go fast, so early registration is recommended. To register for the program, visit www.arborday.org/RIDEM. Trees can be picked up during one of the following pick-up events:

Saturday, September 21 (9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.) Westerly Public Library/Wilcox Park, 44 Broad Street, Westerly

Saturday, September 28 (9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.) RI State Parks Headquarters, 1100 Tower Hill Road, North Kingstown

Saturday, October 5 (9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.) Mt. Hope Farm, 2050 Metacom Avenue (Route 136), Bristol

Saturday, October 19 (9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.) RI Tree Council Headquarters, 2953 Hartford Avenue, Johnston

For questions about the Energy-Saving Trees Program, contact Lou Allard, Urban and Community Forestry Program Coordinator in DEM’s Division of Forest Environment, at 222-2445, ext. 2056, or email him at Robert.e.allard@dem.ri.gov.

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