Alberta to replace trees lost to pine beetles on private land

Alberta is offering to replace trees ravaged by pine beetles on private or municipal land.

EDMONTON — Alberta is offering to replace trees ravaged by pine beetles on private or municipal land.

It’s a joint effort with business and the non-profit organization Tree Canada.

The program allows city dwellers, acreage owners and municipalities to apply for money to replace trees destroyed by the beetles.

Homeowners are eligible for a coupon worth $80 for a replacement tree.

The program will contribute up to $3,000 toward seedlings to replace multiple trees lost in shelterbelts and around homes on small acreages, and up to $5,000 to replace trees on municipal property.

The money is for replacements only and may not be used to treat infested trees or protect established ones.

“This program is a way to put the trees back on the land at a highly reduced cost to the individual and our communities,” Sustainable Resource Development Minister Mel Knight said in a release.

“The importance of having trees in a community — for wildlife as habitat, as air purifiers or simply as nice things to look at — cannot be overstated.”

Tree Canada is a not-for-profit charitable organization established to encourage Canadians to plant and care for trees in urban and rural environments.

Mountain pine beetles have destroyed vast swaths of forest in British Columbia and are moving into Alberta.