Wales plants £5m giant ‘National Forest’ to tackle CO2

The National Forest scheme aims to help Wales to meet carbon targets by absorbing the greenhouse gas from the air

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The Welsh Government has launched plans for a National Forest running the length and breadth of the country.

Backed by £5 million in this year’s Budget, it says the National Forest will help Wales to meet carbon reduction targets, create areas of new woodland and help to restore and maintain some of Wales’ “unique and irreplaceable” ancient woodlands.

It claims a further £10 million of funding will be spent to increase tree planting across Wales.

The National Forest scheme drew inspiration from the development of the Wales Coast Path, which stretches the entire 870 miles of Welsh coastline and attracts millions of visitors a year.

Mark Drakeford, First Minister, said: “There is no escaping the huge environmental challenges the world is facing – the February floods have brought that home to us in Wales in the most devastating way.

“We have a responsibility to future generations to protect nature from the dangers of our changing climate but a healthy natural environment will also offer protection to our communities from the dangers we ourselves face.

“Trees improve air quality, they remove harmful greenhouse gases from the atmosphere, they provide material for construction, they regenerate soil for food, they clean the water in our rivers and they provide a home to all the life that finds shelter in their canopy.”

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