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Report Shows Snohomish County Tree Canopy Code Exceeds Expectations

Posted on Feb 24, 2024 in:
  • Advocacy
  • Industry Issues
  • Environment

Snohomish County has released its annual Tree Canopy Monitoring Report and the numbers are impressive.

 In 2023 under the County’s balanced and flexible long term canopy approach to tree management:

  • 1,816 new trees planted
  • 44% retained canopy on residential development sites
  • 56% newly planted canopy
  • 888,521 square feet of new and retained 20-year canopy achieved
  • Since 2014 adoption of the code – 15.5 million square feet of new and retained canopy

Quoting directly from the report itself: “As the current Snohomish County Code does not require a one-for-one replacement requirement for significant trees, heavily forested lots proposed for residential development may lose tree canopy when developed. This compromise was struck to balance the growing demand for housing and to comply with the Growth Management Act (GMA) goals to incentivize growth in urban areas, reduce sprawl, protect the environment, and provide affordable housing.”

Snohomish County requires a substantial 30% tree canopy coverage for new sub-divisions. The numbers shown in the report indicate homebuilders are exceeding that figure under the foresightful approach adopted in 2014. You can read the entire document at 2023 Snohomish County Tree Canopy Monitoring Report.

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