Tree planting symbolises carbon cutbacks

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A EUCALYPTUS tree has been planted outside Havant’s civic offices to show the council’s commitment to cutting its carbon footprint.

Havant Borough Council celebrated its 10:10 pledge to cut energy usage by 10 per cent in a year, with the tree planting.

The council joined the international campaign in July last year to reduce its carbon emissions.

The eucalyptus was chosen as it is suited to hot, dry summers and represents the adaptations that will have to be made to combat climate change.

Havant Borough councillor Mike Fairhurst, who is portfolio holder for climate change and sustainability, helped to settle the tree into its new home.

He was joined by the council’s ‘sustainability champions’ along with members of Havant’s Transition Network, local tree wardens and representatives from Friends of the Earth.

A pledge tree has also been placed in the foyer of the Civic Offices to show residents what councillors and staff are doing to reduce their energy usage, both at work and at home.

Cllr Fairhurst said: ‘Since July 2010 compared to the same period in the previous year, Havant Borough Council has made an energy saving of around 14 per cent.

‘There’s a lot more we need to do to maintain our 10 per cent target until July 2011.

‘However I’m confident that with awareness events like this tree planting we will meet the challenge.

‘We also have the upcoming Havant Goes Greener week in May and hope to encourage as many of our residents to also cut their carbon footprint.’