Forests Ontario and the Greenbelt Foundation Partner to Enhance Forest Cover

Oct 28th, 2021 6:55 AM

Partnership will advance natural infrastructure in the Greenbelt over next two years

Barrie, ON [October 28, 2021] - Forests Ontario and the Greenbelt Foundation are working together to increase natural forest cover on private land throughout the Greenbelt. Tree planting will support several Foundation goals, including to enhance Greenbelt systems and biodiversity, build climate resilience across the region, and to support jobs and working landscapes.

Through the partnership, there will be additional savings for Greenbelt landowners to plant trees on their property in conjunction with Forests Ontario's 50 Million Tree Program. Landowners who live within the Greenbelt and have space for at least 500 trees may be eligible to apply. The initiative will engage many regional and community planting partners including conservation authorities, First Nations, and local stewardship groups.

"We are thrilled to be working with the Greenbelt Foundation to increase forest cover," said Rob Keen, Registered Professional Forester and CEO of Forests Ontario. "Our forests provide many benefits, including clean air and water, increased biodiversity, sequestering carbon to help mitigate climate change, and improving the well-being of our communities."

The Greenbelt is in Ontario's Greater Golden Horseshoe region, which has more species biodiversity than anywhere else in Canada. The Greenbelt includes areas which stretch from Niagara-on-the-Lake to the tip of the Bruce Peninsula in Tobermory, and from Sheffield in the west to Newtonville in the east. Landowners can visit to determine if they fall within the boundaries.

"The Greenbelt Foundation is excited to work with Forests Ontario to increase the number of native trees planted on the landscape," said Edward McDonnell, CEO of the Greenbelt Foundation. "This partnership will contribute to increasing natural cover in the Greenbelt and help communities in the Greater Golden Horseshoe improve the health of natural areas and become more resilient to the effects of climate change."

To date, Forests Ontario has planted more than 34 million trees through the 50 Million Tree Program alone, creating more than 17,000 hectares of new forests across the province.

Landowners living within the Greenbelt who wish to plant trees can visit, or contact Hayley Murray, Forests Ontario's Forestry Operations Coordinator, at 416-646-1193 extension 222 or

About the Greenbelt Foundation
Greenbelt Foundation is a charitable organization, solely dedicated to ensuring the Greenbelt remains permanent, protected and prosperous. We make the right investments in its interconnected natural, agricultural, and economic systems, to ensure a working, thriving Greenbelt for all. Ontario's Greenbelt is the world's largest, with over two million acres of farmland, forests, wetlands and rivers working together to provide clean air, fresh water, and a reliable local food source.  

About Forests Ontario
Forests Ontario is a not-for-profit charity that promotes re-greening the province through forest restoration, conservation, education and stewardship. Forests Ontario commits to promoting a healthier future by sustaining and supporting healthy forests through multiple tree planting initiatives. Forests Ontario is the voice of our forests. Visit or follow us @Forests_Ontario to find out more.

For more information, photos or to arrange an interview please contact:
Petronilla Ndebele
Director of Strategic Communications
Greenbelt Foundation
(416) 960-0001 Extension 306

Colleen Mahaffie
Communications Officer
Forests Ontario /Forest Recovery Canada
W: 416.646.1193 ext. 225