PUPILS from a local school have helped launch a new tree planting scheme.
NI Water, Woodland Trust and Kelda Water Services (Alpha) are jointly promoting woodland creation and helping to improve biodiversity at Dunore Point Water Treatment Works in Antrim and Castor Bay Water Treatment Works in Lurgan.
The Woodland Creation Project is aimed at offsetting the carbon footprint of the Water Treatment Works and improving the biodiversity at the sites through the creation of new wooded areas.
Approximately 9,000 of a variety of tree species will be planted at the two sites.
Key Stage 2 pupils from Tannaghmore Primary School, joined pupils from Ballycraigy Primary School and St Comgalls in Antrim, by helping out with some of the tree planting at the sites and participated in a workshop hosted by NI Water’s education team on water efficiency and the water cycle.
Dymphna Gallagher, Head of Quality and Environmental Compliance at NI Water, said: “We are delighted to be working with the Woodland Trust. The project has been funded by NI Water’s SCAMP NI Project (Sustainable Catchment Area Management Planning for Northern Ireland).”
Michelle McCaughtry, from the Woodland Trust, added: “This is a wonderful partnership, offering a whole range of benefits. Local schoolchildren have been making their mark by rolling up their sleeves and helping to plant some of the trees; and the overall end result – thousands of flourishing native saplings – will provide a much-needed habitat for wildlife. Trees and woodland also enhance the landscape and improve water and air quality.”
Gavin Cawthra, Managing Director of Kelda Water Services said: “Kelda Water Services are delighted to be working together with the Woodland Trust on this project. We are committed to using our resources sustainability at all our sites, and this scheme will help us promote woodland creation, improve biodiversity and will reduce the long-term carbon footprint of the water treatment process.”
The Trust hopes that other companies will get involved in similar projects. To find out more contact 0845 293 5689 or visit www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/planting.