Summer is here! Flowers are blooming! Waters are warming for swimming!

There is a lot to be excited about. Music festivals and street markets are happening again. Spending time in community is good medicine for us all. Take time to rejuvenate this summer!

There are however still many climate and health situations for us to be concerned about. Carbon levels in the air are at an all time high…in fact the highest ever recorded in the civilized world. We need trees! Trees
combat climate change by absorbing Carbon dioxide which slows down the rate of global warming. Trees release and provide oxygen into the air for us to breathe. Trees shade us from ultraviolet rays, they provide habitat for birds and various wildlife, and their roots stabilize soil and prevent erosion and flooding. Fruit trees provide food for humans, birds and wildlife.

We hear a lot about the destruction of old growth forests, so here is some good news. When threatened ecosystems in BC’s Salish Sea were offered up for sale in 2021, the BC Parks Foundation was ready. The acquisitions were funded with a $4-million donation from the family of Lululemon’s founder, and will protect almost 150 hectares of rare and coastal bluffs. The islands - West Ballenas, Saturnina and part of Lasqueti - will never be developed, although local governments and indigenous communities will determine what type of protections will be put in place. The BC Parks Foundation has been crowdfunding to protect these
endangered ecosystems. In 2019 it raised $2-million to purchase more than 800 hectares in Princess Louisa Inlet on BC’s Sunshine Coast, saving those pristine forests from logging. Earlier this year, it helped establish a 3,500-hectare conservancy within the Tahitan Nation’s territory in northwestern BC. Locally, with the assistance of BC Parks Foundation, the RDN, the French Creek Estuary Society, private donors and volunteers, donations totalling 5.1 million were raised to purchase 18 acres of forested estuary land and
join it to 5 acres of existing protected area for a 23 acre nature preserve. It also is a realization of a dream of creating a protected eagle reserve within the forested property. Our Knox Green Team assisted in fundraising for this project by inviting Denise Foster, Chair of Save Estuary Land Society to speak at our Sunday Worship Service on March 27th of this year. Everyone was delighted when their goal was reached.

The health benefits of trees are many. Studies have shown that when surrounded by trees your blood pressure drops, your heart rate slows and stress levels come down. The new health trend of “forest bathing” has been shown to be beneficial to overall health. So…do yourself a favour and try it! It’s free and simple to do and lucky for us we have many beautiful forests nearby to enjoy.

“If you find yourself worrying, take 3 breaths, address a tree and quietly say ‘Thank You’. If you can’t find a tree, a dandelion will do…..Nature is magic! (Robert Bateman)

Wishing everyone a safe and sunny Summer!

Submitted by: Jan Reinson (a self proclaimed tree hugger)
Knox Green Team