April 18, 2017
Arbor Day gets a special bloom in Yakima
By Toby Freeman
Regional Business Manager
This year's Arbor Fest at the Yakima Arboretum April 15 bloomed especially sweet. That’s because the City of Yakima is now officially a Tree City USA community.
At Pacific Power, we’d like to applaud the hard work that has gone into winning this designation. We serve more 240 communities in the Northwest and being recognized by Tree City USA is more than simply filling out forms and waiting. So congratulations to Mayor Kathy Coffey as well as all the others who helped make this happen.
Power companies care a lot about having healthy trees. Yes, branches can harm the wires that deliver electricity to your home. But properly managed, trees are a major asset to any community. Their beauty is obvious, but so is their value in creating shade. Protecting your house from the hot summer sun can help you save energy and money by keeping your house cooler and less reliant on air conditioning.
Pacific Power has been a Tree Line USA utility for more than a decade.
The Tree City USA designation is given by the National Arbor Day Foundation to cities that demonstrate a commitment to taking care of the trees in their communities. The Arboretum, with the backing of the volunteer Tree Advocacy Committee, has been working with the City to facilitate the process. In order to be a Tree City USA community four standards must be met. The four standards include:
- Creating a tree board to oversee the care of the City's tree
- Create a tree care ordinance that will guide the planting and maintenance of City trees
- Provide a budget for tree care management
- Proclaim a city Arbor Day and observance
That last one was easy, as Arbor Fest has been an established event on the Yakima Community calendar for 18 years. Pacific Power has been a proud sponsor of the event for many years.
This year’s theme was "Trees are the Best!" celebrating all the wonderful things that trees provide. Whether it's habitat for animals, clean air, erosion control, food, materials for the habitat they provide, their ability to clean the air we breathe, or the trees that are best for woodcarving, stations focused on what makes trees great!
More than 600 families took home their own tree to plant in their yard in honor of Arbor Day. That will keep Yakima growing in the best way for years to come.
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