Concrete around trees to be removed

The National Green Tribunal’s Southern Bench has directed the Chennai Corporation to remove concrete laid around trees along the roads, within a week.

The order, aimed at allowing better percolation of water and growth of trees, was passed by the Bench, comprising judicial member P. Jyothimani and expert member G.K. Pandey, on Friday. It was in response to a petition filed by P. Edwin Wilson of Purasawalkam against laying of concrete around trees without leaving any space around.

The petitioner stated that it had become a common sight to see trees along the road being choked by tar or cement laid around them. “The root of the tree takes nutrients, oxygen and water. When concrete is placed over the roots, the digging required to create the concrete space damages the critical root structures. It also reduces the trees’ ability to take in water and oxygen. This will result in the tree’s death,” he stated.

Concretising the base would also weaken avenue trees, thereby posing a threat to the safety of road users. The authorities had also not taken action against nailing of posters on trees, he said.

The Corporation has agreed to comply with the order and pointed out that steps were being taken to ensure that concrete is laid at a one-meter radius around trees.

Vijay Pingale, joint commissioner (works) of the Corporation said they are also in the process of mapping trees with the help of an NGO. “Earlier, the tree lines were in a haphazard manner. Now we are setting it right,” he said.

The case has been posted for hearing to August 6.

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Printable version | May 25, 2022 7:27:58 pm |