'A tree for each citizen': Forestami is trying to plant 3 million trees in Milan

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By Euronews
People walk in Tree Library park in Milan in December 2018.
People walk in Tree Library park in Milan in December 2018.   -   Copyright  AP Photo/Luca Bruno

An urban reforestation project in Milan is attempting to plant 3 million trees in the northern Italian city, roughly equating to the population of the city's metropolitan area.

The project spearheaded by Milan’s municipality, the Lombardy region and other local governments called Forestami, has already planted hundreds of thousands of trees. 

Planting trees, they say, is the first step to making cities greener.

“First, we need to imagine a cultural change: where we have asphalt, we should think about green areas with grass and trees, areas where people can live and use," said Maria Chiara Pastore, the scientific director of Forestami.

"This is one of the targets we are trying to hit,” Pastore told Euronews.

Large cities are responsible for up to 75% of the world's carbon dioxide.

And trees can improve the quality of life for people living in these polluted areas, as they absorb fine particles.

But the benefits of a project like this can stretch beyond a city's limits.

“Forestami is a project, but also a need and a dream because we are talking about a sharp increase in the number of trees, especially high-trunk trees, in Milan over the next few years," said Stefano Boeri, the president of Forestami.

“Planting trees is the most efficient, inclusive, democratic -- because it involves everybody -- and it's also a way slow down the consequences of climate change."

"Planting trees in a city means absorbing carbon dioxide," Boeri explained to Euronews.