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Extreme hot weather conditions are upon us and shade from the trees play a vital role to cool us down.

These municipal trees planted on walkways, parks and road sidewalks have been planted and nurtured over many decades to provide clean air, cool shade during hot summer days and a green environment for the community to enjoy.

Residents are warned not to remove or prune these trees, instead they should contact the City as it is the municipality’s responsibility to do so when needed.

Dead trees, problematic tree roots, tree stumps or those situated on the sidewalks that present a danger to the public will be pruned or removed by the City.

Anyone accidentally or willfully removing trees belonging to the City will be charged the value of the tree, as per the Helliwell System of Evaluation of Trees as determined by the approved City tariffs for removal of trees.

Contravening municipal bylaws is punishable by a fine of up to R2 000 or a maximum sentence of six months’ imprisonment, or both.

“Trees are a source of life as they provide the oxygen that we inhale. When residents hire untrained tree cutters who do not have appropriate equipment and training to cut down trees, they can cause harm to people and damage property,” said Head of Parks in the City Emmanuel Maphorogo.

Residents wishing to remove or prune trees on the sidewalks need to submit a written request to the City.

Every tree planted is an investment into future generations’ environment and helps guarantee a cleaner and greener environment for all.