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New Statewide Campaign Launches -- Encourages Californians To "Invest From The Ground Up"

SAN RAFAEL, Calif., Nov. 27, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, the California Urban Forests Council formally launched its new "Invest From the Ground Up" campaign and website. The campaign is designed to help California homeowners and business owners see the true value of one of the most basic and cost-efficient investments Californians can make in their communities: caring for their trees, parks and green spaces. The initiative is funded by the US Forest Service and CAL FIRE, and includes partnerships with the Western Chapter International Society of Arboriculture and California ReLeaf.

"When people stop and think about what makes a neighborhood great, their attention generally goes to the nice houses and good schools. They don't often see that it's the trees and parks that help make those places special—and valuable," said California Urban Forests Council executive director Nancy Hughes. "As the nation's oldest urban forest council, we have long known that investing in these resources produces significant, measurable returns for communities, but most Californians do not. That's why we—and our partners—feel this campaign is so important and so beneficial."

The "Invest From the Ground Up" campaign will initially roll out in five pilot communities, which are in the process of being selected. In each city, the campaign will seek to partner with existing city, community and professional organizations, along with business owners and homeowners, to help show that when Californians invest from the ground up, they not only create and nurture great neighborhoods—they get back much more than they put in.

As part of the campaign's education efforts, its website will collect news and resources about urban forestry and present them in a consumer-friendly way, aimed at building support for the care of California's trees, parks and green spaces.

"In all my years working on urban forestry, I've never seen an effort to raise awareness and support for our trees quite like this one. It's injecting a fresh perspective and a compelling argument into the public conversation about how to spend our resources," said State Urban Forester for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) John Melvin.

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