SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Good forestry stewardship will be in the spotlight on Friday, April 19 when Missouri State University, City Utilities of Springfield and the City of Springfield will receive tree conservation awards. The Missouri Department of Conservation will honor all three entities at 12:30 p.m. on Friday at Greenwood Laboratory School in Springfield.
Missouri State University is the fifth college in the state to receive Tree Campus USA honors. This is a National Arbor Day Foundation award recognizing excellence in campus tree management, as well as student and community involvement in forestry conservation. To be a Tree Campus USA, a college must have a campus tree advisory committee, a campus tree care plan, a campus tree program with dedicated annual expenditures, an Arbor Day observance and a service learning project.
City Utilities of Springfield will receive its 19th Tree Line USA award. This award is a cooperative effort of the Arbor Day Foundation and the National Association of State Foresters. It recognizes public and private utilities companies that demonstrate practices that protect and enhance the country’s urban forests. To qualify for this award, utility companies must follow industry standards for pruning, planting, removals, trenching and tunneling near trees. The utility’s employees must also be trained in best management practices. The utility must sponsor and participate in a tree planting and public education program. It must also have a formal, tree-based energy conservation program and must participate in annual Arbor Day events. City Utilities of Springfield has received this award longer than any other utility company in Missouri.
The City of Springfield will receive a Tree City USA designation for the 28th year. In addition, the city will be honored as Sterling Community for receiving a Tree City USA Growth Award for the 10th year. Tree City Growth Awards are presented to communities that incorporate innovative programs and projects, increased commitment and new ideas into their urban forestry management strategies. Springfield and Branson are two of only five Missouri cities to receive Tree City USA Silver Community designation.
State Forester Lisa Allen will present all three awards on Friday.
More information about urban forestry management can be found at http://mdc.mo.gov/node/90.