Planting just a few trees can greatly impact overall temperatures, which is why Arizona Public Service (APS) is now accepting applications for the APS Community Tree program.
Shaded surfaces may be up to 45 degrees cooler than the peak temperature of unshaded surfaces. A study by The Nature Conservancy projects the average number of days recording a high temperature of at or above 110 degrees in Phoenix will grow from 12 to up to 42 by 2030. It also noted that some neighborhoods are already as much as 13 degrees Fahrenheit hotter than others, and that these neighborhoods have the least number of trees and the highest levels of child poverty. Planting trees now can help mitigate the impacts of heat and protect against rising temperatures.
The most vulnerable communities often have the least amount of tree cover, so to help provide shade and cooler spaces in areas that need it most, nonprofit organizations, Title 1 schools, neighborhood associations, block watch groups, and cities, towns and municipalities in limited-income areas within the APS service territory will be given priority for support from the program.
Applicants may request a minimum of $1,000 and a maximum of $10,000 for tree-planting projects. Funding may be used to purchase trees that are appropriate for the location and climate where they are being planted, tree stakes and ties.
For information on the program, including help on where to plant and how to select the right tree, visit www.aps.com and search “Community Tree Program.”