Unfortunately, tree vandalism is an issue prevalent in the Strathfield Council LGA. Tree vandalism is the purposeful and illegal destruction of trees including by poisoning, felling and over pruning. If Council suspects a tree has been vandalised, a sign will be posted on the tree as Council investigates the matter.
Why protect trees from vandalism?
Trees are a significant natural resource and contribute to the amenity and character of the Strathfield Local Government Area. Trees provide oxygen, shade and privacy. Trees contribute to reduced costs in cooling for buildings, reduce air and storm water pollution and run off, and extract and store carbon from the atmosphere.
Trees also add aesthetic appeal to streets and may help increase property value.
Investigation, enforcement and sanctions
Council will investigate any reports of damage to trees on public land. A letter requesting information regarding the offence will be circulated to adjacent residents.
If sufficient evidence is received, prosecution will be considered. Actions that could follow include:
- a warning letter
- a recommendation for prosecution
- an order to replant replacement trees of advanced size or
- both prosecution and replacement of trees.
If the damage or vandalism has occurred on a development site in breach of current development conditions the following penalties are recommended:
- fines or loss of bond
- remedial tree work and/or advanced replacement planting
- both of the above
What can you do to help?
Residents and the public are encouraged to become involved by:
- Contacting Council if they notice any unusual activity around trees as earlier notification provides a better chance of catching those responsible and being able to save a tree
- Volunteering to help nurture a tree back to health or ‘adopt a tree’ if the vandalised tree needs to be replaced
- Talking to their neighbours to encourage awareness of any tree vandalism
- Volunteering time for community tree planting days and bushcare programs
Please see Councils Tree Vandalism Policy for further information or to report tree vandalism, please contact Councils Tree Management Officer on 9748 9990.