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           27 February, 2021


    
Category:  Press » Agriculture

 

Riverside Celebrates National Arbor Day With a Successful Tree Planting Program That Has Prompted Local Residents to Plant Nearly 50,000 Shade Trees in the Past 5 Years

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2007-04-28 07:33:18     
Riverside Public Utilities

People often talk about the need to make better use of the Earth's resources. But in Riverside, Calif., people are actually doing something about it.

Residents of this suburban city 60 miles east of Los Angeles have planted nearly 50,000 trees during the past five years through a special "Tree Power" rebate program offered by Riverside Public Utilities (RPU).

Financed with Public Benefit Funds, the program entitles RPU customers to receive rebates of up to $25 on 20 different types of shade trees, including Chinese Flame, Desert Willow, Jacaranda, Bradford Pear, Liquid Amber and Raywood Ash.

RPU customers can purchase up to five trees each year through the program, which the utility manages in cooperation with local nurseries. The actual rebate is issued by RPU as a credit on the tree buyer's utility bill.

"I think it's a wonderful program," said Thomas Napoli, a retired commercial airline pilot who has landscaped his home with more than half a dozen birch and Chinese flame trees. "My out of pocket expenses were just about zero."

Napoli added that the Chinese Flame trees he planted on the west side of his two-story house five years ago have already grown high enough to protect his upstairs bedrooms from the afternoon sun.

"Mr. Napoli is doing exactly what we want people to do with these trees," said David Wright, RPU's general manager, adding, "Well placed, maturing trees can help local residents save as much as 20 percent on their summer air-conditioning bills. These trees also help beautify our city, while improving local air quality."

Riverside residents, for their part, say they are pleased to receive a financial incentive to invest in trees whose value will only increase over time. "You have to wait a few years for these trees to mature, but planting shade trees is a good strategy," said Linda Burk, a retired county employee who has purchased several fruit trees for her home and rental property through the program.

Established in 1895, Riverside Public Utilities is a consumer-owner water and electric utility that is governed by a board of nine community volunteers. Riverside Public Utilities serves over 102,000 electric and 62,000 water customers within the City of Riverside. http://www.riversidepublicutilities.com.

Specialized in: Riverside - Utilities - Electric - Water - Green Power - Be Powerwise - Be Waterwise - Living Eco-style
URL: http://www.riversidepublicutilities.com
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