Jersey Trees for Life believe the introduction of UK tree laws would help form a suitable and up-to-date base on which the Island could grow its own protection laws.
And it wants a dedicated team to be created at the Environment Department to offer advice on trees and to look specifically at applications concerning them.
St Lawrence Deputy Kirsten Morel recently said he had hit a ‘dead-end’ when trying to bring in stop-gap legislation, until new laws are passed, to allow protection orders to be placed on groups of trees.
The Deputy made the comments after images appeared on social media showing a site which had been cleared in Vallée des Vaux earlier this year.
Although the woodland did not include protected trees, Deputy Morel said that more needed to be done to prevent trees from being taken down.
Under the Planning and Building (Jersey) Law 2002, Islanders cannot cut down or alter any listed tree without first obtaining planning permission.
Environment Minister John Young said that all applications to carry out work on protected trees in recent years had been passed – something he called ‘unacceptable’.
Writing in today’s JEP, Donna Marie Rault, administrator for Jersey Trees for Life, said that unprotected trees are often removed because of their close proximity to housing or due to the development of new builds.
She said that any trees not within an individual’s garden should require a permit to be removed and any trees within a garden should not be removed if they are over a certain age or on the protection register.
‘The Environment Department should create a dedicated adviser or team that will look specifically at the applications for permits and be on hand to advise where needed,’ she said.
‘The fines and penalties related to breaking any permits, or not successfully applying for one, should be recorded and implemented.’
- News from Jersey Trees for Life: Pages 18 and 19 of Thursday’s (27 May) JEP.