Arbor Day Foundation and International Paper Host Tree Planting and Distribution Event in Chicago's Big Marsh Park to Support Urban Tree Canopy

Sep 30, 2021 12:10 PM ET

CHICAGO, September 30, 2021 /3BL Media/ - On September 17, 2021, International Paper, Arbor Day Foundation and the Chicago Region Trees Initiative (CRTI), planted 40 trees in Chicago’s Big Marsh Park. Once an active industrial property, Big Marsh opened as a public park in 2016 with a vision to provide a recreational opportunity that combines habitat restoration with public use. In addition, volunteers from the partners helped distribute 140 trees to community members for planting at their homes.

Neighborhoods within the 10th Ward vary widely with respect to tree canopy levels, with an average of 13%, while the national average for metropolitan canopy cover is 41% and the canopy cover in the City of Chicago is 17%. Planting trees in under-resourced neighborhoods, like Chicago’s 10th Ward, will help to increase air and water quality, reduce flooding and surface temperatures- and increase the quality of life for residents. “Planting and distributing these trees will enhance the beauty of this unique recreational area on Chicago’s South Side and provide critical environmental and human health benefits to the residents of Chicago,” said Lydia Scott, director of CRTI.

“International Paper’s Vision 2030 goals are our commitment to building a better future, and our partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation is just one way we’re making good on this commitment in our communities,”said Amy Grow, manager, community engagement, at International Paper.

The funds for this project were provided by International Paper through the Arbor Day Foundation, to The Morton Arboretum and CRTI, who are leading the project. “We are proud to encourage and support local efforts to plant trees. Cities and towns around the globe that line their streets and fill their parks with trees are building healthier, happier communities,” said Dan Lambe, president of the Arbor Day Foundation.

Trees offer vast benefits for the community at large. Thriving urban forests bolster human health, from encouraging physical activity to reducing respiratory illnesses stemming from air pollution. In the United States, park trees alone remove about 75,000 tons ($500 million) of air pollution each year. Urban trees reduce runoff of sediment, pollutants, and organic matter into streams, improving overall water quality. Trees have also been shown to reduce crime, lower stress levels, and develop community pride. According to the 2020 Chicago Region Tree Census, in the Chicago region alone, the urban forest is estimated to provide over $416M in annual ecosystem benefits.


About Chicago Region Trees Initiative

The Chicago Region Trees Initiative (CRTI) is a partnership for coordinated action to improve the health, diversity and equitable distribution of trees in the Chicago region, to benefit people and communities. Established in 2013 by The Morton Arboretum, it is the largest initiative of its kind in the United States. CRTI brings together more than 200 partners from industry, community, and government organizations with a comprehensive plan to lead regional action for trees through 2050. For more information:

About the Arbor Day Foundation

Founded in 1972, the Arbor Day Foundation has grown to become the largest nonprofit membership organization dedicated to planting trees, with more than one million members, supporters, and valued partners. During the last 45 years, more than 350 million Arbor Day Foundation trees have been planted in neighborhoods, communities, cities and forests throughout the world. Our vision is to help others understand and use trees as a solution to many of the global issues we face today, including air quality, water quality, climate change, deforestation, poverty and hunger.

As one of the world's largest operating conservation foundations, the Arbor Day Foundation educates and engages stakeholders and communities across the globe to involve themselves in its mission of planting, nurturing, and celebrating trees. More information is available at

About International Paper

International Paper (NYSE: IP) is a leading global producer of renewable fiber-based packaging, pulp and paper products with manufacturing operations in North America, Latin America, Europe, North Africa and Russia. We produce corrugated packaging products that protect and promote goods, and enable world-wide commerce; pulp for diapers, tissue and other personal hygiene products that promote health and wellness; and papers that facilitate education and communication. We are headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., employ approximately 48,000 colleagues and serve more than 25,000 customers in 150 countries. Net sales for 2020 were $21 billion. For more information about International Paper, our products and global citizenship efforts, please visit