Page last updated at 11:16 GMT, Wednesday, 6 May 2009 12:16 UK

London trees scheme branches out

London Mayor Boris Johnson helps to plant a tree in Brixton along with pupils from Kings Avenue Primary School
Nearly 2m Londoners live in areas further than 1km from nature

The number of trees being planted in London is to increase following an announcement that the city's mayor is expanding his street trees programme.

During his election campaign, Boris Johnson promised to fund 10,000 street trees in 20 priority areas. So far, 1,500 have been planted.

He has now expanded the scheme to cover 40 areas across 32 London boroughs.

Half a million residents in these areas will also be able to register to have a tree planted outside their home.

Up to 400 extra trees will be planted in locations registered online across every priority area.

Nearly 2m Londoners live in areas that are further than 1km from an area of space containing nature or wildlife - and this has been a factor in choosing which areas are being given priority for street trees, said the mayor.

"Street trees are an uplifting addition to our communities and I am determined to reverse their decline," said the mayor.

The programme is being funded by efficiency measures which includes significant cost savings by the scrapping of the Londoner, a newspaper distributed to three million homes across Greater London by the previous administration.

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