Going Green: Valuing Our Natural Assets

Sourced from Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows News

It’s interesting how we measure wealth.

When I was a little kid, my parents, my two sisters and I lived in a teeny old house in a genteel (shabby) neighbourhood. The trees were big when I was small, the yards filled with flowery discoveries. I remember the carefree feeling of being pushed in a stroller, taking in the play of light and shadow from the trees along the sidewalk. the lavish burst of springtime fragrance from the lilac hedge in the back yard.

And then we moved.

My dad’s business had done well and we could afford a big house in a new part of town. There was a bedroom for each of us girls. The whole house seemed phenomenally spacious. It was the largest one on the street. It had a swanky red hipped roof you could see all the way down the block.

And there wasn’t a tree, flower or blade of grass within miles.

My six-year-old heart broke at the thought of the leafy heaven I’d left behind. If my dad had all this money, couldn’t he have bought some nice big old trees?

Fast forward a few years (quite a few), and I’m learning a new language to describe old loves.

Over there? That’s not a ditch, pond or slough — it’s a rain garden or bioswale.

That collection of trees and shrubs is now an urban forest.

Restoring creeks we once recklessly paved over is called daylighting.

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