Pittsburgh Canopy Alliance Celebrates Transformational Investment in Allegheny County
The Pittsburgh Canopy Alliance hosted a kickoff celebration in conjunction with a community tree planting on Thursday, November 30 at Renziehausen Park in McKeesport. The group clebrated the transformational $9 million investment in Western Pennsylvania’s urban forests by the US Forest Service. This grant comes from the USFS Urban and Community Forestry program through the Inflation Reduction Act.
Pittsburgh Canopy Alliance members Allegheny County Conservation District, Allegheny Goatscape, Allegheny Land Trust, Friends of the Riverfront, Landforce, Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy, Tree Pittsburgh, UrbanKind Institute, and Western Pennsylvania Conservancy were collectively awarded $8 million. These funds will support community-level planning and workforce development to plant and maintain trees along streets, in parks and public greenspaces, and residential and institutional property, all within Justice40 zones.
The City of Pittsburgh was awarded $1 million to support the vacant lots tree planting project designed to mitigate urban heat effects in underserved City neighborhoods.
United States Senators Bob Casey and John Fetterman and United States Representatives Summer Lee and Chris Deluzio underscored the importance of investing in a healthier and more sustainable urban forest and green jobs for our region.
“This $8 million grant is at the heart of why I voted for the Inflation Reduction Act: to reduce energy costs for communities, strengthen our workforce, and build a healthier future for our children,” said U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D‑PA). “This investment will help the Pittsburgh Canopy Alliance plant more trees and create more greenspaces that keep the region cooler, the air cleaner, and the public healthier while providing agriculture workers with training and employment opportunities to boost the economy.”
“I applaud this funding for urban forests from the Biden Administration. This $9 million will significantly improve Allegheny County’s public health and empower the region through community-level planning and job creation,” said U.S. Senator John Fetterman (D‑PA). “This is an incredible investment in workforce development, community building, environmental justice, and most of all, Western Pennsylvania.”
“I am thrilled to help secure $8,000,000 for Western Pennsylvania to plant trees across our region, support the agricultural workforce, and improve the health of Western PA’s tree canopy,” said Rep. Chris Deluzio (PA). “These federal investments over the next five years will grow to impact a lot of people and workers, and I am proud that my team was able to help the Pittsburgh Canopy Alliance secure this big-time investment in our community.”
“I’m so proud to have played a part in bringing this $8 million investment to Western Pennsylvania through the Urban and Community Forestry program,” said Rep. Summer Lee (PA). “This isn’t just about planting trees—it’s about planting hope in our communities. It’s a commitment to breathe new life into our urban landscapes, strengthen our communities with green jobs, and ensure that environmental justice is rooted in the very soil of our neighborhoods. We’re not only growing our urban canopy, we’re nurturing the next generation of environmental stewards right here in our backyard. Every single tree we put into the ground is a promise for cleaner air, cooler streets, and a brighter, healthier future for all our neighborhoods.”
Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn echoed the importance of trees.
“Planting a tree is a simple act with a big impact,” Secretary Dunn said. “Trees are a solution to many of our environmental issues, including heat and stormwater from heavy rains, helping our communities address challenges and making them better places to live and work.”
ABOUT THE PITTSBURGH CANOPY ALLIANCE
The Pittsburgh Canopy Alliance is a working group of more than 20 nonprofit organizations and government agencies from across Allegheny County. Alliance partners are committed to increasing equitable access to urban tree canopy and the many human health, environmental, and economic benefits that it brings. This collaborative aims to increase community involvement in local planning, leading to healthier trees and a greater number of them. Learn more, including a list of participating organizations and agencies, at pittsburghcanopyalliance.org.