An oak tree is awarded for the European Tree of the Year 2015

Apr. 27, 2015
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An oak tree is awarded for the European Tree of the Year 2015
Nearly 250 people attended the event, held under the patronage of Mr. Paul Pots, MEP and Vice-Chairman of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety of the European Parliament, and organized with the support of the European organization of landowners and "Tetra Pak". About 185 thousand people from all over Europe took part in the online voting in the international competition for people's favorite trees, which ran from 1 to 28 February 2015. The race was attended by representatives of 14 countries. With 60,000 votes in its favor winner was the Oak on the football field in Estonia. First runner was the big plane in Tata, Hungary, and the Spanish Topola Remolinar took third place. The Bulgarian representatives in the European Tree of the Year 2015 competition - the Chinar of Archar was ranked seventh in the voting with just over 7000 votes.
The 150-year-old Estonian oak originally was growing near a small playground. When is was expanded in 1951, the tree ended up in the middle of a football stadium. For residents of the town this situation is no longer unusual, and students have learned to use oak in their matches. The popular "tree seeker" and a longtime supporter of the competition, Rob McBride, who toured all 14 finalists during the voting period, including the Bulgarian participant in February, said that the "tree-football player" is "a symbol for everyone to see how things can be better."
"The most valuable in the European Tree of the Year contest is that it allows thousands of people to reflect on the environment as an integral part of public heritage." - Paul Pots pointed out during the ceremony. On April 23 in the building of the European Parliament, Paul Pots hosted training for representatives of countries participating in the contest on the standards in tree-care, the role of trees in the urban environment for sustainable urban development, and the conservation of old trees. Leading European experts from the Czech Republic, Great Britain and Belgium presented the best practices and examples of how different European municipalities have turned tree-care in an integral and important part of their policies for urban management. Training participants discussed opportunities for future
cooperation to promote the importance of tree-care in Europe and better involvement of institutions in the planning and implementation of measures to contribute to the preservation of cities as a good home for both people and trees along with their habitat.

The results of the competition are available on-line at www.treeoftheyear.org.