CITY of Bayswater is calling on the public to report “wanton” vandals after 190 trees were reported damaged since the winter planting program began last month.
During one day in May, 18 newly planted street trees were damaged or destroyed along Benara Road in Noranda.
Mayor Barry McKenna said the vandalised trees have cost ratepayers thousands of dollars.
“Over the course of winter we will be putting a thousand trees into the ground to help green our City,” he said.
“This wanton eco-vandalism hurts us all and is a crime, so I’m asking the community to be vigilant and to report those responsible.
“It really is heartbreaking to see them being systematically damaged and destroyed in this way by some mindless thugs.”
Cr McKenna said the trees helped beautify streets and provided environmental benefits such as they filtered nutrients from stormwater, were a habitat for native birds and cleaned the air.
Bayswater Urban Tree Network spokesman Greg Smith said the vandalism “makes no sense”.
“Why would someone do that to public property? There has to be some deep-seated disconnection,” he said.
Mr Smith said the accumulative impact of trees being removed in both private and public domains was equivalent to “ecocide”.
Call police on 131 444 and the City’s security on 1300 360 333 to report suspicious behaviour or vandalism.