Money raised by the sale of cemetery land should be spent on tree planting in Brent.

This is the view of Brent Council’s resources and public realm scrutiny committee, which recommended that the extra cash be used to improve the borough’s environment.

A report by the committee’s chairman, Cllr Matt Kelcher, noted the council recently made £700,000 from the sale of additional cemetery space.

It suggested that it be put to good use and, given that it was raised by the council’s environment department, should be “ring fenced for a project with an environmental theme”.

The report stated: “The council currently does not have the revenue budget to replace all diseased or dying trees it removes (outside of those removed as part of the footway improvement plan), or to plant all of the mature trees it would like to.

“The presence of mature trees on our streets can help to reduce levels of carbon in the atmosphere and significantly reduce stormwater run-off.”

It explained that there is a clear need to tackle Brent’s air quality, particularly in light of the council’s decision to declare a climate emergency last year.

The proposals were “welcomed” by environmental group Brent Trees, which campaigns for the protection of trees in the borough.

Brent Council recently announced plans to plant more than 300 trees and maintain them for the next three years as part of a £200,000 project.

Commenting on the scheme, Cllr Krupa Sheth, who is responsible for the environment at the council, said: “A simple tree has a story that lasts a lifetime, it cleans the air we breathe, it gives habitat to natural life and it makes our streets that much nicer to behold.

“Our climate fightback has only just begun, but with hundreds of new trees coming to roads and avenues, we’re not just planting for the future, but investing in Brent’s lungs today.”