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With spring around the corner, we begin to think about how we can beautify our yards with landscaping and tree removal.Depending on where you live and what views you may have from your residence, homeowners often like to clear trees from their yard in order to complement the views they have. Land clearing can have a negative chain reaction and impact on the land. The removal of trees can increase run-off causing the bank to become unstable. The bank can further be weakened when it is over watered by lawn sprinklers and when pools and septic systems are installed. Trees and shrubs, along with their root systems provide stability to the bank, lessening erosion.If you are living adjacent to an escarpment and begin to clear trees along the slope, you may be putting your home at risk. As the riparian area is cleared of shrubs and trees (including the root system), the ground can become unstable causing further erosion than if the trees and root systems were left intact.Prior to removing trees and vegetation, it is important to consider such things as the topography of your land. Is your parcel of land adjacent to an escarpment or a riverbank, a waterbody or a crest of a slope? Prior to removing any trees from your property, it is important you contact the County’s Planning & Development Department to ensure any clearing you are proposing will not have a negative effect on your land or on neighboring properties.Section 45.8 of the Land Use Bylaw states: “No trees or vegetation shall be cleared within 30 m (100 ft) of any water body, water course or the crest of a slope greater than 15% where the removal could have a negative impact on the water body, water course or slope stability.”If you have any questions regarding tree clearing on your land, please call the Planning & Development Department at 403.350.2170.