WILMINGTON, Calif. – April 27, 2007 – Wilmington elementary school students, seniors and community members joined Port and City of Los Angeles officials today to celebrate Arbor Day and the planting of 71 new street trees along Avalon Boulevard, one of Wilmington’s main corridors.

“What better way to commemorate Arbor Day than by celebrating the start of bringing street trees back to Wilmington?” said Port of Los Angeles executive director Geraldine Knatz, Ph.D.  “We are happy to add ‘tree planting’ to the host of programs the Port is initiating to help clean the air we all breathe.”

“These trees are now a vital and living part of Wilmington that will add beauty and much needed shade as they grow,” said Wilmington Chamber of Commerce president Pat Wilson.  “This is the best Arbor Day we’ve had in years!”

Part of Mayor Villaraigosa’s Million Trees LA program, the Port will be adding more than 7,300 trees to the harbor and Los Angeles areas by the end of 2009.  Trees will be planted by the Port in its neighboring communities of Wilmington and San Pedro to both green and beautify the area. The Port has also embarked upon an aggressive community tree give-away program, and will be giving away more than 500 trees per month, free of charge.  Trees will be distributed at local community events as well as monthly Saturday “Tree Give-Away Days.”

More information on the Port’s tree program and tree give-away dates can be found on the website at www.portoflosangeles.org.

Celebrating its Centennial in 2007, the Port of Los Angeles is America's premier port. As the leading seaport in the nation in terms of shipping container volume and cargo value, the Port generates 259,000 regional jobs and $8.4 billion in annual wages and tax revenues. A proprietary department of the City of Los Angeles, the Port is self-supporting and does not receive taxpayer dollars. At the Port of Los Angeles, high priority is placed on responsible and sustainable growth initiatives, combined with high security, environmental stewardship and community outreach. For its industry leading environmental initiatives, the Port received two Environmental Protection Agency awards in 2006. The Port of Los Angeles – A Cleaner Port. A Brighter Future.