Community Tree Program
The APS Community Tree Program will work to ensure people and neighborhoods in need across Arizona receive the many benefits trees provide. The program will reduce heat island effect by expanding the tree canopy cover in vulnerable communities within the APS service territory and support the APS Clean Energy Commitment.
Trees and vegetation can create cooler spaces by providing shade and through a process called evapotranspiration (water lost through plant transpiration and soil and plant evaporation). These cooler spaces have the potential to limit overall heat gain and help lower overall temperatures. Shaded surfaces, for example, may be 20–45 degrees cooler than the peak temperatures of unshaded materials. Evapotranspiration, alone or in combination with shading, can help reduce peak summer temperatures by 2–9 degrees.
APS will offer grant funding to qualified organizations for community-based tree planting projects in high need areas within the APS service territory. Through an open and competitive cycle, APS will accept only one proposal from a qualified organization per year. Proposals may be submitted for a minimum of $1,000 and a maximum of $10,000, and APS funding may only be used to purchase trees, tree stakes and ties. Funding priority will be given to projects in vulnerable communities that have low tree equity and high tree prioritization map scores. For questions, contact CorporateGiving@aps.com.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Title 1 schools/districts
- Cities, towns, and municipalities
- Neighborhood associations, block watch groups (if 501c3 or comparable)
- Any Arizona 501(c)(3) organization that has been in operation for a minimum of three years, government agency, Title 1 school/district or tribal entity that operates with fiscal accountability and responsibility. Religious organizations may apply for funding of non-sectarian programs.
- Organizations without 501(c)(3) status must use a fiscal agent to apply on their behalf.
- Organizations must demonstrate a non-discrimination policy regarding staff, employment, governing board, and service delivery based on race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability or national origin, and provide evidence of the policy.
- The application for this grant cycle is available online. If applicants do not have internet access, they are advised to contact local public libraries, which offer free public internet access.
- Organizations must be in good standing with the IRS at the time of review or the submitted application(s) will be immediately declined.
- Organizations uncertain of their eligibility may inquire by sending an e-mail to email@example.com.
- Organizations must provide irrigation, ongoing maintenance and monitoring of approved desert-adapted trees.
- Organizations will ensure safe planting locations by contacting 811 prior to planting and reviewing APS Right Tree Right Place information.
- Funding priority will be given to projects in vulnerable communities with low tree equity scores as measured by American Forests Tree Equity Score or in a high need priority area as defined by Trees Matter’s Tree Prioritization Map or the Arizona Dept. of Forestry and Fire Management Shade Tree Planting Prioritization Map..
- Refer to the Maricopa County Air Quality Department Tree List or the Arizona Department of Forestry Website to determine which trees would be best for your location.
- Review APS Right Tree Right Place if planting near power lines.
- Focus should be on desert-adapted; low-water use trees with large shade canopies.
- APS encourages the planting of 15-gallon trees.
- APS funds can only be used to purchase/pay for trees appropriate for the location and climate where they are being planted as well as tree stakes and ties.
- Grantee is responsible for ensuring proper watering and ongoing maintenance.
- Fill out the APS CommunityTree Program grant application.
- We are committed to reviewing all grant requests within 60 days of submission. Notifications about your grant will come from firstname.lastname@example.org. Please ensure that this email address is added to your safe sender list.