My great-grandmother, Eleanor XXX, is considered by many scholars of the Empire’s history to be one of the better rulers in our history. I agree. Her legacy is all around us in the gorgeous architecture that we are blessed to have inherited.

One of her greatest contributions, however, isn’t in the buildings she created, but in the contributions to nature that she made throughout our great cities.

I would argue that the biggest of these is Décret 2941:

Henceforth, all thoroughfares of more than two lanes shall be split to allow for the planting of trees between the lanes. Likewise, trees shall be planted on either side of all thoroughfares throughout the Empire. These trees shall be of diverse species, native to the location in which the road is constructed, and shall be maintained at the expense of the crown.

Eleanor XXX, Décret 2941

I have heard tell that this décret was inspired by her friend (and sometime lover), the Russian playwright Anton Chekhov, although one cannot believe every rumour that one hears.

We know now, of course, that the many trees of the Empire have helped us to keep our roadways cool in summer: reducing the heat absorption effect that concrete and asphalt are known for. This has likewise contributed to the generalized cool that is felt throughout our cities as compared to cities in other parts of the world.

These trees are also responsible for the roughly 20% lower level of pollution that is found in our cities as well.

Aesthetically, the trees further contribute to a sense of being amongst nature that is prevalent throughout much of our territory.

My ancestress is a great inspiration to me as we enter a world in which nature is under attack and we face the spectre of global climate change.

Categories: Environment