Politician wants to give 200 NYC trees email addresses

You read that right: Upper West Side Councilmember Mark Levine plans to give 200 trees in New York City their own email addresses. His spokesperson, Tyrone Stevens, told Gothamist that the goal is to deepen "public engagement with the trees" -- we're guessing the politician believes residents can connect more personally with them that way. People, however, are welcome (encouraged, even) to report a tree's plight, such as broken branches, blight and rotting parts, by sending it an email. Levine himself told the publication that the project's only expense should be the creation of the signage that will display the chosen specimens' email addresses, prominently installed on or near them.

A total of 200 trees is but a fraction of the millions in NYC, though, so Levine's team plans to survey them and choose ones based on how uncommon they are, their age, height, width and historic interest. If all these sound strangely familiar, it's because Melbourne, Australia did the same thing in 2013. The city originally assigned their trees email ads to make it easy to report issues, as well. In time, city officials found that people have begun sending in personal messages, so they've taken to sending back equally amusing responses.

[Image credit: Getty Images/Brand X]