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Municipal Forest Benefits and Costs in Five US Cities

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Abstract:

Increasingly, city trees are viewed as a best management practice to control stormwater, an urban-heat–island mitigation measure for cleaner air, a CO2-reduction option to offset emissions, and an alternative to costly new electric power plants. Measuring benefits that accrue from the community forest is the first step to altering forest structure in ways that will enhance future benefits. This article describes the structure, function, and value of street and park tree populations in Fort Collins, Colorado; Cheyenne, Wyoming; Bismarck, North Dakota; Berkeley, California; and Glendale, Arizona. Although these cities spent $13–65 annually per tree, benefits ranged from $31 to $89 per tree. For every dollar invested in management, benefits returned annually ranged from $1.37 to $3.09. Strategies each city can take to increase net benefits are presented.

Keywords: economic analysis; environmental management; forest; forest management; forest resources; forestry; forestry research; forestry science; natural resource management; natural resources; urban forest management; urban forest valuation

Document Type: Regular Article

Affiliations: 1: Research Forester USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station, Plant Science University of California MS-6, One Shields Avenue Davis CA 95616, Email: egmcpherson@ucdavis.edu 2: Forest Meteorologist USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station, Plant Science University of California MS-6, One Shields Avenue Davis CA 95616, Email: jrsimpson@ucdavis.edu 3: Ecologist USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station, Plant Science University of California MS-6, One Shields Avenue Davis CA 95616, Email: pjpeper@ucdavis.edu 4: Urban Forester USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station, Plant Science University of California MS-6, One Shields Avenue Davis CA 95616, Email: SMaco@davey.com 5: Research Scientist Department of Land, Air, and Water Resources University of California One Shields Avenue Davis CA 95616, Email: qxiao@ucdavis.edu

Publication date: 2005-12-01

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of Forestry is the most widely circulated scholarly forestry journal in the world. In print since 1902, the Journal has received several national awards for excellence. The mission of the Journal of Forestry is to advance the profession of forestry by keeping forest management professionals informed about significant developments and ideas in the many facets of forestry: economics, education and communication, entomology and pathology, fire, forest ecology, geospatial technologies, history, international forestry, measurements, policy, recreation, silviculture, social sciences, soils and hydrology, urban and community forestry, utilization and engineering, and wildlife management. The Journal is published bimonthly: January, March, May, July, September, and November.

    2015 Impact Factor: 1.476
    Ranking: 22 of 66 in forestry

    Average time from submission to first decision: 39.6 days*
    June 1, 2016 to Feb. 28, 2017

    Also published by SAF:
    Forest Science
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