Friday, April 29, 2011

They may have lost Michael Scott, but they still have a great tree canopy according to recent study - Scranton, PA

Urban forest study shows value of Scranton's trees - News - The Times-Tribune

Report to show benefit of city's trees
Pity the flowering pear. Scranton's best trees are burly.
A report on Scranton's urban forest to be released on Arbor Day shows that the city's large, leafy trees store as much carbon as is produced by 56,000 vehicles each year and save the city's residents nearly $630,000 annually in energy costs.
The study, published by the U.S. Forest Service, provides a picture of the type, size and benefits of Scranton's 1.2 million urban trees. It also evaluates their worth in terms of what it would cost to replace them: $322 million.
"I think a lot of people do understand the environmental benefits of trees and the aesthetic benefits, but a lot of people don't understand that they do have an economic value," said Lynn Conrad, program administrator of the NEPA Urban and Community Forestry Program, which helped produce the study.
Three of the most common species in Scranton's urban forest - red maple, black cherry and northern red oak - are also relatively large, leafy trees with the most benefits in terms of reducing air pollution, providing electricity savings and mitigating stormwater.
Large-canopied Norway maple, which make up less than 4 percent of the city's trees, provide nearly 11 percent of the urban forest's leaf area. On the other hand, spindly grey birch, which thrive on culm banks, make up 10 percent of the forest's population but provide less than 3 percent of its leaf area.

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