Urban Forestry

From Academic Kids

Urban forestry is the care and management of tree populations in urban settings for the purpose of improving the urban environment. Urban forestry advocates the role of trees as a critical part of the urban infrastructure. Urban foresters plant and maintain trees, support appropriate tree and forest preservation, conduct research and promote the many benefits trees provide. Urban forestry is practiced by municipal and commercial arborists, municipal and utility foresters, environmental policymakers, city planners, consultants, educators, researchers and community activists.

Contents

Challenges of Urban Forestry

Urban forestry is a practical discipline, focused on tree planting, care, and protection. Ongoing care and intervention are required because trees are constantly challenged by the urban environment. Water may not be readily available; planters may limit root space and consequently limit growth; ordinary physical stresses such as touching can accumulate to cause substantial damage.

Benefits of Urban Forestry

However, the benefits of urban trees are many, including beautification, reduction of the urban heat island effect, reduction of stormwater runoff, reduction of air pollution, reduction of energy costs through increased shade over buildings, enhancement of property values, improved wildlife habitiat, and mitigation of overall urban environmental impact.

Urban Forestry in the United States

In the United States, federal urban forestry policy is overseen by the USDA Forest Service, part of the Department of Agriculture. Much of the work on the ground is performed by non-profits funded by private donations and government grants.

Policy on urban forestry is less contentious and partisan than many other forestry issues, such as resource extraction in national forests.

Urban Forestry Organizations

Related fields of study: forestry, landscape architecture, horticulture, arboriculture, and natural resource management.

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