And resources about trees
A program of the City of Seattle, Trees for Seattle is committed to growing and maintaining a healthy, awe-inspiring urban forest. They recently shared this information. The maps reveal that Fremont nearly meets the 30% goal, even exceeds it in a couple of spots, but that we are losing tree canopy by up to 15%.
“Seattle has a goal of 30 percent canopy cover, the amount of land within the city that is shaded or covered from above by the spread of tree limbs and branches. Increased tree canopy has been correlated with less crime, cooler temperatures, better air quality, cleaner water, more biodiversity, and increased physical and mental wellness. The cooling properties of trees through both shade and water movement act as natural air conditioning within a city so trees are especially important in high-heat urban spaces.
“Using aerial images from 2021, Seattle surveyed our canopy cover and compared it to our 2016 survey. The newly-released analysis and report found that Seattle is slowly losing ground in its canopy cover goals. Since 2016, Seattle has lost an amount of canopy cover that is similar in size to Green Lake, roughly 255 acres. The report details where Seattle is losing canopy: Parks Natural Areas and Neighborhood Residential Areas lost the most although all types of land in the city lost some cover. Neighborhoods impacted by racial and economic injustice not only started with less canopy but also lost more than the citywide average. While there were some canopy gains in these neighborhoods attributed to our many planting programs like Trees for Neighborhoods and Green Seattle Partnership, the losses outpaced the gains.
“The full report details many key points and illustrates our current conditions through several maps and figures. A list of recommendations is also included in the report and Mayor Harrell announced his One Tree Plan shortly after the report’s release. Trees for Seattle will continue to address our inequities in canopy using information in the report to further define the focus of our programs. Our Trees For Seattle and Green Seattle Partnership volunteer programs are working to keep mature trees healthy and establish new trees, especially in environmental justice priority areas. Trees for Neighborhoods will continue to plant 1,000 free trees with residents uses a weighted lottery that prioritizes high heat, low canopy communities and is expanding delivery to all participants. All nine departments who care for Seattle’s forest are working together and with community groups to address these findings and make well-informed plans for achieving our 30% canopy goal. “
They also publish a list of resources: