We've known it all along, but now there's a study which proves it -- as reported by the Toronto Star in their Business Section by Madhavi Acharya-Tom Yew this passed Monday:
A small excerpt:
The report pegs the replacement value, what it would cost to remove a tree and replant a similar one, at over $700 billion, or about $700 per tree.
Urban forests help ease the burden of managing snow and rain by intercepting precipitation, increasing the amount of water absorbed in the ground and reducing soil erosion, the report said.
This wet-weather flow reduction saves the city about $50 million each year, the report said.
Trees also produce oxygen, absorb air pollution, and capture dust, ash, dirt and pollen in their canopies.
Toronto’s urban forest removes about one-quarter of the emissions produced by industry within the city – about 19,000 metric tons of air pollution removed from the atmosphere annually.
That means the urban forest pulls out the particulate matter equivalent to what’s released by over 1 million automobiles each year, TD said.
Greenery also lowers energy demand for cooling and heating – which means savings for households and businesses. The net cooling effect of a young healthy tree is equivalent to ten room-sized air conditions operating 20 hours a day, the report said.
Toronto’s urban forest is comprised of approximately 10 million trees, shrubs, and other flora and fauna that line the streets, parks, and ravines of the city. It includes at least 116 different species, the report said.
Not all trees are created equal, and the benefits they provide vary, depending on size and species, the report said.
“But as a general rule of thumb, we can say bigger is better. Large, healthy trees absorb up to 10 times more air pollutants, 90 times more carbon, and contribute up to 100 times more leaf area to our urban forest canopy relative to smaller trees,” the report said.
And all of us in the AAT program are helping along that investment. Stand tall, stand proud -- good on us!
There's some grand new plantings along St. Hilda's walk -- a row of Dogwood bushes and grasses.
The community Greenhouse's west bed got weeded and mulched too.
Thanks to the park neighbors that came out to help, and to give back to their park.
Hey fellow park users : these young trees have a tough enough time surviving their youth* in big city parks as it is! Damaging their tender young bark with bike locks is so avoidable --
Lock your bike to itself if you're close by. If you are leaving your bike unattended a long ways from where you are -- such as this one -- find a bike rack along the perimeter of the park.
Trees take up water and return nutrients to its roots via the xylem and phloem, which are thin layers at bark level. If the bark is damaged it damages the trees ability to function. If the damage is done when the tree's bark/xylem/phloem is young and tender and thick bark hasn't yet formed it is more serious.
(BTW, boo to the corporate advertising in the park too, even if those petunias are rather pretty.)
* vandalism. dog pee, drought, among other things....
This Jane's Walk starts in Christie Pits and ends in Trinity Bellwoods Park.
The picture shows some of the houses that are buried beneath the Metro Store at College and Crawford, the bridge in the background carried Shaw Street over a tributary of Garrison Creek. Our City is a palimpsest; past landscapes are obscured by streets, houses and other improvements. This walk is about finding clues that reveal the original topography. We're going to look at sewer grates, retaining walls, finish floor levels and trees in an attempt to reconstruct the vanished landscape.
Jon Harstone is an author and local historian who lives in the west end of Toronto. With a background in architectural history and archaeology, Jon is a former board member of Heritage Toronto (formerly the Toronto Historical Board) and the former Chair of the Toronto Local Architectural Conservation Advisory Committee (LACAC).
Please check out this and all Jane's Walks at their website.