Urban forestry is simply about trees in places where people live.
Ultimately, conservation is about empowering citizens to improve the communities where they live and work. The Alliance for Community Trees is the only national organization working to improve the urban forests where 80% of Americans live- our cities, towns, and villages. ACT’s national office assembles coalitions that drive broad environmental success for our more than 180 organizations in 41 states in the pursuit of Clean Air, Green Streets, and Healthy Neighborhoods.
Individuals support ACT to impact national urban forestry programming. ACT administers programs to revitalize and replant entire communities, rebuild and transform regions devastated by natural disasters, and impact long-term health for all citizens. Urban spaces are a public commodity and must be developed with an eye towards sustainability. Your contribution helps sustain neighborhoods and NeighborWoods, leadership training for youth and elected officials, and education and the building of partnerships with community leaders and residents.
Every day across the country the public is learning the benefits of planting and protecting trees. For example, did you know that more trees correlates with:
Lower crime. The presence of trees in urban neighborhoods has been linked to reduced crime.
Cleaner air. Trees provide the oxygen we breathe. One acre of trees produces enough oxygen for 18 people to breathe each day and eliminates as much carbon dioxide from the air as is produced from driving a car 26,000 miles. Tree leaves help trap and remove tiny particles of soot and dust which otherwise damages human lungs and tree root networks filter contaminants in soils producing clean water. Forty trees will remove 80 pounds of air pollutants annually. That is, 4 million trees would save $20 million in annual air pollution cleanup.
Energy savings. Trees lower the temperature through shade. The cooling effects of trees can save millions of energy dollars. 3-4 shade trees located strategically around a house can cut summer cooling costs by 30-50%. For one million trees, that’s $10 million in energy savings.
More public revenue. Studies have shown that trees enhance community economic stability by attracting businesses and tourists. People linger and shop longer along tree-lined streets. 40,000 trees in commercials parking lots would induce shoppers to spend 11% more for goods and services.
Higher property values. Property values of homes with trees in the landscape are 5 – 20% higher than equivalent properties without trees. 4000 trees in yards would increase the sales price of homes by 1%, plus increase the property values as much as 10%. That is an estimated annual increase in homes sale value of $10.4 million.
More efficient stormwater management. Roots stabilize soil and prevent erosion by trapping soil that would otherwise become silt. Silt destroys fish eggs and other aquatic wildlife and makes rivers and streams shallower, causing more frequent and more severe flooding. Trees along streams hold stream banks in place to protect against flooding. One tree reduces 4000 gallons of storm water runoff annually. 400 trees will capture 140,000 gallons of rainwater annually. That is, 4 million trees would save $14 million in annual storm water runoff costs.
As we strive to realize ACT’s promise, Friends of ACT have never been more important to the organization. Your gift has an immediate impact on today’s environment and helps to ensure ACT’s continuing tradition of excellence. Please consider becoming a Friend of ACT, at the level appropriate today. Contact us to discuss these and other reasons to get involved. The Alliance for Community Trees is a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization (EIN # 68-0319301), and also participates in the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC # 12402). To discuss planned giving opportunities, call us at 301-277-0040.