State of the Urban Forest Final Report Released

San Francisco, CA (December 19, 2007)- The Center for Urban Forest Research has just published the San Francisco Bay Area State of the Urban Forest Final Report, written by Jim Simpson and Greg McPherson. The document provides a wealth of information about the benefits of the area’s trees, as well as the historic changes in the urban forests of the San Francisco Bay area. It also offers inspiration for residents of other regions to learn about the ecosystem services their urban forests provide and to work to care for their trees.

The project had three main goals:
1) To describe the historic changes to the region’s urban canopy cover and amount of impervious surface.
2) To quantify the value of ecosystem services the current forest provides.
3) To estimate future benefits based on possible expansion of the urban forest. This information will enhance our understanding of the relevance of urban forests and of the extent to which they affect the environmental and economic health of Bay area communities.
Some of the most interesting findings in the study include the following:
* Urbanization has led to a 10% increase in canopy cover over the last 20 years, but also to a 17% increase in impervious surfaces.
* Total annual benefits for the region were estimated at $5.1 billion per year.
* A modest increase of just 3% in the urban canopy will increase annual benefits by $475 million or $69 for each person in the Bay area.
Download the San Francisco Bay Area State of the Urban Forest Final Report.
For more information, contact Jim Simpson or Greg McPherson at:
Center for Urban Forest Research
PSW, USDA Forest Service
1731 Research Park Drive
Davis, CA 95618
Phone: 530.759.1726
Fax: 530.759.1409