6,600 trees a day die in cities, Greening Gardens reveals

Throughout the summer and winter, thousands of trees begin dying at a rate of 6,600 per day. These “city trees” are not falling from trees, but from the roofs of buildings or from trunks hit by glass or electricity lines. The losses add up to a dangerous loss of roots that strengthen the earth around them. They also degrade the air quality, reduce space available for neighborhoods, protect soil and water quality, and provide healthier homes for the people who live there.

Greening Gardens is a joint project of the U.S. Forest Service and the Natural Resources Defense Council. The two agencies are reporting on the loss of urban tree canopy on a yearly basis, which they say is especially helpful because not all cities have annual monitoring programs.

The project allows individual cities to rate their loss of tree canopy and plot their landscape in order to improve tree health and development. The data includes data on tree canopy, water, land use, and access to shade. The researchers also measure all of the vegetation on public property, including municipal, business, and individual property parks, open spaces, and properties.

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