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Pacific Southwest Research Station

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Our research demonstrates new ways that trees add value to communities, converting results into financial terms to stimulate more investment in trees.

Pacific Southwest Research Station
800 Buchanan Street
West Annex Building
Albany, CA 94710-0011

(510) 559-6300

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Center for Urban Forest Research

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Urban forests improve air quality by reducing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels and absorbing air pollutants. Trees can directly sequester carbon dioxide as woody and foliar biomass while they grow. Properly planted and managed trees can also reduce the need for heating and air conditioning, resulting in fewer emissions released into the atmosphere. A study of one Southwest region's six million trees reveals that the trees remove and store approximately 304,000 tons of atmospheric CO2, 12,000 tons of ozone, and 9,000 tons of particulates.


Effects of Tree Cover on Parking Lot Microclimate and Evaporative Hydrocarbon Emissions from Parked Vehicles
This study shows that trees provide important benefits in parking lots by moderating the heat absorbed by asphalt. Cooler air temperatures reduce ozone concentrations by lowering hydrocarbon emissions. The cooler the car, the lower the rates of evaporation from gas tanks, hoses, and vehicle fabrics. Trees in Davis, California parking lots reduced surface asphalt temperatures by as much as 36°F, vehicle cabin temperatures by over 47°F, and fuel-tank temperatures by nearly 7°F. This study was a cooperation between California Air Resources Board, University of California Cooperative Extension, Albertson's, Inc., and USDA Crop Pathology.

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Last Modified: Mar 28, 2013 02:57:01 PM