Magazine article American Forests

Developing Denver Needs Trees

Magazine article American Forests

Developing Denver Needs Trees

Article excerpt

Ever wonder what a bunch of trees in a city are worth?

Consider this: Trees in Denver and in seven other Colorado cities are worth a total of $44 million in stormwater management--$3.2 million a year. Add another $5.3 million a year to factor in the removal of a couple million pounds of air pollution--stuff like sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, and carbon monoxide. Their value increases by another $4.5 million when you add the savings in air conditioning costs the trees provide through shade, a cooling system with an added benefit: no carbon emissions.

Those are among the findings of a new study AMERICAN FORESTS presented this spring to Denver's mayor, Wellington Webb, and to a number of the cities' foresters. The study was supported by the U.S. and Colorado State Forest Services, along with the forestry departments of the cities of Aurora, Boulder, Denver, Fort Collins, Greeley, Lakewood, Louisville, and Wheat Ridge.

Using satellite images collected in 1986 and 1998, AMERICAN FORESTS analyzed 425,000 acres around Denver and another 2-plus million acres from Denver to Fort Collins. Then, 39 sites were analyzed indepth with CITYgreen software. …

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