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Posted: Oct 15, 2009  21:57

Some Tree-mendous Benefits


Have you ever thought about a world without trees? It's hard to imagine, especially in an area such as Boundary County where our everyday landscape includes beautiful vistas of tree covered mountains in every direction. Trees are an amazingly important resource to our daily life and provide countless benefits without even trying. The following statistics highlight just how important trees are in a community setting.

  • Trees keep our air supply fresh by absorbing carbon dioxide and producing oxygen. One acre of forest absorbs six tons of carbon dioxide and puts out four tons of oxygen. This is enough to meet the annual needs of 18 people.

  • Landscaping, especially with properly placed trees, can increase property values as much as 20 percent, reduce air conditioning costs by up to 50 percent and can save 20-50 percent in energy used for heating. That translates to an annual savings of 2.1 billion dollars.

  • If you plant a tree today on the west side of your home, in five years your energy bills should be three percent less. In 15 years the savings will be nearly 12 percent.

  • In one year, an acre of trees can absorb as much carbon as is produced by a car driven up to 8700 miles.

  • The net cooling effect of a young, healthy tree is equivalent to 10 room-size air conditioners operating 20 hours a day.

  • Nationally, the 60 million street trees have an average value of $525 per tree.

  • A mature tree can often have an appraised value of between $1,000 and $10,000.

  • The death of one 70-year old tree would return over three tons of carbon to the atmosphere.

  • In one study, 83 percent of realtors believe that mature trees have a "strong or moderate impact" on the salability of homes listed for under $150,000; on homes over $250,000, this perception increases to 98 percent.

  • Trees lower air temperature by evaporating water in their leaves.

  • There are about 60 to 200 million spaces along our city streets where trees could be planted. This translates to the potential to absorb 33 million more tons of CO2 every year, and saving $4 billion in energy costs.

  • Trees located along streets act as glare and reflection control.

  • The average tree in a metropolitan area survives only about eight years!

  • Trees can be a stimulus to economic development, attracting new business and tourism. Commercial retail areas are more attractive to shoppers, apartments rent more quickly, tenants stay longer and space in a wooded setting is more valuable to sell or rent.

  • The planting of trees means improved water quality, resulting in less runoff and erosion. This allows more recharging of the ground water supply. Wooded areas help prevent the transport of sediment and chemicals into streams.

  • A tree does not reach its most productive stage of carbon storage for about 10 years.

  • Trees cut down noise pollution by acting as sound barriers.

  • Trees improve water quality by slowing and filtering rain water as well as protecting aquifers and watersheds.

  • Trees provide protection from downward fall of rain, sleet and hail as well as reduce storm run-off and the possibility of flooding

  • In laboratory research, visual exposure to settings with trees has produced significant recovery from stress within five minutes, as indicated by changes in blood pressure and muscle tension.

Information for this article was acquired from the National Arbor Day Foundation and

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