“treeconomics” -trees are good for you

apple tree_optUrban trees are good for your health and wellbeing but could have unrecognised monetary value called “treeconomics” as well.  There are a number of factors which could contribute to treeconomics in urban areas.  The first is the effect on pollution.  Some trees such as Plain trees are good at absorbing air pollution.  The second is to do with energy conservation.  Trees absorb heat in summer and act as heat sinks in winter.  In principle they save on air con use in summer and heating costs in winter.  These effects are small but add up taken over a city wide basis.   Trees mop up carbon helping to mitigate climate change and help absorb rainwater, potentially coping with the more extreme weather we will see.  These effects have been known about for years but now health and wellbeing effects are being recognised as well.  Trees help people to live longer, have less miscarriages and cope with Asthma.

Urban trees are however under more threat today than ever before.  There are two main ones.  People chopping them down and disease.  There are a whole heap of diseases which are spreading and extending their range in part due to climate change.  Plain trees, Scots pines and Ash trees are all under threat from untreatable diseases.

There has never been a better time to value trees, your health may depend on it.  How about suggesting your council plants fruit trees so people can forage for free?  Or in the UK did you its easy to put a tree protection order on a tree and you don’t even have to own it.


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