Forest canopy benefits in small urban areas of Louisiana

Michael Crosby, T. Eric McConnell, Jason J. Holderieath


Urban forests provide many benefits to areas in which they grow, sequestering carbon, mitigating pollution and rainfall runoff, and helping conserve energy. It is crucial that urban trees be managed to maximize the benefits they provide. However, not all urban areas have the capacity, staffing, or infrastructure to adequately manage these areas. Many smaller urban areas are largely unaccounted for in benefit assessment of urban areas within a state. This study presents the estimated benefits of 10 small urban areas in Louisiana that illustrate the tree coverage and benefits of small urban tree cover. i-Tree Canopy was utilized to provide coverage estimates and benefits by photo-interpreting 500 randomly allocated points within each city. Percent tree cover ranged from 11.2%-41% in the 10 cities; estimates of air and atmospheric pollutant mitigation and carbon sequestration and storage were also obtained. These estimates are important considerations for small urban areas because they demonstrate the importance and need for forest management that optimizes community benefits provided to the public.


i-Tree Canopy; municipal management; small urban areas; urban canopy benefits

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