The trees in urban landscapes that line city streets and parks provide a multitude of benefits for people and nature. Cleaner air and being surrounded by trees are good for overall human health, and lesser-known, but no less important is the cooling effect trees have on the surrounding environment. Research has shown that urban areas with greater tree cover are several degrees cooler than areas with fewer trees.
In South Tacoma, an ongoing ‘greening’ effort means more trees will be planted with the intention of improving community well-being and monitoring the impact on people and the surrounding environment. Tacoma Tree Foundation is leading the way with community engagement, providing educational opportunities, hosting events to showcase the important role trees play in our urban spaces, and collaborating with the City of Tacoma and partners to support the overall initiative. The Nature Conservancy and researchers at the University of Washington are uncovering the science and social science of greening spaces to understand how increased tree cover impacts the nearby environment and human well-being.