The study highlights the significant values that community trees provide Bellevue residents including the following:
- $15,561 per year in summer cooling and winter heating energy savings
- $11,650 per year in storm water management savings by intercepting approximately 65 million gallons of storm water annually
- $21,419 per year increase in local property values
- $2,238 per year in air quality improvements by mitigating harmful air pollutants
- $6,020 per year in atmospheric carbon dioxide reduction
Understanding the important environmental and economic value that community trees provide will allow Wisconsin communities, like Bellevue to improve management, advocate for future investment, build partnerships and address threats to ensure that residents receive environmental and economic services well into the future. Simply put, tree benefits increase as trees grow in size which emphasizes the need for sustainable planning, cooperation and participation by all to ensure that trees reach maturity and continue to enhance community livability.
You can learn more about the regional and individual community tree canopy results and see how they can help by visiting the Wisconsin DNR Urban and Community website http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/UrbanForests/urban.html. The analysis was conducted utilizing the i-Tree Streets & Canopy software developed by the USDA Forest Service. I-Tree is a state-of-art, peer-reviewed, free software suite designed to quantify community tree ecosystem services (www.itreetools.org).