Skip to Main Content
U.S. Forest Service
Caring for the land and serving people

United States Department of Agriculture

Home > Search > Publication Information

  1. Share via EmailShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Twitter
    Dislike this pubLike this pub
    Author(s): E. Gregory McPherson; Qingfu Xiao; Natalie S. van Doorn; John de Goede; Jacquelyn Bjorkman; Allan Hollander; Ryan M. Boynton; James F. Quinn; James H. Thorne
    Date: 2017
    Source: Urban Forestry & Urban Greening
    Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
    Station: Pacific Southwest Research Station
    PDF: View PDF  (1.0 MB)

    Description

    This study used tree data from field plots in urban areas to describe forest structure in urban areas throughout California. The plot data were used with numerical models to calculate several ecosystem services produced by trees. A series of transfer functions were calculated to scale-up results from the plots to the landscape using urban tree canopy (UTC) mapped at 1-m resolution for each combination of 6 land use classes and climate zones. California's UTC covered 15% of the urban area and contained 173.2 million trees, five per city resident. UTC per capita was lowest among U.S. states (90.8 m2), indicating ample opportunity for tree planting. Oaks were the most abundant taxon (22%) and overall plantings were youthful. The annual value of ecosystem services was estimated at $8.3 billion and the urban forests asset value was $181 billion. Assuming an average annual per tree management cost of $19 and benefit of $47.83, $2.52 in benefit was returned for every dollar spent. The threat posed by Invasive Shot Hole Borer (Euwallacea sp.) illustrates that urban forests are a relatively fragile resource whose contributions to human health and well-being can be suddenly jeopardized. One scenario projected that should Southern California cities lose 50% (11.6 million) of all susceptible trees, the value of ecoservices foregone over 10 years was $616.6 million. The approximate cost of removing and replacing the trees was $15.9 billion. Strategies to reduce the risk of catastrophic loss by increasing the resilience of California’s urban forests are discussed.

    Publication Notes

    • You may send email to psw_communications@fs.fed.us to request a hard copy of this publication.
    • (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
    • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.

    Citation

    McPherson, E. Gregory; Xiao, Qingfu; van Doorn, Natalie S.; de Goede, John; Bjorkman, Jacquelyn; Hollander, Allan; Boynton, Ryan M.; Quinn, James F.; Thorne, James H. 2017. The structure, function and value of urban forests in California communities. Urban Forestry & Urban Greening. 28: 43-53. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ufug.2017.09.013.

    Cited

    Google Scholar

    Keywords

    Ecosystem services, Multi-city inventory, Sequestration, Urban ecosystems, Urban forestry, Urban tree cover

    Related Search


    XML: View XML
Show More
Show Fewer
Jump to Top of Page
https://www.fs.usda.gov/treesearch/pubs/55313