Jim Robbins is a freelance journalist and author based in Helena, Montana. He has written for The New York Times, Conde Nast Traveler, The Guardian, and numerous other publications, and has published several works of non-fiction. His words below, from his book "The Man Who Planted Trees," are inspiring to me and should give hope to all, that individuals and subservient political jurisdiction can themselves make significant contributions to the cleansing of our air, water, and land, and that we should do so, regardless of the anemic efforts our state and federal governments are making at protecting our land and its people. Maybe we'll inspire those leaders.
"Planting trees, I myself thought for a long time, was a feel-good thing, a nice but feeble response to our litany of modern-day environmental problems. In the last few years, though, as I have read many dozens of articles and books and interviewed scientists here and abroad, my thinking on the issue has changed. Planting trees may be the single most important ecotechnology that we have to put the broken pieces of our planet back together."
~ Robbins, Jim: The Man Who Planted Trees: Lost Groves, Champion Trees, and an Urgent Plan to Save the Planet. [New York: Random House / Spiegel & Grau; 2012]
Below is a long list of the positive benefits trees provide for human beings. The purpose of the list is to persuade that it is good to have more of the things that bring us good. Perhaps it is better to start off with the converse, the [hopefully] equally persuasive proposition that having fewer things beneficial to our health results – invariably – in higher rates of mortality. The thesis of the linked-to article is that, in areas where trees are killed, the human populations in those areas suffer higher rates of deaths from cardio-vascular disease and respiratory disease. And the number of increased deaths is tied proportionally to the number of trees killed. Read the article in "Wired" magazine. It is titled, The Trees Will Die, And Then So Will You .
Cary receives over its approximately 60-square-mile area an average of 44 inches of precipitation each year, which works out to about 40 billion gallons. Flooding of part of the Town is frequent. If an additional million trees were planted in the Town, they would absorb and thus reduce stormwater runoff by 2 billion additional gallons.
Note 1. Wolf, K. L. 1999. Nature and Commerce: Human Ecology in Business Districts. In: Kollins, C., ed. Building Cities of Green: Proceedings of the 9th National Urban Forest Conference. Washington, DC: American Forests.
Note 2. Scott, Klaus I.; Simpson, James R.; McPherson, E. Gregory. 1999. Effects of Tree Cover on Parking Lot Microclimate and Vehicle Emissions. Journal of Arboriculture 25(3).
Note 3. Wolf, Kathy L. 1998. Trees in Business Districts: Positive Effects on Consumer Behavior! Fact Sheet #5. Seattle: University of Washington, College of Forest Resources, Center for Urban Horticulture.
Note 4. Miller, Alban L.; Riley, J.; Schwaab, E.; Rabaglia, R.; Miller, K. 1995. Maryland’s Forests: A Health Report. Annapolis: Maryland Department of Natural Resources Forest Service.
Note 5. The National Arbor Day Foundation. 2004. The value of trees to a community. www.arborday.org/trees/Benefits.cfm (January 12).
Note 6. Heisler, G.M. 1986. Energy Savings With Trees. Journal of Arboriculture 12.
Note 7. U.S. Department of Energy. 2003. Energy Savers, Tips on Saving Money and Energy at Home. Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Clearinghouse.
Note 8. McPherson, E.G. 2001. Sacramento's Parking Lot Shading Ordinance: Environmental and Economic Costs of Compliance. Landscape and Urban Planning 57.
Note 9. Consensus of real estate brokers.
Note 10. Kaplan, R.; Kaplan, S. 1989. The Experience of Nature: A Psychological Perspective. Cambridge, MA: Cambridge University Press.
Note 11. Taylor, A.F.; Kuo, F.; Sullivan, W. 2001. Coping with ADD: The Surprising Connection to Green Play Settings. Environment and Behavior 33(1).
Note 12. NC-DHHS State Center for Health Statistics.
Note 13. New Jersey Forest Service. [undated]. Benefits of trees. Fact sheet. Jackson, NJ: Forest Resource Education Center.
Note 14. Parsons, R.; Tassinary, L.G.; Ulrich, R.S.; Hebl, M.R.; Grossman-Alexander, M. 1998. The View From the Road: Implications for Stress Recovery and Immunization. Journal of Environmental Psychology 18(2).
Note 15. Kuo, F.; Sullivan, W. 2001. Environment and Crime in the Inner City: Does Vegetation Reduce Crime? Environment and Behavior 33(3).
Note 16. Wolf, Kathy L. 2000. The Calming Effect of Green: Roadside Landscape and Driver Stress. Factsheet #8. Seattle: University of Washington, Center for Urban Horticulture.
Note 17. Tree People (an independent group of concerned Los Angeles citizens) Fact Sheet, 2014; George McDowell, repeatedly.
Note 18. Luley, Christopher J.; Nowak, David J. 2004. Help Clear the Smog with Your Urban Forest: What You and Your Urban Forest Can Do About Ozone. Brochure. Davey Research Group and USDA Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station.
Note 19. USDA Forest Service. 2003. Benefits of Urban Trees. Urban and Community Forestry: Improving Our Quality of Life. Forestry Report R8-FR 71. [Atlanta, GA.] Southern Region.
Note 20. USDA Forest Service. 2003. Is All Your Rain Going Down the Drain? Look to Bioretainment—Trees are a Solution. Davis, CA: Pacific Southwest Research Station, Center for Urban Forest Research.
Note 21. Tree People (an independent group of concerned Los Angeles citizens) Fact Sheet, 2014.
Note 22. Tree People (an independent group of concerned Los Angeles citizens) Fact Sheet, 2014.
Note 23. Tree People (an independent group of concerned Los Angeles citizens) Fact Sheet, 2014.
Note 24. Tree People (an independent group of concerned Los Angeles citizens) Fact Sheet, 2014.
Note 25. Tree People (an independent group of concerned Los Angeles citizens) Fact Sheet, 2014.
Note 26. Tree People (an independent group of concerned Los Angeles citizens) Fact Sheet, 2014.
Note 27. Taylor, Andrea Faber; Kuo, Frances E.; Sullivan, William C. 2002. Views of Nature and Self-Discipline: Evidence from Inner City Chil dren. Journal of Environmental Psychology 22(1-2).
Note 28. Dwyer, J. F.; Schroeder, H. W.; Gobster, P. H. 1991. The Significance of Urban Trees and Forests: Toward a Deeper Understanding of Values. Journal of Arboriculture 17(10).
Note 29. Forests, Trees, and Human Health. Editors: Nilsson, K., Sangster, M., Gallis, C., Hartig, T., de Vries, S., Seeland, K., and Schipperijn, J.; Springer Publishing Company, 2013.