My City’s Trees

New app helps people learn about the values of urban trees

FIA data from the forest inventory assessment of Austin, Texas, shown on My City's Trees.
FIA data from the forest inventory assessment of Austin, Texas, shown on My City’s Trees.

The Texas A&M Forest Service has developed a web-based application, My City’s Trees, designed to give the public easy access to information from the urban forest inventories conducted by the U.S. Forest Service Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program.

The application, hosted at the Texas Forest Info website, currently shows results from FIA’s first urban forest assessment for Austin, Texas, but the inventories of many more cities are in progress and will be online when data is available.

The application allows users to zoom in to specific areas of interest such as their own neighborhoods and generate maps and reports with tables, figures, and explanatory text about their urban forests and the ecosystem services they provide. This information includes:

  • Distribution of the forest area, tree population, and land cover classes,
  • Numbers of trees by species and other attributes,
  • Urban forest carbon stocks and leaf biomass,
  • Compensatory values, which are estimates of the value of the forest as a structural asset, meaning a compensation amount for the physical loss of the trees,
  • Residential energy savings due to tree shading and microclimatic effects of urban trees (currently in development),
  • Surface water runoff that was avoided because of urban trees, and
  • Air pollution removed by trees, plus the economic value of avoided human health impacts from pollution removal by trees.

For more information about the My City’s Trees app, email Chris Edgar at cedgar@tfs.tamu.edu or Rebekah Zehnder at rzehnder@tfs.tamu.edu.

For more general information on Urban FIA, contact Tom Brandeis at 865-862-2030 or tjbrandeis@fs.fed.us.

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