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Fort Lauderdale's Urban Forest

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Fort Lauderdale's urban forest, that is all of the trees in our City, has been a work in progress for nearly 45 years.  Early pioneers were eager to maintain the greenness of our City, and we carry on that tradition today. As stated in our  Press Play Strategic Plan, our current canopy goal is 23.6% coverage by 2018. That means that, viewed from above, 23.6% of our City's land area would be covered by the branches and leaves of trees.  

Trees are some of nature's most beautiful creations, but the benefits of good canopy coverage, and each tree in specific, extend far beyond their aesthetic qualities. Trees have environmental, economic and social value. They:

  • Cool the air and provide an antidote to our Urban Heat Island Effect 
  • Save energy by providing shade in the summer months and blocking cold winds in the winter months, limiting the amount of electricity that HVAC systems use
  • Provide oxygen, improve air quality and combat warming by removing carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases from the atmosphere
  • Reduce stormwater runoff, help prevent erosion and recharge groundwater
  • Provide habitats for wildlife important to a healthy eco-system
  • Increase property values
  • Improve parks and public spaces, which increase quality of life, bring revenue to support City services, and give people a place to recreate and connect with nature
  • Improve social connections by engaging residents in tree planting efforts and care
  • Support smart growth, such as walkability, because of their ability to calm traffic and increase the comfort of sidewalks

For more information on the benefits of trees, check out these articles on Gene's Green Scene:

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