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5/26 GGG Spring Speaker Series presents Dr. Greg McPherson “Climate-Proofing California’s Urban Forests, One Community at a Time”

Event Date: 
2015-05-26 04:10 - 05:30

2015 GEOGRAPHY GRADUATE GROUP Spring Speaker Series
*Tuesdays 4:10-5:30pm * 166 Hunt Hall*

“Climate-Proofing California’s Urban Forests, One Community at a Time”

California’s urban forests account for 5% of the state’s land area and are home to 95% of its 38.3 million residents. On average, tree canopy covers 15% of urban land and its health and resilience is intimately related to the quality of life and well-being of all urban dwellers. Recent findings indicate that urban tree canopy is declining, street tree density is declining and the combination of drought and invasive pests are killing city trees at unprecedented rates. There is a critical need to increase the biodiversity and resilience of urban forests in California. Such a transformation will require a generation of dedicated commitment, but its legacy will be more stable, productive and climate-friendly forests for our children’s children

Dr. Greg McPherson is a Research Forester with the USDA Forest Service's Pacific Southwest Research Station and Center for Urban Forest Research located in Davis, CA. Greg grew up under a canopy of American elm trees in Howell, Michigan. Despite attempts to save the trees, all were lost to Dutch elm disease, and having felt the sting of that loss he became a green accountant, developing new methods and tools for quantifying the value of nature's benefits from city trees. He works with a team of scientists to measure and model effects of trees on energy use, urban heat islands, air pollutant uptake, carbon sequestration, and rainfall interception. Their research is helping justify investments in urban forest planning and management. In 2000, Greg received the International Society of Arboriculture's L.C. Chadwick Award for Research. Greg was a co-founder and Chair of the Tree Growth and Longevity Working Group and serves on the California Urban Forest Advisory Council. He attended University of Michigan (BGS), Utah State University (Masters in Landscape Architecture), and SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (Ph.D. Forestry).