Urban Forests: Environmental Benefits

Environmental Benefits of Urban Trees
Shade is one of many environmental benefits trees provide.

Urban forests are made up of the trees that exist in urban or suburban landscapes. An urban forest is comprised of trees in many settings – in residential and commercial landscapes, along streets and other rights-of-way, and in parks, greenways and set-aside natural areas.  Urban forests have great environmental, economic and social value.

Urban forests can moderate the impacts of urban air pollutants.  Trees remove particulates, sulfur dioxide, ozone and other

Plantation Forests and Climate Change

Written by Amy Grotta, University of Oregon


Plantation forests are a type of managed forest in which the trees are planted (as opposed to naturally regenerated), of the same age and generally of the same species, and are intended to maximize the production of wood fiber. Trees in a plantation forest are usually planted uniformly in rows to maximize the site’s growing space and resources, to ensure uniform growth, and to facilitate the use of mechanized harvesting equipment.

Figure 1.

Managed Forests

Written by Amy Grotta

Managed forests are those that people intentionally designate and manipulate to produce desired goods such as wood products and/or services such as recreational opportunities. This designation applies to “National Forests” that are managed by the U.S. Forest Service, “State Forests” that are managed by individual state agencies, “Industrial Forests” that are managed by timber industries for wood products, “Family Forests” that are managed by individual landowners and/or their families, and “Urban Forests” that are managed by …

Forest Management Types


Written by Amy Grotta

Forest ecosystems are made up of dozens of species and life forms, with sometimes complex patterns of vertical and horizontal structure. Across a large landscape, forest ecosystems are managed in a variety of ways and have many levels of human activity. Along a rough gradient from least intensive to most intensive human activity, forests may be characterized as wilderness, managed forests, wildland-urban interface, and urban forests. Each of these forest types is described in further …