Tree Foundation of Kern

The Benefits of Trees

Trees do their part - let's do ours!

Trees offer numerous benefits, but in Kern County in the heat of the summer, perhaps the biggest benefit of all is shade which leads to greater comfort. Before air conditioning, shade trees were the natural coolants, dropping temperatures 10 degrees, and keeping the environment under 100 F. As urban sprawl increased, so did asphalt parking areas, also known as "heat islands" because they absorb heat and radiate 10 degrees of heat into the immediate surroundings. By dropping temperatures, shade trees do their part in making us more comfortable in summer.

We have a very special relationship with trees, don't we? We are totally dependent on breathing the oxygen that they produce, just like they are dependent on us for the carbon dioxide that we exhale. Where would we be without each other? Trees improve the quality of the air we breathe by trapping dust particles harmful to our lungs. Leaves absorb carbon dioxide and poisonous gases and replenish the atmosphere with pure air. One acre of trees provides enough oxygen to support 18 people.

Here are other ways trees work for us each day.

Trees save energy by throwing shade in summer and breaking wind in winter. As a result, we burn less fossil fuels for heating and cooling. Trees strategically placed around buildings can reduce air conditioning needs by 30% and save 20% to 50% in heating costs.

Trees reduce noise pollution by absorbing unpleasant sounds from the urban environment.

Trees increase economic stability by attracting and keeping businesses in a community. Research shows that people linger and shop longer along tree-lined streets. Apartments and offices rent more quickly and tenants stay longer in wooded areas. Healthy, mature trees increase property values 10% to 20% and accelerate the sale of properties.

Trees improve personal health by relieving psychological stresses. In a high nature environment, violence is less frequently used to resolve conflict. Medical research shows that patients in rooms with a view of trees and green open spaces recover more quickly.

Trees improve water quality by reducing the impact of raindrops on the ground, resulting in less runoff and erosion. Wooded areas help prevent the transport of sediment and chemicals into streams.

Trees promote wildlife diversity by creating cover and habitats for animals, birds and butterflies that would otherwise be absent from urban areas.

Trees add beauty by softening the harsh lines of urban architecture. Trees often give visitors the first positive impressions of a community. Picture your town without trees. Is it still a place where you would like to live? Trees improve the quality of life for all of us - now, and in the years ahead.