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Benefits loom large for cities that have trees

Trees are not just for hugging anymore. Actually, they never were, but we just have better research to count the ways trees love us back.

You will note that U.S. Forest Service research using its iTree models show that a 245/8-diameter white oak growing as a street tree in a residential Akron neighborhood provides more than $243 in annual environmental benefits.

Akron is compiling information about this street tree resource, much like was done in Toledo in 2010 through an Ohio State University Extension Why Trees Matter inventory showing that street trees there provided more than $15.1 million annually, with a cost/benefit return of 366 percent for the community.

Northeast Ohio has a great connection to all of this ''treesearch.'' Davey Tree Expert Co., headquartered in Kent, was the private partner with the Forest Service as it developed the free public software iTree models that illustrate the benefits of trees.

Read more in the Akron Beacon Journal.

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