Urban Forest Strategy - Rationale

“A healthy urban forest is critical for any city that prioritises its environmental and social outcomes”

Why is Geelong's urban forest important?

A healthy urban forest is critical for any city that prioritises its environmental and social outcomes. Geelong’s urban forest is a valuable community asset that crosses public and private boundaries, enhancing the local environment and providing a green network of spaces for the community to utilise.
Geelong’s urban forest is important as it provides the following benefits:

  • Shade from tree canopies and reduction in sun exposure
  • Reduction of heat exposure during heatwaves
  • Energy savings in buildings through shading of walls and roofs
  • Habitat for wildlife, particularly birds
  • Rainfall and stormwater interception, resulting in reduced stormwater flows into the bay and rivers
  • Wind abatement
  • Microclimatic moderation for human thermal comfort
  • A unique City brand - attractive, well maintained green spaces reflect proactive and innovative Council management
  • A sense of place
  • Amenity and landscape aesthetics
  • Improved property values along tree-lined streets
  • More attractive commercial and retail centres
  • Air pollution amelioration
  • Carbon storage and sequestration
  • A food source
  • A connection to nature, especially for children


Did you know...

  • Geelong’s public urban trees are worth over $370 million.
  • Geelong has 75,268 street trees and over 45,000 urban park trees.
  • Geelong’s street trees store 19,000 tonnes of carbon and sequester over 1,300 tonnes per year.
  • Stormwater run-off is 62% higher from asphalt than from turf or tree pits.
  • The public urban forest alone absorbs around four Olympic sized swimming pools of stormwater each year, preventing run-off into the bay.
  • The presence of street trees can improve residential property values by up to 30%.
  • Large healthy trees can remove between 60 and 70 times more air pollution than smaller trees.
  • Temperatures can be between 5o Celsius and 20o Celsius cooler underneath tree canopies.
  • Up to 80% of the cooling effect of trees is directly from shading.

Surface Temperature Reduction Examples


Example 1: Orbit Drive, Whittington

Time: 4:20pm Date: 24 February 2015 Ambient Temperature: 33 degrees Celsius

Unshaded roadway is 15 degrees Celsius hotter than asphalt shaded by a tree.


Unshaded roadway is 15 degrees Celsius hotter than asphalt shaded by a tree.

Measurement Object
Maximum Temperature (oC)
Minimum Temperature (oC)
Emissions
Reflected Temperature (oC)
Average Temperature (oC)
Profile line (P1)
45.1
30.5
1.0
20.0
41.4


Example 2: Myers Street, Haymarket Carpark

Time: 5:00pm Date: 24 February 2015 Ambient Temperature: 31 degrees Celsius

Asphalt shaded by trees is 19 degrees Celsius cooler than unshaded asphalt.


Asphalt shaded by trees is 19 degrees Celsius cooler than unshaded asphalt.

Measurement Objects
Temperature (oC)
Emissions
Reflected Temperature (oC)
Average Temperature (oC)
Measure point 1
28.2
1.00
20.0
Shaded
Measure point 2
46.8
1.00
20.0
Unshaded
Measure point 3
27.8
1.00
20.0
Shaded




Page last updated: Thursday, 18 July 2019

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