“Tree Equity,” a notion promoted by advocacy group American Forests, has received attention recently, including an article in the July 4 New York Times featuring Philadelphia. In brief summary, tree cover varies significantly among neighborhoods (more precisely, census blocks) in urban areas. A higher proportion of tree cover correlates with higher property values, higher median incomes of the residents, and with a whiter racial makeup. Therefore, one might say that the uneven distribution of urban trees is a feature of environmental inequity. American Forests proposes a program to plant 31.4 million trees annually in urban areas at a cost American Forests estimates at $8.9 billion. It asserts that that program would confer a number of benefits that would make it a good investment.
Continue reading the full Legal Intelligencer article, “Thinking About Tree Equity and Its Benefit to Clients, Community.”