Missouri Becoming More ‘Tree Conscious’

Apr 5, 2013

A Missouri Department of Conservation ten year survey revealed changing attitudes about the importance of community trees.

According to an additional study by the department that spanned three decades, trees provide communities with many benefits that almost always outweigh any maintenance costs.

Perceptions are changing. People are more aware of and more committed to halting dangerous habits such as tree-topping and destroying forestry for construction purposes, according to MDC State Urban Forester Nick Kuhn.

“If people know which trees save them energy and which ones are the good one to plant so that it’ll save energy later, we all win,” Kuhn said. “We all get a better home which makes a better neighborhood which makes a better community. And that’s what we want out of these trees. We want them to work for us and help us all, have a better city and a better state.”

Kuhn says they benefit everything from preventing pollution to storm runoff.

“As it rains they slow that water, they filter pollutants out of the water as it’s running across the ground. And by slowing down how much water, or filtering and absorbing it, that reduces how much water gets to the street or those other impervious surfaces,” Kuhn said.

The MDC is traveling statewide presenting workshops to spread the word about maintaining community trees.