The world is finally beginning to listen to Mother Nature. Over the past couple years, people have started to realize that we need to take care of the planet in order to take care of ourselves. Along with the expanded stress of eating healthier and exercising regularly in advertisements, green building and design has also come into play. With new standards such as LEED and the Well Institute, everyone is coming together to help preserve our land instead of ignoring important environmental factors. A new study has found that simply planting trees can help improve our health.
The study is called “Planting Healthy Air” by the Nature Conservancy (TNC). The goal being to improve the quality of life in urban areas by cooling temperatures and reducing pollution. The TNC argues that, “an investment in tree planting of just $4 per resident in some of the world’s largest cities could improve the health of tens of millions of people.” Imagine highly populated cities that are well-known for their air pollution – Los Angeles and Beijing, for example. The burning of agricultural residues, fuel wood, and fossil fuels can cause particulate matter to expand into the air, thus creating air pollution. Air pollution reportedly kills 3.3 million people a year. To prevent this number from doubling by 2050, change must occur.
How exactly does planting trees help the environment? Trees provide erosion prevention, storm water management, and noise reduction. Trees can capture up to 1,000 gallons of rain water. Thus, preventing the water from ending up in storm drains where additional energy is required to pump and filter it. They can also absorb ozone, which is a potent greenhouse gas. By shielding your house from wind, trees can help reduce heating bills and energy consumption by up to 50% per year.
According to the TNC, “trees also sequester carbon, helping mitigate climate change.” Trees naturally produce a cooling effect by up to 3.5 degrees Fahrenheit when one of the most harmful weather-related disasters is urban heat. A singly tree’s shade can save the energy of what 10 air conditioners need to run for 20 hours a day. By planting more trees, the particulate matter in the air can become trapped on the hair-like surfaces of their leaves. A growing tree can consume 48 pounds of carbon dioxide per year; exhaling enough oxygen to support your breathing for up to 2 years.
The study concluded that a mere $100 million investing into tree planting for the world could lead to 77 million people with cooler cities and 68 million people with measurable reductions in air pollution. It is also said that planting trees can beautify your house and increase its property value by as much as 20%! Beautiful, better for the environment, better for your health – what more could we ask?
Trees can provide health benefits for outdoor air, but Airtek Indoor Air Solutions is here to assist in improving any indoor air quality needs. For any concerns about particulate matter in your home, office, or facility, contact Airtek at 1-877-858-6213 today.