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The many benefits of Novi's urban forest
Published: 1/29/2021
The near-40,000 trees that make up the City of Novi’s urban forest provide innumerable benefits to the community, with just a few highlighted below.
  1. Provide wildlife habitat - From birds and mammals nesting high in canopies, to insects making a meal of its leaves, to the microbiome and fungal network supported by the roots, trees play a vital role in our local ecology. In addition to the shelter they offer, many trees produce fruit, seeds, or bark that serve as a food source for wildlife. Many tree species even have flowers that provide an important nectar source for pollinators.
  2. Boost property value - According to research compiled by the Arbor Day Foundation, a well-maintained landscape featuring large trees can increase property value by up to 15 percent. Trees can also stimulate economic development by making retail areas more attractive to shoppers or by attracting new business and tourism to an area.
  3. Cut energy costs - Trees can lower your utility bills by providing shade and cool the air by transpiration of water through the leaves over the course of the growing season. Additionally, they can serve as windbreaks in the winter to help redirect cold drafts away from your home.
  4. Fight pollution - Through the process of photosynthesis, trees absorb carbon dioxide from the air and convert it into oxygen. They also capture airborne particulate pollutants on their leaves, thus helping to purify the air we breathe.
  5. Intercept stormwater - Trees greatly reduce stormwater runoff by absorbing groundwater through the roots and capturing rainfall on leaves where it can evaporate away. This helps prevent flooding and limits strain on the storm sewer system while also assisting in keeping our water sources clean by reducing runoff.
  6. Health and well-being benefits - According to research compiled by the International Society of Arboriculture, living amongst urban trees can reduce levels of stress and fatigue, decrease recovery time following medical procedures, increase work satisfaction and productivity, calm traffic, and reduce crime rates, among other benefits. Through their natural beauty and the shade they provide, trees also create inviting spaces for outdoor activities and social congregation.