i-Tree Eco London

About i-Tree Eco London

In order to better understand the natural capital of urban trees in London and to value the services they provide, an i-Tree Eco survey was undertaken in the summer of 2014. The survey was undertaken by the RE:LEAF London Partnership and completed by over 300 volunteers, supported by trained i-Tree Eco surveyors. 

The survey indicated that London’s urban forest comprises 8,421,000 trees. The ecosystem services provided by these urban trees that were considered within the project were carbon capture, rainwater interception, the removal of air pollution, building energy savings and building energy carbon avoided, and these were valued at £132.7 million per year.

Specifically, this project aimed to:

  • promote London’s urban forest and the benefits it provides
  • provide a pan-London picture of tree and woodland cover
  • engage volunteers in trees and further opportunities to plant and manage them
  • provide verifiable economic values to the benefits that the urban forest provides
  • establish values that are a precursor to proper asset and risk management
  • establish parity between the services that the urban forest provides with other recognised urban infrastructure such as street lighting and highways

This study demonstrates the value that urban trees provide to all who live in, work in and visit London. This project highlighted that London’s urban forest comprises almost 8.5 million trees – that’s one per inhabitant of London. The project highlighted that approximately 60% of trees in London are privately owned, yet the publically owned trees contribute to around 60% of the ecosystem services. This is due to the greater prevalence of mature and large canopy trees found in public ownership. In summary, the project report found that London’s trees are a valuable functional component of the landscape, they are under threat from the impacts of a changing climate and more needs to be done to safeguard London’s urban forest for the future – protecting the existing stock and planting more for future generations.

Project partners

Forestry Commission England

Greater London Authority

Forest Research

London Tree Officers Association

Trees for Cities

Tree Council

Natural England

Treeconomics

For further details and results see:

Related research

For further information, see:

Contact

Kieron Doick
Land Regeneration and Urban Greenspace Research Group

Centre for Sustainable Forestry and Climate Change
Forest Research
Alice Holt Lodge
Farnham
Surrey GU10 4LH