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NASA Creates Tree Map Of U.S.


The NASA Earth Observatory, in conjunction with Woods Hole Research Center’s (WHRC) National Biomass and Carbon Database, released an image showcasing where the greatest concentrations of trees are in the U.S.  The newly released map was a byproduct of computer models, space-based radar, satellite sensors, and ground-based data.  It took six years to collect and correlate the data.  NASA claims that it is the most detailed and complete biomass map of any country in the world.  Despite the biomass concentrations in some areas and the protection of old-growth forests, not all of the U.S. has adequate tree cover. According to the Daily Mail, American cities have lost a quarter of their trees in the past three decades. In fact, 634 million trees would be needed “to provide adequate canopy cover for the largest cities.”  The new tree map should provide local, state, and federal agencies with a valuable tool to target where trees need to be planted.  Replacing lost trees, and creating new forests needs to be a high priority for the government and its citizens.  Adding additional biomass can create new CO2 scrubbers for our atmosphere and help increase oxygen outputs as well.  Arbor day isn’t that far off, and with some planning, we can provide private citizens with the tools to target new plantings for urban areas.


  1. This is very cool. I’d like to see a map of air quality readings and see how biomass concentrations correlate with the air quality readings.


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