What are the most forested cities in America? If you are having a hard time finding greener cities online because most of the rankings you have bumped into in a plethora of articles on other websites either offered imprecise or incomprehensive information, you need not look further than our list of 50 most forested cities in the US providing authentic and thoroughly researched data.
Today, when the world is beset with a wide range of environmental challenges, the importance of urban forests has drawn increased global attention in recognition of the fact that forests make a vital component of urban settings for a healthy society.
Urban forests not only contribute to human well-being, wildlife protection, soil stability, pollution absorption and carbon sequestration, but they also help offset the impact of climate change listed as one of the global challenges by the United Nations.
Of late multiple approaches have been employed in a bid to measure canopy covers of different cities, but the results gained remain inconclusive due to the limited scope of the projects or the limitations of the technology used.
One such exercise was carried out at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) by the Senseable City Lab using ‘Treepedia’, an algorithm toolkit that works in combination with Google’s Street View technology to map the presence of trees in a city. This platform is, however, limited to a select 30 cities worldwide, of which Tampa city of Florida is the most tree-rich with 36 percent of its landscape dotted green. The aim of the project, as MIT researchers put it, is to raise awareness among peoples about the state of the green in their respective cities.
Nevertheless, certain US cities have been investing in urban greening programs to mitigate the rising levels of environmental pollution (see 11 least polluted countries in the world) with the help of local populations and environmental activists. New York City’s MillionTreesNYC drive may serve as an example of one such endeavor. This project concluded in 2015 successfully served its aim of thickening the city’s canopy cover.
In relation to the point made at the beginning, we may add that many rankings online may describe New York, for instance, to be the most forested city in the US, but the fact remains only when the data of this city’s five constituent counties is taken into account will they be able to come up with the near-exact figure of the forest coverage area. Not only do the rankings in question fall short of backing their numbers, but they also fail to explain to the readers the methodology they went by in ranking so few cities they have so little data available of.
For compiling this list of 50 most forested cities in the US for our readers, we scoured the websites of US Census Bureau, US Forest Service and a couple of other trustworthy sources. Our estimates revolve around the forest canopy covers of the highly populous cities in the US: it is not centered on medium-sized or small cities. Unlike other websites, we based our rankings for the forest cover of each city on the county-level data acquired using US Forest Service’s Interactive Forest Resources 2017 to dispel concerns, if any, about its authenticity. To make the information gathered more thorough and comprehensive, we incorporated information about the total land area of each city on our list to paint a complete picture for our readers.
You may also find our list articles on 11 Countries with the Most Forests in the World and 10 Countries with the Highest Deforestation Rates in the World interesting and informative.
So, without further ado, here goes our list of 50 most forested cities in the US, starting with No. 50.
50. Washington, District of Columbia: Washington D.C. is literally a tree-less city with a zero percent forest cover on a 61.05 sq miles landscape.