Trees Please: Saving and Serving the Urban Forest

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EcoJustice RadioTwo Los Angeles arborists talk urban forestry with EcoJustice Radio, and about the need to plant and care for trees to strengthen urban ecosystems and heal the climate.

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Urban ForestryTrees to Heal Our Cities

Given the state of the environment, whether discussing soil health, biodiversity, food production, air quality, the impacts of climate change, or sanity and solace, it is critical now for humanity to embrace trees. Trees are essential to restoration of ourselves and the planet.

Many of us are acutely aware of forest degradation and widespread deforestation attributed to commercial agriculture (conventional cattle ranching, soybeans and palm oil, in particular) taking place globally. In addition, in 2020, we witnessed the loss of millions of acres of forest due to megafires in Siberia, Australia and the Western part of Turtle Island aka the U.S. We are urgently being asked to remember trees and the vital roles they serve in our lives and environments.

STORY: The BirdHouse: Reconnecting People & Place through Arts & Ecology

According to the UN Food & Agriculture Organization: Forests cover 31 percent of global land area. Approximately half the forest area is relatively intact; more than one-third is primary forest (i.e. naturally regenerated forests of native species, w/o visible signs of human disturbance). More than half of the world’s forests are found in only five countries (the Russian Federation, Brazil, Canada, the United States of America and China) and two-thirds (66 percent) of forests are found in ten countries. The top 3 countries with the largest forest area are: Russian Federation followed by Brazil and Turtle Island aka the U.S.

Trees are essential to ecosystems worldwide and to the continuance of life itself. This show contemplates restoring our relationship to trees, as well as caring and maintaining them long-term in urban settings. As megacities rise and human beings continue to concentrate in larger numbers in dense environments, we need to explore myriad ways to nurture trees and ultimately foster a culture that respects and celebrates their innate value to our present and future.

STORY: How Urban Forestry Can Cool the Climate and Promote Social Equity

“Humans co-evolved with trees, and our interactions with trees shaped our history, our foodways, our settlements, and our very cultures. It is deeply hardwired in us to live among trees, in mutually beneficial arrangements. We have been in these relationships with trees for much longer than we have lived in cities, and if we are to continue living in urban centers, we must make a space for trees, and continue participating in this human-arboreal relationship.” — Cameron Miller

*Lora May Hall, owner of Full Circle Gardening, is a horticulturalist, an ecologically oriented gardener, educator, and ISA Certified Arborist. She is an advocate for green space in urban areas and improving the quality of the urban environment for everyone who lives there. She is on the board of Hollywood Orchard.

*Cameron Miller is the Ecological Program Manager at The BirdHouse, an educational non-profit serving as a hub of exchange for those interested in caring for the land and people, through arts and ecology. He is a student in Tree Care and Landscape Design at Mt. San Antonio College, a permaculture practitioner, and arborist-in-training.

*Carry Kim, Co-Host of EcoJustice Radio. An advocate for ecosystem restoration, indigenous lifeways, and a new humanity born of connection and compassion, she is a long-time volunteer for SoCal350, member of Ecosystem Restoration Camps, and a co-founder of the Soil Sponge Collective, a grassroots community organization dedicated to big and small scale regeneration of Mother Earth.

Podcast Website: http://ecojusticeradio.org/
Podcast Blog: https://www.wilderutopia.com/category/ecojustice-radio/
Support the Podcast: https://socal350.org/contribute-to-socal-350-climate-action/

Urban Trees, EcoJustice Radio

Interview by Carry Kim
Intro by Jessica Aldridge
Engineer: Blake Lampkin
Executive Producer: Jack Eidt
Show Created by Mark and JP Morris
Music: Javier Kadry
Episode 79

Updated 4 March 2021

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About Jack Eidt

Novelist, urban theorist and designer, and environmental journalist, Jack Eidt careens down human-nature's all consuming one-way highway to its inevitable conclusion -- Wilder Utopia. He co-founded Wild Heritage Partners, based out of Los Angeles, California. He can be reached at jack (dot) eidt (at) wilderutopia (dot) com. Follow him on Twitter @WilderUtopia and @JackEidt