• Jessica Colarossi

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    Photo of Jessica Colarossi. A white woman with long, straight brown hair and wearing a black and green paisley blouse smiles and poses in front of a dark grey background.

    Jessica Colarossi is a science writer for The Brink. She graduated with a BS in journalism from Emerson College in 2016, with focuses on environmental studies and publishing. While a student, she interned at ThinkProgress in Washington, D.C., where she wrote over 30 stories, most of them relating to climate change, coral reefs, and women’s health. Profile

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There are 13 comments on City Trees and Soil Are Sucking More Carbon Out of the Atmosphere Than Previously Thought

  1. Trees grow faster without competition, but rapid growth is weak. Trees that grow fast die fast. Old growth is the best solution. Unfortunately, I don’t think there are any shortcuts or alternatives to a human presence with a much less injurious footprint on nature.

  2. In Pittsfield Berkshire County we have an urban forest in Springside Park which provides a tremendous amount of carbon sequestration and storage in the 231 acres of oak hickory and maple. But the eco-services being provided by this Urban Forest are being threatened by mountain bikers which are dismantling the trails, scaring away wildlife and fragmenting the forest ecology.

  3. Why are not grassroots and citizens creating facebook, nextdoor and other social media networks about actual actions for us to effectively contribute to forestation or reforestation. Finding information is not easy and then there are no local groups -that I have found- actively working on mitigation or “solutions”
    Anyone knows of a national or state base program or networks in MD or DC?

  4. In Massachusetts tree cutting is a big problem. It escalated rapidly starting sometime in 2015 – number of tree-cutters exploded, and now most of big, mature trees are gone everywhere – along the roads (asphalt is exposed to sun all day, biking become heat-stroke dangerous), on private properties, in the parks and reservations (they started it, I think). And I can’t find out why – there used to be laws protecting trees, and now they leave dry trees standing, but destroy healthy trees, I wrote every local organization I could think of, asking what laws had been changed, and the reply was – nothing is going on, nothing to see here.
    I think strategic cutting the shade trees along the roads greatly contributed to 2020 and 2022 droughts on North-East. Prevailing winds and typical North Eastern air-flows had been altered as result of excessive exposure of roads to solar radiation. It feels deliberate, but I can’t find who or what is behind it.

  5. I found this article very interesting. I found it because I saw in the Acadians Advocate that said the Dept of Energy was giving the state of Louisiana $603 million to have a direct air capture hub to sequester 1 million tons of co2.

    I was wondering what $603 million spent on tree’s would do.

    1. The maths would be = 1M Tonnes = 2204622622lbs
      An average tree will suck 48lbs per year.
      1M tonnes would need 45.9M trees.
      1 acre of cheap agricultural land = $8000
      1000 trees per acre.
      You would need 4950 acres of land.
      land cost: 4950 acres x $8000 = $39.6M
      Leaving $563.4M to buy and plant saplings = ~$12.27 per tree.
      Yep, you could probably do it.

      1. I like your idea and calculations Christopher, but to be a little more realistic there would be a few more things to consider. First the soil condition would need to be evaluated and most likely cultivated. If its cheap land it probably would require soil amendment, rototilling, and fertilizing. Second you need water and lots of it, a delivery (Irrigation) system to supply it equally among each tree. If saplings were to be planted the survival rate could fall below 50% depending on many, many factors. Trees started in greenhouses and that have at least a one inch caliper trunk have a much greater chance at survival through seasonal weather. Finally the labor to plant and manage such a monumental task would be a significant cost unless there was an army of volunteers continually dedicated to the cause. To put actual numbers to it, sure but who would flip the bill.
        Sadly, I believe the consensus of thinking to combat climate change is going in the wrong direction and will not be effective until people realize how precious trees are and wiping out a third of the planets trees and counting… is disastrous.

  6. Thank you for the valuable information in this post. It has provided me with new insights and has been instrumental in helping me solve a problem. I appreciate your efforts!

  7. Grow giant sequoia everywhere they can be grown. They grow to be 100X more massive than an average tree and they live 30X longer (3,000 years vs 100 years), meaning one giant sequoia is 3,000 (100×30) better at sequestering CO2 than an average tree.

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