Portland Redlined Redcedar Study
Can the health of redcedar be an indicator of climate change vulnerability?
The climates of our cities are changing
Some neighborhoods feel the heat more than others
Urban Forest Equity
Sadly, many of the hottest neighborhoods in cities are those occupied by Black, Indigenous, and People of Color communities. Arguably, the root of this injustice stems from America’s racist ideals and practices in the 1930s.
1936 Home Owners' Loan Cooporation
The legacy of these decisions is still apparent today. Neighborhoods that were less eligible for financial investment opportunities have reduced forest canopy coverage and greater heat levels. More information and data available at the Mapping Inequality Project.
RICHMOND, Va. - On a hot summer's day, the neighborhood of Gilpin quickly becomes one of the most sweltering parts of Richmond. There are few trees along the sidewalks to shield people from the sun's relentless glare. More than 2,000 residents, mostly Black, live in low-income public housing that lacks central air conditioning.
Is the dieback of redcedar an effect of climate change?
What can we learn from where redcedar trees are unhealthy?
Together we can explore redcedar as a symbol for the inequities in our cities.
Where are redcedar dying in our communities and what does that mean?
Redlining is a term for the practice of discrimination and denial of services to foreign or non-white communities. The practice directed capitol away from BIPOC and immigrant families, creating inequalities in wealth that are still apparent today.
The effects of redlining are also apparent in urban forests, including reduced access to green spaces, less canopy cover and higher surface temperatures, and less benefits of trees in general. Together, these effects indicate these redlined communities are less resilient to the effects of climate change.
Does the health of trees in redlined communities symbolize their vulnerability to climate change?
The dieback of redcedar is likely driven by hotter and longer droughts.
It may be one of the first tree species to show signs of heat stress in the PNW.
Together we can explore the dieback as a possible indicator of climate vulnerability in our communities.