There will of course be times in the duties of a tree consultant that they find themselves recommending a tree is removed. However, most of the time, the consultant puts the needs of the tree first, and does what is needed to protect the tree. As well as looking out for the tree itself, there are numerous reasons why we should be grateful that consultants take this approach.
Why should we be grateful that in a tree survey the needs of the tree are usually put first? As well as providing beauty in the landscape and in some cases, being of historical significance, trees do a range of extremely important environmental jobs. Of course, we all know that trees provide oxygen, helping us to breath, but some of their other jobs are not quite so obvious. For example, that tree close to your house that you have considered cutting down more than once, it could be helping cut your heating bills. One of the many things that a tree consultant knows that trees do, is to provide shelter and reduce wind speed. Where they are situated close to buildings, this action helps to reduce heat loss from those buildings during the colder months. As well as being good for the environment, the lower energy usage is good for your pocket. In the warmer months, a tree inspection will show that the tree is working just as hard, providing shade and cooling the air around it through the water that evaporates from the leaves of the tree. They also provide a comfortable place to sit under and enjoy your surroundings during the summer, reducing your risk of sunburn and associated health problems.
If that is not enough to convince you to have a tree report carried out to ensure your trees are healthy, then how about the protection they provide your building materials. It has been suggested that the shade of a tree can significantly reduce material degradation caused by direct sunlight and heat. That means less work for you in the medium and long term. Being surrounded by trees has been shown to improve your state of mind and to even affect mental health. However, there is more to this than just a ‘feel good’ factor. Trees actually improve the quality of the air around them. Meaning that if you spend time near trees you are breathing in less harmful pollutants such as carbon monoxide, particulates, ozone, nitrogen and sulphur dioxide, to name just a few. In terms of numbers, a single person causes roughly 10 tons of carbon dioxide to be emitted each year. One single tree, saved after a tree health survey removes about 1 ton of carbon dioxide per year. Consider the number of trees in the country, compared to the number of people. The forests and woodlands in the UK currently remove about 10 million tons of carbon from the atmosphere every year. Still not convinced, then consider that one acre of trees annually absorbs the same amount of carbon dioxide that is produced by the average car being driven for 26,000 miles. That same acre of trees, given the all clear by a tree condition survey, also produces enough oxygen for 18 people to breathe for a year.
Trees also reduce ground water run-off and the associated risk of flooding, and act to dampen and reduce noise pollution. In addition, they provide privacy, a home for wildlife and are an integral part of every ecosystem in terms of providing food and nesting materials. You should be convinced now that the tree consultant is right to put the tree first where possible.