In this webinar we explored the topic of trees and climate change with Cameron Pensini the Sustainability Project Officer from the Queanbeyan Palerang Regional Council and Dr David Freudenberger from the Australian National University.
The webinar was recorded on 13 October 2021, you can view the recording here.
These are the main points from the webinar:
- Surface heat mapping done by the Queanbeyan Palerang Regional Council (QPRC) shows that urban areas like Queanbeyan, Googong, Braidwood and Bungendore are significantly hotter than natural areas such as Tallaganda National Park. These towns are urban heat islands and are two degrees warmer than the surrounding landscape. The council is developing an urban cooling strategy to combat the problem of heat islands and has studied tree species that might be suitable for establishing urban forests. The QPRC has developed a list of 130 suitable trees for the future urban cooling project and has established a trial site for urban trees in Bungendore.
- The rational for selecting trees species for climate change in urban areas can be applied to a rural setting. For more information click on the Yass Area Network and Macquarie University Guide below.
- Dead grass has the same surface temperature as bitumen, which can be up to four degrees hotter than forest areas.
- Due to human impacts our land is now a ‘novel landscape’ that is vastly different to what it was prior to human habitation. Novel landscapes or ecosystems occur when a new combination of species appear due to human activity, environmental change or the impact of introduced species (Lyndenmayer et al 2008).
- ‘Ecosystem services’ are the benefits provided to humans through the transformation of natural resources (land, water, vegetation and atmosphere) into goods and services essential to life and wellbeing. These ‘goods and services’ include clean air, water, climate regulation, soil building, habitat, fertility and food. Trees provide provisioning, regulating, processing and cultural services to human beings. These free services are essential to human life but are often difficult to attribute a monetary value to.
- Every bit counts when it comes to vegetation and planting trees. Even a small patch of high-quality vegetation can help provide rich diversity on farms. For further information see Greening Australia and the Australian National University, Sustainable Farms Project links below.
Macquarie University Climate Ready Revegetation Guide
Keeping it Cool – Vegetation and Heat Adaptation Strategy - Queanbeyan Palerang Regional Council
Yass Area Network Climate Ready Project
Fodder trees and shrubs workshop
Revegetation for small farms
Key Concepts of Ecosystem Services
Lyndenmayer, D.B. et al (2008), Novel ecosystems resulting from landscape transformation create dilemmas for modern conservation practice, Conbio Online Library 26/11/2021 https://conbio.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdfdirect/10.1111/j.1755-263X.2008.00021.x
ANU Sustainable Farms Research
The Crossing Courses and Workshops
Greening Australia Connecting and Protecting Landscapes
This event is funded by the NSW Government through an Increasing Resilience to Climate Change (IRCC) Community Grant.