How Do We Galvanize Local Climate Action?

Cheryl Ng, Cindy Zhaohua Cheng, and Dr. Stephen Sheppard
Collaborative for Advanced Landscape Planning, University of British Columbia 

Uncertainty, denial, pessimism. These are the words commonly associated with climate change today, especially as news headlines reveal devastating stories about wildfires, heat stress, and other climate-related disasters across the world.

How can we turn the conversation around, to include messages of hope for the future instead? How can we bring climate change and its solutions down to the local level where people care the most? How can we encourage friends & neighbors to take collective action against one of humanity’s most pressing problems? Read More "How Do We Galvanize Local Climate Action?"

How Do Urban Tree Managers in the Pacific Northwest Decide What Trees to Select?

Dr. Paul Ries, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR & Joshua Petter, Tree Solutions Inc, Seattle, WA

Tree selection decisions at the municipal level are made by many different natural resource professionals, including arborists, urban foresters, planners, and landscape architects. A recent study by Oregon State University aimed to explore how managers make tradeoffs and prioritize different tree selection criteria to better understand how trees are selected for public lands. We surveyed primary contacts for Tree City USA designated cities across Oregon and Washington. Of these municipalities, 79 out of 151 responded (52.3% response rate), with six municipalities providing responses from more than one department for a total of 85 responses.   Read More "How Do Urban Tree Managers in the Pacific Northwest Decide What Trees to Select?"

Focus on Belowground Research in the Urban Forest

Susan Downing Day Susan Downing Day
Faculty of Forestry, University of British Columbia
Learn more about Susan Downing Day.

I arrived at the University of British Columbia just over a year ago to serve as Program Director for UBC’s urban forestry program. Although I still have some projects underway at my previous institution (Virginia Tech), I am looking forward to working with partners in the PNW to continue my research program in belowground systems (soils and roots!) in urban forests. Read More "Focus on Belowground Research in the Urban Forest"

Trees for Human Health & Wellness

Kathleen Wolf Kathleen Wolf
University of Washington

Research on the relationships of nature experiences in cities and human health has been underway for decades. In recent years the number of studies has surged, providing important insights. Nearby nature is not just nice to have, it is profoundly important for the wellness of people and their communities. Read More "Trees for Human Health & Wellness"

Urban Forest Governance in the Face of Calamities: A Canadian Perspective

Cecil Konijnendijk Cecil Konijnendijk
Faculty of Forestry, The University of British Columbia
Learn more about Cecil Konijnendijk.

There is increasing interest in understanding the governance of urban forests, that is, the ways in which we make strategic decisions about our cities’ trees and woodlands. Urban forest governance is often complex, involving a wide range of so-called ‘actors’. Obviously municipal urban foresters or other green space professionals have an important role to play, but many other individuals and organizations are involved as well. Read More "Urban Forest Governance in the Face of Calamities: A Canadian Perspective"

Electrical Hazard Awareness Training

Phillip Kelley Phillip Kelley
Contract Climber & Owner of Samara Tree Preservation and Training

The presence of electrical hazards on a job site is one of the most common hazards we face as arborists. This is true regardless of where you are based, as there is always potential for an energized conductor to be present on nearly every job site we walk onto. This is probably why it is the third highest cause of fatalities among arborists in the U.S. This leads us to the question, if electricity is such a common hazard, how are people not recognizing it or trying to prevent it?

Read More "Electrical Hazard Awareness Training"

Basics of Tree Biomechanics

Chris Madison Chris Madison
Madison Tree Consulting, LLC
Learn more about Chris Madison.

One of the greatest responsibilities of the professional arborist is to help our clients understand the many benefits that trees provide. But these benefits must outweigh the risks that are also present. Clients are mostly concerned with the risk side of the equation and contact us to know more about the likelihood of tree failure. This is where a strong understanding of biomechanics can help us. Read More "Basics of Tree Biomechanics"

Veteran Black Cottonwood Failure at Lake Washington

Chris Rippey Chris Rippey
Rippey Arboriculture, LLC
Learn more about Chris Rippey.

Slightly before 5:45 pm on December 29th, 2018, the largest single-trunked black cottonwood tree (Populus trichocarpa) in Seattle fell to the ground. This tree was listed in the Arthur Lee Jacobsen book, “Trees of Seattle” as having a 93-inch diameter and being 140 feet tall. This tree was loved by both the local community and by a root decay organism called Armillaria. Read More "Veteran Black Cottonwood Failure at Lake Washington"

Fundraising, Webinars, and Scholarships

Evan Sussman Evan Sussman
Board TREE Fund Liaison & Sonshine Tree Care, LLC
Learn more about Evan Sussman.

Greetings fellow arborists, I wanted to take a moment and update everyone on a few TREE Fund things.


The 2019 PNW ISA’s Annual Training Conference’s Fundraising for the Tree Fund was an absolute success. Between the Silent Auction, Heads or Tails game, and 50-50 Raffle we netted $10,895.73 to donate to the TREE Fund. That’s excellent! A massive thank you goes out to all the donors for the auction and games, as well as to all those of you who participated. Read More "Fundraising, Webinars, and Scholarships"

2019 ATC: A Recap and Reflections from the Conference Chair

Scott Altenhoff Scott Altenhoff
Urban Forestry Management Analyst - City of Eugene Parks and Open Space

In his land acknowledgment ceremony during our opening general session at the Graduate Hotel, Native American elder, Dr. Kelvin Frank, told the story of the Snohomish creation legend which centers on the efforts of several Puget Sound tribes to lift an oppressively low sky--a sky so low that everyone bumped their heads on it. By using poles crafted from giant fir trees and shouting "Ya-hoh!" (meaning "lift together") the various tribe members were able to collaborate and push the sky up to its current position. This legend serves as a great metaphor for working together to tackle big, looming problems such as climate change. Read More "2019 ATC: A Recap and Reflections from the Conference Chair"