Environmental Studies Program


Date of this Version



Environmental Studies Undergraduate Student Thesis, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 2020.


Copyright 2020 Ethan Dudden


As the effects of negative effects of climate change are realized, urban forests a means to reduce the potential damage and adverse conditions in urban areas (Wolf, et al., 2020) (Livesley, McPherson, & Calfapietra, 2016) (Xiao & McPherson, 2002). Preserving these resources is becoming more difficult however, as the trees that make up urban landscapes become less adapted to current conditions with every passing year (Aitken, Yeaman, Holliday, Wang, & Sierra, 2008). Changes in climate and world systems also point to invasive pests becoming greater threats to urban forest resources with time (Tubby & Webber, 2010) (Amberger et al., 2017). In order to preserve the benefits these ecosystems provide, and buffer against harsher conditions as a result of climate change, urban forest trees will need to be planted using trees adapted to conditions individual cities are projected to experience (Aitken, Yeaman, Holliday, Wang, & Sierra, 2008). Additionally, more diverse urban forests need to exhibit higher diversity at the genus level, such that damage from pests doesn’t interrupt ecosystem functions (Driesche & Hoddle, 2016). Further climate research is needed to determine optimal future conditions to plan ahead for, and local research will be needed during implementation to allow for healthy forests in specific climate conditions.