Scientists at the US Center for Urban Forest Research have developed free online software that can show how much carbon dioxide a tree in California has sequestered in its lifetime and the past year.
The Tree Carbon Calculator is programmed in a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet that provides carbon-related information for a single tree in one of six California climate zones.
It is the only tool approved by the California Climate Action Registry’s urban forest project reporting protocol for quantifying carbon dioxide sequestration from tree planting projects.
Users enter information, such as a tree’s climate zone, species name, size or age.
The program then estimates how much carbon dioxide the tree has sequestered in the past year and its lifetime.
It also calculates the dry weight of the biomass that would be obtained if it were removed.
‘The Tree Carbon Calculator is easy to use and provides quantifiable incentives for tree planting and stewardship projects,’ said Greg McPherson, director of the Center for Urban Forest Research.
‘Anyone from homeowners to certified arborists can use it.’
In 2009, the Center for Urban Forest Research will add data for tree species in climate zones across the US, McPherson said.
The calculator can be found at the US Forest Service Climate Change Resource Center website here.