Faculty Advisor

Dr. Christie Klimas


Urban forests provide a multitude of different valuable ecosystem services, such as carbon sequestration and air pollutant removal. However, urban forests are also at risk due to negative impacts brought on by climate change and the increased presence of invasive species. In this natural experiment, 3 transects of land in Prairie Wolf Slough, Highland Park, Illinois was monitored over the course of 4 years in order to evaluate demographic changes. The estimated total whole tree biomass for the forest was calculated to be 115,420.4 kg in the year 2016 and 115,154.0 kg for the year 2020. The total amount of carbon stored decreased from 1,331.1 metric tons in 2016 to 1,328.0 metric tons in 2020. These declines in both stored carbon and whole tree biomass relate to an overall decrease in ash and elm trees, which could potentially be the result of the amplified presence of invasive species due to climate change, as well as forest restoration strategies.


Faculty Advisor: Dr. Christie Klimas

Department of Environmental Science and Studies