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Urban Tree Risk and Disasters

This presentation discusses the role of urban tree risk management in local disaster planning. It introduces the Urban Tree Risk Index (UTRI) model which is a landscape scale GIS implementation for urban tree risk assessment.

Central Alabama Regional Planning and Development Commission (CARPDC) partnered with The Alabama Emergency Management Agency (AEMA), The Society of Municipal Arborists (SMA), The Alabama Association of Regional Commissions (AARC) and Urban Forestry South (as technical advisers) to develop a vegetative Risk Management Plan template and GIS tool to identify and manage vegetated areas from both the Emergency Managers and Urban Foresters point of view.

The template includes a GIS tool, the Urban Tree Risk Index tool (UTRI), that is designed to help emergency managers, planners and urban foresters to develop a vegetative management plan. A vegetative management plan can be used as an objective within a hazard mitigation plan to reduce potential hazards and limit the amount of debris after a storm event.

The use of this tool and the development of an overall vegetativemanagement plan proposes to reduce the impact of storms on urban forests by helping counties and communities plan to manage trees andvegetation prior to an event so that there is less debris after an event byhaving them focus their efforts on trees in transportation corridors leading tocritical infrastructure as well as along main thoroughfares.

The UTRI Model (Urban Tree Risk Index) was developed by CARPDC as part of a NUCFAC grant for urban forestry and disaster planning.

Presentation by:

Rachel Barker, Environmental Planner
Central Alabama Regional Planning & Development Commission
Montgomery, Alabama

Dudley R. Hartel, Center Manager
Urban Forestry South
Athens, Georgia


GUFC’s 21st Annual Conference and Awards Program
Managing the Fear Factor:  Trees, Pests, Storms and the Law
November 2 and 3, 2011

James Madison Conference Center
Madison, Georgia


Urban Tree Risk Management Guide (NA-TP-03-03), Pokorny, Jill and Jana S. Albers

Georgia Urban Forest Council, Decatur, Georgia, Mary Lynne Beckley, Executive Director

Date Released/Presented
Nov 03, 2011
Disaster, Planning, Risk Assessment and Hazard, Urban Forest Management
Tree Risk, UTRI, GUFC
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