Oak Leaves
Oak leaves Oak Leaves © Maddy Baker

Stories in Idaho

Planting a Healthy Future

From urban forestry to rural plantings, TNC Idaho is working with partners to create a healthier future.

This page was updated on September 22, 2020.

Tree planting is one of the identified activities to address climate change through Natural Climate Solutions developed by TNC scientists. Here in Idaho, TNC has multiple tree-related projects that are working to address climate change including tree plantings and an urban heat study.

City of Trees Challenge

The Nature Conservancy in Idaho is proud to be a lead partner in the City of Trees Challenge in the effort to plant 235,000 seedlings in forests around Idaho. By working with both urban and rural partners, we believe this effort will connect all Idahoans, because Idaho’s changing climate is impacting the places we love, our lifestyles and the health of our communities. The time to act is now, and the way forward is together.

City of Trees logo.

City Forest Credits

The Treasure Valley City Forest Credits Program was developed as a key recommendation from the Treasure Valley Forest Carbon Assessment, a 2017 report by The Nature Conservancy in Idaho, Treasure Valley Tree Canopy Network and Ecosystem Sciences Foundation.

The assessment helps us better understand how the current community forest mitigates regional carbon impacts and how future investments in tree planting, care and recycling can sustain more resilient natural resources and economies within our region.

The pilot project was accepted by the City Forest Credits Registry in October 2018. We are soliciting a Sustainability Sponsor interested in purchasing over 1,300 City Forest Carbon+ credits at a value of $50,000.

Diagram showing how carbon credits are created by forestry and tree planting projects and used to offset pollution.
Carbon Credit Cycle Carbon Credits © The Nature Conservancy Magazine

Key Findings from the Treasure Valley Forest Carbon Assessment

  • Project partners planted over 8,200 trees since 2013.
  • After 25 years, these trees can store 15,200 metric tons of CO2. This is an amount equivalent to taking 5,400 Treasure Valley drivers off the roads for one year.
  • If these plantings had earned carbon credits, they would be worth between $304,200 and $532,400, which could have been used to support planting and maintenance costs.
A woman walking a bicycle pauses under a large tree with yellow and orange foliage.
Fall Leaves in Boise Leaves turning color in the fall in Boise, Idaho. © Christian Nafzger

TV Canopy Network

TNC Idaho is a proud member of the Treasure Valley Canopy Network (TVCN). This collaborative works towards sustainable development of the Treasure Valley’s urban forest. Clean water, clean air and vibrant economies are greatly influenced by our urban forest.

Treasure Valley Canopy Network logo.

Canopy Continuum

Through TVCN and a partnership with Portland State University, TNC has participated in a study called the Canopy Continuum. This project explores the link between environmental and human health in communities using data from air quality and urban heat. The urban heat section was completed in Summer 2019 using volunteers to collect data that was then used by CAPA Strategies to create a Heat Watch Report. The results from this will be used to help in other projects, like the City of Trees Challenge, to help identify areas that could benefit from trees.