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Central Park, perhaps the best-known urban park in the world - not in vain has it been the scene of numerous films, such as the mythicalBreakfast with diamonds (1961), Love story(1970) orWhen Harry found Sally (1989) -, has approximate dimensions of 4,000 x 800 meters. To give you an idea, think that, with its 341 hectares of total area,It is larger than two of the smallest nations in the world: The territory of Monaco almost multiplies by two and by eight that of Vatican City.
The entire park, including its lakes and mountains, are what they are by man-made. The plans for this authentic nature reserve were designed by the American landscape architect, journalist and botanist Frederick Law Olmsted and by Calvert Vaux, also a landscape architect, but he is a British national. It was completed in 1873 and is home to some 250,000 trees in numerous valleys, including one of the last groves of American elm trees in the northeastern United States.
According to calculations made by Reforesta (non-profit association founded in 1991 and declared of Public Utility) based on data provided in the conferencesForests and Climate Change, a Spanish holm oak tree releases 42 kilos of oxygen per year on average. If we carry out the extrapolation of these figures, the 250,000 trees in Central Parkwould generate a total of about 10.5 million kilos of oxygen during those twelve months.
Take a deep breath!
As we have mentioned before, this is not the only benefit that a park like Central Park brings to the people who live in its environment. The green areas of cities, in addition to helping to combat pollution, becoming authentic lungs of the urban environment, help people who live in their surroundings to relax and reduce stress, They contribute to improving our physical health - because they encourage us to go for a walk and also to practice sports in a healthier environment.and they also promote social relationships.
It is not surprising, therefore, that the World Health Organization (WHO) considers these spaces essential to improve our well-being both physically and emotionally. According to this institution,cities should have a minimum of 10-15 square meters of green area per inhabitant.
1. Trees can contribute to increasing local food and nutrition security, providing food such as fruits, nuts and leaves for both human consumption and forage. Its wood, in turn, can be used for cooking and heating.
2. Trees play an important role in increasing urban biodiversity, providing plants and animals with habitat, food and protection.
3. A mature tree can absorb up to 150 kg of CO2 per year. As a result, trees play an important role in mitigating climate change. Especially in cities with high levels of pollution, trees can improve air quality, making cities healthier places to live.
4. The strategic location of trees in cities can help cool the air between 2 and 8 degrees Celsius, thus reducing the urban “heat island” effect and helping urban communities adapt to the effects of climate change.
5. Large trees are excellent filters for urban pollutants and fine particles. They absorb polluting gases (such as carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, ozone, and sulfur oxides) and filter fine particles such as dust, dirt, or smoke from the air, trapping them on leaves and bark.
6. Research shows that living near and having access to urban green spaces can improve physical and mental health, for example by lowering high blood pressure and stress. This, in turn, contributes to the well-being of urban communities.
7. Mature trees regulate the flow of water and play a key role in preventing floods and reducing the risks of natural disasters. An evergreen or mature tree with permanent green leaves, for example, can intercept more than 15,000 liters of water per year.
8. Trees also help reduce carbon emissions by helping to conserve energy. For example, the correct placement of trees around buildings can reduce the need for air conditioning by 30 percent and reduce heating bills in winter by 20 to 50 percent.
9. Urban landscape planning with trees can increase a property's value by 20 percent and attract tourism and business.