World Resource Institute

King County, United States

Building on its tree planting projects, King County braces for climate change by conserving land and protecting urban forests.

“Our investments in healthy forests and green open spaces build on the partnerships that helped us surpass our goal of planting 1 million trees throughout King County. We are taking an integrated approach to increase urban tree canopy, protect more forestland that is storing carbon today, and prepare local forests for climate impacts. This community-led effort will produce multiple benefits: cleaner air and water, healthier habitat, and more equitable access to open space.”

Dow Constantine, Mayor, King County, United States

Success Story

On Earth Day 2021, King County Executive Constantine launched an initiative to plant, protect and prepare a combined three million trees throughout King County. This initiative builds on the successful partnership that completed the 1 million Trees initiative nearly one year early. The county will take a more integrated approach that increases tree canopy in communities where there is the greatest need, accelerate land conservation to protect the trees that are storing carbon today and prepare local forests for climate impacts. The Executive announced this initiative at a new urban park in unincorporated King County that has a dearth of open green space. This new park, formerly trash-strewn and covered with invasive species, demonstrates the multiple benefits that can be achieved with partners, including equitable access to safe, welcoming open space; healthier, more resilient forests that absorb more carbon; and protecting urban forest that cool streams that feed into salmon–bearing rivers.