In this photo from 2018, urban forestry staff are shown pruning city trees in Eugene.

In this photo from 2018, urban forestry staff are shown pruning city trees in Eugene.

City of Eugene

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In June, the Oregon Department of Forestry hired Scott Altenhoff to lead its Urban and Community Forestry Assistance program. Previously, Altenhoff worked as an urban forester for the City of Eugene, where he became aware of temperature disparities due to differences in tree cover between economically disadvantaged and affluent neighborhoods. In 2014, he worked with community members to direct city crews to plant more trees in West Eugene and launched annual maintenance cycles for their upkeep. Today, Altenhoff has a new target: school campuses that he says are in dire need of “green infrastructure” to promote health, improve air quality and combat social inequity. Scott Altenhoff joins us to talk about his vision and the key threats facing urban forests, from climate change to invasive species.

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