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Urban Tree Species Selection: An Approach for Adapting to a Changing Climate

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Title: Urban Tree Species Selection: An Approach for Adapting to a Changing Climate
Author: Gilbert, Dayna
Department: School of Environmental Design and Rural Development
Program: Landscape Architecture
Advisor: Paine, CeceliaRobert, Corry
Abstract: The predicted images of climate change require adaptive strategies for use in landscape architectural practice. The literature was synthesized to identify potential impacts of climate change on tree species as well as processes that can be applied to address vulnerability to future temperature and precipitation changes projected for Southwestern Ontario. The City of Toronto’s recommended tree list was examined and each species’ character traits were coded for emergent plasticity traits under current climate conditions. Using predicted temperature and rainfall patterns from two emissions scenarios based on multiple climate models, I assessed tree species' plasticity and survivability. Results identified eleven of nineteen tree species that show reduced tolerance to predicted climate change, including common species. Landscape architects can use the information gathered from each process to improve plant and tree selection for climate change resilience and adaptation.
Date: 2013-08
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