In a recent article on The Conversation, Rob MacKenzie, Professor of Atmospheric Science in the School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, asks whether trees really help clear the air in our cities, and considers the many ways in which trees affect the urban environment.
Trees affect the urban environment in several subtle ways. From altering air flows, to collecting pollution deposits, to affecting the chemical make up of the atmosphere, their impacts are both pervasive and difficult to pinpoint.
Professor Rob MacKenzie is an atmospheric scientist with a particular interest in how plants affect air composition. As a result of a £15M grant, the University of Birmingham has set up the Birmingham Institute of Forest Research (BIFoR), of which Rob is inaugural Director. BIFoR will focus on two linked challenges: the impact of climate and environmental change on woodlands; and the resilience of trees to pests and diseases.