January 8, 2018 | By: Carol Lea Spence

The Arboretum in Lexington is inviting schools and environmental youth groups to tour its grounds to learn more about how trees reduce the effects of climate change. The Kentucky Association for Environmental Education and Kentucky State University Center for Environmental Education have provided funds to keep the field trips, Trees and Carbon Storage: How You Can Help Reduce the Effects of Climate Change, free for participating groups through June.

The field trip is recommended for students in grades six through 12 and groups from 15 to 50 people. During their tour of the grounds of The Arboretum, the State Botanical Garden of Kentucky, students will learn about plant conservation and ecosystem services and how trees can help reduce the effects of climate change. They will have the opportunity to use professional forestry tools to measure the amount of carbon stored by Arboretum trees.

In addition to the field trip, groups will be provided with a pre-tour activity that introduces the carbon cycle and a post-tour activity that will include adopting a tree. The University of Kentucky’s Urban Forest Initiative is collaborating with The Arboretum on the project.

“Trees impact our quality of life by capturing carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change, and also cleaning our air and water and conserving energy,” said Jackie Gallimore, The Arboretum’s children’s education coordinator. “After the field trip, students will be encouraged to adopt trees at their school or neighborhoods and look out for their health —something that will benefit us all. We want the students to come away from their trip to The Arboretum with an understanding that there is something they personally can do to combat climate change.”

Funding until June covers both tour and transportation costs, up to $8 per student. After that, the field trip fee will be $3 per person. Teachers and group leaders who are interested in scheduling a trip for their students can contact Gallimore at Jackie.gallimore@uky.edu.

The Arboretum, housed within the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, is a joint effort between UK and the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government. It is located at 500 Alumni Drive and offers 100 acres of trails, waterways, native trees, a children’s garden and exhibits. For more information visit The Arboretum website, http://arboretum.ca.uky.edu.

The Urban Forest Initiative is a working group of UK’s Tracy Farmer Institute for Sustainability and the Environment, whose mission is to advocate for and elevate the function, value and perception of urban forests in the Bluegrass region. More information about the Urban Forest Initiative can be found at https://ukntrees.ca.uky.edu/.


Jackie Gallimore, 859-257-9339

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