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Management

Tree in skyline

Urban Forest Management Plan 

Trees are fundamental to the character of Seattle and to our quality of life. In our rapidly changing climate, Seattle's urban forest is an increasingly important asset, playing a critical role in mitigating climate change impacts, including heat island effects, as well as supporting Seattle's public health, providing habitat for wildlife, creating spaces for exploration and enjoyment, cleaning our air and water, and reducing the quantity of stormwater runoff, further helping water quality. 

Extreme heat events have had devastating impacts, especially in low income and Black, Indigenous, People of Color communities. Trees are an effective tool to reduce the impacts of heat events, reducing temperatures in and around homes. The role of trees in mitigating this significant and increasing impact to our community underscores how important it is to ensure the urban forest is effectively managed.

Seattle's newly updated Urban Forest Management Plan provides a framework for policy and action that guides City government decision-making to help Seattle maintain, preserve, enhance, and restore its urban forest. The core of the plan is a set of outcomes, strategies, actions, and indicators that will guide department staff in supporting a healthy and sustainable urban forest across Seattle's publicly and privately owned lands. You can explore the plan through the links below.

2020 Urban Forest Management Plan (pdf)

2020 Urban Forest Management Plan - Executive Summary (pdf)

Past Plans

2007 Urban Forest Management Plan (pdf)

2013 Urban Forest Stewardship Plan (pdf)