What is the best way to assess how local people and the economy benefit from street trees?
Local authorities have a duty to protect trees that are considered to be in the public’s interest, but there are several methodologies for estimating their amenity value. Forest Research conducted a literature and methodological review of three different valuation systems: ‘Capital Asset Value for Amenity Trees’ (CAVAT), Helliwell and i-Tree (originated in the United States).
- i-TreeFree, non-proprietary, open-source systemStrong emphasis on assessing economic and environmental annual benefitsCovers the social and cultural component of valueSignificant advantages of flexibility, detailed output and allowing a wide range of benefits to be assessed, provided data is availableMeets the needs of small communities and large city metropolitan areas.
- CAVATConsiders the value of a tree over its remaining expected lifetimeCovers social and cultural issuesSimpler to implement if data is limited
- HelliwellEmphasis on visual amenityGenerates the most variable valuation outcomesBest suited to single tree and small-scale community evaluations, but can also handle urban woodlands
Funders and partners
Commissioned and funded by the Forestry Commission
The project was completed in 2008.
- Estimating amenity values of street trees and woodland views
- Health benefits of street trees
- About our research into people, trees and woodlands
- Forest economics
- Urban Regeneration and Greenspace Partnership