Couldn't find element LayerAd

Error finding content

Mother Nature's Air Conditioning - Windows to the Universe

Shop Windows to the Universe

The Universe at Your Fingertips 2.0 DVD from the Astronomical Society of the Pacific is in our online store, filled with Earth and space science resources.
Autumn colors on a deciduous tree.
Click on image for full size
Corel photography

Mother Nature's Air Conditioning
News story originally written on July 11, 1997

J.S. Maini of the Canadian Forest Service called forests the "heart and lungs of the world." This is because forests filter air and water pollution, absorb carbon dioxide, release oxygen, and maintain animal life. But forests are not only the heart and lungs of the world, they are its air conditioning too!

In fact, NASA researchers are studying how "urban forests" help keep our cities cool. Urban forests are any trees and plants that are found in our cities.

Cities are getting hotter and hotter. This is because humans are replacing plants with material such as asphalt and concrete. Asphalt and concrete can be 20-40 degrees hotter than surfaces like grass. You have probably noticed this on a summer day. Walking bare-foot on the sidewalk burns, but the grass still feels cool to your feet.

Trees and plants make our cities beautiful and they also help keep our cities cool.

Shop Windows to the Universe Science Store!

Our online store includes issues of NESTA's quarterly journal, The Earth Scientist, full of classroom activities on different topics in Earth and space science, as well as books on science education!

Windows to the Universe Community

News

Opportunities

You might also be interested in:

Cool It! Game

Check out our online store - minerals, fossils, books, activities, jewelry, and household items!...more

1999--A Year in Review...

It was another exciting and frustrating year for the space science program. It seemed that every step forward led to one backwards. Either way, NASA led the way to a great century of discovery. Unfortunately,...more

STS-95 Launch: "Let the wings of Discovery lift us on to the future."

The Space Shuttle Discovery lifted off from Kennedy Space Center on October 29th at 2:19 p.m. EST. The weather was great as Discovery took 8 1/2 minutes to reach orbit. This was the United States' 123rd...more

Moon Found Orbiting Asteroid

A moon was discovered orbiting the asteroid, Eugenia. This is only the second time in history that a satellite has been seen circling an asteroid. A special mirror allowed scientists to find the moon...more

U.S. is Fed Up with Russia

Will Russia ever put the service module for the International Space Station in space? NASA officials want an answer from the Russian government. The necessary service module is currently waiting to be...more

More on Recent Coronal Mass Ejection

A coronal mass ejection (CME) happened on the Sun early last month. The material that was thrown out from this explosion passed the ACE spacecraft. The SWICS instrument on ACE has produced a new and very...more

Mother Nature's Air Conditioning

J.S. Maini of the Canadian Forest Service called forests the "heart and lungs of the world." This is because forests filter air and water pollution, absorb carbon dioxide, release oxygen, and maintain...more

Planetary Alignment 2002

In late April through mid-May 2002, all five naked-eye planets are visible at the same time in the night sky! This is includes Mercury which is generally very hard to see. You won't want to miss this!...more

Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation and NASA, our Founding Partners (the American Geophysical Union and American Geosciences Institute) as well as through Institutional, Contributing, and Affiliate Partners, individual memberships and generous donors. Thank you for your support! NASA AGU AGI NSF