On October 7 and 8, 2016, Hurricane Matthew pounded Georgia coastal counties with wind gusts felt 50 miles inland, and Savannah and Tybee Island experienced 71-96 miles per hour winds. The Georgia Forestry Commission surveyed the damage and the storm-generated tree debris left, finding the highest amount of damage in Chatham County. But other communities experienced tree loss as well, and urban areas with the greatest canopy suffered the most damage. In Statesboro, for example, over a thousand trees were affected. View this video entitled “ReGrowth” from independent filmmaker Patrick Rippman on the effects of the storm on the Savannah-area community and its trees.
In January, 2017, 41 confirmed tornadoes struck the state of Georgia in one 36-hour period. The south Georgia area was especially devastated. The Dougherty-Worth-Turner-Wilcox tornado, for example, was a mile wide and travelled 70 miles. But other communities were affected as well, from Albany and beyond. Over 5000 acres of urban trees were affected.
Cleanup will take months, but once completed, these urban landscapes will need help in recovering and restoring their canopy loss. As someone who knows the benefits of urban trees and the tremendous loss that is experienced when trees are damaged and lost, you can help. Please donate what you can to Georgia Urban Forest Council’s Georgia ReLeaf fundraising drive to restore tree canopy in South Georgia. All funds raised will go directly to providing trees to these towns and cities, and donations are fully tax-deductible. Thank you!
Please share that you’ve donated,and encourage others!