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Database Provider


NowThis Earth


7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, AP® / College


Science, Social Studies, Civics, History, Health

Resource Type

  • Videos, 10 minutes, CC, Subtitles

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - Northeast, Maryland


YouTube Video

How Systemic Racism Is Linked to Fewer Trees in Your City

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  • This video describes the lingering effects of redlining on tree cover in many cities across America and how planting trees in these areas can help improve human health, save money and energy, and sequester carbon, citing examples in Baltimore.
  • Students learn about the importance of tree cover in urban areas and the jobs that could be created planting and caring for these city-maintained trees. 
Teaching Tips


  • The video informs students about organizations like American Forestry and Baltimore Tree Trust.
  • It emphasizes the need to increase tree cover in affected communities.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should be familiar with the history of redlining and other environmental inequalities that many communities face.


  • Teachers could use this video to explain connections between social justice issues and environmental issues.
  • You could show the video from 0:36-1:21 to explain how redlining has led to fewer trees in many communities.
  • Teachers can facilitate a group activity where students use the Tree Equity Score to explore different cities in the United States. 
  • Social studies classes can use this video to open up a lesson about the role of local governments in addressing both local and global issues that affect their citizens.
  • Science classes can discuss the health benefits of trees after watching the video and use it as a hook for lessons about photosynthesis.
Scientist Notes
The resource describes the history of redlining and disparity of tree cover among urban cities in the USA. It connects how Indigenous communities and people of color become less resilient to climate change impacts as a result of low tree equity score and environmental racism. This resource is recommended for teaching.
  • English Language Arts
    • Speaking and Listening (K-12)
      • SL.6-8.2 Integrate and evaluate information presented in diverse media and formats, including point of view, reasoning, and use of evidence and rhetoric.
  • Social Studies
    • Geography
      • Geography 1 (D2): Students understand the geography of the United States and various regions of the world and the effect of geographic influences on decisions about the present and future by using inquiry to predict and evaluate consequences of geographic influences.
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