Tree Carbon Calculator (CTCC)

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The USFS Center for Urban Forest Research Tree Carbon Calculator (CTCC) is used in CA for quantifying carbon dioxide sequestration from GHG tree planting projects. The Excel based program uses information on the climate region and size or age of a single tree to produce carbon-related information such as:

  • Carbon dioxide stored in the tree due to its growth over many years
  • Carbon dioxide sequestered during the past year
  • Dry weight of aboveground biomass that could be utilized if the tree was removedis the only tool approved by the California

For trees strategically located to shade buildings and reduce energy consumed for heating and cooling, with additional input, the CTCC can also calculate:

  • Annual energy savings in kWh of electricity and MBtu of heating per tree
  • Carbon dioxide equivalents of these energy savings
  • The CTCC can be used to estimate GHG benefits for an existing tree or to forecast future benefits for a planting project.

Users should recognize that conditions vary within regions, and data from the CTCC may not accurately reflect their rate of tree growth, microclimate, or building characteristics. When conditions are different it may be necessary to apply biomass equations manually using adjusted tree growth data and perform building energy simulations with modified weather and tree data to more accurately depict effects of trees on GHGs.

The CTCC is intended as "proof of concept" software that is in the testing phase. It is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. In 2011, this version will be replaced by a Web-based version with greater functionality.