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Four Illinois research institutions announced on Thursday a two-year project that will examine how drought affects urban trees in order to inform how cities nationwide can effectively respond to drier-than-normal conditions made more common in some areas by climate change.
Drought is typically studied in an agricultural context, the researchers said. This project, on the other hand, will “provide useable information for decision makers in charge of urban tree management,” said Trent Ford, who is the state climatologist based at the University of Illinois, in a news release. Other institutions involved with the research are The Morton Arboretum, Argonne National Laboratory and the Prairie Research Institute’s Illinois State Water Survey.
The project is funded through the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Program Office, which supports high-priority climate research regionally, nationally and internationally.