Thesis Collaboration with Lorenzo Villani
Lorenzo Villani, in collaboration with Justdiggit and MetaMeta, researched the effect of trees on cooling down microclimates and ultimately the earth.
In early 2018 we came into contact with Lorenzo to partner on research that looked into the effectiveness of our regreening methods, as part of his MSc thesis. Once this partnership came into play Lorenzo began his research into our project areas in the Dodoma region of Tanzania. These were his main insights on the cooling effect of trees:
Effect of trees on local temperatures
Lorenzo looked specifically into how the number of trees in an area directly impacts that area’s average top soil temperature. He used satellite and drone data to determine the average temperatures of the top soil in the Dodoma region zones.
He found that the number of trees was important to mitigating temperatures in the dry season. His results showed that the more trees the lower the temperature! However, this was only the case where sufficient trees were present. Therefore, he estimated that an average of at least 10% of the area targeted should be covered with trees. This is the minimum amount necessary to ensure temperatures decrease effectively.
Effect of trees on our the planet
Ultimately, Lorenzo found that trees are incredibly important to the cooling down of the earth! The more trees farmers bring back back on their land the more resilient their land will be to the seasons. Based on this research he concluded that if farmers have at least 10% of their land covered in trees, or 50 trees per hectare, they can ensure lower temperatures during the dry season. This can also improve their crop yield and soil conditions. On a bigger scale this can contribute to the cooling down of the entire planet!
Now Lorenzo is continuing his research as a PhD student at the University of Florence! To read more about Lorenzo’s research go to his paper: Integrating UAV and satellite data to assess the effects of agroforestry on microclimate in Dodoma region, Tanzania – IEEE Conference Publication