Where are the trees? Not Paris, new 'Green View Index' finds

FeaturesAssociated Press

A Massachusetts Institute of Technology project that maps trees in the world's major cities is making it easier for city officials and citizens to figure out where more green is needed.

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The project, called Treepedia, uses Google Street View to create what the MIT team calls the Green View Index.

Carlo Ratti, director of MIT's Senseable City Lab, says trees play a critical role in urban environments. They help keep cities cool, mitigate pollution and flooding and just make the environments more pleasant places to live and work.

The website gives birds-eye views of 15 cities, with trees represented by green dots. Users can zoom into a neighborhood or street to see ground-level images.

The project plans on adding many more cities, making it easier to compare and share information.