4 reasons to be grateful for green spaceNov 21, 2023
Scientific research proves spending time working, relaxing, and entertaining in your backyard –backyarding as the TurfMutt Foundation calls it – has myriad benefits for people and the planet. During Thanksgiving week, the TurfMutt Foundation offers these reasons to be grateful for green space.
- Green space supports physical health. Greener neighborhoods can stop us from aging on a genetic level, and living near green space could add 2.5 years to your life, according to recent research.
- Spending time in green space makes us happier. A 2019 review of research from the University of Washington revealed that contact with nature is associated with increased well-being and happiness. A systematic review of 14 studies from multiple countries indicates that young children living near nature and public open space tend to have better mental health than young children without nearby green space.
- Nature exposure improves learning. Children who participated in an urban farming youth internship program experienced a number of long-term benefits, including higher college enrollment, connectedness to the environment and the community, healthy eating habits, and higher levels of self-confidence.
- Plants have environmental super powers. According to the U.S. Forest Service's Northern Research Station, the nation's urban canopies, which are home to an estimated 5.5 billion trees, provide roughly $18 billion in annual benefits through the removal of pollution from the air ($5.4 billion), carbon sequestration ($4.8 billion), reduced emissions ($2.7 billion), and improved energy efficiency in buildings ($5.4 billion).
To learn more about creating the yard of your dreams, go to TurfMutt.com. For more information, sign up for Mutt Mail, a monthly e-newsletter with backyarding tips and all the news from the TurfMutt Foundation here. Look for Mulligan the TurfMutt on the CBS Lucky Dog television show. Download the International Backyarding Fact Book to learn why spending time in our yards and community parks is good for us and the planet.