Do you want to help collect data for Operation Healthy Air?


Operation Healthy Air is our brand new program engaging citizens in cities to improve understanding of how their local environment influences local climate and air pollution. Starting with pilot sampling “campaigns” in Long Beach, and Chino, and the Inland Empire (e.g. Riverside and Redlands) in the summer of 2017, we will look to expand in 2018 to greater Los Angeles and other cities.eview training materials

Review training materials and upcoming training events to get involved. Write to Mark Chandler if you want to participate in data collection for Operation Healthy Air.

We recently concluded data collection with “Resilient Trees 3.0”

  NOTE: We are not recruiting volunteers for the Resilient Trees 3.0 project now, all information below represents past data collection efforts.


During February-June 2017 we collected data on 10 individual trees per region for each of the 10 target species:

  • Canary Island Pine (Pinus canariensis)
  • American Sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua)
  • Honey Locust (Gleditsia triacanthos)*
  • Brazilian Pepper Tree (Schinus terebinthifolia)
  • Red Ironbark (Eucalyptus sideroxylon)
  • Broad-leaved Paperbark (Melaleuca quinquenervia)
  • Kurrajong (Brachychiton populneus)
  • Chinese Banyan (Ficus microcarpa)*
  • Chinese Elm (Ulmus parvifolia)
  • Camphor Tree (Cinnammum camphora)

This represents a total of 400 trees we will need help measuring!  We particularly need help from Certified Citizen Scientists in measuring two of these species:

  • Honey Locust appears to be scattered in a variety of parks across the 150-mile gradient in low densities (2-3 per park), too low to cover through dedicated collection events.  Measuring even just a few individuals near you will make a huge difference in reaching our goals.
  • Chinese Banyan/Indian Laurel Fig, while prevalent, is planted mostly as a street tree.  As the lab prefers data from trees that have 50% permeable surface around it, we will need your measurements of those individuals that happen to have enough permeable surface around it to provide good data (e.g. at the convergence of two lawns, street tree in front of an office park, etc.).

Once you’ve collected data, you can submit your measurements in a couple ways:

iNaturalist is a powerful tool that maps and shares observations of biodiversity worldwide.  We use it to put all our data in one place because it is easy to use and it keeps track of tree data, photos, and location.  The easiest way for us to collect your data is through this tool.  However, we realize not everyone has access to smartphones in the field, so there is a pen and paper method for submission as well.

With iNaturalist you can:

  • Collect data on trees in greater Los Angeles
  • Help us to understand which trees provide more cooling benefits
  • See the data collected by citizen scientists near you
  • Join a community of citizen scientist observations of biodiversity from around the world

Download the app on your iPhone or Android phone and get started today!

Review iNaturalist’s step-by-step instructions on how to create and add observations.


Watch our videos about how to collect tree data for Earthwatch using iNaturalist using your phone (iPhone or Android) or your desktop computer:

iNaturalist for iPhone Tutorial

iNaturalist for Android Tutorial

iNaturalist for Desktop Tutorial

View the most recent iNaturalist observations from the Earthwatch Urban Resiliency Program:

Submit Data Collected Using Pen & Paper

If you filled out your data collection sheets by hand, you have several options for submitting this information to the lab (ranked in order of ease to the lab).

  • Record the data on pen and paper, but upload it via iNaturalist using the hybrid method:
  • Re-type the data into the Excel spreadsheet template along with your event/contact information. In addition, scanning and attaching your original collection sheets and e-mailing them to Earthwatch at will ensure the most accuracy.
  • If you don’t have time to fill out the Excel spreadsheet, e-mail with the scanned, raw data collection sheets as an attachment. Staff at Earthwatch and the lab can then compile these into Excel format for you.
  • Snail mail using regular postal service the original sheets to the lab. Print out the cover sheet and fill in your information. The cover sheet includes the mailing address where you should send your collection sheets.

Please keep your original data sheets until July 1st, 2017 to allow research scientists to verify all data entered.

Need a training refresher?

Get the training you need to become a Certified Citizen Scientist for this project.
Search Earthwatch Urban Resiliency Program