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Economic Value of White's Woods

  1. Stormwater run-off absorbed by the Nature Center:
    207,000 gallons annually

  2. Pollutants (sulfur dioxide, particulate matter, etc.) 
    17,010 lbs removed annually.

  3. The temperature difference between shaded and non-shaded ground can be as much as 36 degrees F, based on some studies (Lenart, 2019). 

  4. Carbon already stored (and released if timbered):
    27,688 tons, worth an estimated $643,945.

  5. Carbon stored annually: 1,102 tons, important for mitigating climate change and a potential source of revenue.

  6. Mental and physical health benefits from outdoor recreation-- providing thousands of dollars in community-wide health care savings.


Stormwater Management

The White's Woods forest plays a major role in stormwater management. 


Average interception of rainfall by a forest canopy ranges from 10-40% depending on species, time of year, and precipitation rates per storm event. *


Two streams starting in the WWNC run through the Indiana Borough: White's Run, and White's Run Tributary.



The changes to the landscape, not only increase the volume of water that goes to the stream, it also shortens the amount of time it takes the water to get to the stream.*


Vincent Cotrone, The Role of Trees and Forests in Healthy Watersheds, Penn State Extension (2015).

*Heavy precipitation events in Pennsylvania are expected to increase by 40 percent in the next 20 years.

Air Quality and Temperature Control

The White's Woods Nature Center removes a total of 17,010 pounds of pollutants annually, including: 


  • sulfur dioxide,

  • nitrogen dioxide,

  • carbon dioxide,

  • and particulate matter. 


It also has a large impact on area temperature (e.g., Indiana Borough and White Township.) Temperature between shaded and non-shaded ground can be as much as 36 degrees Fahrenheit, based on some studies (Lenart, 2019).

Recreation for All

A recent DCNR survey indicated that the most popular outdoor recreation activities for Pennsylvanians are walking and hiking - with running, cycling, and birdwatching not far behind.  The WWNC has it all!

The DCNR Pennsylvania Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan 2020-2024: Recreation for All identifies a major statewide goal as having a walking trail within a 10-minute walk for every Pennsylvania resident. The WWNC is within a 10-minute walk for over 10,000 Indiana Borough and White Township residents, including Indiana University of Pennsylvania students.

This same DCNR strategic plan underscores the role of outdoor recreation in helping with the dramatic reduction of health care costs. Outdoor recreation helps to reduce stress, lower heart rate, and blood pressure, reduce obesity, boost the immune system, and speed recovery from illness. 

The WWNC helps our community reduce health care costs.

WWNC helps control stormwater, heat, and pollutants, and provides extensive health benefits for thousands of people in the Indiana region.  It saves the community tens of thousands of dollars per year.  (Money we will have to spend if the trees are lost.)

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