Jump to content

Welcome to FutureTimeline.forum
Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to create topics, post replies to existing threads, give reputation to your fellow members, get your own private messenger, post status updates, manage your profile and so much more. If you already have an account, login here - otherwise create an account for free today!
Photo

The Future of Forests and Forest Management

Forests Forest Management Trees British Columbia Brazil California Prescribed Burning LIDAR Forest Mapping

  • Please log in to reply
11 replies to this topic

#1
caltrek

caltrek

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 12,515 posts

How Technology is Transforming British Columbia’s Forest  Industry

 

https://www.timberwest.com/the-future-of-forestry-is-here/

 

Introduction:

(Timber West) For forest companies, like TimberWest, the health of the trees and associated ecosystems are paramount.  From seedling to maturity, the trees must be monitored and any problems addressed.  The way in which this monitoring happens is changing dramatically through the convergence of new sensing technologies such as LiDAR, and the ability to deploy sensing technology using drones.

 

What was once used only for air space and meteorological research, LiDAR, which stands for LIght Detection And Ranging and is commonly referred to as airborne laser scanning, is now being used for forest research to more accurately examine everything from the height and diameter of trees to ground terrain evaluation and plot-level wood volume estimates.

 

In the just-released video Forest for the Trees: How technology is transforming BC’s forest industry, University of British Columbia (UBC) forestry professor Dr. Nicholas Coops emphasizes LiDAR and drone use are just two more recent examples of the forest sectors technological revolution, and the types of technology incorporated into every-day forest management.

 

Coops explains LiDAR technology can be used with airplanes or drones and involves sending pulses of light down to the ground that bounce back and mirrors the data captured into images that allow forest planners to measure the topography, depth, height, slope and other values of the land being surveyed.

 

Domenico Iannidinardo, TimberWest’s Vice-President of Sustainability and Chief Forester says he sees great value in LiDAR technology and drones when it comes to forest management and planning. LiDAR can provide a wide range of enhanced ecological applications such as evaluating microhabitat diversity and watershed modelling. Through the use of LiDAR, forest planners can rapidly and accurately produce three-dimensional data-sets which allows them to better assess road building opportunities, stand value and wood quality, resulting in more efficient inventory management.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#2
caltrek

caltrek

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 12,515 posts

Satellites Could Soon Map Every Tree on Earth

 

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-02830-3

 

Introduction:

(Nature) Terrestrial ecosystems are defined in large part by their woody plants. Grasslands, shrublands, savannahs, woodlands and forests represent a series of gradations in tree and shrub density, from ecosystems with low-density, low-stature woody plants to those with taller trees and overlapping canopies. Accurate information on the woody-vegetation structure of ecosystems is, therefore, fundamental to our understanding of global-scale ecology, biogeography and the biogeochemical cycles of carbon, water and other nutrients. Writing in Nature, Brandt et al.1 report their analysis of a massive database of high-resolution satellite images covering more than 1.3 million square kilometres of the western Sahara and Sahel regions of West Africa. The authors mapped the location and size of more than 1.8 billion individual tree canopies; never before have trees been mapped at this level of detail across such a large area.

 

The spatial resolution of most satellite data is relatively coarse, with individual image pixels generally corresponding to areas on the ground that are larger than 100 square metres, and often larger than one square kilometre. This limitation has forced researchers in the field of Earth observation to focus on measuring bulk properties, such as the proportion of a landscape covered by tree canopies when viewed from above (a measurement known as canopy cover).

 

However, during the past two decades, a variety of commercial satellites have begun to collect data at a higher spatial resolution, capable of capturing ground objects measuring one square metre or less. This resolution improvement places the field of terrestrial remote sensing on the threshold of a fundamental leap forward: from focusing on aggregate landscape-scale measurements to having the potential to map the location and canopy size of every tree over large regional or global scales. This revolution in observational capabilities will undoubtedly drive fundamental changes in how we think about, monitor, model and manage global terrestrial ecosystems.

 

Brandt et al. provide a striking demonstration of this transformation in terrestrial remote sensing. 


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#3
funkervogt

funkervogt

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,259 posts

 

Satellites Could Soon Map Every Tree on Earth

 

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-02830-3

 

Introduction:

(Nature) Terrestrial ecosystems are defined in large part by their woody plants. Grasslands, shrublands, savannahs, woodlands and forests represent a series of gradations in tree and shrub density, from ecosystems with low-density, low-stature woody plants to those with taller trees and overlapping canopies. Accurate information on the woody-vegetation structure of ecosystems is, therefore, fundamental to our understanding of global-scale ecology, biogeography and the biogeochemical cycles of carbon, water and other nutrients. Writing in Nature, Brandt et al.1 report their analysis of a massive database of high-resolution satellite images covering more than 1.3 million square kilometres of the western Sahara and Sahel regions of West Africa. The authors mapped the location and size of more than 1.8 billion individual tree canopies; never before have trees been mapped at this level of detail across such a large area.

 

The spatial resolution of most satellite data is relatively coarse, with individual image pixels generally corresponding to areas on the ground that are larger than 100 square metres, and often larger than one square kilometre. This limitation has forced researchers in the field of Earth observation to focus on measuring bulk properties, such as the proportion of a landscape covered by tree canopies when viewed from above (a measurement known as canopy cover).

 

However, during the past two decades, a variety of commercial satellites have begun to collect data at a higher spatial resolution, capable of capturing ground objects measuring one square metre or less. This resolution improvement places the field of terrestrial remote sensing on the threshold of a fundamental leap forward: from focusing on aggregate landscape-scale measurements to having the potential to map the location and canopy size of every tree over large regional or global scales. This revolution in observational capabilities will undoubtedly drive fundamental changes in how we think about, monitor, model and manage global terrestrial ecosystems.

 

Brandt et al. provide a striking demonstration of this transformation in terrestrial remote sensing. 

 

Why not use automated, flying drones to map the forests? If they only flew as high as regular airplanes, they wouldn't need high-tech cameras to image individual trees. 



#4
caltrek

caltrek

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 12,515 posts

Bill Introduced in U.S. Senate to Promote Prescribed Fires to Reduce Fire 

 

https://wildfiretoda...duce-fire-risk/

 

Introduction:

(Wildfire Today) A bill has been introduced in the U.S. Senate that would make large sums of money available to increase the number of acres treated with prescribed fire (also known as controlled burns).

 

It has been fashionable during the last two years to blame “forest management” for the large, devastating wildfires that have burned thousands of homes in California. According to a 2015 report by the Congressional Research Service the federal government manages 46 percent of the land in California. The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection manages or has fire protection responsibility for about 30 percent.

 

Research conducted in 2019 to identify barriers to conducting prescribed fires found that in the 11 western states the primary reasons cited were lack of adequate capacity and funding, along with a need for greater leadership direction and incentives. Barriers related to policy requirements tended to be significant only in specific locations or situations, such as smoke regulations in the Pacific Northwest or protecting specific threatened and endangered species.

 

The National Prescribed Fire Act of 2020, Senate Bill 4625, which was introduced last week by Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon and two cosponsors, would help address the capacity issue by appropriating $300 million for both the Forest Service and the Department of the Interior (DOI) to plan, prepare, and conduct controlled burns on federal, state, and private lands. It would also provide $10 million for controlled burns on county, state and private land that are at high risk of burning in a wildfire. Additionally, the bill establishes an incentive program that would provide $100,000 to a State, county, and Federal agency for any controlled burns larger than 50,000 acres. (Summary and text of the bill)

AmElkRxFire_10-20-2010.jpg

A firefighter ignites the American Elk prescribed fire in Wind Cave National Park, October 20, 2010.

Photo by Bill Gabbert.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#5
caltrek

caltrek

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 12,515 posts

Why not use automated, flying drones to map the forests? If they only flew as high as regular airplanes, they wouldn't need high-tech cameras to image individual trees. 

 

The article cited in the opening post indicates that drones are in fact used for the purpose you describe.  I imagine a satellite could take in a much larger area.  Marry that to AI, and you can obtain a very efficient system for mapping and counting of trees.  Blending both approaches together might also be advantageous. Satellites for a first order of approximation, drones for more detailed work that might be needed for exact species identification, monitoring of the early stages of disease spread, etc. 


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#6
caltrek

caltrek

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 12,515 posts

Oh...and because I listed Brazil as a tag:

 

The Amazon is Burning in 2020 Again

 

https://theprint.in/...ndemics/516446/

 

Introduction:

(The Print) The fires in the Amazon region in 2019 were unprecedented in their destruction. Thousands of fires had burned more than 7,600 square kilometres by October that year. In 2020, things are no better and, in all likelihood, may be worse.

 

According to the Global Fire Emissions Database project run by NASA, fires in the Amazon in 2020 surpassed those of 2019. In fact, 2020’s fires have been the worst since at least 2012, when the satellite was first operated. The number of fires burning the Brazilian Amazon increased 28 per cent in July 2020 over the previous year, and the fires in the first week of September are double those in 2019, according to INPE, Brazil’s national research space agency.

 

Despite the surge in fires, international attention has waned in 2020, likely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet the degradation of the Amazon rainforest has profound consequences from climate change to global health.

 

Global climate implications

 

The Amazon rainforest covers approximately eight million square kilometres — an area larger than Australia — and is home to an astounding amount of biodiversity.

It helps balance the global carbon budget by absorbing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and plays a key role in the global water cycle, stabilizing global climate and rainfall. A nine nation network of Indigenous territories and natural areas have protected a massive amount of biodiversity and primary forest.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#7
caltrek

caltrek

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 12,515 posts

Natural Debate: Do Forests Grow Better Without Our Help?

 

https://grist.org/cl...thout-our-help/

 

Introduction:

(Grist) When Susan Cook-Patton was doing a postdoc in forest restoration at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center in Maryland seven years ago, she says she helped plant 20,000 trees along Chesapeake Bay. It was a salutary lesson. “The ones that grew best were mostly ones we didn’t plant,” she remembers. “They just grew naturally on the ground we had set aside for planting. Lots popped up all around. It was a good reminder that nature knows what it is doing.”

 

What is true for Chesapeake Bay is probably true in many other places, says Cook-Patton, now at the Nature Conservancy. Sometimes, we just need to give nature room to grow back naturally. Her conclusion follows a new global study that finds the potential for natural forest regrowth to absorb atmospheric carbon and fight climate change has been seriously underestimated.

 

Tree planting is all the rage right now. This year’s World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, called for the world to plant a trillion trees. In one of its few actions to address climate concerns, the Trump administration — with support from businesses and nonprofits such as American Forests — last month promised to contribute close to a billion of them — 855 million, to be precise — across an estimated 2.8 million acres.

 

The European Union this year promised 3 billion more trees as part of a Green Deal; and existing worldwide pledges under the 2011 Bonn Challenge and the 2015 Paris Climate Accord set targets to restore more than 850 million acres of forests, mostly through planting. That is an area slightly larger than India, and provides room for roughly a quarter-trillion trees.

 

The study found that natural regeneration can capture more carbon more quickly and securely than tree plantations.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#8
caltrek

caltrek

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 12,515 posts

Bill Introduced in U.S. Senate to Promote Prescribed Fires to Reduce Fire

 

More on that:

 

https://www.courthou...evention-bills/

 

Introduction:

WASHINGTON (Courthouse News) — This summer, smoke from wildfires that burned hundreds of thousands of acres on the West Coast, stained midday skies across America in a hazy orange hue. Wednesday, U.S. Senators heard testimony from experts on how to prevent those aggressive flames from devastating future communities.

 

The Senate subcommittee focused on oversight of the nation’s lands and forest and mining operations met to hear testimony on more than a dozen pending bills, chief among them being the National Prescribed Fire Act of 2020.

 

That bill, introduced by Oregon Democratic Senator Ron Wyden, would establish two funds with the U.S. Forest Service and the Department of Interior specifically to increase the scale of controlled burns.

 

Wyden said the bill was an underfunded tool in the fire management toolbox, noting that without financial support, forest management teams would never get in front of wildfires through controlling the burn. 

 

Although there were over 86,000 prescribed fires burned between 2009-2018, those targeted infernos only used 3 million acres of potential flammable materials, while the nation’s annual loss from wildfires is on average 7 million acres.

 

 


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#9
funkervogt

funkervogt

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,259 posts

 

Why not use automated, flying drones to map the forests? If they only flew as high as regular airplanes, they wouldn't need high-tech cameras to image individual trees. 

 

The article cited in the opening post indicates that drones are in fact used for the purpose you describe.  I imagine a satellite could take in a much larger area.  Marry that to AI, and you can obtain a very efficient system for mapping and counting of trees.  Blending both approaches together might also be advantageous. Satellites for a first order of approximation, drones for more detailed work that might be needed for exact species identification, monitoring of the early stages of disease spread, etc. 

 

That sounds like a good plan. 



#10
caltrek

caltrek

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 12,515 posts

^^^Thanks for the encouraging comment.

 

What I came here to post:

 

Fire and Biodiversity in the Anthropocene

 

https://science.scie...0/6519/eabb0355

 

Introduction:

(Science) Fire has shaped the diversity of life on Earth for millions of years. Variation in fire regimes continues to be a source of biodiversity across the globe, and many plants, animals, and ecosystems depend on particular temporal and spatial patterns of fire. Although people have been using fire to modify environments for millennia, the combined effects of human activities are now changing patterns of fire at a global scale—to the detriment of human society, biodiversity, and ecosystems. These changes pose a global challenge for understanding how to sustain biodiversity in a new era of fire. We synthesize how changes in fire activity are threatening species with extinction across the globe, highlight forward-looking methods for predicting the combined effects of human drivers and fire on biodiversity, and foreshadow emerging actions and strategies that could revolutionize how society manages fire for biodiversity in the Anthropocene.

 

ADVANCES

 

Our synthesis shows that interactions with anthropogenic drivers such as global climate change, land use, and biotic invasions are transforming fire activity and its impacts on biodiversity. More than 4400 terrestrial and freshwater species from a wide range of taxa and habitats face threats associated with modified fire regimes. Many species are threatened by an increase in fire frequency or intensity, but exclusion of fire in ecosystems that need it can also be harmful. The prominent role of human activity in shaping global ecosystems is the hallmark of the Anthropocene and sets the context in which models and actions must be developed. Advances in predictive modeling deliver new opportunities to couple fire and biodiversity data and to link them with forecasts of multiple drivers including drought, invasive plants, and urban growth. Making these connections also provides an opportunity for new actions that could revolutionize how society manages fire. Emerging actions include reintroduction of mammals that reduce fuels, green fire breaks comprising low-flammability plants, strategically letting wildfires burn under the right conditions, managed evolution of populations aided by new genomics tools, and deployment of rapid response teams to protect biodiversity assets. Indigenous fire stewardship and reinstatement of cultural burning in a modern context will enhance biodiversity and human well-being in many regions of the world. At the same time, international efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are crucial to reduce the risk of extreme fire events that contribute to declines in biodiversity.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#11
caltrek

caltrek

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 12,515 posts

I had intended this thread to focus on the science involved in forestry. The following article demonstrates how that science sometimes needs to deal with politics - including criminal conduct, and can be thwarted in that collision.

 

‘Timber Mafia’ Threatens the Future of Romania’s Ancient Forests

 

https://www.aljazeer...pearing-forests

 

Introduction:

(Al Jazeera) Romania’s old-growth forests are vast ancient woodlands that straddle the Carpathian Mountains in Eastern Europe. They have survived unchanged since the end of the ice age. But now these extraordinary forests are disappearing at an alarming rate and once gone, they can never be fully restored.

 

There is growing outrage about the environmental crimes committed by what has been dubbed the “Timber Mafia” – criminals who many believe operate hand-in-glove with the Romanian authorities.

 

 “They (the forests) are fragile and they need to be preserved,” said Orieta Hulea, WWF Romania’s country director, explaining why these forests are so important to Europe.

 

“They are vivid examples of how natural processes shape an ecosystem that is untouched by humans.

 

“Old-growth forests have a spectacular composition. It’s this mix of old trees and young trees creating a mosaic of habitats that is a shelter for a very rich biodiversity. More than half the population of bears lives in Romania. About 30 percent of the wolf population. We have lynx, we have wild cats. These forests are of infinite value: the aesthetic value, the inspirational value, the spiritual value of these forests,” she said.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#12
caltrek

caltrek

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 12,515 posts

The Best Way to Restore Forests May Not Actually Involve Planting Trees

 

https://www.sciencea...lant-themselves

 

Introduction:

(Science Alert) The best and most diverse forests are the ones that plant themselves. It's something these amazing ecosystems have been doing for hundreds of millions of years, and some environmental advocates in the United Kingdom think we should simply get out of the way.

 

A new report from the environmental non-profit Rewilding Britain argues trees should only be planted by humans if natural regeneration is unlikely, or will take too long. First, we should try to prime and protect the land for normal growth.

 

The idea is nothing new in conservation circles, nor is it a tactic only under discussion in the UK. While planting trees holds many benefits for local environments and the wider climate, the best results depend on what, when, where and how a tree is planted and cared for. 

 

Today, rapid reforestation attempts often produce monocultures or invasive tree species, ultimately reducing local biodiversity and access to land, water or food supplies within surrounding communities.

 

Even when it comes to carbon sequestration, experts think the quality of a forest might matter more than the sheer quantity of trees, although research in this field is limited.

 

See also post #7 for an article with a similar theme.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Forests, Forest Management, Trees, British Columbia, Brazil, California, Prescribed Burning, LIDAR, Forest Mapping

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users