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  • Library: Plantation failure

    Evergreen Alliance Staff
    By BC Forest Practices Board
    The investigation found that licensees’ reforestation choices shifted from establishing lodgepole pine monocultures to establishing more mixed species stands over the investigation period (2007-2019), with the intent of establishing resilient stands to meet timber and non-timber resource objectives. While the trend is encouraging, investigators found that licensees were generically regenerating to pre-harvest mature stand species composition without considering site-specific tree species application, reflecting a lack of critical thinking regarding longer-term stand development.
    On the ground, licensees complied with FRPA reforestation requirements, but more than 60 percent of the cutblocks sampled were in poor or marginal stand condition due to poor health, low stocking, and/or competing vegetation—this result appears to be driven by ineffective application of silviculture treatments, forest cover retention, species choices and placement at the site level. One of the main factors contributing to poor stand condition was that licensees were not following best management practices for reforestation in dry-belt fir stands. Given the stand conditions observed, it is likely that many of these stands will not be healthy beyond free growing, potentially compromising forest yields and forest cover requirements for resources such as wildlife habitat and forage production.
    (2020) Forest Practices Board investigation-Reforestation in IDF Subzone.pdf

    Evergreen Alliance Staff
    Forests, Lands, Natural Resources and Rural Development Minister Doug Donaldson announced in February 2018 that a Panel would review British Columbia (BC) Forest Inventory Program. The announcement included the Panel members as Bill Bourgeois, Clark Binkley, Valerie LeMay, Ian Moss and Nick Reynolds.
    Key functions of BC’s Forest Inventory Program include:
      Undertaking new forest inventories to replace older ones
      Maintaining existing forest inventories through updates
      Ground sampling and re-measurement of natural (unmanaged) stands
      Monitoring the post-harvest growth of managed stands
      Providing models to project stand development and future yield.
    The BC Forest Inventory Panel undertook a review of the Forest Inventory Program between April and September 2018. The Panel’s work included reviewing the existing program, requesting and then evaluating written submissions, interviewing key users and developers, and assessing programs in other provinces and jurisdictions. This report summarizes the Panel’s findings and provides recommendations on possible improvements to the BC Forest Inventory Program.
    (2018) British Columbia Forest Inventory Review Panel Technical Background Report.pdf

    Evergreen Alliance Staff
    Submission by Anthony Britneff and Martin Watts
    Our submission is based on a number of questions originally submitted by the opposition forest critic to the forest minister during the 2014 and 2016 Estimates Debates and on the ministerial responses to those questions prepared by MFLNRO&RD for the forest minister.
    While FAIB managers seem to consider the 2014 and 2016 Estimates Debate questions to be some sort of personal condemnation of staff work, the questions are simply a reflection of real issues encountered in the course of completing contracts for clients and issues that FAIB managers chose to ignore, such as:
    • MFLNRO&RD data management problems were identified when validating MFLNRO&RD data under contract for FAIB for use in parameterizing1 VDYP7 and problems identified when preparing data for PrognosisBC calibration under a contract for RPB,
    • SIBEC problems were identified while under contract to RPB to assess the use of SIBEC data for planning and investing in silviculture activities under the LBIS and,
    •SIBEC, TASS/TIPSY, biomass conversion and access to data problems were identified during the quantification, validation and verification of forest carbon offsets projects to ISO standards, which require uncertainty to be documented and, if possible, quantified in order to account for it.
    In this submission, we go through the questions on the DVD (provided separately) in reference to the forest minister’s responses, while adding any relevant updates. We also incorporate these subject areas:
    • Individual tree volume,
    • Additional ground sample programs and the analyses associated with them,
    • The culling of the PSPs,
    • The debate between the YSM and SDM programs and,
    • The TSR and AAC determination processes with respect to VRI attribute adjustment, VRI
    statistical analysis, G&Y model assumptions and the use of monitoring data.
    (2018) A submission to the Forest Inventory Program Review Panel.pdf

    Evergreen Alliance Staff
    By W. Jean Roach, Suzanne W. Simard and Donald L. Sachs
    Single-species planting of lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta var. latifolia) following clear-cut logging or wildfire has been common throughout interior British Columbia, Canada, but health problems with the species have been documented as it grows beyond the juvenile stage. We examined damage and stocking in twenty-seven 15- to 30-year- old lodgepole pine plantations that were previously declared free growing in the highly productive cedar – hemlock forests in southeastern British Columbia, where lodgepole pine is absent from many primary forests. In order to be free growing, stands must meet minimum tree density, height, damage and brush competition criteria as legislated by the Provincial government. Overall, 44 per cent of lodgepole pine trees had unacceptable damage (causing them to be rejected as crop trees), and as a direct result, one-third of the plantations were no longer defined as free growing because there were insufficient crop trees remaining. Natural regeneration of other tree species partially compensated for the unhealthy pine. Logistic regression and odds ratio analysis associated increasing risk of damage from western gall rust with increasing soil moisture, more northerly aspects and mechanical site preparation, and decreasing risk with pre-commercial thinning treatment. Risk of damage from snow and ice was associated with increasing mean annual precipitation, decreasing longitude and broadcast burning. Risk of bear damage was associated with increasing soil moisture, pre-commercial thinning treatment and broadcast burning. Based on our results, we recommend that single-species planting of lodgepole pine be curtailed in the Interior Cedar–Hemlock zone in southeastern British Columbia.
    (2015) Evidence against planting lodgepole pine monocultures in the cedar–hemlock forests of southeastern British Columbia.pdf

    Evergreen Alliance Staff
    By Jonathan R. Thompson et al
    The 2002 Biscuit Fire burned at mixed-severities encompassing over 200,000 ha of publicly owned forest- land, including more than 8300 ha of conifer plantations. We used pre- and post-fire digital aerial photography to examine how the level of canopy damage varied within these plantations in relation to topography, weather, vegetation-cover, and management history, with an emphasis on the age of the plantation. We examined 198 plantations that varied widely in age (5–47 years), size (1.25–47 ha), and landscape context. The average level of canopy damage within the plantations was 77%. Based on Ran- dom Forest variable importance values, plantation age was the best predictor of canopy damage. Average annual precipitation, elevation and topographic position were ranked second, third, and fourth, respec- tively. A model selection procedure, using geo-statistical regression models and Akaike’s information criterion, corroborated the importance of plantation age relative to the other predictors tested and also suggested that the influence of age varied over time. The top ranked regression model indicated that the level of canopy damage reached its maximum around age 15 and stayed relatively high until age 25 before declining.
    (2011) Canopy damage to conifer plantations within a large mixed-severity wildfire varies with stand age.pdf

    Evergreen Alliance Staff
    By Alex Woods et al
    Dothistroma needle blight, caused by the fungus Dothistroma septosporum, is a major pest of pine plantations in the Southern Hemisphere, where both the host and the pathogen have been introduced. In northern temperate forests where the pest and host trees are native, damage levels have historically been low; however, Dothistroma is currently causing extensive defoliation and mortality in plantations of lodgepole pine in northwestern British Columbia, Canada. The severity of the disease is such that mature lodgepole pine trees in the area are succumbing, which is an unprecedented occurrence. This raises the question of whether climate change might enable the spread of the disease by surpassing an environmental threshold that has previously restricted the pathogen’s development in northern temperate regions. Establishing a causal relationship between climate change and local biological trends is usually difficult, but we found a clear mechanistic relationship between an observed climate trend and the host–pathogen interaction. A local increase in summer precipitation, not climate warming, appears to be responsible. We examine whether the recently observed climate change trend exceeds natural fluctuations in the local climate.
    (2005) Is an Unprecedented Dothistroma Needle Blight Epidemic Related to Climate Change?.pdf

    Evergreen Alliance Staff
    By BC Ministry of Forests
    This report briefly describes the growth and yield prediction systems currently supplied by the British Columbia Ministry of Forests (MOF). Only those growth and yield prediction systems that generate estimates of stand volume are presented here. Site index curves, individual tree volume equations, and other important growth and yield tools are not described.
    This report is intended for MOF and licensee personnel who are involved in preparing or reviewing MOF growth and yield predictions. Therefore, the reader is assumed to be familiar with growth and yield terminology and concepts, especially as they relate to the situation in British Columbia. Throughout the report, synthesis of information is stressed rather than technical detail.Relevant background information is provided for the growth and yield prediction systems, and examples are given to illustrate their proper use.
    (1991) Growth and Yield Prediction Systems.pdf

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