Lab Canada

$12.3M allocated to continue forest management research

Edmonton, AB – Research into sustainable forest management has received $12.3 million in continued funding from the federal government. “Network research is identifying new solutions for the development of more sustainable forest management practices across the country. Our research findings are making a difference on the ground,” says Dr Jim Fyles, SFM Network scientific director, McGill University.

The network currently comprises more than 160 researchers working in partnership with a wide range of industrial, provincial government and Aboriginal partners. Past research is already having an impact in forest management plans and techniques across the country. Last year, the Coulombe Commission recommended sweeping changes to forest management in Quebec. The commission’s decisions were supported, in part, on network research results. Similarly, network findings have made important contributions to support the Ontario Forest Management Guide for Natural Disturbance Pattern Emulation.

In addition, Alberta-Pacific Forest Industries (Al-Pac) is using network research results to better understand the cumulative effects of human activities in one of Canada’s busiest corners of the boreal plain, and helping them to understand the interactions of land use and hydrology in the boreal plain. Several aspects of Louisiana-Pacific Canada’s proposed 20-year forest management plan in Manitoba are based on Network research. Ducks Unlimited is using network research findings to provide input into changing buffer and riparian guidelines in Manitoba. JD Irving, in New Brunswick is continuing to work with network researchers to determine the range of silviculture intensity that is compatible with the persistence of forest bird populations on the lands it manages.

“One of the most unique aspects of the network is says Dr Fyles. To date, 26 network graduates have accepted academic appointments at universities across Canada. Six are principal investigators on projects funded by the network and five are focused on issues involving Aboriginal communities.