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UBC Theses and Dissertations

A framework for evaluating the impact of planting strategies on wood supply Erdle, Thomas Alan


To effectively meet wood supply objectives, design of reforestation efforts based on planting requires selection of both the rate and density at which plantations are to be established. An analytical framework to aid in making these decisions is constructed and employed in a case study of an industrial forest holding in northwest New Brunswick. The case study reveals how planting tactics can be evaluated at the forest level in measures relevant to the forest management goals reforestation is meant to serve. To demonstrate this, stand level responses to planting, forecast with a plantation growth simulator, are used as input for a whole forest productivity model. Simulations with the forest model are performed over a range of plantation establishment options to generate forest level performance indicators of magnitude and cost of immediate harvest increase, magnitude and cost of future harvest increase, required seedling supply, and total cost of plantation establishment. Data generated by several hundred such simulation trials are condensed and presented in nomogram format. In this form, the results clearly demonstrate the sensitivity of planting effects on wood supply to forest structure and stand operability constraints and highlight the trade-offs between (1) capturing short term versus long term gains; (2) level of risk and level of harvest; (3) increased harvest and its associated cost; and (4) stand operability constraints and increased harvest. This information may greatly influence decision making but is not available when assessment of planting options is restricted to stand level performance. The analytical framework presented must be coupled with the decision maker's values and objectives to be of most value in tailoring plantation tactics to wood supply goals.

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