2. Do current regeneration practices adequately address risks from climate change and forest health factors all the way to rotation age?


Question 2:
Do current regeneration practices adequately address risks from climate change and forest health factors all the way to rotation age?

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  1. I find this a rather difficult question with the exponential growth in climate change. From models I have seen climate change is happening now, but as time goes on the speed at which it is taking place will continue to increase without drastic change to economic and ecological practices by humans in all aspects, even outside of forestry.
    With this being said I believe the regeneration practices today are adequate for given rotation ages as proved with the continued logging of healthy second growth stands as we speak. However, the question is will these practices hold up in the future for the next rotation? The answer I believe is that, yes these practices will hold true, though they may not properly address risks of climate change.
    My train of thought would be that, trees are made to grow in their specified ecosystem, barring mass site disturbance. Though my knowledge on the planning of forest regeneration may be limited, it is to my understanding that as long as we have soil, we have seedlings and we have tree planters, there will be little worry whether trees will begin to regenerate. The problem is putting the proper trees in the proper areas.
    As planning for this has become rather cut and dry for many Foresters, due to experience, it can all come down to be based off planting the proper crop trees for the proper BioGeoClimatic Zone, Subzone, and Variant. Which to me is cut and dry as we are observing Old Growth forests. However with climate change, to proper assess the risks of change to the environment; there may need to be more Site Series surveying done during regeneration of the stand rotation.
    What Im saying by this is that with the rapid changes in climate change; a CWHvm1 01 today, may not be a CWHvm1 01 tomorrow. Though making this call upon planning for regeneration may not be the easiest thing while trying to meet Regen Declaration, making it more difficult to plan for a climate change within one rotation age. Monitoring of the Site and Ecosystem may prove beneficial for future rotations.

    “Blog Administrator transferred Mark’s comment to here”

  2. Due to global climate change, Spruce beetle is becoming an issue in Prince George and Mackenzie area. Beetle is taking advantages of earlier and warmer spring, changing their two-year life cycle to one-year life cycle. More and more over-mature Spruce stand (e.g. Riparian Reserve) and fresh blowdown provide significant food source for beetle.

    In 1989, Spruce beetle swiped PG area already. People salvaged thousands ha Spruce leading stand (clear-cut with large scale pile burning). For one example, in a lake near PG, pine regeneration was planted after massive salvage harvest. However, according to the picture I saw, 25 years old young pine stand were attacked by MPB. It is quite a shocking after seeing the picture recording the landscape level (1989 VS Today).

    1. Thanks Ziyan! According to new forester like you have seen on the ground. Do you think current regeneration practices doing it job well? If not ,do you have some potential suggestions?

      1. I am not able to answer this question as I do not have rich experience regarding to Silviculture. Government encourages and requires licensees to consider planting different species in order to address the risk of climate change affect. I agree with Mark’s opinion above, in addition, it might be beneficial to use some scientific based climate model to predict future while monitoring of the Site and Ecosystem.

  3. If climate change bites as hard as the pundits are saying then what trees we plant won’t matter at all….there will be bigger fish to fry. It matters as much as washing dishes on a sinking Titanic.

  4. I echo Mark’s comment above. We simply do not know what awaits us in the future with climate change. We can certainly make educated assumptions based on current data and modeled predictions but experience has taught us that assumptions and models are often quite off the mark once we actually are in the time frame we planned for. My feeling here is to have a system that allows for flexibility and not to get locked in a box.

  5. No!
    Clear-cutting is changing the micro-climate and is increasing the annual temperature by 5-6 degrees C on the site. Since we are causing a micro-climate change in addition to the dynamics of global climate change, I think we are increasing the risks.

    In the near term, the risks appear moderate, since most trees species are well within their range of climate tolerance.But on xeric sites (in the Southern Interior), I have observed an increased risk level already. I now have to use higher levels of tree retention to get adequate seedling survival .

  6. No, Early FG timelines are too soon and many forest health issues are not manifested by the early time lines. We do not have a good handle on combined forest health losses over time.

  7. I think that BC is a large and diverse province and this question will have different answers depending on what part of the province people are working in. There are papers out there that address species selection and climate change for the various Biogeoclimatic Zones. In the area I practice no major changes to species acceptability are expected, but I would expect the drier interior zones to have some potentially significant challenges. My experience suggests blocks in my area that have been correctly declared free growing continue to remain free growing and in good silvicultural condition. I have read some reports that suggest this may not be true in all regions. I think that perhaps an overview review of a sample of blocks from various Biogeoclimatic Zones may help focus attention to the areas where current standards/practices are not adequate. I would expect the majority of the province would be OK but it would be good to know where the potential problems are.

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