Forestry in North America and other regions around the globe, when carried out with clear objectives, has historically been considered a sustainable practice given that it regenerates trees. However, in the face of changing climate uncertain future environmental pressures on tree species raise questions about forestry’s future sustainability. There is uncertainty associated with future climate projections and thus around the ability of our management decisions today to achieve their intended outcome in the future. Subsequently, modeling the effects of changing climate on forest ecosystems into the future is taking place on many scales incorporating many assumptions. For this reason it is imperative that we use every opportunity presented to us to empirically test the parameters of these models with field validation. Because we are sailing into untested waters, unsure of what the end point should be, I would argue that when considering structured research direction with respect to understanding future ecological condition, keeping an open mind to what we can learn peripherally along the way will also be one of our greatest assets. I will talk about how questions leading to more questions broadened our understanding and helped to refine our methodologies in the study of tree vigour and defence, climate influence on growth, and site related water stress in central British Columbia.
The Natural Resources & Environmental Studies Institute (NRESi) at UNBC hosts a weekly lecture series at the Prince George campus. Anyone from the university or wider community with interest in the topic area is welcome to attend. Presentations are also made available to remote participants through Livestream (Channel 1). Go to http://www.unbc.ca/nres-institute/colloquium-webcasts to view the presentation remotely.
Past NRESi colloquium presentations and special lectures can be viewed on our video archive, available here.