Wood Supply Analysis by Simulation
- Clifford, William Lepoer Trench
University of British Columbia
Traditional methods of determining an "allowable annual cut" are shown to be both inaccurate and insufficient for modern forest management needs in Canada. The notion that forest managers must choose from many possible management strategies is presented. The choice of an appropriate strategy depends on an understanding of the long-term environmental, economic and social effects of alternative strategies.
A method of forecasting the effect of harvesting and silviculture on forest development is presented. The method is demonstrated through a wood supply analysis of a forested area covering approximately 1.9 million acres in northwestern New Brunswick. The difficulties associated with simulating the future forest with conventional forest inventory information are shown. The uncertainty in understanding of such parameters as development class distribution, yield curves and time to operability of silviculturally treated areas, is translated through a series of scenarios, into a range of possible futures. This sensitivity analysis suggests the kinds of information which must be collected to improve forecasts of the future forest. In the meantime, management decisions must be made in the face of explicitly identified uncertainty.
The role of forecasting as a guide to monitoring the progress of management strategies is emphasized.
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