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NSERC Strategic Project Grant
Designing Successful Forest Renewal Practices for Our Changing Climate
In late 2015 NSERC announced that this SPG, led by Suzanne Simard, was selected for funding in the themes of ‘Natural Resources’ and ‘Optimizing Resource Extraction, Harvesting and Renewal’. Suzanne Simard (UBC) is a leading world expert in forest ecology and silviculture systems, especially regeneration silviculture. Her team of co-investigators at the Universities of British Columbia (Les Lavkulich, Bill Mohn, Jason Pither), Alberta (Justine Karst), and Reading (U.K.) (Brian Pickles) have a range of skills that cover forest soil biogeochemistry and microbiology, mycorrhizae, facilitation of seedling regeneration, assisted migration of Douglas-fir, and analysis of ecosystem structure and function.
(1) To evaluate the effects of various forest removal treatments, including differing levels of variable retention harvesting, and regeneration using various tree species mixtures, on regeneration success, carbon cycling, productivity and biodiversity.
(2) To evaluate the effects of legacy trees (trees that remain on site) (healthy, stressed, and dying) on forest regeneration, specifically their impacts on seedling survival success via soil properties, including root symbiosis.
(3) To investigate the performance of local wild, selected, and migrated seed sources during the establishment years, with the aim of optimizing seed mixtures for regeneration success
(4) To quantify the links between forest ecosystem structure and function, above- and below-ground, and how they are moderated by alternative renewal methods
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