Forests in the Nation's most densely forested and most densely populated region will change radically in the next 50 years, primarily because of the way they are managed -- or not managed -- today, according to a new report by a team of USDA Forest Service scientists and partners.
"This research is vital to everyone concerned about sustaining diverse, healthy, productive forests and the associated ecosystem services, commodities, and jobs our forests provide," said Tony Ferguson, Acting Director of the Northern Research Station and the Forest Products Laboratory. "It provides a scientific foundation for exploring and discussing the future of forests, and it underscores the role of management in making forests healthier and more resilient."
Future Forests of the Northern United States is part of the Northern Forest Futures Project, a cooperative effort of the Forest Service, the Northeastern Area Association of State Foresters and the academic community. Begun in 2009, the project examines how past trends and today's choices may impact Northern forests in coming decades.
The new report is published as General Technical Report NRS-151 by the Forest Service's Northern Research Station and is available online at: http://www.
Change is nothing new to Northern forests, and much of it has been positive over the past century. Since the early 1900s, a period when forests were exploitively logged and cleared for farms, there has been an increase of 11 million acres of forest land and an increase of 144 million cubic feet of timber, both despite a population increase of 26 million people.
However, other changes are causing concern for forest owners and managers: the expanding impact of invasive species, loss of species diversity, low diversity in forest age classes, increasing urban expansion that is shrinking forest acreage, fragmentation of forest land, parcellation of forest ownerships, loss of forest-based employment, effects of burgeoning white-tailed populations on tree regeneration and forest composition, and increasing atmospheric carbon emissions.
"The challenges facing northern forests are large, complicated, intertwined, and enduring," said Stephen Shifley, one of the 30 authors who collaborated on Future Forests of the Northern United States and a principle investigator for the Northern Forest Futures project.
"By applying the best available science to look ahead at how forests are likely to change over the next 50 years, we think forest owners, managers, planners, and policymakers will be better prepared to avoid many future problems by implementing proactive management practices that are ecologically sound, socially acceptable and economically viable."
A few of the trends that will affect Northern forests over the next 50 years include:
Future Forests of the Northern United States is one of a series of publications examining past, present and anticipated changes in forest biodiversity, productivity, health, soil and water, carbon, biomass, energy, commodities, employment, and recreation in the U.S. North. Other publications are available at: http://www.
The mission of the Forest Service's Northern Research Station is to improve people's lives and help sustain the natural resources in the Northeast and Midwest through leading-edge science and effective information delivery.
The mission of the Forest Service, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the Nation's forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations. The agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to state and private landowners, and maintains the largest forestry research organization in the world. Public lands the Forest Service manages contribute more than $13 billion to the economy each year through visitor spending alone. Those same lands provide 20 percent of the Nation's clean water supply, a value estimated at $7.2 billion per year. The agency has either a direct or indirect role in stewardship of about 80 percent of the 850 million forested acres within the U.S., of which 100 million acres are urban forests where most Americans live.
USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write to USDA, Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Stop 9410, Washington, DC 20250-9410, or call toll-free at 866-632-9992 (English) or 800-877-8339 (TDD) or 866-377-8642 (English Federal-relay) or 800-845-6136 (Spanish Federal-relay).
Jane Hodgins | EurekAlert!
Forest Management Yields Higher Productivity through Biodiversity
14.10.2016 | Technische Universität München
Farming with forests
23.09.2016 | University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES)
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.
"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...
COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.
In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...
'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.
Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine
21.10.2016 | Information Technology
21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences