The project aims to further develop and test forest models that can be applied to identify and assess optimum strategies for sustainable forest management both in Russia and elsewhere, by bringing together the modelling expertise in Russia and in the EU countries. A framework for forest modelling and quantitative land-use for forestry will be developed facilitating decision-making associated with wise development of forest ecosystems as a natural, renewable resource in a changing environment. The specific objectives and tasks of the project are as follows:
- to review, compare and synthesise forest modelling approaches that have been developed recently in Russia and the EU, using a logically consistent hierarchical framework, with the aim to provide a set of tools for prediction of stand growth and site / landscape changes;
- to develop theoretical structural models of forest succession based on the space time properties of large forest territories, in order to predict tree species composition and its dynamics at regional scales;
- to develop ecosystem models of the forest / soil ecosystem, in order to quantify the carbon stock and carbon cycle dynamics in coniferous and broad-leaved forests of European Russia in different climatic and site conditions;
- to evaluate the model against available field data, and to test their consistency within the overall hierarchical framework;
- furthermore, to apply the models within a scenario analysis of different forest management strategies, in order to define sustainable management options for various scenarios of environmental change.
This project was funded by INTAS association, under the contract number INTAS 97-30255.