Friday Focus On: Facets of Conservation

This year’s Friday Focus On presents three contemporary perspectives on how foresters are practicing interdisciplinary conservation in different arenas. (Sessions will run concurrently.)

Eastern White Pine: The Tree That Made a Nation

When astonished Europeans first spotted the vast pine forests of eastern North America, containing an estimated 600 billion fbm (3.4 billion m3) of lumber – forests teeming with trees twice as tall as even the tallest pine trees in England – the economic and military potential was immediately evident. This iconic species, ranging west from southeastern Canada and Maine to Minnesota, and then south along the Appalachian Mountains to northern Georgia, played a pivotal role in the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries in the building of a nation, the growth of a conservation ethic, and a profession. This session will initially explore the encompassing influences of history and the ecology of eastern white pine. It will then transition to a broader discussion of white pines across North America. White pines are a key to many systems playing foundational roles in ecosystem function, wildlife habitat, aesthetics, and economics. Our panel will discuss current and contemporary silvicultural practices that are aimed at keeping white pine a part of our forests, in light of current forest health issues and the emerging impacts of climate change.

Speakers (click here to read speaker bios)

  • Maria Janowiak, Northern Institute of Applied Climate Science, led by the USDA Forest Service
  • Andrew Vietze, Former Managing Editor of Down East: The Magazine of Maine
  • Dr. Kristen Waring, School of Forestry, Northern Arizona University
  • Marcella Windmuller-Campione, University of Minnesota
  • Chris Woodall, USDA Forest Service


Natural Capital Markets for Every Acre in America

In the last decade, some large landowners have made more money selling carbon offsets than they have selling timber. The regulatory carbon market is just the first in a wave of emerging natural capital markets, but many questions remain about how these markets will be structured to deliver real value for consumers and landowners, both rural and urban. This panel will discuss some challenges faced by existing carbon markets and explore paths for expanding participation while improving capital efficiency. Valuation of wildlife habitat, fire risk, and water quality will be covered as well. By valuing all of the services a well-managed forest provides, natural capital markets will help American foresters and landowners get paid for their responsible stewardship of the land.

Speakers (click here to read speaker bios)

  • Damian Adams, UFL
  • Pat Manley, USFS
  • Zack Parisa, SilviaTerra
  • Eric Hallstein, The Nature Conservancy
  • Roger Williams, Blue Source
  • Marley Gray, Azure Multiparty Engineering



Science, Trees, and Quality of Life: Humanity Needs Foresters!

Trees provide a wealth of environmental services. Research shows that they also encourage a wide range of human health and wellness co-benefits. Physical, mental, and social benefits are proven outcomes of having trees and forests in our communities. But not everyone has access to leafy green! How might communities plan and manage the urban forest to make better health happen for everyone? Dr. Wolf will share the latest research about the links between nearby nature and human health and propose how tree canopy makes lives better for all. Having trees in cities? It doesn't just happen! Urban forest systems must be planned, planted, and maintained to produce the rich ecosystem services we need and desire. The questions at the heart of urban forest management are: what activities and practices will yield the results we want, and which are red herrings that distract managers? Based on data obtained through survey work with northern Ohio communities, Alan will share results that are being used to strengthen and focus urban forestry programs across Ohio.

Speakers (click here to read speaker bios)

  • Kathy Wolf, University of Washington
  • Alan Siewert, Ohio Division of Forestry