Mary Carol Koester 2-27-12
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Mary Carol Koester 2-27-12

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    Mary Carol Koester 2-27-12 Mary Carol Koester 2-27-12 Presentation Transcript

    • Western North CarolinaReport Card on Forest Sustainability WNCForestReportCard.org
    • Partner Organizations Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest SustainabilityUSDA Forest Service•  Southern Research Station•  National Forests in North CarolinaUNC Asheville•  National Environmental Modeling and Analysis Center (NEMAC)•  Renaissance Computing Institute (RENCI)
    • Region: Western North CarolinaWestern North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability •  3 Councils of Government •  18 Counties
    • Ecoregion: Blue Ridge Mountain Section Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability
    • Ecoregion: Blue Ridge Mountain Section Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability A place of natural beauty marked by areas of ruggedness and isolation•  Zone of ecological importance and exceptionally diverse•  Blue Ridge National Heritage Area•  Appalachian Trail•  Blue Ridge Parkway•  Great Smoky Mountains National Park (most visited national park)•  Pisgah and Nantahala National Forests (most visited in East)•  9 river basins split by the Eastern Continental Divide
    • Ecoregion: Blue Ridge Mountain Section Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability
    • Why Is A Report Card Important? Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability•  Are our region’s forests sustainable over the long term?•  What are the critical threats?•  Are people committed to sustaining forests?•  Are we prepared for future challenges?
    • What Information is Provided?Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability •  Evaluate how forests are impacted by natural and human- caused changes •  Help provide a better understanding of the value of forests •  Comprehensive guide and fact book to help inform decision making and policy formation
    • Montreal Process Criteria and Indicators Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability What Are Criteria and Indicators?•  Criteria identify the most important attributes of forests•  Indicators measure and describe change within criteria•  The Montreal Process Criteria and Indicators (MPCI) is an accepted international framework for understanding the effects of complex environmental, social, and economic conditions relating to temperate forests
    • Montreal Process Criteria and Indicators Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability The Report Card utilizes the MPCI Criteria:•  Biodiversity •  Carbon Cycle•  Production •  Socioeconomic•  Ecosystem Health Benefits•  Soil, Water, and Air •  Policy
    • Montreal Process Criteria and Indicators Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest SustainabilityWhat Makes A Good Indicator?•  General importance•  Forest condition and function•  Sensitivity to change•  Accurately measured•  Scale flexibility•  Spatial and temporal scales•  Data available and cost-effective•  Narrow or widespread application
    • Montreal Process Criteria and Indicators Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability The Report Card includes 26 Indicators (55 metrics)•  Species at risk •  Soil disturbance•  Land use change •  Water use•  Forest fragmentation •  Visibility•  Timber volume, growth, •  Ozone concentrations removals •  Carbon storage•  Biomass production •  Jobs, wages•  Insect and disease •  Visitors occurrence •  Spiritual retreats•  Severe weather and climate trends
    • Montreal Process Criteria and Indicators Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability Ranking the IndicatorsImproving Stable At RiskWorseningDynamicUncertain
    • A Glance at the 7 Criteria Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest SustainabilityLet’s look at some examples under each Criterion •  Biodiversity •  Carbon Cycle •  Production •  Socioeconomic •  Ecosystem Health Benefits •  Soil, Water, and Air •  Policy
    • Biodiversity Variety, Abundance, Complexity Western North Carolina Report Card on SustainabilityLands Managed for Conservation ImprovingNatural Communities at Risk WorseningSpecies at Risk WorseningLand Conversion WorseningForest Fragmentation Worsening
    • Biodiversity Variety, Abundance, Complexity Western North Carolina Report Card on Sustainability Grassy Bald Forest Community TypesSpruce-Fir High Heath Beech Gap Elevation Bald Oak Northern Northern Hardwood High Pine-Oak Hardwood Elevation Heath Oak Rich Cove Acidic Cove Montane Oak-Hickory Montane Oak-Hickory Hemlock Shortleaf Pine-Oak Montane Alluvial Forest
    • Production Forest Goods and Services Western North Carolina Report Card on SustainabilityOwnership of Timberland StableComposition and Age StableTimber Volume, Growth, and Removals ImprovingHarvest of Non-Timber Forest Products UncertainPotential for Biomass Production Uncertain
    • Production Forest Goods and Services Western North Carolina Report Card on SustainabilityOwnership of Timberland•  3.2 million acres of timberland•  74% private ownership•  26% public ownership•  Public land in all but 2 countiesManagement Implications•  Road density•  Access•  Overuse•  Income from resource
    • Ecosystem Health Mitigating Threats Western North Carolina Report Card on SustainabilityInsect and disease occurrence DynamicSpread of invasive species WorseningSevere weather UncertainChanges in climate Uncertain
    • Ecosystem Health Mitigating Threats Western North Carolina Report Card on SustainabilityYear hemlock woolly adelgid infestation confirmed in county
    • Soil, Water, and Air Conservation of Essential Resources Western North Carolina Report Card on SustainabilitySoil Resource StableLandslides WorseningWater Resource ImprovingAir Resource Improving
    • Soil, Water, and Air Conservation of Essential Resources Western North Carolina Report Card on SustainabilityWestern North Carolina Soil Systems
    • Soil, Water, and AirConservation of Essential ResourcesWestern North Carolina Report Card on Sustainability Landslides as of 2005
    • Soil, Water, and Air Conservation of Essential Resources Western North Carolina Report Card on SustainabilityWater | River Basins Eastern Continental Divide
    • Soil, Water, and Air Conservation of Essential Resources Western North Carolina Report Card on SustainabilityWater Quality | Impaired Waters
    • Soil, Water, and Air Conservation of Essential Resources Western North Carolina Report Card on SustainabilityAir Quality | Visibility Conditions•  Four federally-mandated Class I areas in Western North Carolina•  The Clean Air Act tolerates no degradation of visibility in Class 1 Airsheds –  Joyce Kilmer-Slickrock Wilderness –  Linville Gorge Wilderness –  Shining Rock Wilderness –  Great Smoky Mountains National Park
    • Soil, Water, and Air Conservation of Essential Resources Western North Carolina Report Card on SustainabilityAir Quality | Visibility Conditions Worst Baseline (2000-2004) Natural Background 1860 Worst (estimated progress for 2018) Natural Background (2064) Shining Rock Wilderness, 2007
    • Carbon Cycle Carbon Pool, Carbon MarketWestern North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability Carbon storage Stable Carbon market Uncertain
    • Carbon Cycle Carbon Pool, Carbon MarketWestern North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability
    • Carbon Cycle Carbon Pool, Carbon Market Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability•  Western North Carolina forests are no longer experiencing high growth rates•  Ability to sequester carbon will diminish with age•  Areas outside the region will better meet carbon marketing objectives•  Continue to recognize our existing forests as a valuable carbon pool
    • Socioeconomic BenefitsRecreation, Tourism, and the Forest Economy Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest Sustainability Economic condition Improving Recreation resource Stable/At Risk Forest output Stable Cultural/spiritual values Improving
    • Socioeconomic Benefits Recreation, Tourism, and the Forest Economy Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest SustainabilityTypes of Recreation•  Biking•  Hunting•  Fishing•  Rafting•  Kayaking•  Canoeing•  Birding•  Rock Climbing•  Camping•  Skiing•  Swimming•  Hiking•  Zip Lining•  Driving•  Public Gardens Photo:  Derek  Olson  
    • Socioeconomic Benefits Recreation, Tourism, and the Forest Economy Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest SustainabilityRecreation Destinations•  Rivers and Waterfalls•  Boat access points•  Developed Camping areas•  Wilderness Areas•  AT and other trail systems•  Ski resorts
    • Socioeconomic Benefits Recreation, Tourism, and the Forest Economy Western North Carolina Report Card on Forest SustainabilityWood Manufacturing Mills, 2007
    • PolicyPlanning and Monitoring, Legal Protection, and Public Participation Western North Carolina Report Card on Sustainability Planning and monitoring Improving Legal protection Stable Public participation Improving
    • PolicyPlanning and Monitoring, Legal Protection, and Public Participation Western North Carolina Report Card on Sustainability Monitoring Aquatic and Terrestrial Wildlife •  Wildlife Action Plan •  Big Game Harvest Reporting System •  Furbearer Trapper Harvest Survey •  Wildlife Diversity Program •  North American Breeding Bird Survey
    • PolicyPlanning and Monitoring, Legal Protection, and Public Participation Western North Carolina Report Card on Sustainability •  Federal, state, and local legal framework / Best Management Practices, burning, sediment control, riparian zones, high-impact land use •  Strong public interest in conservation •  Over 40 interest groups are active in Western North Carolina
    • Overall Rankings by CriteriaWestern North Carolina Report Card on Sustainability
    • Thank YouContact: mkoester@fs.fed.us WNCForestReportCard.org