|Each year, windstorms damage forests around the world. Wind damage disrupts management planning; impacts riparian, wildlife, and visual quality reserves; and causes substantial losses in timber value. On the other hand, windstorms are natural disturbance events and are important drivers of stand structure and landscape pattern in unmanaged forests. |
The International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO), Wind and Trees group meets every 4-5 years. Previous meetings have been in Edinburgh UK (1993), Joensuu Finland (1998) and Karlsruhe Germany (2003). The next meeting is August 5-9, 2007 in Vancouver, hosted by the UBC Department of Forest Sciences, FERIC and the BCMOF Research Branch Decision Support group. This conference (hereafter ‘the conference’) will provide an excellent opportunity for aerodynamicists, physicists, foresters, engineers, arborists, physiologists, and ecologists to present their work and discuss new developments, approaches, and methodologies in the fields of wind and tree interaction, damage prediction, and damage mitigation. On Days 1 and 2 of the conference, speakers will present oral and poster-based presentations in four consecutive sessions on: windflow over landscapes and within canopies; wind loading and resistance; biomechanics and acclimative growth; and, ecological effects. On Day 3 we will tour the UBC Malcolm Knapp Research Forest. This visit will include presentations by researchers working on the riparian buffers experiment, a demonstration of tree winching, demonstrations of crown modification equipment used for windfirming, and demonstration of field diagnosis of windthrow risk. Day 4, the final day of the conference, will be structured as a workshop (hereafter ‘the workshop’) and will focus on the current status and future development of windthrow risk prediction tools and management practices. During the morning session, speakers will review the status of current windthrow models. We will then have a panel that includes modellers and managers discussing future directions in windthrow risk modelling. The audience will be also be asked to provide input on modelling priorities and tools. The afternoon session will focus on windthrow management and will include representatives of local organizations describing their windthrow management programs. This will also be followed by a panel discussion and audience participation session. We will also offer an optional a post-conference optional field trip to Clayoquot Sound. To encourage participation by local practitioners, we will enable registrants to register for the full conference or for the Day 4 workshop only. Based on past conferences with the IUFRO group, and with attendance at windthrow workshops in BC, we expect approximately 120 international/non-local registrants and 30 local registrants for the full conference. With the recent high winds in BC we expect an additional 50 local professionals to attend the Day 4 workshop. Participants will include both researchers and managers. We will have graduate student interns assist with conference organization and delivery. All abstracts for oral and poster presentations will be compiled in a conference abstracts document and this will also include contact information for participants. Selected papers from the conference will be published in a special issue of the international journal ‘Forestry’ published by Oxford University Press.