Forest Conference Report No. 1, 2023

Rafal Chudy,a,* Jacek Siry,b Virginia Morales Olmos,c Kate Marcille,d Austin Himes,e Bin Mei,f Srijana Baral,g and Frederick Cubbage.h

a: Forest Business Analytics, Łódź, Poland;
b: Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of Georgia, Athens, GA, USA;
c: Universidad de la República, Tacuarembo, Uruguay;
d: USDA Forest Service, National Forest System; Washington, DC, USA;
e: Forest and Wildlife Research Center, Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS, USA;
f: Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University, Durham, NC, USA;
g: Department of Forest and Rangeland Stewardship, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, USA;
h: Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC, USA.
*Corresponding author: E-mail:
rafal@forest-journal.com

Citation: Chudy R, Siry J, Morales Olmos V, Marcille K, Himes A, Mei B, Baral S,  and Cubbage F. 2023. Forest Conference Report No. 1, 2023. J.For.Bus.Res. 2(2): 170-180.

Published: 29 December 2023

Copyright: © 2022 by the authors


ABSTRACT

Forest Conference Reports provide the overview of selected conferences the JFBR Editorial Team visited during a particular time. In our inaugural issue, we cover meetings throughout 2023.
Forest conferences featured in this report:
• IUFRO Close-to-nature silviculture: experiments and modelling for forestry practice;
• UGA Timberland Investment Conference;
• VII Faustmann Conference;
• 5th International Congress on Planted Forests;
• International Society of Forest Resource Economics;
• Western Forests Economists
• IUFRO Working Group 2.08.03 – “Enhancing the performance and sustainability of eucalypt plantations to broaden their benefits”

Would you be interested in inviting our Journal to your upcoming forest event? We would love to feature it in our next Forest Conference Reports and share the details with our Readers. Let us know if this is something you would be open to, and we can discuss the logistics further. Contact Rafal Chudy at: rafal@forest-journal.com
Thank you for considering this opportunity

Keywords: conference, forest, report


IUFRO Close-to-nature silviculture: experiments and modelling for forestry practice

February 7-8, 2023 / Online / Elaborated by: Rafal Chudy and Austin Himes


This joint event was held online between IUFRO’s Division 1 Silviculture and Division 4 Forest Assessment, Modelling and Management. Close-to-nature silviculture is a conceptual approach to silviculture that emulates natural processes. The concept has a long history in Europe and is similar to ecological silviculture, which has been a more popular term in North America. Close-to-nature silviculture can include a wide range of practices, but it is often, and sometime controversially, promoted as an alternative to even-aged plantation forestry. This event focussed primarily on showcasing new science and the practice close-to-nature silviculture through empirical experiments and modelling. The speakers were knowledgeable and engaging, and their presentations were informative and thought-provoking.

Overall, there were 19 presentations given at the online conference that focused on research on silviculture, inventory, modelling and management. In addition, two editorial team members of the Journal of Forest Business Research presented at the event. Austin Himes discussed challenges and opportunities in teaching ecological silviculture in the U.S. Rafal Chudy compared the profitability of artificial and natural regeneration between Poland and the U.S. South. The conference sparked global interest with presentations focused on, among others: teak plantations in Ghana, cork oak stands and how to integrate biodiversity and nontimber products in Mediterranean forestry, individual tree modelling for close-to-nature silviculture in Finland, long experience of close-to-nature silviculture in northern Japan, models of silviculture for mixed and uneven-aged stands in agroforestry systems, carbon dynamics in young forest plantations and agroforestry in Madagascar, silviculture and carbon fluxes in Italian Alps, restoring fire-dependent ecosystems, conversion of even-aged stands to multi-layered structures using variable-density thinning, silvicultural systems of Sitka spruce in the United Kingdom or ecological silviculture for mixed boreal woods in western Canada.

This event was organized and sponsored by the collaboration of the following researchers and institutes: Jens Peter Skovsgaard, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences; Teresa Fonseca, University Tras-Os-Montes & Alto Douro, Portugal; Pil Sun Park, Seoul National University, Korea Khosro Sagheb-Talebi, Forests and Rangelands, Iran; Don Hodges, University of Tennessee, USA; Bianca Eskelson, University of British Columbia, Canada; Temesgen Hailemariam, Oregon State University, USA; and Arne Pommerening, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.


UGA Timberland Investment Conference

March 7-9, 2023 / Amelia Island, FL, USA / Elaborated by: Bin Mei



Our Editorial Team at the UGA event, from left: Bin Mei, Rafal Chudy, Jacek Siry, and Matthew Pelkki.

This biennial Timberland Investment Conference was held by University of Georgia’s Harley Langdale Jr. Center for Forest Business in early March 2023. About 350 people attended this event, including representatives from TIMOs, REITs, forest consulting companies, timberland appraisers, forest carbon companies, investors, family offices, nonindustrial private forest landowners, lenders, lawyers, insurance companies, and academics. The attendance was a bit lower than the pre-pandamic level, which centered around 500.

The 1.5 day conference started Wednesday (March 8) afternoon with an outlook of the US Economy by Dr. Laura Ullrich, Senior Regional Economist of Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Dr. Jeff Dorfman, University of Georgia and State Fiscal Economist for the state of Georgia, and Dr. Brooks Mendell, Forisk Consulting. Despite a shared view of another potential economic downturn in 2024, the expected demand for forest products remained strong. Topics covered in the second day were factors affecting timberland investment, impact investing and ESG expectations, forest carbon, and timberland investment labor market.

Journal of Forest Business Research (JFBR) was one of the sponsors and many of JFBR’s editorial board members attended this conference. In particular, Dr. Bin Mei discussed the benefit and cost of forest carbon and the quantification of additionality based on his three papers published at JFBR. JFBR welcomes submissions from presenters at UGA Timberland Investment Conference to be published as forest business notes and opinion letters in addition to research articles.


7th Faustmann Symposium

April 1-3, 2023 / Christchurch, New Zealand / Elaborated by: Jacek Siry


Faustman Symposium attendees.

The 7th Faustmann Symposium was held at the beginning of April 2023 in Christchurch, New Zealand. The symposium was hosted by New Zealand School of Forestry at the University of Canterbury. The meeting consisted of two days of presentations followed by a one-day field trip to Geraldine Forest, Peel Forest and TW Adam’s Arboretum in Greendale. The meeting was attended by about three dozen researchers from all over the world, who delivered 23 presentations. The topics included New Zealand international forest investments, including motivations for investing in the country by domestic and international investors, discount rates, investment returns and radiata pine plantation management. The role of the Faustmann formula in developing optimal forest management strategies was discussed as well, including considerations such as artificial and natural regeneration, small-scale private forestry, risk management, non-consumptive benefits, and taxation. The applicability and extension of the Faustmann formula to an ever-changing world were also discussed, including teaching considerations. Forest carbon considerations were addressed by several presenters, including the impact of carbon prices on forest harvesting decisions, estimating carbon leakage, identifying lands with forest carbon sequestration potential, and optimal carbon pricing.

The symposium was attended by a Journal of Forest Business Research editor, who delivered the presentation titled, The profitability of artificial and natural regeneration: A forest investment comparison of Poland and the U.S. South authored by Rafal Chudy, Fred Cubbage, Jacek Siry, and Jacek Chudy. This research relied on the discounted cash flows methods used to evaluate artificial and natural regeneration in representative pine and oak stands in Poland and the U.S. South. NPV, LEV, IRR and BCR were calculated for each regeneration method using a 5% discount rate. Natural regeneration regimes in both regions were associated with higher IRRs. While LEVs were higher for planted scenarios, the difference with natural regeneration scenarios was relatively small.


5th International Congress on Planted Forests (ICPF2023)

November 7-10, 2023 / Nairobi, Kenya / Elaborated by: Jacek Siry


5th International Congress on Planted Forests, “Planted forests, an essential nature-based solution to meet growing needs in wood products, restore forest ecosystems, and mitigate climate change” was held in November 2023 at World Agroforestry (CIFOR-ICRAF) Campus in Nairobi, Kenya. The meeting was co-organized by the European Institute of Planted Forest (IEFC), FAO, TreeDivNet, Kenya Forest Research Institute (KEFRI), Kenya Forest Service (KFS), World Agroforestry, CIFOR, and the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change and Forestry of Kenya.