Fish model shows forest management can produce biofuels and restore salmonids

February 10, 2019 |

In Washington, researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) have been modeling to understand the costs and benefits of thinning forests and the potential for improving habitat, yielding benefits not only for the environment, but also for the economy.

Decision models linking process-based and biological models are powerful tools for determining how forest management can simultaneously produce biofuels and help restore at-risk salmonids. Beyond supplying biomass and salmon, selectively thinning Northwest forests also has a third benefit—reducing the risk of intense wildfires.

Thinning scenarios that restore threatened and endangered species while lowering the risk of high-intensity fires creates a triple win scenario—and that’s good news for the biomass industry. Forest restoration efforts in the Pacific Northwest can tap into an international biomass market capable of purchasing pellets from a region largely new to the biomass industry, increasing American competitiveness.

Researchers at PNNL, ORNL, and USFS have developed spatial models linking wildlife species, landform-specific forest thinning treatments, and hydrologic flow regimes with the habitat for juvenile spring Chinook salmon and bull trout.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Tags: , , , , , ,

Category: Research

Thank you for visting the Digest.