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Characterization of regeneration failure in the Canadian boreal forest using satellite imagery and airborne laser scanning data

OB 7
Hub: RM, LSJ, MM
Year: 2024 - 2028
Shaya (Fatemah) Gholami, PhD

Boreal forests constitute the largest carbon reservoir globally, providing a wide array of ecosystem services and serving as an essential timber source for societal needs. Natural and anthropogenic disturbances can profoundly alter the structure and composition of these ecosystems. While the complex interactions between climate change, the frequency, severity, and extent of these disturbances, and the forest regeneration trajectories have received considerable attention in recent decades, their exact consequences remain poorly understood.

The objective of this project is to characterize and assess the magnitude of regeneration failures following clearcutting and forest fires at different locations in the Eastern boreal forest of Canada. By combining satellite images from various sensors with airborne laser scanning (ALS) data, this project will bring new insights into post-disturbance regeneration dynamics and identify factors responsible for the variability in the success of regeneration establishment. The results will help quantify the impact of regeneration failures on timber yield and the provision of ecosystem services, and allow for the spatially explicit identification of areas that should be prioritized for targeted silvicultural actions.

Shaya (Fatemah) Gholami, PhD student
Université Laval
Partners: Canadian Space Agency,, Ministère des forêts, de la faune et des parcs (Québec)
Supervisor: Alexandre Morin Bernard

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