Guidelines - Establishing permanent plots for monitoring the environmental effects of forest biomass harvesting
Thiffault, E.; Paré, D.; Dagnault, S.; Morissette, J., Natural Resources Canada - Canadian Forest Service
The effects of the removal of forest biomass on soils and soil productivity are still not well understood, particularly over the medium and long term. Since there is a growing interest in biomass harvesting, establishing permanent plots to monitor the environmental effects of biomass removal seems a suitable way to generate knowledge to ensure the sustainability of these operations. The objective of this Canadian Forest Service of Natural Resources Canada initiative is to encourage the establishment of permanent plots that will favour the development of indicators that aim to ensure the sustainable harvest of forest biomass. The present guidelines describe how to establish permanent plots to monitor the environmental effects of forest biomass removal in accordance with statistical analysis criteria. It also explains the methodology used for gathering data on soils, vegetation and woody debris and the manner in which to send data on the plots for archiving, to make it possible to resample the plots and conduct a follow-up on the longterm effects. The analysis of data from a large number of plots, representing a wide range of soil and climatic conditions and stand types, will provide deeper knowledge of the impacts of biomass removal and a better understanding of the environmental issues involved.