Seminar Abstract

Kelly Burnett

Thursday, April 15, 2004
1:30 to 3:00

Dynamic Landscape Modeling in the Coastal Landscape Analysis and Modeling Study (CLAMS)


The primary goal of the Coastal Landscape Analysis and Modeling Study (CLAMS) is to assess potential consequences of forest management policies on biodiversity, carbon, and timber production at multiple scales for the Oregon Coast Range. In approaching this goal, data and models were generated that may contribute to achieving regional conservation objectives.

Understanding of forest management effects on biodiversity is poorly developed and based on relatively recent empirical and experimental work at forest stand and small landscape scales. Thus, simulation models are needed to assess management effects at broader spatial and temporal scales. In response, CLAMS uses a systems approach and joins spatially-explicit models for current vegetation conditions, landowner behavior, land-use change, biodiversity to simulate outcomes of current and alternative forest policies into the future. Many of the specific models were created or adapted in CLAMS, including those for debris flow dynamics, focal species, and timber harvest estimates based on economic behavior. Climate is a driver in some of these models. For example, the dynamic and spatially-distributed model characterizing debris-flows is driven by simulated weather patterns and fire events over thousands of years.

Model inputs include digital topography and forest cover data and outputs include simulated sequences of debris-flows with volume estimates for sediment and wood contributed to fan, terrace, and in-channel stores. Estimated fluxes in sediment and wood volumes determine habitat suitability as input for a coho salmon population viability model and establish the natural range of variation in the abundance of high quality habitat.

The CLAMS project offers a context for management in the region and demonstrates the power of spatial simulation modeling to evaluate forest management effects at multiple spatial scales. Although CLAMS has not specifically incorporated the effects of climate change when simulating forest policy alternatives, the models and approach are flexible enough to do so.

This presentation covers research conducted by Kelly M. Burnett, Gordon H. Reeves, Peter W. Lawson, Thomas A. Spies, and Daniel J. Miller

Speaker bio:

Kelly Burnett, Gordon Reeves, and Thomas Spies work with the Pacific Northwest Research Station, US Forest Service, 3200 Jefferson Way, Corvallis, Oregon, 9733. Kelly can be reached at 541-750-7309.

Peter Lawson works with the Northwest Fisheries Science Center, NOAA-Fisheries, 2115 SE OSU Drive, Newport, Oregon, 97365.

Daniel Miller works with the Earth Systems Institute, 3040 NW 57th St., Seattle, Washington, 98107.