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About Us

Introduction:
There is increasing recognition in Canada, the United States, and Mexico that forest ecosystem inventory and monitoring is vital to the successful implementation of sustainable forest management. Reliable basic environmental information is needed for formulating effective land use and conservation policy; valuation of forest services and benefits; planning management activities; effectively implementing those activities; and following the results over time, to confirm the sustainability of present practices or to guide modification of activities toward a more sustainable state. This information directly supports reporting and assessing the status of criteria and indicators of sustainability and serves as a knowledge base for supporting research and development.

The three countries confirmed that the best approach to addressing common resource inventory, monitoring and assessment issues was to utilize a North American Forestry Commission (NAFC). NAFC supports research and natural resource management activities through Working Groups that explore issues of concern to the three countries. The first meeting of the North American Forestry Commission (NAFC) Inventory and Monitoring Working Group (IMWG) was held January 11-13, 2000, at the World Trade Center in Portland, Oregon, USA. The objective of this group is to explore opportunities to improve strategic inventory and monitoring at the North American scale by exchanging knowledge and by working collaboratively on issues of common interest.

The Working Group identifies and takes advantage of opportunities to increase scientific and technical collaboration; fosters compatible approaches to forest inventory, monitoring and assessment among the three countries; evaluates remote sensing and other technologies to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of forest inventory, monitoring, and assessment; sponsors and facilitates exchanges to build capacity and increase our understanding of different approaches to forest inventory, monitoring, and assessment; and fosters communication with other NAFC working groups.

Objectives:

  • Identify and take advantage of opportunities for increasing scientific and technical collaboration and consistency in national inventory, monitoring, and assessment among the three countries and globally.
  • Foster compatible approaches to forest inventory, monitoring and assessment among the three countries.
  • Evaluate the use of remote sensing and other technologies to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of forest inventory, monitoring, and assessment.
  • Sponsor and facilitate exchanges to build capacity and increase our understanding of different approaches to forest inventory, monitoring, and assessment.
  • Advise member countries about the current status of respective forest inventory, monitoring, and assessment programs.
  • Foster communication with other NAFC working groups.

For a complete look at the charter of the Forest Inventory and Monitoring Working Group, click here.

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