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.
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 Study Groups
that explore issues of concern to the three countries.
The first meeting of the North American Forestry Commission
(NAFC) Study Group on Forest Inventory and Monitoring
was held January 11-13 2000 at the World Trade Center
in Portland, Oregon, USA. The objective of this group
is to specifically explore opportunities to improve
strategic inventory and monitoring at the North American
scale by developing a better understanding of each country’s
current programs and future plans.
All three countries are currently revising their approaches
to national scale forest inventory and an NAFC Study
Group aimed sharing research and information and taking
advantage of opportunities for collaboration and scientific
exchange on forest inventory, monitoring, and assessment
could make a significant contribution. This Study Group
would, identify and take advantage of opportunities
for increasing scientific and technical collaboration,
foster compatible approaches to forest inventory, monitoring
and assessment among the three countries, evaluate 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,
and foster communication with other NAFC study groups.
in the Study Group consists of up to four representatives
from each country, to be appointed by the respective
NAFC organizational bodies. Meetings may also include
additional invitees as deemed appropriate by the permanent
members. Next year’s meeting will be hosted by Canada
in late January in British Columbia with a general theme
of collaboration on remote sensing.
year plans for the Study Group included finalizing and
approving a Study Group Charter; holding a workshop
to report on the state of national inventories in each
country; document the current state of remote sensing
technology in each country; and organize outreach to
other NAFC Study Groups. The Charter and workshop have
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 use of remote sensing and other technologies
to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of forest
inventory, monitoring, and assessment.
and facilitate exchanges to build capacity and increase
our understanding of different approaches to forest
inventory, monitoring, and assessment.
member countries about the current status of respective
forest inventory, monitoring, and assessment programs.
communication with other NAFC working groups.
a complete look at the charter of the Forest Inventory
and Monitoring Working Group, click