The forestry sector, on a global scale, plays an increasingly important role in the mitigation of climate change through the capture of atmospheric carbon dioxide and storage of carbon in tree biomass, dead organic matter and soil carbon pools. Tree biomass is also considered a source of renewable energy, provided that biomass collection does not result in soil degradation or excessive cost and carbon emission during harvest, transport and processing. The meeting will focus on the potential of carbon sequestration by trees and forests under different conditions i.e. climate, silviculture and management intensity in both natural forests and plantation forests.

The symposium objectives

To bring together decision-makers, ecologists, forest scientists, forest practitioners, academics, forest managers and researchers interested in silviculture and modelling of plantations or natural forests in one forum to share and review information, developments, concepts and ideas within the broad spectrum of listed topics.  The intention is to unite interest groups from plantation forestry and natural forests, with the combined objective of sharing a better understanding of carbon sequestration dynamics through analysing forest productivity and physiological and morphological responses to climate change. This interaction will facilitate networking to develop joint projects and activities that will address priority research issues.

The Symposium Format

The symposium is planned over two days at the Wallenberg Research Centre, Stellenbosch (www.sun.ac.za/stias).  The programme will consist of key note addresses and a number of invited international speakers who will report on scientific developments on a number of themes covering the full value chain, including interventions on silviculture and management regimes up to the final product.