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Monitoring of forest response to gradual environmental changes or abrupt disturbances provides insights into how forested ecosystems operate and allows for quantification of forest health. In this chapter, we provide an overview of Smartforests Canada, a national-scale research network consisting of regional investigators who support a wealth of existing and new monitoring sites. The objectives of Smartforests are threefold: (1) establish and coordinate a network of high-precision monitoring plots across a 4400 km gradient of environmental and forest conditions, (2) synthesize the collected multivariate observations to examine the effects of global changes on complex above- and belowground forest dynamics and resilience, and (3) analyze the collected data to guide the development of the next-generation forest growth models and inform policy-makers on best forest management and adaptation strategies. We present the methodological framework implemented in Smartforests to fulfill the aforementioned objectives. We then use an example from a temperate hardwood Smartforests site in Quebec to illustrate our approach for climate-smart forestry. We conclude by discussing how information from the Smartforests network can be integrated with existing data streams, from within Canada and abroad, guiding forest management and the development of climate change adaptation strategies.
Pappas, C., Bélanger, N., Bergeron, Y., Blarquez, O., Chen, H. Y. H., Comeau, P. G., … Kneeshaw, D. (2022). Smartforests Canada: A Network of Monitoring Plots for Forest Management Under Environmental Change (pp. 521–543). https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-80767-2_16