Graduate student (MSc) position – Université Laval, University of New Brunswick

Productivity of black and white spruce plantations as a function of climate change

Project description: Black and white spruce plantations could play an important role in maintaining timber supplies as climate change will increase the risks associated with natural disturbances. Indeed, by using forest plantations to increase wood production and carbon sequestration in low risk areas, it will theoretically be possible to compensate for losses incurred in high-risk areas. However, the productivity of plantations may be affected by climate change, which can induce biases in the calculations of the volume of wood available to supply processing mills. It is therefore important to predict the effect of climate change on the growth of spruce plantations. The effect of climate change can be estimated using a network of permanent sample plots established in several regions with varying temperature and precipitation regimes. The general objective of this project is therefore to develop a model for predicting the growth of black and white spruce plantations to assess the effect of different scenarios of climate change. The results of this project will then be incorporated into a general model aimed at mitigating the effects of natural disturbances on forest harvest levels across the province of Quebec.

Candidate profile: Completion of a bachelor’s degree in forestry, environment, biological sciences or other relevant field. Strong motivation and very good autonomy are desired.

Financial support: Guaranteed minimum annual income of $ 18,000 (CDN) for two years.

Beginning of the MSc: January, May or September 2022.

Contact: Send a cover letter, a transcript and a complete CV by email to Loïc D’Orangeville, Faculty of Forestry and Environmental Management, University of New Brunswick (loic.dorangeville@unb.ca) or David Pothier, Département des sciences du bois et de la forêt, Université Laval (david.pothier@sbf.ulaval.ca).

This project will be carried out in collaboration with Hugues Power (hugues.power@mffp.gouv.qc.ca) and Luca Serban (luca.serban@mffp.gouv.qc.ca) of the Direction de la recherche forestière du Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs du Québec.

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