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Department of Renewable Resources

The Department of Renewable Resources houses a diverse group of academic staff and support staff who are united by a goal of developing and disseminating new knowledge on soils, forests, range, crops, and wildlife and how these features combine to form ecosystems. In particular we are proud of our ability to link biological, environmental and landscape features to develop better ways to manage ecosystems and natural resources. We hold the opinion that a combination of natural and carefully managed ecosystems will be needed to sustain the soils and biota, and the goods and services from ecosystems that society needs.
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  1. The Nexus of Science and Story: Data vs Perceptions of Climate Change [Download]

    Title: The Nexus of Science and Story: Data vs Perceptions of Climate Change
    Creator: Booth, Sarah P.
    Description: Although the IPCC can be credited with significant efforts to bridge communication between scientist and policy makers, there is still a noticeable discrepancy between the scientific consensus and public perception of the existence and causes of climate change that hamper the implementation of policies aimed at the mitigation and adaptation. Most people gain their understanding of science through the media, and in this contribution I investigate how journalists portray climate change affecting people in a comprehensive case study across Canada. The study is based on a content analysis of more than 3000 English language newspaper articles published across Canada from 2000 to 2013. I examined how climate or weather related events were portrayed, and whether or not the article linked the event in question to climate change. The reported events were then compared against historical climate data from 1950 to 2013 to determine if the event was correctly or incorrectly attributed to a climate change trend (true or false positives), or was correctly or incorrectly not attributed (true or false negatives). Perhaps conforming to expectations, temperature and precipitation related events reported in the news media were largely portrayed as harmful to both humans and ecosystems, but articles that attributed events to climate change were in the minority. Only a small number of climate events, such as permafrost thaw in northern Canada and the pine beetle epidemic in British Columbia were consistently linked to climate change. In general, journalists started to reliably attribute events to climate change when the observed climate change signal exceeded 1.5°C. Thus, attribution to climate change only emerges near a threshold that the scientific community considers dangerous (≥2°C). Events linked to changes in precipitation were reliably associated with seasonal anomalies exceeding a 50% increase or decrease over normal conditions but were rarely attributed to long term trends, which was generally correct. In summary, reporting of climate related events in print media was surprisingly accurate with respect to true positives when the climate change signal exceeded 1.5°C, and also for true negatives when an observed climate change signal was absent. However, for an intermediate warming signal between approximately 0.5 and 1.5°C, I observed a large proportion of false negatives. This represents a missed opportunity for journalists to communicate impacts of global climate change. To better link weather related news stories to moderate climate warming, web-based tools to access historical climate data are provided for journalists to communicate climate change impacts with more confidence at an earlier stage.
    Subjects: Climate Change, Media Content Analysis, Canadian Newspapers
    Date Created: 2016
  2. Other Publications (Renewable Resources)

    Title: Other Publications (Renewable Resources)
    Creator: ERA Administrator
    Subjects:
  3. University of Alberta MSc thesis: Models Dataset and Formulations [Download]

    Title: University of Alberta MSc thesis: Models Dataset and Formulations
    Creator: Moradaoglu, Pembegul
    Subjects: R programming language data, Woodstock data, Linear regression
  4. University of Alberta MSc thesis: Model formulations and data [Download]

    Title: University of Alberta MSc thesis: Model formulations and data
    Creator: Kuloglu, Tevfik Z.
    Subjects: Genetic Algorithm, Mathematical Programming, Goal Programming, Mixed Integer Programming, Forest Management
  5. Optimal forest harvest age considering carbon sequestration in multiple carbon pools: A comparative statics analysis [Download]

    Title: Optimal forest harvest age considering carbon sequestration in multiple carbon pools: A comparative statics analysis
    Creator: Asante, Patrick
    Description: We present an analytical model for determination of the economically optimal harvest age of a forest stand considering timber value, and the value of carbon fluxes in living biomass, dead organic matter, and wood products pools. Through comparative statics analysis, we find that consideration of timber value and fluxes in biomass carbon increase harvest age relative to the timber only solution, and that the effect on optimal harvest age of incorporating fluxes in the dead organic matter and wood products pools is indeterminate. We also present a numerical example to examine the magnitudes of these ef- fects. In general, incorporating the dead organic matter and wood products pools have the effect of reducing rotation age. Perhaps more interestingly, when initial stocks of carbon in dead organic matter or wood products pool is relatively high, consideration of these pools can have a highly negative effect on net present value.
    Subjects: optimal rotation, boreal forest, carbon market
    Date Created: 2012
  6. Conference Proceedings (Renewable Resources)

    Title: Conference Proceedings (Renewable Resources)
    Creator: ERA Administrator
    Subjects:
  7. Synthesis Reports (Renewable Resources)

    Title: Synthesis Reports (Renewable Resources)
    Creator: ERA Administrator
    Subjects:
  8. Research Notes (Renewable Resources)

    Title: Research Notes (Renewable Resources)
    Creator: ERA Administrator
    Subjects:
  9. Journal Articles (Renewable Resources)

    Title: Journal Articles (Renewable Resources)
    Creator: ERA Administrator
    Subjects: