IMFN Circumboreal Initiative Short- and Medium-term Priorities Identified

Representatives from Canada, Finland and Sweden met in February to identify research questions and priorities of transnational significance within the circumboreal region that have potential to be effectively addressed through model forests and other similar sites. The meeting took place at the Mekrijarvi Research Station, Ilomantsi Municipality, Finland.

While China and Russia were unable to attend, both countries have confirmed their participation in the Initiative. Prior to the meeting, the IMFN Secretariat also contacted Norway and the UK to gauge possible interest and both requested additional information.

Participants to the Mekrijarvi workshop agreed on a framework plan to move forward with the Initiative, on priority actions and follow-up, and on probable short and medium-term opportunities. Overall, participants agreed that global change will be the “umbrella” framework under which climate change (and specifically vulnerability and adaptability) could be examined and that this will be the dominant, but not exclusive, issue to pursue. Throughout the meeting, a number of program areas and projects were identified by the various participants on the following topics:

  • climate change vulnerability related to both biophysical and human systems
  • participation in a multi-country project to develop a circumboreal vegetation map
  • examining biomass and site productivity
  • environmental monitoring and reporting
  • broader engagement of other networks and initiatives

Additional information on the IMFN Circumboreal Initiative can be found at ww.imfn.net under “Network Initiatives”.