Projects / Programmes source: ARRS

Criteria for evaluation of deforestation assessment

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
4.01.01  Biotechnical sciences  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Forest - forestry 

Code Science Field
B430  Biomedical sciences  Sylviculture, forestry, forestry technology 

Code Science Field
4.01  Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences  Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries 
Forest functions, deforestation, landscape ecological principles, spatial planning, green infrastruc
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (13)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publications
1.  15492  PhD Andreja Ferreira  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  193 
2.  29426  PhD Dejan Firm  Biotechnical sciences  Junior researcher  2011 - 2013  57 
3.  06470  PhD David Hladnik  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  249 
4.  29831  Špela Jagodic    Researcher  2011 - 2013 
5.  28537  PhD Anže Japelj  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  144 
6.  27605  PhD Milan Kobal  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  338 
7.  16067  PhD Andrej Kobler  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  284 
8.  12796  PhD Janez Krč  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  308 
9.  10973  PhD Janez Pirnat  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Principal Researcher  2011 - 2013  200 
10.  22576  PhD Anton Poje  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  129 
11.  06473  PhD Igor Potočnik  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  264 
12.  28224  PhD Andrej Verlič  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  132 
13.  32702  Saša Vochl  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  117 
Organisations (2)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publications
1.  0404  Slovenian Forestry Institute  Ljubljana  5051673000  11,842 
2.  0481  University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical Faculty  Ljubljana  1626914  64,298 
The ultimate objective of the research project is to develop methodology and criteria for assessment of the potential areas of deforestation. The methodology will be developed through public databases that are available within the information systems of the Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Food of the Republic of Slovenia, Ministry of Environment and Spatial Planning and the results of the research group, developed in previous projects CRP. 1. The theoretical part of the research will come from the legal basis of the specific legislation, where we will explore how the individual steps of the adoption of spatial planning documents are carried on and thus the potential for appropriate decisions and warnings about the (in) appropriateness of planned areas for deforestation. 2. Based on the information in the environment of geographic information systems at the level of Slovenia we will determine the sites for which a special assessment on the suitability of deforestation is needed or there are restrictions on deforestation. In forestry these areas include protected forests, forests with pronounced ecosystem services, protected areas and forest habitat types and Natura 2000 areas in forests and forested landscape. 3. In areas of three landscape types, which include the urban landscape, agricultural and forested landscape we will analyse landscape ecological characteristics: structure and spatial arrangement of forests, the location of different habitat types (Natura 2000 areas), the location of agricultural and urban land use and infrastructure layout. Based on spatial analysis, we have already presented the Slovenian urban areas and agricultural landscapes (Hladnik, 2005; Hladnik and Pirnat, 2011), forest core areas, woody patches of forests with preserved internal environment, preserved corridors of natural vegetation, open space with intensive human use and human introduced corridors. 4. Spatial models will be developed on the basis of which will be assessed on the possibility of deforestation – taking into the account requirements of the protected areas and the EU environmental directives, criteria of landscape ecological structure, keeping a minimum network of natural vegetation and "stepping stones" in the landscape structure, primal forests preservation and natural vegetation remains in the landscape matrix, the conservation of species composition of forests, their potential risk to the forecast of climate change, its site production capability and their functional significance. At the level of Slovenia we will create an overview of areas dominated by protected forests or forests recognized as “worthy” by experts. These forests require a special assessment before any decision for deforestation is accepted. At the level of the selected areas we will develop a model of criteria and indicators that need to be used as a control mechanism when the question of deforestation or fragmentation of forest is risen. We will develop an expert model of the priority areas for deforestation. This model will be supported with a map of priority areas for the deforestation.
Significance for science
We used a methodology for the determination of priority areas for deforestation, which includes in-depth and comprehensive treatment of landscape ecological characteristics and factors. The following considerations we deem relevant as a contribution to the development of science : 1 At the level of Slovenia : Persistant forests and stability of their internal environment is an important indicator of biodiversity at the landscape level. Persistant forests are those whose area did not change since 1975 ( 53% of Slovenia). Model of four variables at the level of entire country reached 74.0% accuracy. Of all the variables the best explanation of the change is given by the initial distance from the forest edge and partly by the slope of the terrain. Distance from settlements and altitude do not have noticeable effect. Stability of the internal environment, in addition to several other indicators (structure, preservation, tending) is an important factor when deciding pro or con on deforestrationt. 2 The individual landscape types : 2.1. In agricultural and suburban landscapes we have updated the method of determining the agricultural and suburban landscapes depending on the degree of forest cover and fragmentation of forest habitats. In areas with significant changes in forest structure, preserved deciduous stands represent important ecological structural landscape element, and therefore we propose a criterion for conservation of forest stands with respect to the tree structure. As an additional criterion would be possible to use data on past investments (eg, tendinge and protection) of forests . For the evaluation of landscape structure and connectivity of forest habitats would be reasonable to use the following quantitative indicators : • the degree of forest cover (indicative minimum target value is 20-30 % of the forest; The question of sufficient forest cover should be assessed in terms of size and shape of the area - on small and / or elongated areas may be relatively low forest cover (eg the 10%) is sufficient to maintain the populations of wild fauna and flora in the wider area), • the number of patches and the frequency distribution of patches, • size and largest surface area of forest patches (a stable internal environment), • shape of forest patches, • type of forest patches (tree structure and development phase), • spatial distribution and connectivity of forest patches and corridors • changes in major habitat types. These can be assessed by using of some indicators of landscape structure, which is especially useful in an area that is extremely important for individual species (in our case the barred warbler and red-backed shrike) . Habitat for red-backed shrikes and barred warbler, require a combination of small forest patches, shrubs, hedges and meadows in the agricultural landscape. 2.2 The urban landscape (central area of the Municipality of Ljubljana) , we have prepared a spatial model to analyze current areas of deforestation and impact of any new deforestation. We used graph theory, where each graph consists of nodes and links connecting at least two nodes. In our case, we proceeded from the assumption that central core areas of preserved forest in the best way preserve and maintain the diversity of forests, as these areas of forest are spatially stable and mature. As the core areas we took all those internal parts of the forest, situated 250 m inwards from the edge of the forest patches or forest matrix. Each forest patch may be important because: • it contains a core area • it lies in the area, important for connectivity in agricultural landscape • it contains the core area and is at the same time lying on the relevant site. We have found that in Ljubljana structure of forest patches (here as a siz ) and their spatial distribution can be regarded as a suitable.
Significance for the country
Given criteria for assessing areas of deforestation can improve land-use planning and reduce conflicts in multipurpose forest area planning . Suggestions for additions and improvements criteria for the assessment of deforestation are based on analyzes of legal - administrative barriers to effective decision-making on interventions in forests and spatial factors in the various Slovenian landscapes. Despite the fact that the research is supported by the basic landscape - ecological knowledge , which provide a wider study scientific research significance , the proposals for criteria is tailored to the needs of Slovenian spatial planning . The analysis was carried out on three types (urban , agricultural , forested ) of typical landscapes in Slovenia, and in addition to the general considerations for the design criteria it also brings local significance due to detailed analyzes of specific landscapes of Ljubljana and the wider Karst area . With these analyzes, we shed light on the planning problems and proposed solutions for urban , agricultural and forested landscapes in relation to the unique landscape - ecological characteristics of each type of landscape . The identification of barriers and conflicts for the successful design and implementation criteria for the assessment of deforestation has involved several institutions (University of Ljubljana -Biotechnical Faculty , Slovenian Forestry Institute ,Slovenian Forest Service, Inspectorate for Agriculture, Forestry , Food and Environment ) , which presented views on the issue of different perspectives : legal, administrative , supervisory , and planning . Proposals for criteria for assessing of deforestation are objective . Some existing criteria for forest planning are subjective . Most problems occur in the assessment of deforestation in relation to the forest functions, which can not be determined purely objective and the degree of forest cover in landscape in which spatial framework for the setting of rates is missing . New proposals for criteria are objectified , so the forest planning will be easier. With precise , objective criteria the decisions on land use changes will be standardized and therefore less likely that non-uniform land-use planning betwwen municipalites or forest management units will occur, as we have sometimes recorded so far. Criteria and proposals for assessment of land use change promote improvements in the planning system and regional legislation in the direction of a more transparent and more objective spatial planning changes. Objective criteria are the basis for transparent spatial decision-making and more firm cooperation of forestry work with other spatial planning institutions within the planning .
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