Forest Management Public Summary for Duke University, Duke Forest
Forest Management Public Summary for Duke University, Duke Forest
Forest Management Public Summary for Duke University, Duke Forest Certification Code: SW-FM/COC-175 Date of Certification: December 1, 2001 Date of Public Summary: December 2001, updated for 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 This document was produced according to the guidelines of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and the SmartWood Program. No part of the report should be published separately. Certifier: SmartWood Program1 c/o Rainforest Alliance 65 Bleecker Street, 6th Floor New York, New York 10012 U.S.A. TEL: (212) 677-1900 FAX: (212) 677-2187 Email: email@example.com Website: www.smartwood.org 1 SmartWood is implemented worldwide by the nonprofit members of the SmartWood Network.
The Network is coordinated by the Rainforest Alliance, an international nonprofit conservation organization. The Rainforest Alliance is the legally registered owner of the SmartWood certification mark and label. All uses of the SmartWood label for promotion must be authorized by SmartWood headquarters. SmartWood certification applies to forest management practices only and does not represent endorsement of other product qualities (e.g., financial performance to investors, product function, etc.). SmartWood is accredited by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) for the certification of natural forest management, tree plantations and chain of custody.
To earn SmartWood certification, a forest management operation must undergo an on-site field assessment. This Public Summary Report summarizes information contained in the initial assessment report, which is produced based on information collected during the field assessment. Annual audits are conducted to monitor the forest management operation’s activities, to review the operation’s progress toward meeting their certification conditions, and to verify compliance with the SmartWood standards. Addenda providing the updated information obtained during these annual audits are included as attachments to the Public Summary Report.
1. GENERAL SUMMARY 1.1. Name and Contact Information Source Name: Duke University, Duke Forest Contact Person: Judson D. Edeburn, Resource Manager Address: Duke University, Box 90332, Durham, NC 27708-0332 USA Tel: 919.613.8013 Fax: 919.684.8741 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://taxodium.env.duke.edu/forest/history.html 1.2. General Background A. Type of operation: Duke Forest (DF) is a research, education, and demonstration forest owned by Duke University. The DF objectives are to provide a broad array of ecological, biological, and forestry-related research and teaching opportunities, protect unique plant and animal communities, and timber harvesting.
B. Years in operation Duke University has owned portions of the forest since the mid-1920s. It has been managing the forest to provide for the above objectives since purchased, or approximately 75 years. C. Date first certified December 1, 2001 D. Latitude and longitude of certified operation 36 degrees north and 79 degrees west 1.3. Forest and Management System A. Forest type and land use history Duke University began purchasing small farms and interspersed forestland as a buffer and expansion lands for the campus and as an investment for the future. In 1931, roughly 4,696 acres became Duke Forest when it was placed under the management of the School of Forestry.
The mission of the School was to advance graduate education in forestry in the southeastern United States. The forest was managed to “demonstrate practical and economical techniques for managing timber; develop an experimental forest for research in the sciences associated with growing timber; and to provide an outdoor laboratory for students of forestry.” Dr. Clarence
Korstian was the original Forest Director and established much of the basis on where it is today. One result of meeting those objectives was that funds created by managing timber allowed the School to purchase additional acreage over the years. The size of the Duke Forest now stands at around 7,830 acres. As the School of Forestry gradually was incorporated into the Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences, the objectives of Duke Forest have broadened to encompass a broad variety of disciplines in the natural, biological, and environmental sciences. Photo 1 – Dr. Clarence Korstian on the new Duke Forest The Forest is located near the eastern edge of the North Carolina Piedmont plateau.
Patterns of vegetation were influenced significantly by past land use practices, particularly timber harvesting and agriculture. Much of the DF was intensively managed for tobacco, corn, pasture, and, in many cases, had been over-used to the point where it was allowed to revert to forest. There is little remaining of the original vegetation with the exception of areas that were inaccessible or difficult to farm or log. Four general forest types are found within the Duke Forest; upland hardwood, bottomland hardwood, pine, and mixed pine-hardwood. Oak-hickory (Quercus-Carya sp.) is the normal upland hardwood type found due to rocky, dry, and shallow soils.
Bottomland hardwoods consist primarily of yellow poplar (Liriodendron tulipifera) and sweet gum (Liquidambar stryciflua), with some minor areas of birch-sycamore (Betula-Platanus sp.) along riparian areas and in extremely wet lowlands. Deep, well-drained soils support beech (Fagus grandifolia), maple (Acer sp.), white oak (Quercus alba) and red oak (Quercus falcata). Pine stands that result from old-field natural succession or planting consists primarily of loblolly pine (Pinus taeda) with components of shortleaf (Pinus echinata) and Virginia pine (Pinus virginiania). There is also a mature stand of longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) planted on the basis that it is in the northern most end of its range.
In all, over 900 species of plants are present on the forest, including more than 100 species of trees, about 30 species of mammals, 90 species of breeding birds, 24 species of amphibians, and 30 species of reptiles. The forest contains some of the best examples of mature, second-growth forest communities remaining in the North Carolina Piedmont.
Photo 2 – Mature Longleaf Pine Stand B. Size of management unit and area in production forest, conservation, and/or restoration Duke Forest consists of 7,830 acres (3,132 ha) of land available for forest management that excludes “residual” parcels that are dedicated to highest and best use or other university research facilities and disciplines. Of that, 1,986 acres (794 ha) are considered ecological reserves and non-harvestable research sites, 1,425 acres (570 ha) are conservation zones namely aesthetic management zones (AMZ), streamside management zones (SMZ), and historical or archaeological sites.
That leaves the remaining 64%, or 4,419 acres (1,768 ha) dedicated to active forest management. This management focuses on providing a good distribution of age classes and stand composition for research, education, and demonstration needs, and revenue generation to cover the cost of operations and management.
Photo 3 – FACTS-1 Carbon Research Project The Forest is divided into eight different Divisions or Tracts with the largest being the Durham Division consisting of 2,452 acres (980 ha) having a single contiguous block and several smaller parcels and narrow strips all within Durham and Orange Counties. This Division includes the Duke Homestead section that surrounds the Primate Center and the oldest portions of the Forest, acquired primarily between 1925 and 1947. The Korstian Division is the second largest, around 1,933 acres (773 ha), and contains the New Hope Creek corridor and the Henry J.
Oosting Natural Area, which were acquired from 1925 to 1948. The Division is situated in the Chapel Hill Township of Orange County. Blackwood Division also is in the Chapel Hill Township of Orange County, is made up of 1,019 acres (407 ha) in several parcels and was acquired between
the years of 1944 and 1959. The Eno Division is located in the Eno and Chapel Hill Townships of Orange County and is 484 acres (194 ha). Hillsboro Division is 582 acres (233 ha) situated in the Cheeks and Hillsborough townships of Orange County and is divided by the Eno River, which flows in a southerly direction through the property. In 1966, the Duke Power Company donated 1,360 acres (544 ha) in Chatham County to the University that became the Haw River Division. Of this, 420 acres (168 ha) were sold to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the B. Everett Jordan Reservoir Project and another 3-4 acres (1-2 ha) as a canoe launch area managed by the county.
The remaining Tract is the Dailey Tract located in Pleasant Grove Township of Alamance County totaling 430 acres (172 ha).
Table 1: Forest Use by Area Forestland Use Acres (ac) Hectares (ha) Productive forests 4,419 1,768 Conservation zones 1,425 570 Reserves 1,986 794 Total forest area 7,830 3,132 C. Annual allowable cut (AAC) and/or annual harvest covered by management plan In the early 1980s Duke Forest used stratified random sampling to inventory its holdings and found that the forest consists of nine strata, resulting from combinations of cover types and ages identifiable from cover maps of the Divisions. Specific strata identified were:
Loblolly pine stands, 0 to 40 years of age
Loblolly pine stands, greater than 40 years of age, including uneven-aged stands
Mixed conifer stands, other than loblolly pine, 0 to 60 years of age
Mixed conifer stands, greater than 60 years of age
Mixed conifer stands, uneven aged
Mixed pine and hardwood stands, all ages
Mixed hardwood stands, except oak, all ages
Oak stands, all ages
Non-forested areas Sampling points for each Division and strata were chosen to estimate total timber volume within each strata to a 10% allowable error with a 95% probability.
Data collected from each point included species, diameter at breast height (DBH), total height for pines, merchantable height for hardwoods, estimates of form and crown class, and two increment cores for each point to calculate growth. Calculations from this information it indicated that there were 22,903 cords of pine pulpwood, 59,154 thousand board feet (MBF) (236,616 m3 ) of pine sawtimber, hardwood pulpwood totaling 19,040 cords and hardwood sawtimber in the amount of 34,099 MBF (136,396 m3 ) standing in the inventoried area in 1981. Growth estimates were based on tree cores and calculated using stand tables.
Generally on pine sites, 116 cubic feet of wood is being produced annually; on mixed hardwood sites 59 cubic feet, and on oak sites 30 cubic feet. Using this information, the maximum annual sustainable harvest for hardwood sawtimber was established at 715 MBF (2,860 m3 ), for hardwood pulpwood 500 cords, pine sawtimber with chip-n-saw 1,726 MBF (6,904 m3 ) and pine pulpwood 934 cords (Table 2). Removing volume for those acreages designated as conservation zones and reserves further refined this annual sustainable harvest so that the recommended annual harvest volume is 240 MBF (960 m3 ) for hardwood sawtimber and
1,000 MBF (4,000 m3 ) for pine sawtimber. The only instances where this volume has actually been harvested or exceeded in any one year during the past decade occurred after catastrophic disturbance events such as Hurricane Fran in September, 1996, a major tornado in November, 1992, and a 1993 southern pine beetle epidemic. The average annual harvest for that 10-year period is 222,598 BF (890 m3 ) for hardwood sawtimber, 289 cords of hardwood pulpwood, 927,371 BF (3,709 m3 ) for pine sawtimber, and 546 cords of pine pulpwood. Table 2: Allowable Cut and Actual Harvest Levels Maximum Sustainable Harvest (Annually) Recommended Sustainable Harvest (Annually) Average Annual Harvest (Last 10 Years) Hrdwd Sawtimber 2,860 m3 960 m3 890 m3 Hrdwd Pulpwood 500 cords - 289 cords Pine Sawtimber 6,904 m3 4,000 m3 3,790 m3 Pine Pulpwood 934 cords - 546 cords The Forest has conducted a new inventory within the last year to update growth and yield information and is analyzing it to determine any changes.
The general feeling is that the actual growth on the forest has increased by having more plantations in younger age classes than during the 1980s inventory and the use of thinnings to increase stand vigor and growth. D. General description of details and objectives of the management plan/system The original management plan for Duke Forest was prepared in 1981 by the Forest staff. In the past, there had been significant detailed records that had been kept of activities on the Forest and data collected over a long period of time. This was the first effort to consolidate this information into a comprehensive management plan that outlined the purposes of the Duke Forest.
The plan had not been revised until May 2001 and was to accommodate the needs of the certification assessment. That process resulted in the addition of addenda to address specific issues relating to FSC and Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) requirements. Because of this effort and a newly updated inventory, the complete plan is in the process of being revised with anticipated completion within a year.
Duke Forest has a primary mission of providing research, education, and demonstration opportunities for faculty, students, and other research institutions. Thus there is an overriding goal to ensure that there are representative samples of various ecosystems present on the forest of such size and age configuration and distribution to provide research and training sites now and in the future. Because of this, there have been many research projects involving plantation spacing, growth and yield, thinning techniques, and regeneration methods that have contributed significantly to the forestry sciences.
More recently, work in the fields of microclimatology, forest succession, population dynamics, and nutrient cycling has become an increasing component of studies conducted on the Forest. The forest is in regular use as a laboratory for teaching students in forestry and environmental sciences during the course of undergraduate and graduate studies. Since 1976, the Duke Forest has been included in a nationwide network of research sites selected by The Institute of Ecology to provide a wide range of conditions and habitat types available for long-term scientific research in a multitude of disciplines.
More specifically, as an Experimental Ecological Reserve, it “is a field site representative of an important natural system which is dedicated for long-term experimental research...(and) identified as critical to providing support for future ecological research and application to problems of national concern.”
Photo 4 – Sign depicting purpose of Duke Forest In addition, a primary consideration of the Forest is to protect sites containing unique plant species or communities to “ensure areas of ecological significance are available for long-term study and that irreplaceable biota is not destroyed.” Significant acreage of the Forest is set aside from harvesting for this purpose, including the Oosting Natural Area, all areas identified by the N. C. Natural Heritage Program as potentially containing sensitive species or communities, AMZs, SMZs, and a series of permanent plots that have served as a long-term ecological data source for evaluating plant community succession.
These plots have provided valuable information on the changes in the Forest over time. The Forest also is included in the Orange County land use planning efforts and the staff has been active participants in this process. Another objective of Duke Forest is economic. Since establishment of the Forest, it has been operated as a separate self-supported institution. As such, it has provided revenue through the sale of forest products to cover operating costs and the purchase of additional lands to expand the boundaries of the Forest. Revenues are obtained from harvesting available areas using a multitude of silvicultural techniques to demonstrate various harvest methods and to maintain healthy timber stands.
Techniques include seed tree, shelterwood, thinning, clearcuts, group selection, individual tree selection, and salvage. Generally pine plantations are managed on a 50- 55 year rotation with a goal of growing high quality sawtimber. Hardwood stands for the most part are included in conservation zones or reserves, although there are some that could be managed for forest products. Currently, little hardwood silviculture is practiced. Harvesting systems used are primarily ground equipment. Forest products are sold based on lump-sum (timber deeds) for those areas large enough, or by direct sale as a percentage of stumpage for smaller operations.
Timber deeds normally go to local brokers or mills, while the smaller sales are often conducted by small logging operations through direct contract. The road system has been intact for decades and little new construction occurs unless to facilitate a research project.
Photo 6- Clearcut Harvest Unit Photo 5 – Patch Shelterwood Cut Finally, a major management objective is recreational use of the DF. Despite being private property, the University allows and manages uses for recreation and provides some picnic facilities and trails as long as recreation doesn’t negatively impact the ecological attributes being managed for and forest operations. Most forest roads are also available for hiking and biking, although vehicular traffic by the public is restricted. Due to a significant increase in population of Durham and Orange Counties surrounding the Duke Forest (22.8% and 26.2% over the last 10 years, respectively), there has been a coinciding increase in use of the forest for recreation purposes.
Because of this and past threats to the Forest from development there have been some interactions between the Duke Forest staff and stakeholders to try and resist these efforts. Also, several studies have been done by the Duke Forest staff to gather various data relating to forest users.
The Duke Forest is administered under the auspices of the Executive Vice President of Duke University who serves as Chair of the Duke Forest Advisory Committee, and the Provost who is responsible for budgetary issues. The Dean of the Nicholas School of the Environment and the Duke Forest Advisory Committee actively assist in providing direction for Forest activities. Staffing consists of a Resource Manager, Program Coordinator, Forestry Technician, Grounds and Maintenance Supervisor, part-time secretary, graduate students, and various part-time and seasonal student assistants.
1.4. Environmental and Socioeconomic Context Originally known as Trinity College.
Duke University is located in Durham, North Carolina in the eastern Piedmont plateau region of the state. Property acquisition incorporated into Duke Forest dates back to the mid 1920s when President Few and Duke University benefactor James B. Duke set out to buy land to accommodate future expansion of the College. They purchased poor quality, abandoned corn and tobacco farmland, old fields, and small tracts of forestland. Fortuitously, a portion of this land was incorporated into the Duke Forest totaling 4,696 acres. Today, Duke University’s Duke Forest consists of six Divisions (Blackwood, Durham, Eno, Korstian, Hillsboro, and Haw River) and two Tracts in 4 counties (Alamance, Chatham, Durham, and Orange) and is 7,830 acres (3,132 ha).
Duke Forest contains a number of historical and cultural resources. Artifacts from Indigenous Peoples and those who followed are dispersed throughout its six Divisions.
Photo 7 – Historic road crossing in stream Clarence F. Korstian, a senior silviculturalist in the U.S. Forest Service, was named as the first director of the Duke Forest in 1930. Dr. Korstian, who also became the Dean of the School of Forestry, was responsible for developing the first Duke Forest management plan and setting policy precedents that exist today. Since 1931, Duke Forest has provided continuous teaching and research opportunities and demonstration areas for Duke University faculty and students. Other universities, schools, and various organizations and agencies also use the Duke Forest for education and research.
The School of Forestry has been incorporated into the Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences. The Forest operation, from a commercial timber perspective, is considered to be a small to medium sized operation. Once a rural area, the Duke Forest locale has experienced unprecedented growth in recent years. Areas around the Durham and Korstian Divisions are almost exclusively developed. The Eno Division is 80% surrounded by development. Many of the challenges for the Duke Forest lie in confronting the urban and suburban growth that will occur around the remaining Divisions. The Office of the Duke Forest has taken the initiative to become involved with regional activities attempting to preserve the landscape and its ecology.
The most significant endeavor thus far is their participation in the New Hope Corridor Open Space Master Plan for the region. Judson D. Edeburn, the current Duke Forest Resource Manager, attempts to maintain relations with community stakeholders (e.g., adjoining landowners) by identifying disputes in their early stages. In the recent past disputes have been minimal, but with the development of property adjacent to the Forest, they are likely to increase. The Resource Manager has resolved a few property line disputes. Settlement with the landowners involved splitting the difference relative to the area in dispute.
In one boundary dispute, on the Haw River Division, Duke Forest feels they have a solid case and are considering proceeding through legal channels to resolve the dispute.
Individuals, usually adjoining landowners, affected by management operations are notified and apprised of proposed forestry activities (e.g., logging, burning, spraying, and increased traffic) and associated environmental and aesthetic effects to solicit their comments or concerns. For logging, burning, and spraying operations in more remote portions of Duke Forest no notification occurs. However, when operations occur near dwellings, buildings, and forested and nonforested properties of adjoining landowners the Resource Manager of Duke Forest will notify them personally. Contact information is also provided to landowners during the visit.
There were many examples of where the Duke Forest staff has tried to accommodate their neighbors. In some cases buffers in Duke Forest adjoining private property have been increased to provide a measure of safety or aesthetic screening for the neighboring landowner.
Significant archaeological sites and areas of cultural, historical, or community significance, are identified, catalogued, and mapped as stated in the Duke Forest management plan. Consultation with state archaeological offices, universities, and local experts does occur. The Orange County Preservation Commission has been involved with some sites. Various graduate student or student intern research projects have focused on these special sites. A number of archeological and historical sites are studied and recorded on the Korstian Division by the research labs of the Duke University Anthropology Department.
The University of North Carolina has studied a number of archaeological sites in Orange County. They are designated as special management zones by Duke Forest and protected during harvest operations and often maintained, to the extent possible, after natural disturbances such as hurricanes. The policy, as stated in the management plan, is that all sites are to remain undisturbed by the general public. Duke Forest does not advertise their location.
The Duke Forest staff allows well-established customary and lawful uses of the forest consistent with conservation of the forest resource and the objectives (i.e., teaching, research, demonstration) as stated in the management plan. Customary uses of the land (e.g., cemeteries) have been incorporated into the forest management plan and are protected from forest practices. There is no hunting or trapping on Duke Forest however, a number of recreational pursuits (e.g., jogging, biking, bird watching, walking or hiking, horseback riding, fishing, and picnicking) are engaged in by faculty, staff, and students of Duke University and individuals residing in local communities in North Carolina and elsewhere.
Past recreational use studies estimated visitation at 150,000 activity days in 1980 and 300,000 in 1991. A new study is being initiated in 2001. Traditionally, there are no formal easements associated with Duke Forest. However, the Duke Forest staff has permitted “informal” easements for neighbors requiring access across DF. Periodically, Duke Forest will revoke these easements for short intervals to exert its ownership over the property and to avoid possible attempts at adverse possession. Photo 8 – Large, mature loblolly pine Various individuals, interest groups, and other stakeholders have supported the Forest over the years.
These concerned groups have countered development and University policy that has threatened the Forest in the past. Along with developments that surround the Forest there have been some problems with vandalism and poaching. Also, various forest practices (e.g., prescribed burning, herbicide spraying) have had to be curtailed or carried out with considerable effort due to the close proximity of housing developments, commercial enterprises, and public roads. The future success of the Forest hinges, in part, on developing strong, positive relationships with their recently arrived neighbors (e.g., adjoining landowners) and building support within the University (i.e., administration, faculty) and among the various stakeholder
groups (e.g., schools, environmental groups, county commissioners, forestry-related and other businesses).
1.5. Products Produced A. Species and volumes covered by the certificate Table 3: Certified Production Species Scientific name Volume (10 yr avg.) Product Pine sawtimber Pinus sp. 3,709 m3 logs Pine pulpwood Pinus sp. 546 cords logs Hardwood sawtimber Quercus sp. 211 m3 logs Liriodendron sp. 115 m3 Mixed hardwood 564 m3 Hrdwd pulpwood Multiple species 289 cords logs Data concerning volume of Quercus species removed was available for six out of the ten years.
Data regarding the volume of Liriodendron removed was available for five of the ten years. Percentages were used to extrapolate out the volume figures in order to determine the ten-year average for the individual species.
B. Description of current and planned processing capacity There is no processing capacity associated with Duke Forest. Forest products are sold to local loggers, timber brokers, or sawmills, who then merchandize the logs based on grade and product. There are no plans for adding such facilities in the future. 2. CERTIFICATION ASSESSMENT PROCESS 2.1. Assessment Dates (2001) May 3 Stakeholder public notices distribution starts (e-mail, FAX, and mail) June 3 Initial team planning June 4 - 7 Field assessment at Duke Forest June 8 Begin report write-up and continue stakeholder interactions (e-mails and interviews) June 21 Public stakeholder meeting in Triangle Research Park, N.
C. August 17 Draft report to Duke Forest for initial review and factchecking/comments May, June, July Comments received from stakeholders September 1 Comments received from Duke Forest September 10 Draft report to peer reviewers and SmartWood headquarters November 19 Comment back from peer reviewers November 25 Final draft submitted to SW Certification Committee November Certification Contract signed and received by SmartWood 2.2. Assessment Team and Peer Reviewers
Loy Jones, Team Leader, B.S. in Forest Management, 23 years international experience in forestry and environmental assessments and impacts.
Mr. Jones is the Manager of the SmartWood Southern USA Region and has been a Team Leader for forest management and chain of custody certification assessments, specialist in environmental impact of forestry
operations (for both natural forest management and plantation forestry), community forestry and certification.
Joe Hamrick, Landscape Biologist – Joe Hamrick currently works for Raven Environmental Services Inc. of Huntsville, Texas - an environmental and forest management consultancy specializing in endangered species management, forest management and habitat planning, and environmental assessments. Prior to joining Raven, Mr. Hamrick was employed by TempleInland Forest Products Corporation for a period of eighteen years. During that time he held positions as Operations Manager of the Selection Forest Management Group responsible for all selectively harvested acres in Texas and Louisiana; Manager of Forest Practices for the 2.2 million acres in Temples’ ownership; Area Biologist for the Southern and Eastern Regions; and Operations Manager of Scrappin’ Valley - the corporations’ 10,400-acre forest and wildlife demonstration area.
Joe serves on the Texas Forestry Association Board of Directors. He has also served on both the Texas and Louisiana Habitat Conservation Planning Committees for the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker. Mr. Hamrick is a 1979 graduate of Texas A and M University with a B.S. Degree in Landscape Architecture and currently resides in Lufkin, Texas.
Stephen C. Grado, Forest Economics/Sociology, Ph.D. Dr. Steve Grado obtained an undergraduate degree in Political Science from Villanova University in 1971. After working in the business field for five years, he went on to study forestry in the School of Forest Resources at Penn State University where he was employed as a research assistant from 1982 to 1995. During this period he was involved with various research projects covering such diverse areas as biomass production, recreation, and heritage tourism. Through teaching and research experience and on the job training, he has gained an expertise in economic issues related to natural resource systems.
He completed a Master's degree at Penn State University in Forest Science and Operations Research in 1984 and received a Ph.D. from the Penn State School of Forest Resources in 1992. Currently, he holds a position as an Associate Professor of Forestry at Mississippi State University. His expertise, as a natural resource economist, is specializing in issues relating to multiple-use forest management, outdoor recreation, human dimensions, agroforestry, short-rotation forestry, and tourism.
Edward G. Farnworth, Ecology, Ph.D. – Dr. Farnworth obtained an undergraduate degree in Biology from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, a Master of Sciences in Entomology and Zoology and a Ph.D. in Entomology and Ecology, both from the University of Florida. After a Post Doctoral Fellowship in Ecology at the University of Georgia’s Institute of Ecology he joined the faculty of the Institute and spent ten years in research in forest productivity, structure and functioning of wetlands, particularly fresh water tidal marshes and riparian systems, and the application of ecological principles to development issues.
He worked for 11 years as senior ecologist and senior environmental advisor with the InterAmerican Development Bank dealing with environment/development issues in Latin America and the Caribbean. His expertise includes management and conservation of natural resource; watershed management; coastal zone management; environmental impact assessment; wetlands protection and function; environmental and natural resources policy; environment/development policy; environmental issues and solutions in transportation, energy, water supply, sewage, solid waste management and agriculture; and environmental institution development.
Farnworth is currently an independent consultant in environment and development.
Two different peer reviews were sought for this assessment. The peer reviewers included:
1. Senior ecologist, silviculture, and/or researcher from southeastern USA with extensive field and research experience with both public and private agencies. 2. Senior forester from the southeast USA, with long-term indigenous forest conservation and management experience. 2.3. Assessment Process During the field phase of the assessment process, the team conducted the following steps as part of the normal SmartWood certification process: 1) Pre-Assessment Analysis – The team prepared for the assessment by conducting research concerning Indigenous Peoples, reviewing the management plan, and other documents provided by Duke Forest.
2) Selection of Sites – In the initial meeting with the DF staff the team described the attributes of areas that needed to be visited. The Duke Forest staff then offered site alternatives that provided an opportunity to observe various activities, age classes, land uses, and operations. Specifically, there was an effort to see sites that had a range of silviculture activities located within the forest, that were protected as conservation zones or biological reserves, that had uses that could impact forest management, that were representative of forest types within the forest boundaries, and that were distributed across the different Forest Divisions.
3) Field Interviews and Site Reviews – The team met with the Resource Manager, Forest Technician, Grounds and Maintenance Supervisor, faculty from the Nicholas School of the Environment, graduate students, and student interns at the Duke Forest office on the West Campus in Durham, North Carolina. Many of these individuals were present during field visits as well. While in the office portion of the assessment, the team reviewed various documents such as the management plan, local government land-use planning material, inventory information, maps of the Forest, documents relating to harvest activities, and other information the team felt was required to conduct an objective assessment.
Field visits were conducted on the sites listed in Table 4.
Table 4. Summary of Forest Areas and Areas Visited by SmartWood Assessors Forest/Block Name Total Area Assessment Site Ac Ha Description Durham Division C-54 1.5 .6 Shelterwood C-72 8 3.2 Natural Area C-47 9 3.6 Shelterwood C-39 8 3.2 Thinning Haw River Division C-5 & 6 25 10 Clearcut Korstian Division Oosting Natural Area 160 64.8 Natural Preserve C-12 12 4.8 Plantation C-17 12 4.8 Plantation C-18 5 2 Clearcut C-30 9.4 3.8 Plantation Blackwood Division
C-7 13.6 5.4 Thinning C-6 14.3 5.7 Thinning C-2 20 8.1 Sale Area Hillsboro Tract C-6 6 2.4 Rock Quarry C-6 65 26 Trespass and Tornado Damage TOTALS 334.4 148.4 4) Assessment Report Development – The assessment report was developed over a 30- day period after the fieldwork was completed.
Throughout this write-up period the assessors continued to conduct stakeholder interviews and other research. 5) Peer and Candidate Operation Review of the Report – The final draft report was reviewed by Duke Forest staff and three independent peer reviewers (normal FSC requirement is two).
6) Certification Decision – SmartWood headquarters made the certification decision. This was completed after review of comments made on the draft report by the forest operation staff and peer reviewers. 2.4. Guidelines This assessment report is based on the FSC Principles, Criteria, and Indicators as presented to the team by the Team Leader. The document used was titled SmartWood Generic Guidelines for Assessing Forest Management, Southern USA Region (May 2001). The Team Leader explained that this document is a compilation of the following: 1. SmartWood “Generic Guidelines for Assessing Forest Management” (March 2000); 2.
FSC-US National Indicators as adopted by the Board of Directors (February 2001); 3. Elements of the draft standards for the Southeast USA determined by SmartWood for inclusion; and 4. Field tests of the guidelines on several forest management operations in the region. At a minimum, these guidelines are based upon SmartWood’s “Generic Guidelines for Forest Assessment” which have been reviewed and accredited by the FSC.
2.5. Stakeholder consultation process and results The purpose of the stakeholder consultation strategy for this assessment was threefold: 1. Ensure the public is aware of and informed about the assessment process and its objectives, 2. Assist the field assessment team in identifying potential issues, and 3. Provide diverse opportunities for the public to discuss and act upon the findings of the assessment. This process is not just stakeholder notification, but wherever possible, detailed and meaningful stakeholder interaction. The process of stakeholder interaction does not stop after the field visits, or for that matter, after even a certification decision is made.
SmartWood welcomes, at any time, comments on certified operations and such comments often provide a basis for field auditing.
The assessment of Duke University’s Duke Forest involved a stakeholder review process that incorporated input from both local and regional stakeholders. Notice of the assessment, public meetings, and requests for comments on the forest organization’s operations were first distributed to Duke Forest stakeholders the first week in May. Subsequent e-mail and postal mail notices with updated information on the stakeholder meetings were mailed out prior to the field assessment on May 30, 2001 (e-mail) and June 1, 2001 (postal mail). During the assessment process (June 4 to June 9, 2001), local stakeholders were contacted individually and invited to comment.
In addition, two public meetings were held, in the Cedar Mountain Community Center, near Dupont State Forest on June 14, 2001 and at the MCNC auditorium, Research Triangle Park, Durham County. Notification of these meetings without the details was sent to the stakeholders 42, and 49 days in advance respectively, and at 14 and 21 days with meeting details. A survey to incorporate stakeholder input was developed and brought to the two public meetings (23 surveys were given out at these meetings), mailed to 927 stakeholders, and e-mailed to 58 addresses, some of which were group addresses. A request was made to return the completed surveys by July 15, 2001.
The formal report process for receiving stakeholder comments was until July 30, 2001, approximately three months. During this time, the SmartWood list of stakeholders was expanded as more interested parties asked to participate. Issues Identified Through Stakeholder Comments and Public Meetings The stakeholder consultation activities were organized to give participants the opportunity to provide comments according to general categories of interest based upon the assessment criteria. The table below summarizes issues identified by the assessment team with a brief discussion of each based upon specific interviews, public meeting comments, and surveys.
Table 5: Stakeholder Comments FSC Principle Stakeholder Comments SmartWood Response P1: FSC Commitment/ Legal Compliance Stakeholders gave no comments. Deeds for all properties are held in two different locations, the University and in county court houses. The DF will defend their property boundaries through the legal counsel of Duke University.
The DF Resource Manager, provided detailed summary information on land titles including the file number corresponding with original title held by the Duke University Real Estate Administration Office, grantor of the property, and date of acquisition.
P2: Tenure & Use Rights & Responsibilities There were no comments from stakeholders on land disputes. There was general acceptance of the recreational opportunities afforded to the public as 79% (n=81) of those who responded to the stakeholder survey were satisfied with forest management’s approach to providing recreation.
The DF staff needs to initiate a process or strategy for developing relationships with organized stakeholder groups. Twentytwo percent (n=23) of those who responded to the stakeholder survey expressed a desire for better public relations and communications with Duke Forest. Thirteen percent were unable to respond to this issue.
There were several “Neighbors” who expressed that they had had problems with DF on a number of issues ranging from harvesting, access issues, and deer problems. The deeds for all properties are held in two different locations, the University and in county court houses. The DF will defend their property boundaries through the legal counsel of Duke University. Since Duke University is a private institution, there is no legal or customary/traditional rights to own, manage, or use forest resources (timber and non-timber) on DF on the part of the local communities. The DF formal policy is that these activities are prohibited from taking place.
Of course, exceptions are made to accommodate the public.
Settlement with the landowners on property issues involved splitting the difference relative to the area in dispute. In one case, on the Haw River Division, DF feels they have a solid case and are considering whether to proceed through available legal channels to settle the dispute. Protocol for dealing with landowner disputes specific to DF is not written into a policy and, as a result, there is no formal system in place to deal with such disputes. Duke Forest needs to develop a proactive strategy for capturing stakeholder attitudes, opinions, and perceptions of DF and its operations. This includes a continual updating of stakeholder lists.
P2: Tenure & Use Rights & Responsibilities There were no comments from stakeholders on land disputes.
There was general acceptance of the recreational opportunities afforded to the public as 79% (n=81) of those who responded to the stakeholder survey were satisfied with forest management’s approach to providing recreation. The DF staff needs to initiate a process or strategy for developing relationships with organized stakeholder groups. Twentytwo percent (n=23) of those who responded to the stakeholder survey expressed a desire for better public relations and communications with Duke Forest. The deeds for all properties are held in two different locations, the University and in county court houses.
The DF will defend their property boundaries through the legal counsel of Duke University.
Since Duke University is a private institution, there is no legal or customary/traditional rights to own, manage, or use forest resources (timber and non-timber) on DF on the part of the local communities. The DF formal policy is that these activities are prohibited from taking place. Of course, exceptions are made to accommodate the public. Settlement with the landowners on property
Thirteen percent were unable to respond to this issue. There were several “Neighbors” who expressed that they had had problems with DF on a number of issues ranging from harvesting, access issues, and deer problems.
issues involved splitting the difference relative to the area in dispute. In one case, on the Haw River Division, DF feels they have a solid case and are considering whether to proceed through available legal channels to settle the dispute. Protocol for dealing with landowner disputes specific to DF is not written into a policy and, as a result, there is no formal system in place to deal with such disputes. Duke Forest needs to develop a proactive strategy for capturing stakeholder attitudes, opinions, and perceptions of DF and its operations. This includes a continual updating of stakeholder lists.
P3 – Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Information received from the Bureau of Indian Affairs confirmed Duke University’s assertion that there were no issues related to Indigenous Peoples’ rights on DF lands.
Not applicable. P4: Community Relations & Workers’ Rights DF staff had positive things to say about their employment. Evidence of their satisfaction could be seen in the long tenure of many employees with DF. Graduate students and Student Interns also expressed a positive attitude toward the DF staff and felt they were being treated fairly. One logger was interviewed and was very supportive of DF in terms of the work provided and on-the-job assistance provided by the Forest Technician. A timber broker was very positive in his dealings with the Duke Forest staff. The Resource Manager carried out prior notification to adjoining landowners of forest activities.
Stakeholder comments upheld this contention for the most part. There is good relationship between the loggers and timber brokers and the DF due in large measure to the Forest Technician. Field interviews were favorable. Unfortunately, none of these stakeholders responded to the survey.
P5: Benefits from the Forest Based on previous recreational use studies there exists some level of satisfaction with recreational opportunities afforded local communities and others who frequent the forest. There was general acceptance of the recreational opportunities afforded to the public as 79% (n=81) of those who responded to the SW stakeholder survey were satisfied with forest management’s approach to providing recreation. The stated objectives of the Duke Forest (i.e., teaching, research, and demonstration) provide for a number of benefits to the University, faculty, students, and local communities.
On the research side, the benefits of forest activities are far reaching (e.g., Facts-1).
Duke Forest employs locals and purchases a number of goods and services from local communities.
P6: Environmental Impact There were some problems expressed by SW survey respondents. Of the 103 respondents to the DF SW survey the most frequently mentioned environmental problems were: road maintenance-14%, erosion control-13%, environmental protection-12%, buffer zones –11%, and wildlife habitat-11%. One issue that was not listed on the survey specifically, but verbally addressed by 7% of respondents was problems related to an overpopulation of deer. There were some minor problems expressed by survey respondents.
Of the 103 respondents to the DF survey the most frequently mentioned monitoring problems were: site maintenance-9%, vandalism, theft, and arson-9%, and poaching-5%. There were a few comments on pest monitoring and seven related to deer overpopulation. Due to the surrounding urban/suburban growth the Duke Forest provides a number of environmental benefits to the region. The stakeholder survey comments generally support an appreciation of the Duke Forest and its environmental benefits. The urban/suburban growth surrounding the forest Divisions and Tracts will present the greatest challenge to the forest staff.
Limiting forest practices and issues such as deer problems will require considerable effort and planning on the part of the staff. Stakeholder involvement can help with this process.
P7: Management Plan Seventy-nine percent (n=81) of those who responded to the stakeholder survey were satisfied with the DF management plan quality. Seventeen percent of respondents were unable to assess the management plan quality, most likely because they have not seen the plan. DF needs to review, revise, and update the Management of the Duke Forest plan, and include a reasonable timeframe for future periodic reviews that include stakeholder’s input. P8: Monitoring & Assessment No comments received. Because certain aspects of monitoring and assessing the forest resource were not incorporated into forest operations or were not clearly documented in the management plan this information is largely out of the grasp of the general public.
P9: Maintenance of High Conservation Value Forest Few stakeholders (n=14) had ever heard of HCVFs. Many expressed difficulty with the definition as stated in the FSC Principles. However, 92% of the survey respondents felt HCVFs were important and 85% felt forests should be included as HCVFs. DF should develop a method that further defines those areas they consider of primary and secondary significance to determine which if any would meet the criteria for a HCVF. HCVFs need to be incorporated into the management plan and made a part of an outreach program for stakeholders. P10 - Plantations Only 6% of survey respondents felt plantation management should be improved.
A total of 19% were unable to answer this question.
The DF does a good job with their plantation management however; they should include the social impacts of plantation establishment and management into the Duke Forest operation planning
process and in revised management plans. Plantation management also should be made a part of an outreach program for stakeholders 3. RESULTS, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS 3.1. General Discussion of Findings Table 6: Findings by FSC Principle Principle/Subject Area Strengths Weaknesses P1: FSC Commitment and Legal Compliance Duke Forest was found to be in compliance with all applicable laws and was also aware of relevant international conventions and treaties.
DF is a responsible citizen in terms of legal and social obligations in North Carolina. There are no apparent conflicts between the DF legal responsibilities and the FSC P&C.
There is no comprehensive list of applicable laws and/or treaties that might be useful both as reference and educational tool. P2: Tenure & Use Rights & Responsibilities Duke Forest, as part of a private university does a commendable job, securing their forest properties, interacting with their neighbors in regard to ongoing forest operations and recreational opportunities. Duke Forest staff should initiate a process or strategy for developing relationships with organized stakeholder groups. Stakeholder lists need to be updated periodically.
P3 – Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Results from a predictive model for items of historical, cultural, and archaeological relevance have enabled DF to manage the forest resource with consideration of historical, cultural, and archaeological sites.
Eleven percent of the SW survey respondents felt they could improve in areas related to historical and cultural issues. P4: Community Relations & Workers’ Rights Forest work is packaged and offered in ways that create quality work opportunities for contractors. Employment conditions (e.g., remuneration, benefits, safety equipment, training, and workman’s compensation) are as good for non-local workers as they are for local workers doing the same job. DF operations purchase a majority of their goods, equipment, and services from the Duke Forest needs to develop a policy for informing faculty, staff, graduate students, and visitors of the potential hazards in the forest and the need for considering safety equipment upon entering the DF.
Duke Forest needs to develop a proactive strategy for capturing stakeholder attitudes, opinions, and perceptions of DF and its operations. This includes a continual updating of stakeholder lists.