Linking forest risk to finance

Work on a new NERC Knowledge Translation project which aims to develop a Forest Finance Risk Network that will provide a link between researchers and the finance sector

News from Forest Research: February 2012

Forests are at risk from a number of natural and manmade hazards. Researchers and academics working in the field of forest risks are well informed of these issues, but until now there was no established flow of information to the finance sector. In collaboration with Genevieve Patenaude from the University of Edinburgh, Forest Research has recently started work on a new NERC Knowledge Translation project which aims to develop a Forest Finance Risk Network that will provide a link between researchers and the finance sector.

The project will help to develop improved information on forest risks in order to support investment decisions. The main risks it will cover include natural hazards, such as wind, fire, pests and diseases, and anthropogenic risks such as inappropriate management, and policy/regulatory issues.

Already there has been strong interest in the application of ForestGales – a tool developed by Forest Research that estimates wind risk to forestry. This has led to a collaboration with a specialist insurance intermediary in order to develop ForestGales for natural forests in the tropics and, through a pilot project in Wales, as a tool to provide higher-scale regional risk estimates. It is hoped that in the future other areas of Forest Research’s work may feed into this network.

The Forestry Commission is also involved in this work and is particularly interested in targeted risk information to help underpin investment in forestry under the UK Woodland Carbon Code.

For more information visit the project web page. Alternatively, contact Susan Davies or Mike Perks.

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This and other news stories can be found in the Winter 2011/2012 issue of FR News, our online newsletter.