Altaf Arain Guest SES Seminar Series

Date and Time


Altaf is with McMaster Centre for Climate Change, School of Geography and Earth Sciences "Climate change, extreme weather and management impacts on forest plantations"

In Canada, forests cover about 40% (397 Mha) of the land area. A large portion of these forests (230 Mha) has traditionally been managed for timber production. Canadian, forestry sector has undergone drastic changes in recent years and timber is not the only major resource extracted from forest ecosystems. Forestry sector is emerging as bio-energy and organic fiber source and a major contributor to offset greenhouse gas emissions and promote green economy. Climate change and extreme weather events are having drastic impacts on forests ecosystems in Canada, affecting their growth, resilience and overall survival.  These impacts are evident from recent alarming events of mountain pine beetle infestation, forest fires, droughts, floods and heat stresses in both US and Canada. In this presentation, background information and recent trends in global warming and how changes in climate are affecting forest ecosystems in North America will be covered. In particular results from a decade long monitoring and investigation study in an age-sequence of pine plantation forests, known as Turkey Point Flux Station, near Lake Erie in southern Ontario, Canada will be presented.  This research will help to assess the vulnerability of managed forests to future climate change and extreme weather events.

M. Altaf Arain Bio

Dr. Arain is a professor in the School of Geography and Earth Science at McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario and the Director of the McMaster Centre for Climate Change. He has served as the president of the Canadian Geophysical Union (CGU) - Biogeosciences Section from 2009-2012. Dr. Arain’s research interests focus on bio- and hydro-meteorology, hydrology, climatology, air pollution, land surface-atmosphere interactions and climate modeling. He has expertise in both micrometeorological measurements and land-surface atmosphere interaction modeling. Dr. Arain’s has established Turkey Point Flux Station to investigate energy, water and carbon cycles in managed conifer (75, 40 and 12 year old age sequence) and deciduous forests in southern Ontario. These flux tower sites are part of Ameriflux, North American Carbon Program and global Fluxnet initiatives. He has been involved in the development of vegetation ecosystem models such as the coupled Canadian Land Surface Scheme-Canadian and Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (CLASS-CTEM-N+). Much of this modelling work was part of a multi-university collaborative modeling initiative known as the Canadian Global Coupled Carbon Climate Model, (CGC3M)) to develop a Canadian global coupled carbon climate model. He has published more than 90 refereed journal papers.

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