It’s time to have your say!
An independent review of the National Forest Inventory (NFI) has launched a survey to gather feedback on the products and services delivered by the NFI from its users. This survey will be available from 17/06/2020 to 17/07/2020 accessed via a link below. The survey aims to seek input from landowners, forestry and woodland professionals on their current use of NFI products/services, how the outputs of the NFI could be improved and how the NFI may need to evolve to meet future demands?
The NFI represents a long-term, national-level monitoring programme on the extent and condition of woodlands in Great Britain. The NFI is composed of two elements;
- an earth observation programme to identify the location and extent of woodlands over 0.5 ha in size and;
- a fieldwork programme to assess the composition and condition of the mapped woodland areas.
These two activities run on rolling annual and five-year cycles, respectively. They provide information on the current state of woodlands and a continuous record of change over time. The NFI programme was established in 2009, over the past decade the NFI has collected an archive of annual GB woodland area and two detailed assessments of woodland composition arising from two completed field survey cycles and a third scheduled to begin. For more information on how the NFI collects and reports on this woodland database see the ‘About the NFI’ section of this website.
Please use this link to take the survey:
Purpose of the Review
The NFI was originally mandated and designed to produce an enduring evidence base of woodlands that could meet both current and future reporting requirements. The current NFI reporting schedule was devised 10 years ago.
Over the past decade technological advances and an increased interest from both the general public and government in woodland data has led to the need to review the information needs of the NFI. The aims of this review are, therefore to:
- Confirm the requirement and importance for long-term monitoring that is stable and provides a long-term view on the condition of forest and woodlands in Great Britain.
- Understand the demands for the current NFI catalogue of products.
- Are the products/services of the NFI meeting user requirements?
- What will be the future product requirements of NFI?
- In what order or timing would customers place the next 5 years of deliverables?
- Identify any gaps or deficiencies in the existing or developing offering.
- Gather feedback on our current dissemination, communication and marketing of materials.
- Any other customer feedback that will help us develop and grow.
The Review Process
Your feedback will be collected via an online questionnaire (NFI User Survey 2020). The results of the questionnaire will be analysed and reviewed by an independent external review group comprising experts in the forestry sector.
Timing of the Review
The NFI review questionnaire will be available to download/access from the 17/06/2020 and must be completed and submitted by the closing date of the 17/07/2020.
The final report prepared by the review board will be used to inform future programme planning and the reporting schedule of the NFI. This is your opportunity to influence the future reporting of woodlands in GB.
Current NFI Products and Services
The annually-updated digital woodland map is a core output of the NFI and is freely available from the Forestry Commission open data site (data-forestry.opendata.arcgis.com/). The map is used as the basis of statistics published by the NFI programme and in Forestry Statistics; all compliant with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics (published 2009).
The woodland data collected in the field surveys is used to produce a series of analytical reports, an archive of which can be accessed from: www.forestresearch.gov.uk/tools-and-resources/national-forest-inventory/. The reports fall into three main categories:
- Inventory reports – which outline the current state of Britain’s woodland;
- Forecast reports – estimating how the woodlands may change over time and;
- Customised reports – created according to specific requirements as requested from external enquiries.
The External Review Board
The NFI review is being led by an external group of four experts from both the public and private forestry sectors. The biographies of the review board are provided below:
Peter Whitfield (chair)
Peter is currently Business Development Director at Tilhill Forestry has more than 40 years’ experience in Forestry both in the UK and overseas. Peter’s experience is in harvesting and general management as well as forest management. Areas of particular interest are people development, strategy and business development. A Fellow of the ICF Peter has held a number of industry posts including being a member of the Expert Committee on Forest Science, Chairing Confor’s Technical and Compliance Group, a member of the ICF Professional and Educational Standards Committee and chairing the current Private Sector Production Forecast Working Group for Forest Research.
Lawrence is an analytical team lead at the Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC) delivering evidence from strategic long-term surveillance, modelling and remote observing into environmental policy within the UK and internationally. He has worked at the science policy interface for 35 years drawing new technologies and analytical techniques into practical operations.
He has reshaped JNCC’s portfolio of nationally representative biodiversity monitoring delivered in partnership with science and voluntary sector bodies leading the citizen based sampling, increasing species coverage by a factor of ten and improving functional representation, within reducing resources.
Lawrence is the programme and science lead for the Dept of Environment and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) Earth Observation Centre of Excellence which is driving the application of satellite earth observations to policy delivery across air, land, water, and marine functions.
Mark is Principal Adviser for Climate Change in the Forestry Commission and is currently their policy lead for woodland creation. He works closely with Defra on climate change adaptation and mitigation, including forestry’s role in helping to meet future carbon budgets. He has sat on steering Boards for Inventory, Forecasting and Operational Support for more than a decade and prior to taking up his current role in 2007, was Head of the Environmental Research Group in Forest Research.
Kari T. Korhonen
Kari is a Principal Scientist at the Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke). He is the head of the Finnish National Forest Inventory and supervisor of the forest inventory and forest planning scientists at Luke. Korhonen has large experience in working with international expert groups, such as UNECE Team of Specialists on Monitoring Sustainable Forest Management, FAO Global Forest Resource Assessment Advisory Board, ITTO Expert Panel, and EU Commission LULUCF Expert Group.