A unit of Lasting Forests
evolving since March 30, 1999
 
 

A Total Forest Management Plan
and Wildland Management
Decision Support System

 
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Preface


The Trevey is dedicated work for people and the lands and waters of a region. It's special dedication is to diverse action for land units which includes:

The Trevey (sounds like "peavey," the logger's tool, or "Tree-vy") is a system being designed and developed.The Trevey staff is continually attempting to understand and be responsive to the entire relevant world, often called the ecosystem. Such natural systems have only four major parts. Knowing these four big, fundamental, but related (and often overlapping) components and continually working with them and their relations are the major tasks within this large and complex system.


Dirt

The lithosphere including geology, rocks, minerals, topography, geomorphology, glaciation, and soils

Water

The hydrosphere including recipitation of all types and amounts, dew, fog, fog-drip, runoff, wetlands,groundwater, and soil moisture

Air

The atmosphere including air, smoke, air pollution, ozone, climate, weather, and wind effects

Life

The biosphere with all forms of life, human and otherwise, including all plants and animals and microorganisms

The strongly-related components of all natural resources are employed in the system. These are:physical (trees, rocks, water - the energy and matter) as well as changes over time, being in the right place (space), and having some variety or diversity.
The Trevey is a system designed to help landowners, developers, and others to understand their forests and related rural lands and their relationship to them. It is conceived as an enterprise within Rural System. The enterprise, a system, is composed of staff, facilities, computers, and software. It's main component, however, is the quest for producing for landowners and managers a powerful planning aid and assistance for making complex natural resource decisions. When well developed, The Trevey will integrate data from the field with knowledge gained from research and elsewhere, process and analyze it, select best alternatives using various optimization procedures, and produce a personalized, site-specific document, a hypertext, for the owner or manager. It is planned that that document be continually changing and instantly available via the Internet for realistic decision-making. The end is modern, sophisticated natural resource management. A major premise is that to sustain profits or net benefits from the land and resources, then people must sensitively manage land. The Trevey provides assistance in doing just that.After gaining new understanding, then we may together develop modern sophisticated plans for improving productivity, satisfactions, and profits from the land over many years.

We all have a question...

How do we use what we now know about the rural lands, domesticated and wild, what we are gaining from research and related development, all in the context of a host of legal, financial, and other limits? How do we use it so that we know and can assure visitors and owners that we are achieving superior benefits? The answer is in The Trevey of Rural System.

The Trevey may also help agencies and regulatory groups understand landowners and how to assist them in becoming a part of the invaluable wildland and other rural resources of a region. These areas provide many very important services and roles, provide products, and may offer new potentials.

A sweeping global view of the need for forest management and conservation, is presented in Philosophy: The Roots of Lasting Forests System and Management. Laws have prompted detailed ecosystem analyses, and a library of thoughtful writers are responding to the importance of forests and the need for their care and management.

The program addresses one of the Principles of the Forest Stewardship Council (#5) encouraging

"...the efficient use of the Forest's multiple products and services to ensure economic viability and a wide range of environmental and social benefits."
It is important that modern farming include optimization not only for crops, livestock, and other activities, but also for a complex of many wildland related resources. These include forestry and wildlife, but also landscape values, endangered plants, ancient forests and wilderness, outdoor recreation, and some crop/garden and agroforestry benefits.

New hardware, software, and concepts allow a computer program called The Trevey to be developed that can be used to add strong components to farm plans, particularly a wildland. This project seeks to use the best concepts from previous TVA work on the WRAP system, work for the US Department of Defense, and new knowledge bases and algorithms to provide a superior decision assistance and decision support for land owners.

Importantly, The Trevey concept is not only directed to individual forests or farm tracts but also to the region. Increasingly, a broad, landscape view is being recognized as both needful and useful. Preserved forests, both public and private, will serve as one framework (but only one) within which other ecological, esthetics, economic, and energetic considerations and land use decisions occur. The linkages of land and fish, of grass and air, of birds and tropical forests are now widely recognized. No act on the land is singular any longer. Each act affects other people and other lands. This recognition motivates Rural System staff and encourages efforts to select the best areas for preservation while not creating restrictions that result in significant statewide or regional net economic loss or significantly reduce future development potentials. The areas that may be preserved blend ecological and human needs, perpetuate a broad spectrum of values and services, all the while reducing future ecosystem restoration costs. Around and adjacent to these areas, superior, profitable, comprehensive long-term forest and land management is practiced.

In Maryland, as an example of related interest, citizens passed the Maryland Forest Conservation Act (SB-224) along with county- and municipal-level forestry regulations, making existing forest condition and character become an integral part of the site planning process for land development. Prior to getting grading permits approved or erosion and sediment control plans, applicants must provide information on the condition of the existing forest and provide a plan for conserving the most valuable portions of the forest. The Act requires that a forest stand delineation be submitted and then forest conservation plans be submitted later in the development process. The Trevey attempts to assist in meeting those needs in Maryland, but also to respond to a diverse, changing set of laws, rules, and information needs throughout the mid-eastern US region.

A report called TheTrevey is presented to you after the tract has been delineated with its forest stands (composed of Alpha Units) and other areas. The report is produced by The Trevey System. The report is available both on the Internet at a web site and as a paper document. The report is from a word processor system having very common elements but when they are selected and combined with the characteristics of a particular tract of land, a unique report results. Landowner objectives are often unique and thus no one gets an average report (which, on average, seem inappropriate). The report is a combination of selected information, computer simulations, and computer optimization. The results, besides information, is a set of practices and schedules that if taken will achieve the landowner's objectives, given the resources of the area and the owner. If changes occur (e.g., fires, storms, land sales or purchases) the report can be revised and new optima computed for the revised system.

The Trevey Elements are the textual pieces of the system being prepared and revised. They are the chapters or units of the book for an owner or a unit of land. Each element casts light on needed elements. Each helps participants see The Trevey concept and the direction of the yet unfinished system. The Elements are presented here so that they may be used in other ways (education, research suggestions, partial plans, etc.) and improved.

A singular, generic system may produce a unique book (one rarely produced on paper because of its size and because it is readily seen at a web site in color) for each management area or unit. The electronic or internet book is like a good newspaper, out-of-date tomorrow. The Trevey shifts the emphasis from the plan to a planning system, a computer-based entity being continually updated, revised, edited, expanded, and made more interactive than the day before. An entire book may be obtained by the landowner, but chapters, tables, figures, and maps may also be retrieved from a computer screen or page printer. Ancillary products such as photographs of seeds or slides of pathogenic materials may be included. The total plan may not be (and rarely is) of interest on a particular day. A variety of other needs is met for stewardship plans, realtor work, court testimony, risk reduction, wildlife management, and estate planning. The material typically found in plans is available on a web site. The plan would has owner security. The landowner may call up his or her plan at any time, see color images, maps, and the latest information about the land and the plan for it. Models for components of everyone's plans are managed and improved from a central office but each person's plan remains directed to their personal objectives.

The stands (and other land units) and their area are based on likely species composition, density, size, condition, and age and likely dynamics. Superior site analyses of each stand and sub-unit of land are then delineated (mapped) and used to isolate stands of high quality vegetation, forest groves, and individual specimens to be considered for potential preservation in the development process. A variety of other needs is met for stewardship plans, realtor work, court testimony, risk reduction, wildlife management, and estate planning.

There are many premises and basic operating concepts of the The Trevey. The pattern of the general system and a systems approach are used.

A sketch of the general system.

Most premises are relatively simple and straight forward but their union and applications together produce a unique system with often amazing and far-reaching results. We have organized these premises largely within the categories of the general system, but some are inclusive and do not fit easily. They are labeled "Others" and may yield to further analysis and grouping.
Fundamental operating concepts that shape the work within The Trevey ...
  1. A systems approach
  2. Equifinality
  3. The n-dimensional hyperspace
  4. Land and the working platform
  5. Relations vs interactions
  6. Things (or energy) in time and space
  7. Alpha Units
  8. Non-linear predominates
  9. The rationally robust
  10. Sequence dominates factor effects
  11. Forest age dominates forest type
  12. Time-since...dominates factors
  13. Objectives of nature
  14. Objectives of publics
  15. Using a priori knowledge
  16. Cumulative knowledge
  17. Non-map land surface areas
  18. Action during the growing season
  19. The union of food and cover
  20. Transition tables
  21. Production functions
  22. Zones of influence
  23. Edge volumes
  24. The night world
  25. Lunar forces
  26. Minimum data; maximum information
  27. Heuristic optimization
  28. Alternative concepts of planning ... the system