User's guide to RegWise
RegWise (sv: RegVis) is a tool for large-scale forestry scenario analysis. Because users have different assumptions about forest management and use, the application can evaluate a variety of forestry-related issues. What to analyse is decided by the user and may include many utilities: supply of timber, forest fuel ("bio-energy"), development of biodiversity, and amount of carbon sequestration in forest.
The basic analyse done with RegWise is non-spatial. In such an analysis you would normally choose to use National Forest Inventory (NFI) survey plots as input data. A spatial analysis requires whole-coverage data, which is obtained by combining NFI plots with remote sensing data. One method to combine data is called kNN, and Heureka will offer the possibility to import kNN-Sweden data (). A GIS-tool for working with landscape samples in the form of 1x1 km contiguous squares have been developed.
Results can be presented in tables and maps that describe the state and development of the forest ecosystem as well as outcomes of cuttings and other utilities.
The application addresses the needs of information desired by different kind of users, for example the Swedish Forest Agency, the Swedish Environmental Agency, large forest companies, and branch organizations and actors interested in forest policy issues. Because many uses are included in the analyses, other organizations - such as municipalities, county administrations, and NGO:s - will benefit from the analyses.
Working with Projects
RegWise is based on forest scenario analyses, in contrast to the optimization-based analysis used in PlanWise. A scenario is a result of the assumptions made and the models selected for projecting the development of the forest and the outputs over an extended time horizon.
In RegWise, a set of rules is used to allocate activities (silvicultural treatments and harvesting) to treatment units. A treatment unit in RegWise could be an NFI sample plot. Rules for allocating treatments are currently (2011) the same as in the Hugin system, the predecessor to RegWise. These rules are represented as priority functions, with which treatment priorities are calculated for each treatment unit. Treatments are then allocated according to the priorities calculated, subject to global constraints such as maximum harvest volume or maximum area fertilized during a period. Of course, not all treatments are applicable to all treatment units. Additional rules define what treatments are allowed. For example, final felling can only be carried out if the stand age for a certain treatment unit has reached the minimum final felling age, and pre-commercial thinning is only carried out in young stands with a stem density succeeding a certain threshold value.
The total harvest volume can be set either manually or determined automatically. In the latter case, harvesting in a period is essentially calculated as a function of current growth, growth trend (whether growth is increasing or decreasing over two periods). A more detailed explanation of how it works is given here: RegWise Priority Functions. In RegWise and in PlanWise, treatment units are grouped into so called Forest Domains, based on used-defined criteria (conditions), see About Control Categories, Control Tables, and Forest Domains. The Control Table ControlTable Scenario Settings is specific for RegWise, and holds the settings for priority functions and global constraints mentioned above.
Basic steps for running a simulation:
- Select an area. If you use NFI-data, you should use a five-year series since each survey takes five years.
- Define forest domains and control categories.
- Link control categories to each forest domain. Assign the area proportion for each control category so that a forest domain is completely allocated (100%).
- Select "Simulate..." from the Action-menu.
- Reference year reflects the inventory year, or in case you are using NFI-data for several inventory years, the "average" year that corresponds to the middle of the period of the input data. For example, if you have selected inventory data from 2005 to 2009 (five years), then the reference year will be set to 2007.
- Start year is year of the first time period (middle) of the scenario. If, for example, this is set to 2011, and the reference year is 2007, then all data will be projected for four years (2011 minus 2007) before the actual scenario begins. During these four years, harvesting is simulated according to manual settings in control table Regional Framework. Since the growth period length is five years, the forest state and outputs (harvest volumes etc.) is distributed over a five-year period in a logical way. In this example, the period middle of the forest is year 2011, and it will be represented by the state of the forest in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013 (projected from 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009 respectively).
Results can be presented in maps, tables, and graphs, both on stand-level and forest-level aggregates, see Results.