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Durham University

Department of Geography

Departmental Research Projects


A research project of the Department of Geography.


Demonstration of the use of satellite images, estimations and the www in forestry to protect nature and prevent environmental accidents.

ForestSAFE is an international project funded by the EU LIFE-Environment programme which is set up to demonstrate new ideas, methods or technologies for environmental protection and management.

The project itself is an international partnership between nine institutions in Sweden and the U.K. The intention is to match needs derived by foresters at both regional and national scales with contemporary research.

Project Partners

National forestry organisations

  • National Board of Forestry (Sweden)
  • Forestry Commission (U.K.)
  • Forest Research (U.K.)

Regional forestry organisations

  • Regional Forestry Board of Vaesterbotten
  • Regional Forestry Board of Vaestra Goetaland
  • Forest Enterprise, Galloway
  • Forest Enterprise, Kielder

Research Institutions

  • Swedish University of Agricultural Science
  • Durham University


The project aims to develop innovative scientific methods that combine satellite imagery and ground survey data with planning and monitoring tools to demonstrate how public authorities, forest companies and private forest owners can access up-to-date forestry and landscape information.

There are five key objectives:

Monitor changes in the forest due to planting, harvesting, silvicultural operations and areas of damage from wind, snow or fire.

Identify areas of high environmental value e.g. riparian zones with a large proportion of deciduous tree species, very old forests, and wetland forests.

Estimate growing stock, age and tree species composition at stand, local and landscape level.

Demonstrate methods to track stands with poor or good growth potential over time.

Demonstrate how up-to-date information can be provided to users through the internet.


From the Department of Geography

From other departments

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