Washington, D.C.–The Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) is proud to have participated in the 26th International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) World Congress, the global gathering of forest stakeholders, from June 23 to 29, 2024 in Stockholm, Sweden. SFI was represented by Lauren Cooper, Chief Conservation Officer at SFI and Dr. Healy Hamilton, Chief Scientist at SFI, both of whom had an opportunity to present and address attendees.

The IUFRO World Congress is a premier platform for researchers, policymakers, and experts from around the world to share the latest research, innovations, and applied science in forestry. The Congress featured over 4,500 presentations covering themes such as biodiversity, bioeconomy, forest resilience, and sustainable societies.

Cooper presented on An exploration of Climate-Smart Forestry to reduce risk, enhance opportunity, and seek alignment across landscapes featuring an overview of the Climate Smart Forestry concept and highlighting SFI’s unique role in closing the science-practitioner gap, identified in her PLOS Climate article in 2023. She pointed out the strength of the Climate Smart Forestry requirements in the SFI Forest Management Standard as a central tool to advance such principles across the North American landscape.

Dr. Healy Hamilton, SFI’s Chief Scientist, Antonio Brunori, Head of PEFC Italy, and Lauren Cooper, SFI’s Chief Conservation Officer, met up at the IUFRO World Congress 2024.

“We are proud to name SFI amongst the many organizations with conservation leaders presenting at this prestigious event,” said Cooper. “This opportunity aligns perfectly with SFI’s mission to advance sustainability through forest-focused collaboration, and to learn from other forest conservation and sustainable management leaders on a global scale.”

Dr. Hamilton co-authored a presentation in the session titled Bottom-up meets top down: Data and tools for developing forest biodiversity metrics combining in situ and remote sensing, highlighting the potential of coupling remote sensing, machine learning, and ground observations with models to provide operational solutions for understanding complex forested landscape processes and supporting efficient planning toward sustainable management.

“I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to share our work at the IUFRO World Congress,” said Dr. Hamilton. “By leveraging cutting-edge technologies like remote sensing and artificial intelligence, we can unlock new insights into forest ecosystems and pave the way for more effective conservation strategies.”

The IUFRO World Congress was an exciting opportunity for the SFI conservation team to connect with like-minded professionals, exchange knowledge, and learn from the latest research and innovations in the field. SFI is the only forest certification program that requires participants to support research that improves forest health and conservation understanding. SFI’s conservation efforts contribute to its standards by quantifying conservation benefits across the SFI footprint of over 147 million hectares. And SFI’s science-based tools, such as those measuring the contributions of SFI-certified forests in mitigating climate change, provide powerful nature-based solutions.

For more information about SFI’s conservation impact and commitment to sustainable forest management, visit https://forests.org/conservation/.

For more information about the IUFRO World Congress, visit https://iufro2024.com/.

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The Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI) advances sustainability through forest-focused collaborations. We are an independent, nonprofit organization that leverages four interconnected pillars of work: standards, conservation, community, and education. SFI works with the forest sector, conservation groups, academics, researchers, brand owners, resource professionals, landowners, educators, local communities, Indigenous Peoples, and governments. Collaborating with our network, we leverage SFI-certified forests and products as powerful tools to help solve sustainability challenges such as climate action, conservation of biodiversity, education of future generations, and sustainable economic development.

Christine Leduc
VP, Communications and Government Relations
Sustainable Forestry Initiative