Climate-friendly Forests: An evening with Forest Ecologist Bill Keeton


6:30 PM


Ilsley Library, Jessica Swift Community Room, 75 Main St., Middlebury, VT

Join UVM Professor of Forest Ecology, Bill Keeton, as he explains how our forests can be more “carbon-friendly” in the face of a rapidly changing climate. Learn about the role of forests in keeping carbon out of the atmosphere, how carbon markets work, and the possibilities for Vermont landowners to participate in these markets.

Across North America, researchers like Bill are finding that old-growth forests sequester, or store, much more carbon than do young forests. Younger forests absorb carbon at a faster rate, “but older, higher biomass forests act like big carbon reservoirs, holding carbon that, if cut, would be released to the atmosphere, even accounting for new growth and the portion of carbon transferred to wood products,” Bill acknowledges. Researchers suggest that managing for high biomass forests and improving the forest’s ability to store carbon will help address excess carbon dioxide in our atmosphere.

And now there are major financial incentives for climate friendly forest management offered by rapidly developing domestic and international carbon markets. But challenges range from the technical complexity of carbon forestry to the bewildering array of different carbon market types and mechanisms, not to mention the formidable requirements governing the forestry and conservation projects generating emissions offsets. In this talk, UVM Forestry Professor Dr. William Keeton will break out the key points landowners and conservationists need to know.

The talk will cover basic carbon science; carbon forestry; and markets, offsets, and carbon projects. The talk will also discuss the findings of a recently completed feasibility study commissioned by the Vermont Land Trust.

Read a profile of Bill’s research.

Bill’s talk is co-sponsored by Vermont Family Forests, Vermont Natural Resources Council, Vermont Audubon, and the Addison County Regional Planning Commission.

UVM Professor of Forest Ecology Bill Keeton directs the Carbon Dynamics Laboratory and is a Fellow in the Gund Institute for Environment. His research focuses on forest dynamics, riparian ecology, forest carbon, old-growth forests, and sustainable forest management. He holds a B.S. in Natural Resources, a Masters in Conservation Biology and Policy, and a Ph.D. in Forest Ecology.