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Lake Simcoe Sessions Podcast​

Episode 2​: Changing Forests

What changes has the Lake Simcoe watershed seen in its forests over the years? What did forests look like in the past? What do they look like now? And what changes can we expect to see in our forests in the future? Special guest Phil Davies joins host Katie Biddie to better understand the threats our forests face in the future as they discuss the special role trees play as both adaptations and mitigations to climate change. They look at how trees and forest composition will change over the next several decades in response to climate change and rising temperatures.​​​​

Special Guest Bio

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Phil Davies is a Registered Professional Forester (R.F.P.) and Manager of Forestry and Greenspace Services with the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority. He understands how forests, woodlands, and trees affect the lives of so many communities and is responsible for looking out for Ontario’s forests and protecting the various values they provide.

Phil holds a Masters of Forest Conservation (MFC) from the University of Toronto and is a member of the Ontario Professional Forestry Association. He has worked in southern Ontario forests over the past 20 years and has witnessed first-hand the changes happening in our forests today.

Phil Davies

Key take​aways from this episode:

  • Forests help to mitigate climate change by serving as an important greenhouse gas sink that absorb and store carbon dioxide.
  • Some tree species, like the White Spruce, are predicted to be pushed out of this area by 2050 because of climate change.​ ​

What can you do?

  • Learn how to identify a tree in your neighbourhood or at your local conservation area. Use our dichotomous tree key, or the app Seek by iNaturalist to learn a new species of tree.
  • Plant for the future. If you’re planting a new tree, pay attention to what you’re planting. Pick a species that will thrive in the future and select native plants as much as possible.
  • If you own a woodlot or forest on your property, think about the composition of your trees. Learn more about Grow Your Legacy program from the Regional Municipality of York’s Greening Strategy where landowners in northern York Region are eligible for additional funding to increase forest cover. The Simcoe County Tree Planting Program seeks to increase tree cover in high priority areas such as marginal farmlands and along streams in Simcoe County. 
  • If your property is suitable, our experts are happy to help you establish a new forest, connect or enlarge your existing forest, or establish a windbreak. Our team of experts will help you every step of the way from funding and planning to planting and tending your new trees. We may cover 50% to 90% of the costs.

Meet Our Host

Host Katie Biddie has spent nearly a decade working in environmental education, nature interpretation and community engagement, and is a proud Lake Simcoe watershed resident. 

As a child she aspired to be the next “Dr. Jane Goodall”, investigating wildlife all around the world. Katie has visited 24 different countries, is a graduate from the University of Guelph (HBSc.) with a major in Zoology, a graduate of Lakehead University (BEd.) specializing in Outdoor and Environmental Education, and is currently a York University Masters candidate in Community Engagement and Leadership.

Katie Biddie

support icon   Thanks to RBC Foundation 

This podcast is brought to you by the RBC Foundation under Tech for Nature. We are grateful for the support as we educate and inspire Lake Simcoe watershed residents.​

information, icon   Related Information​

Learn more about climate change in the Lake Simcoe watershed

View local climate change trends and projections

Are you an educator? Download our free grade 7 and 8 climate change presentation

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