Restoring the Earth The Boreal Forests
Alan Watson Featherstone
on Wednesday, 11 April 2007
The Jardine Penthouse, 48/F Jardine House, One Connaught Place
Complimentary Drinks Reception 6.30 pm; Lecture 7.30 pm
(please note that additional seating has now been provided at this venue) We are delighted to welcome to Hong Kong Alan Watson Featherstone to lecture on the world's Boreal forests. Boreal forests extend all around the northern land masses of the planet, and they form the world's largest forest ecosystem. Home to wildlife that includes bears, wolves, caribou and tigers, the boreal forest zone contains some of the Earth's best remaining wilderness areas. Characterised primarily by conifers such as pine, spruce, fir and larch, they are also noted for the occurrence of two closelyrelated species of aspen, that are the most widelydistributed trees on the planet. Illustrated with outstanding high quality colour slides, the talk will provide a snapshot of the current state of the boreal forests, and a message of hope for the future. The world's boreal forests also play a vital ecological role in terms of climate regulation. However, boreal forests are under threat all around the world now, through factors such as logging, mining and humaninduced climate change, with potentially disastrous consequences for the future. The short growing season, harsh climate and marginal conditions in the boreal zone leave the forests there particularly vulnerable to degradation by human activities, and also mean that they are slow to recover from such disturbance. This presentation gives an overview of boreal forests and their ecology, and the threats they face, and includes a detailed focus on Scotland's forests, as a case study both for the effects of boreal forest loss and also for the potential for ecological restoration to reverse the environmental destruction that has already occurred. Alan Watson Featherstone has been the Executive Director of Trees for Life since its inception, and the charity has received a series of awards, including the UK Conservation Project of the Year Award in 1991, and the Millennium Marque Award, for environmental excellence for the 21st century, in 2000. In 2001, Mr. Watson Featherstone received the prestigious Schumacher Award in recognition of 'his inspirational and practical work in conserving and restoring degraded ecosystems'. Currently, Mr Watson Featherstone is spearheading a new project through Trees for Life, called Restoring the Earth, which is promoting the restoration of the planet's degraded ecosystems as the most important task for the 21st century. An accomplished nature photographer, Mr. Watson Featherstone launched the Findhorn Nature Calendar in 1983, combining his photographs of nature with inspiring quotations in a beautiful highquality publication. This lecture is being held in the fine surroundings of the Jardine Penthouse. Members and their guests are most welcome to attend at HK$100 for Members, HK$150 for Members' guests and others. This includes a complimentary drinks reception prior to the lecture.