The Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund

Introduction to Grant Projects

Forest Resource Conservation Group, Forest Research Institute, Forest Research Department, Hokkaido Research Organization Nobuhiro Akashi, Research Principal

Proposing sustainable management methods for forest landscapes using retention forestry

Research grant

Project Description

Verifying the effectiveness of retention forestry in providing a balance between producing timber and conserving biodiversity.
The future sustainability of Japan's man-made forests is in danger due to an imabalance in age structure and excessive tree-trimming for biomass resources. Recently retention forestry has been drawing attention as a forest management method which provides a balance between producing timber and conserving biodiversity, and mitigates the damage caused by clear-cut logging. This project aims to carry out Japan's largest-scale verification test of this method to clarify its effects on biota, and soil and water conservation functions. It will also assess the changes to timber production and the socially beneficial functions of forests when retention forestry is being widely implemented across a landscape, in order to propose forest management methods that sustainably realizes both timber production and these socially beneficial functions. [Project no. R15-0025]

Ecosystems and the Symbiotic Society
Grant year
FY15/3 Research Grants
Grant term
2 years
April 2016 - March 2018
Grant amount
10,000,000 yen
Activity region
Akabira, Fukugawa, and Ashibetsu, Hokkaido Japan
Work being carried out at a retention forestry test site

Overview of the Organization

Nobuhiro Akashi, Research Principle
Project organization
Hokkaido Research Organization
Forest Resource Conservation Group, Forest Research Institute, Forest Research Department
Nobuhiro Akashi, Research Principle
Specialist fields: forest science, ecology
Affiliated academic societies: The Japanese Forest Society, The Ecological Society of Japan, The Mammal Society of Japan
Background: 1996, left the Kyoto University Graduate School of Science doctoral program after completing course term. 1998, awarded doctorate of science. 1996, becomes a researcher at the Hokkaido Research Organization Forestry Research Institute and is given responsibility for researching methods for handling Yezo deer populations and conserving biodiversity in Hokkaido's forests. 2013, begins verification testing of retention forestry with co-researchers, carrying out research aimed at creating a balance of timber production from man-made forests and conservicng socially beneficial functions.
2014, adopts current position.
Research record
  • Akashi N, "Evaluating forest functions." Journal of Northern Hokkaido Forests Association p.129-132. Hokkaido Shimbun Press. (2011)
  • Akashi N, Unno A, Terazawa K. "Effects of deer abundance on broad-leaf tree seedling establishment in the understory of Abies sachalinensis plantations." Journal of Forest Research 16: 500-508. (2011)
  • Kon H, Akashi N, Minamino K, Kuramoto S, Iida S. "Seed dispersal of broad leaved species in Abies sachalinensis plantations on central Hokkaido, Japan." Japanese Journal of Ecology 63: 211-218. (2013)
  • Akashi N, Fujita M, Watanabe O, Uno H, Ogihara H. "A simple check sheet for evaluating the impact of Yezo deer on natural forests." Journal of the Japan Forest Society 95: 259-266. (2013)
  • Akashi N, Unno A, Terazawa K (2015) Significance of woody browse preferences in evaluating the impact of sika deer browsing on tree seedlings. Journal of Forest Research 20: 396-402.
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