New online ‘Tree Volume Calculator’ launched by Minister Doyle

A new online ‘Tree Volume Calculator’ has been launched to help forest owners and managers estimate tree volume and determine the value of single trees or whole forests.

The calculator was launched today, Wednesday, June 5, by Andrew Doyle, Minister of State with responsibility for forestry, who explained that the technology uses basic information from the tree, and provides results that can be used to inform forest management decisions.

“The availability of this online calculator gives everyone access to a facility that allows the calculation of tree volume using the basic information of tree diameter and height. Availability online will allow people to access the facility at any time,” Minister Doyle said.

By launching this calculator today, we are endeavouring to provide the best available information to all those involved in managing forests and in providing advice to owners.

The calculator was created using data from thousands of trees, which forms the basis for calculating information for newly-felled trees.

For conifers, this data was obtained from more than 38,000 trees in experimental plots, which were felled between 1971 and 2006.

For broadleaf trees, developers used the data from 4,000 trees across the country. These were not felled; rather, a remote diameter scope was used to collect the information.

The information for boradleaf trees was gathered throughout the year 2013.

According to the Department for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, the calculator allows the total stem volume of a tree, as well as the volume of any segment of a stem, to be calculated.

The department also claims that “very high accuracy can be reached” if the upper stem diameter and stump diameter are incorporated into the measurements.

“This information on tree size will aid in making an informed decision on whether to fell a forest, or retain it for a further number of years,” Minister Doyle added.

He concluded his remarks by saying: “At a national level, from a roundwood supply and wood quality perspective, the timing of felling is important to allow the production of sufficient quantities of valuable sawlog-sized material to support an expanding sawmill sector.”