Three scientists rewarded by the Marcus Wallenberg Prize 2020

The Marcus Wallenberg Prize aims to recognize, encourage and stimulate path-breaking scientific achievements, which significantly contribute to broader knowledge and/or technical development within the broad fields of interest to the forest industry.

In 2020, 3 scientists were rewarded for their groundbreaking work on a model to predict forest growth in a changing climate. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the ceremony has been postponed to Autumn 2021 and no prices were given in 2021.

In the 90s, Professors Joseph Landsberg, from Australia, and Richard Waring, from the USA, developed a forest growth model based on simple plant physiological principles such as access to light, water, and nutrients. Professor Nicholas Coops, then working in Australia, now in Canada, added advanced satellite imagery to scale up the model. The result is a powerful tool, the Physiological Principles Predicting Growth, or 3PG model, that predicts growth and assesses the risks to the world’s forests posed by climate change.

3PG is now one of the world’s most widely used models for assessing forest growth over large areas. Forest owners use it for purposes such as calculating volume, diameter and biomass development. It can be applied to species as diverse as eucalyptus and pine, in monocultures and mixed-species stands, across different climates and landscape types from Australia and New Zealand to Europe and North America.

Watch the recording of the Digital Ceremony and Symposium held on 26 October 2021 to learn more about their work and forest growth in a changing climate.