Plantation Management 3D

Author: Janet Saw, Berwick School of IT, Monash University

Forest management is a complex problem. The aim of this simulation game is to manage water levels in the catchment by considering the areas of plantations to maintain, the various stages between plantations, the location of plantations, and also partly sustain a small town by providing employment in the forestry industry.

Below are a few generalised facts from the Australian Bureau of Rural Sciences about plantation forestry and its effects. These were taken into consideration during production of the simulation.

  • Plantations can reduce stream flow, and impact may be significant in the future.
  • Annual crops and pasture use less water than trees because of shorter growing seasons and shallower root systems. Trees use more water than pasture. Expanding plantation forests can cause issues in catchments where water is short in supply.
  • The amount of runoff change depends on rainfall. Where mean annual rainfall is 1000mm/yr, on average the runoff changes by 200mm/yr of rainfall.
  • Water use is less if plantation is located on elevated parts of catchment.
  • Effects of plantations on water yield can potentially be minimised by dispersing plantations across the landscape and phasing planting to spread age classes.

This 3D visualisation requires the Virtools 3DVIA Player.

Plantation Game 3D screenshot
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