Date: April 25, 2018
Time: 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm Pacific
Presenter: Sergey Tsynkevych (M.A.) & Duncan Knowler (PhD); School of Resource and Environmental Management (REM), Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC.
Overview: Supported by funding from the British Columbia Cattlemen’s Association (BCCA) and the Mitacs Accelerate Program, Sergey embarked on a year-long modelling study to better understand the potential effects of the Yellow Starthistle (YST or Centaurea solstitialis) invasion on BC’s ranchers. Yellow Starthistle has a long and well-documented history of negative impacts in Western United States that reaches tens of millions of millions of dollars annually. The negative impacts of the invasion are incurred primarily by livestock producers, although orchards and vineyards are known to be affected as well via faster depletion of soil moisture. Aided by climate change, YST is moving North and is posing a real threat to the arid and semi-arid grassland ecosystems present in the Okanagan Region. To investigate the potential damages from the invasion, Sergey created a bioeconomic model to simulate the YST invasion. He found that, if YST proceeds to invade interior BC, an average rancher could face additional costs of $8,912 annually. He discusses various model scenarios and the impacts YST could generate in more detail. He proceeds by analysing how ranchers’ land management actions could be used to reduce the risk of invasion of private rangelands and how climate change could affect those actions. Finally, he examines the value of preventative actions in light of his findings and the wider academic literature.
Presenter Bio: An economist by training, Sergey is currently completing a Masters in Resource Management (M.R.M) at SFU’s School of Resource & Environmental Management (REM). Having started his career in Eastern Canada in the IT and Financial Industries he changed course and moved to Western Canada to pursue his passion by studying the interactions between socio-economic systems and the environment. When he’s not engaged in quantitative studies, he entertains his creative and scientific sides by experimenting with homebrewing, fermentation techniques and edible fungi cultivation.