Southern Forestry Consultants (SFC), a U.S. company with over three decades of forestry management experience in the southeastern U.S. meets the innovation engine of a top tier Canadian geomatics firm with an international portfolio. Southern Forestry Consultants and Lim Geomatics create a strategic partnership to kickstart the digital transformation of the forestry industry.
“We were aligned right off the bat,” says Dr. Kevin Lim, president and founder of Lim Geomatics. “They’re bringing the forestry expertise. We’re bringing the GIS, geomatics and IT technology.”
Southern Forestry stewards 500,000 acres of forest on behalf of mostly private landowners with properties that stretch across the southeastern U.S. The company integrates economic, recreation, wildlife management and environmental priorities into cohesive forest management systems. “We have been in business since 1987,” says Michael Dooner, founder and president of SFC. “In that 31 years, we have developed and implemented strategies that are in many ways now accepted as the appropriate ways of managing southeastern forests.”
The foresters, wildlife biologists and land managers at SFC have honed the company’s benchmark methodologies over countless hours in the field. This boots-on-the-ground know how will help inform the Lim Geomatics’ innovation engine. “They are the subject matter experts,” Lim says. “They’re going to allow us to ground the tech side within the pure forestry domain.”
Founded in 2006, Lim Geomatics already plays a pivotal role in how geospatial technologies are transforming the forestry sector. Lim published the original research on how remotely sensed LiDAR data can be used to create enhanced forest inventories. The firm also develops web-based and mobile applications that improve how companies collect and use geospatial data at each stage of forestry operations. “We feel very strongly that they are the leading North American geomatics firm in the natural resources field,” Dooner says. “The goal is to take Lim Geomatics’ ability to create the future and apply it to present-day forest management practices.”
The next wave of Lim innovation will incorporate the field experience of veteran foresters. SFC and Lim Geomatics are developing solutions and tools for foresters by foresters. Sophisticated geospatial technologies will integrate with silvicultural systems that have been refined over decades. “It’s something we’ve thought about for years,” Lim says. “We can’t get there without someone helping us to put the pieces together.”
This alliance was forged in response to a groundswell of demand from within the forestry industry for new and better ways of applying technology. Lim Geomatics and SFC have joined forces to kickstart nothing short of a paradigm shift. “We’re not just looking to create the next normal iteration of a digital solution,” Dooner says. “We’re looking to exponentially advance the use of technology in forest management.”
The cross-border partnership is an industry game changer. Lim Geomatics and SFC have the experience and the vision to pioneer next generation digital solutions that are firmly rooted in the complex practice of a rugged industry. The future of forestry begins at the intersection of innovative geospatial technology and decades of field experience under the canopy.