Simon Landhäusser

Simon Landhäusser

Department of Renewable Resources
University of Alberta

Chair title

NSERC/Capital Power/Oilsands Industrial Research Chair in Forest Land Reclamation

Chair program

Industrial Research Chairs program


Chairholder since 2009


Industrial disturbances such as open pit mining for mineral resources currently affect significant areas in the boreal forest regions of Canada. These activities completely remove vegetation, soil and subsoil to expose the layers that contain the resource. This Industrial Chair will address questions related to the reclamation of disturbed lands to self-sustaining boreal forest ecosystems common to the region. The research program will focus on the function and underlying processes of forest canopy cover as a prime factor in determining forest successional pathways.

The key activities of the Chair will be to develop innovative strategies and techniques for the re-establishment of forests on surface mined lands and to investigate whether these forests develop and display processes and functions comparable to natural ecosystems. Initially the focus will be on the establishment of trembling aspen (an early successional fast-growing tree species native to the boreal forest) and its use as a nurse crop for forest development. In particular, factors such as seedling planting stock quality, site conditions and planting techniques that promote rapid establishment and development of a closed forest canopy will be addressed.

The research will provide the industrial partners with a clear path to reconstruct boreal forests on reclaimed lands. The chair program will help direct future forest reclamation research by leveraging and building on past and current scientific information and will help refine the knowledge and understanding needed for more effective forest reclamation strategies at the provincial, national and international level.


  • Albian Sands Energy Inc.
  • Capital Power
  • Suncor Energy
  • Syncrude Canada Ltd.

Contact information

Department of Renewable Resources
University of Alberta
4-42 Earth Sciences Building
63 University Campus NW
Edmonton, Alberta
T6G 2H1

Tel.: 780-492-6381
Fax: 780-492-1767


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