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Research Branch Staff Publications

Integrating climate change adaptation into forest management.

Spittlehouse, D.L. 2005. Integrating climate change adaptation into forest management. The Forestry Chronicle 81:91-695.
Future climate change will affect society's ability to use forest resources. We take account of climate in forest management and this will help us adapt to the effects of climate change on forests. However, society will have to adjust to how forests adapt by changing expectations for the use of forest resources because management can only influence the timing and direction of forest adaptation at selected locations. There will be benefits as well as loses and an important component of adaptation will be balancing values. Adaptation options to respond to impacts on the timber supply in Canada for the next 50 to 100 years are limited mainly to forest protection and wood utilisation because these forests are already in the ground. Adaptation through reforestation will focus on commercial tree species. It is important to start developing adaptation strategies now. These include assessing forest vulnerability to climate change, revising expectations of forest use, determining research and educational needs, development of forest policies to facilitate adaptation, and determining when to implement responses. Government agencies should take the lead in creating an environment to foster adaptation in forestry and in developing the necessary information required to respond.
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