Adapting Sustainable Forest Management to Climate Change: Scenarios for Vulnerability Assessment

Summary Text: 

This document is an outcome of Phase II of an effort by the Canadian Council of Forest Ministers to minimize the risks to Canadian forests and woodlands and maximize the benefits associated with a changing climate. It aims to equip members of the Canadian forest sector with a suite of tools and state-of-the-art information to enable them to make better decisions about the need for adaptation and the types of measures that may be most beneficial. The document is to be used in conjunction with workshops, seminars, and presentations to benefit forest practitioners as they seek innovative ways to adapt sustainable forest management policies and practices for a changing climate.  

Abstract or Description: 

Maintaining sustainable forest management practices in Canada during the 21st century and beyond will be a major challenge, given the uncertainties of global socioeconomic development and multiple interacting consequences of global environmental change. Scenarios represent an important tool for decision makers to use in exploring the causes and effects of possible changes in future environmental conditions and the implications of those changes for forests and the social, environmental, and economic benefits that forests provide. Scenario analysis allows managers and other stakeholders to evaluate the consequences of plausible alternative futures for forest management and to develop robust adaptation strategies. This report addresses the origins of the scenarios that will be needed to assess the impacts of climate change and other stressors on managed forest systems. It examines how scenarios can be constructed for application at local scales (such as a forest management unit), using both top–down (downscaling from global and regional projections) and bottom–up (accounting for local trends and projections) approaches. Practical examples of using scenarios for impact assessment in forestry are briefly reviewed in four case studies from across Canada. 

Publication Info: 

Price, D.T., and K.J. Isaac, 2012. Adapting sustainable forest management to climate change: Scenarios for vulnerability assessment. Canadian Council of Forest Minsters Climate Change Task Force.