Climate Change and...

Re-Framing Forest and Resource Management Strategies for a Climate Change Context

Contents of the ToolBox: Adaptation, Mitigation and the "5-R Strategies"

Adaptation Strategies: 1. Increase Resistance to Change. "Homeland Security" approach. Defending high-value resources against change is an appropriate and defensible, if short-term, approach for resource managers under certain circumstances. High-risk, high-value, and/or extremely urgent situations, such as critically vulnerable endangered species, extreme fire-risk situations, or volatile invasive species epidemics, are most appropriate subjects for resistance management. In such cases, using great force to armor resource against change may be the best option. This action may be extremely expensive, take much time, resource, and staff effort, and be possible only for the short term. An example of resisting environmental change against great odds of success has been the program to captively propagate and reintroduce California condor. Other examples include creating in-situ refugia for endangered species, constructing thorough fire breaks, conducting early-detection rapid-removal programs on new invasions of undesired exotic species, or erecting tarps over snowfields in alpine ski-areas (Fig 1.). Resisting change may often be risky; in many situations conditions will eventually become so different that a resource threshold passes and resistance becomes futile. Then, an undesired consequence can be that the system ratchets forward catastrophically (burns, floods, falls into an extinction vortex). Thus, choosing to resist change might be considered a "paddling upstream" option.

bottom right