Climate Change and...
Re-Framing Forest and Resource Management Strategies for a Climate Change Context
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Fig. 1. Managing for resistance to change. Invasion by lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta) is a common response to warming 20th-21st century conditions in Sierra Nevadan meadows. At Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite National Park, CA, climate change and other historic land uses have interacted to promote recurrent colonization episodes of pine (A). National Park Service managers have chosen to resist and counter these effects by periodically removing pine seedlings and small trees (B). Photo: C. Millar.
Fig. 2. Promoting resilience to change. Before- (upper) and after- (lower) thinning treatments to improve resilience to wildfire in pine forests at the Blacks Mountain Experimental Forest, northern Sierra Nevada, CA. The treatment included mechanical thinning plus prescribed fire; resilience was proven highly effective in the treated areas in the aftermath of the 2002 Cone Fire (Ritchie et al. 2007). Photo: John Ahnstead, USFS.
Fig. 3. Enabling response to change. Seed transfer rules, based on zones such as those of the California federal, state, and private forest-genetic programs, have been developed to restrict movement of germplasm from source areas to restoration locations under the assumption that local genotypes are better adapted than non-local. Relaxing the guidelines and increasing diversity by mixing small percentages of seed from zones adjacent to the restoration sites may improve adaptation in the face of changing climates. Photo: California Dept. of Forestry and Fire Protection.
Fig. 4. Realigning ecosystems far out of the range of natural variability. Rather than using the common rule to target historic pre-disturbance conditions and lake level elevation as a restoration effort for Mono Lake's aquatic ecosystem, the 1990 court settlement and subsequent policies used water balance and climate models to develop goals that would re-align the lake level to current dynamics and anticipated future climates. Photo: C. Millar.
Fig. 5. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Biomass production from wood fiber removed during forest fuel reduction treatments provides alternative energy, thereby reducing fossil-fuel dependent energy consumption and ultimately lowering greenhouse gas emissions. Photo: Mark Nechodom, USFS.