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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2012

Implications of growth uncertainties associated with climate change for stand management

Eriksson Ljusk, Ola; backeus, sofia; garcia, frederick


Climate change is expected to have substantial effects on many aspects of forest ecosystems, including timber production. Temperatures in northern Europe are expected to increase considerably, although there is substantial uncertainty about both the seasonal and average changes that will occur. In Scandinavia, production is predicted to increase across most of the area covered by boreal forest, since the growth of trees in the region is currently limited by temperature. Therefore, we have analyzed the importance of adapting management practices to future climate changes and considered possible ways to address associated stand management problems. For this purpose, we simulated climate scenarios with temperature increases ranging from 2.5 to 6.0A degrees C over a 100-year period, and effects on typical Swedish stands with several species, then optimized their management with simulated annealing. The results indicate that the maximum considered temperature trend would raise the economic value of the stands by almost 5% more than the minimum trend. However, the importance of optimizing management plans in accordance with the correct temperature scenario appears to be limited. The plan optimized for the minimum temperature trend was only marginally inferior to the plan optimized for the maximum temperature trend in the maximum trend scenario, and vice versa. It also seemed adequate to use a deterministic formulation of the problem, and in cases where a stochastic climate change model generated more robust plans, the advantage could be attributed to model artifacts rather than climate change per se.


Climate change; Forest management planning; Simulated annealing; Uncertainty

Published in

European Journal of Forest Research
2012, volume: 131, number: 4, pages: 1199-1209
Publisher: SPRINGER

Authors' information

Eriksson Ljusk, Ola (Eriksson, Ola)
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Forest Resource Management
backeus, sofia (backeus, sofia)
Swedish Energy Agency
garcia, frederick
National Institute of Agricultural Research (INRA)

Sustainable Development Goals

SDG13 Climate action

UKÄ Subject classification

Forest Science

Publication Identifiers


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