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Research article2016Peer reviewedOpen access

Adaptation of Forest Management Regimes in Southern Sweden to Increased Risks Associated with Climate Change

Subramanian, Narayanan; Bergh, Johan; Johansson, Ulf; Nilsson, Urban; Sallnäs, Ola


Even though the growth rates of most tree species in Sweden is expected to increase in the near future as a result of climate change, increased risks of damage by storms and various pests and pathogens, notably root rot and bark beetles, may also occur. Thus, forest management practices such as changes to thinning regimes, reductions in rotation lengths, and switching to other species (native or exotic) may represent adaptive management strategies to increase the resistance and resilience of Swedish forests to climate change. Clearly, thorough analyses examining the effects of anticipated climatic changes on damage levels, and the potentially relieving effects of possible management adaptations are needed before implementing such changes. In this study, damage caused by storms, root rot and bark beetles (single and in various combinations) under selected climate and management scenarios were simulated in Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) stands. The results indicate that reductions in thinning intensity and rotation lengths could improve both volume production and profitability in southern Sweden. In addition, cultivation of rapidly growing species, such as hybrid larch (Larix x marschlinsii Coaz.) and hybrid aspen (Populus tremula L. x P. tremuloides Michx.), could be as profitable as Norway spruce cultivation, or even more profitable. However, slow-growing species, such as Silver birch (Betula pendula Roth), Downy birch (Betula pubescens Ehrh.) and European beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) indicated low economic output in terms of Land Expectation Value.


storm-felling; bark beetle; root rot; simulation model; forest production; profitability; land expectation value

Published in

2016, Volume: 7, number: 1, article number: 8
Publisher: MDPI AG