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Research article2019Peer reviewedOpen access

Impacts of climate change, weather extremes and alternative strategies in managed forests

Subramanian, Narayanan; Nilsson, Urban; Mossberg, Magnus; Bergh, Johan


The growth rate of most tree species in boreal forests will increase with changing climate. This increase is counterbalanced by an increased risk of damage due to extreme weather events. It is believed that the risk of storm damage will increase over time, especially if forests continue to be managed as they are today. In this study, a new landscape-level hybrid forest growth model 3PG-Heureka was developed and simulations were performed to predict the damage caused by storm events in Kronoberg county, over a period of 91 years (2010-2100) with different alternative management regimes under various climatic scenarios (historic, RCP4.5 and RCP8.5). The results indicate that damage caused by storm events could drastically reduce the annual volume increment and annual net revenue obtained from forest landscapes if current forest management regimes are used. These problems can be reduced by adopting alternative management strategies involving avoiding thinning, shorter rotation periods and planting alternative tree species. Alternative management strategies could potentially improve annual volume increments and net revenue obtained while reducing storm-felling. Planting Scots pine instead of Norway spruce across the landscape to minimize storm damage is predicted to be less effective than reducing rotation periods.


Landscape modelling; parameterization; storm-felling; short rotation forestry; timber harvesting; net income

Published in

2019, Volume: 26, number: 1, pages: 53-70 Publisher: TAYLOR & FRANCIS INC