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Application of Structured Decision Making to an Assessment of Climate Change Vulnerabilities and Adaptation Options for Sustainable Forest Management

Aynslie E Ogden, Faculty of Forestry, University of British Columbia; Forest Management Branch, Government of Yukon
John L Innes, Faculty of Forestry, University of British Columbia

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Abstract

A logical starting point for climate change adaptation in the forest sector is to proactively identify management practices and policies that have a higher likelihood of achieving management objectives across a wide range of potential climate futures. This should be followed by implementation of these options and monitoring their success in achieving management objectives within an adaptive management context. Here, we implement an approach to identify locally appropriate adaptation options by tapping into the experiential knowledge base of local forest practitioners while at the same time, building capacity within this community to implement the results. We engaged 30 forest practitioners who are involved with the implementation of a regional forest management plan in identifying climate change vulnerabilities and evaluating alternative adaptation options. A structured decision-making approach was used to frame the assessment. Practitioners identified 24 adaptation options that they considered important to implement in order to achieve the regional goals and objectives of sustainable forest management in light of climate change.

Key words

adaptation, climate change, impacts, structured decision making, sustainable forest management, vulnerability
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Ecology and Society. ISSN: 1708-3087