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Integrated landscape management for resilient mountain forests under global changes

Project description

Increasing forest resilience to global changes

Forests are essential in reducing global warming and sustaining biodiversity. Therefore, EU policies aim to increase forest resilience by applying sustainable management practices. However, forests are subject to dramatic changes (e.g. natural disturbance regimes, land use and climate change) which impede forest management planning. The EU-funded REINFORCE project will develop multi-scale and integrated forest management strategies to improve resilience to changes in European mountain areas by studying several regions in the Alps. The project will use an innovative method combining dynamic landscape modelling, functional diversity and network analysis to identify the most efficient interventions in mountain landscapes to increase forest resilience. Lastly, the project will contribute to filling the gap between science and local decision-makers by incorporating the stakeholder community in building effective forest landscape management plans.

Objective

Forests are key components of modern landscapes, providing essential ecosystem services to humans and sustaining biodiversity. As they mitigate global warming, forest ecosystems are essential elements for meeting the objectives of the Paris Climate Agreement and an increase of their future resilience through sustainable management practices is one of the main priorities of the EU policy. Forests are projected to undergo dramatic compositional and structural shifts prompted by global changes, such as intensifying natural disturbance regimes, land use and climate change. This uncertainty makes planning for forest management exceptionally difficult. To date, studies have mainly focused on adapting forest management to climate warming but new interdisciplinary approaches for understanding and implementing tailored adaptation actions are needed to increase forest resilience to a large set of uncertainties. The overall aim of REINFORCE is to develop multi-scale and integrated forest management strategies to enhance resilience to global changes in European mountain forest landscapes. The project will consist in assessing future forest landscape dynamics in multiple case study regions in the Alps using advanced simulation modelling tools, followed by developing resilience-based forest management plans. This will be accomplished with a novel and innovative approach combining dynamic landscape modelling, functional diversity and network analysis. This approach allows to determine where to intervene more efficiently in stands within the landscape to maximize the resilience of the forests to sudden disturbances and climate change. Mixing multiple expertise and methods, REINFORCE will ultimately contribute in filling the gap between science and local decision-makers by incorporating stakeholder community in building effective and integrated forested landscape management to cope with climate and global changes.

Coordinator

ACCADEMIA EUROPEA DI BOLZANO
Net EU contribution
€ 183 473,28
Address
VIALE DRUSO 1
39100 Bolzano
Italy

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Region
Nord-Est Provincia Autonoma di Bolzano/Bozen Bolzano-Bozen
Activity type
Research Organisations
Links
Total cost
€ 183 473,28