In order to enhance the resilience of forests against destructive events (forest fires, insect epidemics and other natural disturbances), a number of adaptation solutions exist. For example, active fuel management (e.g. thinning, removal of debris and prescribed burns) can help reduce the risk of forest fires. Managing forests in a way that prioritizes more fire-resistant species also increases their resilience. Since areas plagued by insect epidemics are often more vulnerable to fire, they can be prioritized for logging, which reduces risk.
With the climate evolving as fast as it is, human assistance may be necessary to maintain forests that are suited to their climate conditions. For example, assisted migration can be used to encourage the establishment of species suited to the new temperature patterns and more resistant to different risks. Additionally, the selection of fast-growing species helps ensure a greater supply of timber for the logging industry.
The Integration of Climate Change and the Development of Adaptive Capacity into the Determination of Allowable Cuts in Quebec Forests
The approach developed provides decision-makers with a decision-making aid process that summarizes the results of the model.
Land conservation also can be used to establish forest reserves. Indeed, an intact forest offers a number of advantages such as the preservation of habitat and biodiversity. One must not overlook the impacts that lower production has on the communities that rely on this resource. These communities can increase their resilience by diversifying their economy and reducing their dependence on the forestry industry. In order to reconcile the different uses of forests (both commercial and recreational), it is important that they are well managed and in a way that involves all the parties concerned.
Logging schedules are currently dependent on cold weather to facilitate access to work areas. This schedule will have to be reviewed and harvesting methods modified as a function of changing conditions throughout Quebec. Adaptation solutions in the forestry sector should be implemented on a broad scale. In 2021, the Ministry of Forests, Wildlife and Parks (MFFP) published the Climate Change Adaptation Strategy for Forest Management, a reference to raise awareness of players in the sector.
Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs
Climate Change Adaptation Strategy for Forest Management (in French)
Forêt s’adapter : Development of silviculture that fosters the adaptation of the upper St. Lawrence River Valley forests to global changes
The project will increase awareness among local forest managers, advisors and owners of current and future global changes and the management of uncertainty in the planning of their forested land.