ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0684.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Atmospheric Science Keywords: climate analogue; climate change; model ensemble; twin region; analogue region; national forest inventories; species suitability; forest adaptation; forestry practice; Europe
Online: 29 March 2021 (11:28:36 CEST)
Climate analogues provide forestry practice empirical evidence of how forests are managed in “twin” regions, i.e. regions where the current climate is comparable to the expected future climate at a site of interest. But the uncertain future climate creates uncertainty in how to adapt the forests. We therefore investigate how the uncertainty in future climate affects tree species suitability and whether there is a common underlying pattern. Like most studies we employ different ensemble variants of RCP 4.5 and 8.5. But instead of focusing on a single point in future time, we resolve each variant in a climate trajectory from 2000 to 2100. We calculate climatic distances between the climate trajectories of our site of interest and the current climate in Europe, generating maps with twin regions from 2000 to 2100. Forest inventories from the twin regions allow us to trace the changes in the prevalence of 23 major tree species. We find that it is not the direction but rather the velocity of the change that differs between the scenarios. We use this pattern to propose a tree species suitability concept that integrates the uncertainty in future climate. Twin regions provide further information on silvicultural practices, pest management, product chains etc.