Forests & Climate Change

As anthropogenic climate change pushes forests outside of their climatic envelopes and extant ranges, forest managers need information about what actions and strategies will maintain forests now and into the future. Research has shown a number of meaningful actions that can protect forests by reducing disturbance hazards and, in some cases, enhance them by increasing their carbon storage potential.

Because there are many questions about implementation, effectiveness, and tradeoffs of management strategies, the only way to answer those questions is through modeling. The most robust approach though is to consider multiple models so as to 1) understand the differences in the processes modeled and scales represented which can lead to understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the model frameworks used, and 2) better understand the sources and magnitudes of the uncertainty of a future projection. This is why INR is working on a modeling inter-comparison project with other researchers from the USDA Pacific Northwest Research Station. 



  • Oregon Natural & Working Lands Carbon project. INR is assisting the Oregon Global Warming Commission in assessing the science related to ways to monitor and promote more uptake of carbon on Oregon’s natural & working lands.
  • PNW Landscape Carbon Modeling Intercomparison (2023-). As part of the USDA Forest Service R6 / PNWRS Carbon Initiative, INR is participating in a multi-model forest and carbon change inter-comparison exercise to explore uncertainties related to future forest conditions and carbon stocks.
  • Prescribed Fire and Climate Change in Northwest National Forests (2016). In partnership with EcoAdapt and the Available Science Assessment Project (ASAP), INR helped to synthesize and evaluate the body of scientific knowledge on this topic to determine the conditions, timeframes, and geographic areas where particular actions may be most effective for resource managers