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Developing climate change adaptation strategies for forests

ForeStClim is an EU-funded environmental project addressing forests and climate change. The short name stands for “Transnational Forestry Management Strategies in Response to Regional Climate Change Impacts“.



This project evaluated the effects of climate change on forests and forestry across North West Europe, based on case study areas in partner countries. The researchers developed and demonstrated tools and techniques to support the implementation of adaptation strategies. Forest Research worked with 20 other partners from the UK, Germany, France, Netherlands and Luxembourg.

Key findings and outputs

  • Comprehensive modelling of the impact of climate change scenarios on forest ecosystems in North West Europe
  • Tools, guidelines and methodologies for risk assessments to identify how individual forests are most at risk from climate change (e.g. wildfire, disease, storm damage, groundwater recharge, etc) or threats to goods and services (employment, timber productivity, tourism, etc)
  • Development of a strategic decision support system for sustainable forestry management, forest protection and water management
    Implementation of new site survey practices
  • Demonstration of new strategies at test sites, including the development of a climate change adaptation demonstration forest at Queen Elizabeth Forest Park in Scotland
    International photography competition “Trees and humans in a changing climate”, displayed at Risley Moss in the UK

Our involvement

As a full project partner, Forest Research used future climate projections from UKCP09 and the project’s own team of climate scientists in Luxembourg, to assess the needs and options for climate change adaptation in a productive upland Sitka spruce forest in the Scottish Borders. The team tested forest design plans and silvicultural systems using new configurations of two models: Ecological Site Classification (ESC) and ForestGALES.
Forest Research is monitoring the success of management and interventions with a set of indicators based on forest productive capacity, environmental quality, biodiversity maintenance and social impacts.

Funders and partners

The project has 21 partners from the UK, Germany, France, The Netherlands, and Luxembourg who will each contribute work to develop climate change adaptation strategies in the forests of north-west Europe.

In the UK the project brings together science and policy teams from Forest Research (FR), Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH), University of Newcastle, University of Bangor, Mountain Environments and the Mersey Forest.




For further information please contact:

Bruce Nicoll

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Forestry Staff Bruce Nicoll.24d14a83.fill 600x600 1
Bruce Nicoll

Principal Scientist