Title: Decision support for evaluating landscape departure and prioritizing forest management activities in a changing environment
Author: Gärtner, S.; Reynolds, K.M.; Hessburg, P.F.; Hummel, S.S.; Twery, M.
Source: Forest Ecology and Management
Description: We evaluated changes (hereafter, departures) in spatial patterns of various patch types of forested landscapes in two subwatersheds ("east" and "west") in eastern Washington, USA, from the patterns of two sets of reference conditions; one representing the broad variability of pre-management era (~1900) conditions, and another representing the broad variability associated with one possible warming and drying climate-change scenario. We used a diagnostic set of class and landscape spatial pattern metrics to compare current spatial patterns of test subwatersheds against the two sets of reference conditions. In a companion decision support model built with the EMDS modeling system, we considered the degree of departure in the subwatersheds, relative to the two sets of reference conditions along with two additional criteria (vulnerability to severe wildfire and timber harvest opportunity), to determine the relative priority of landscape restoration treatments, and the potential for timber harvest to underwrite the treatments.
Keywords: decision support system, reference conditions, climate change, historical range of variability, landscape evaluation, landscape planning, ecosystem management
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Gärtner, S.; Reynolds, K.M.; Hessburg, P.F.; Hummel, S.S.; Twery, M. 2008. Decision support for evaluating landscape departure and prioritizing forest management activities in a changing environment. Forest Ecology and Management