Smart reforestation tool considers future climate conditions for replanting decisions

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In Oregon, reforestation scientists at the USDA Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station, Oregon State University and the Conservation Biology Institute developed the Seedlot Selection Tool, a web-based mapping application to help forest land managers in replanting decisions following a timber harvest or forest fire. Using different climate change scenarios, forest land owners and natural resource managers can explore options for responding to climate change by determining where seeds or seedlings should be sourced so that they are suited to grow well in the projected future climate.

Using climate models to define zones based on current and projected climate and tailored for matching seedlots and planting sites, the tool allows the control of various input parameters and can be customized for the management practices, climate change assumptions and risk tolerance.

Now available for the northeastern and western U.S., including Alaska, the tool will be expanded to include the southeastern U.S.