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Ecosystem service provision, management systems and climate change in Valsaín forest, central Spain

Abstract

This study addresses the impact of climate change and management approach on the provision of four ecosystem services (ES) (timber production, protection against gravitational hazards, carbon sequestration and biodiversity) in Valsaín forest in central Spain. The hybrid forest patch model PICUS v1.6 was used to simulate the development of 24 representative stand types over 100 years (2010–2110) in a full factorial simulation experiment combining three management regimes [“business as usual” management (BAU) and two alternatives to BAU (AM1 and AM2)], a no-management scenario (NOM) and six climate scenarios (historic climate represented by the period 1961–1990 and five transient climate change scenarios). Simulations indicated relatively small differences as regards the impact of the different management alternatives (BAU, AM1 and AM2) on the provision of ES as well as a clear improvement in biodiversity, protection and carbon storage under the no-management regime (NOM). Although timber production indicators were the most sensitive to climate change scenarios, biodiversity-related indicators responded fastest to the management regimes applied. Indicators of protection against rockfall and landslides were affected by both management and climate change. The results indicate substantial vulnerability of ES provisioning under the more extreme climate change scenarios at low elevations (1250 m). At higher elevations, the productivity of Scots pine stands may show a moderate decrease or increase, depending on the climate change scenario.

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Acknowledgments

This study was financed by the EU FP7 project ARANGE- 289437. We are especially grateful to Javier Donés, Director of Valsaín forests and to Miguel Cabrera for facilitating the access to data. We are grateful to three anonymous reviewers who provided thoughtful comments on earlier versions of the manuscript. English was revised by Adam Collins.

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Correspondence to Susana Pérez.

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Pardos, M., Pérez, S., Calama, R. et al. Ecosystem service provision, management systems and climate change in Valsaín forest, central Spain. Reg Environ Change 17, 17–32 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10113-016-0985-4

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10113-016-0985-4

Keywords

  • Timber production
  • Biodiversity
  • Carbon storage
  • Forest modelling
  • Climate change vulnerability
  • Resilience