A desired future condition for Sierra Nevada forests, Chapter 15.

A desired future condition for Sierra Nevada forests, Chapter 15.
“If we open a quarrel between past and present, we shall find that we have lost the future” (Winston Churchill).
Forestry is an art as well as a science, a creative response to existing forest conditions based on the best silviculture, ecology, and wildlife biology. The challenge has always been how to best provide a forest’s multiple ecosystem services with imperfect knowledge of management’s effects. Conflicts over the priority of those ecosystem services (e.g., timber, fuels reduction, wildlife habitat) on public forest lands has often resulted in management by restrictive prescription. Yet the best forestry has always required flexibility, innovation, and the latitude to respond to ecological context. How can forest management in the Sierra Nevada regain its art? Ironically, the uncertainty of global climate change could be a catalyst for restoring flexible management if agencies consider some changes. No one can predict exactly how changing climatic conditions may affect forests. All forest projects will be experimental, requiring assessment at multiple scales and including patterns of variation. Acknowledging this uncertainty, committing to monitoring forest response, then adapting management practices as information accumulates, would institutionalize flexibility. It would also require managers and stakeholders explicitly discuss and develop a desired future condition against which to measure forest conditions. The hope of GTR 220 and this collection of papers is that it can provide a starting point for that discussion.
Begin Date
Originator Name
North, M., ed. In Managing Sierra Nevada forests. USDA, Forest Service Pacific Southwest Research Station, p. 184. Albany, CA.
Global or not applicable
Access Limitations
No Restrictions
Climate Change, Ecology, Forest, Forest Health, Forest Management, Sierra Nevada
Resource Type
Resource Owner

To the owner of A desired future condition for Sierra Nevada forests, Chapter 15.

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