Modelling and adaptation

Adaptation to a changing climate focuses on assessing the potential impact of climate change on all forest values and adopting different management practices for existing forests, selecting different species or genotypes for plantation establishment or growing forests in new locations.

Ongoing research and predictive modelling of climate change impacts on NSW forests will support adaptation responses. The Forest Monitoring and Improvement Program is exploring the futures of forests including the impacts of climate change. This includes model-based scenarios that provide information about what may happen in the future to support evidence-based decision-making. Scenarios describe possible futures for drivers of change or policy interventions. Models translate those scenarios into projected consequences for nature and nature’s benefits to people.

Priority RFA information

Integrate climate change adaptation and mitigation into the management of the forest estate across NSW through:

  • developing model-based scenarios to explore alternative future pathways
  • improving model accuracy and expertise of forest managers to run models and use outputs in decision-making
  • identifying dynamic risk management avenues and adaptation pathways to minimise the loss of biodiversity and biodiversity values and maximise adaptive capacity across the landscape
  • integrating adaptation pathways into Species Management Plans, management of high conservation value assets and Fire Management Plans across the landscape
  • increasing knowledge of adaptation management for species and ecosystems across the landscape
  • developing guidelines and guidance materials to support adaptation management across the landscape
  • identifying and integrating climate change considerations into the monitoring and evaluation requirements for the IFOAs on State Forests
  • assessing climate change risks, and integrate adaptation responses into FCNSW Forest Management System to maintain the objectives of ESFM
  • pursuing management opportunities that maximise socioeconomic, carbon sequestration and other benefits that flow from forests
  • considering mitigation actions and opportunities across the forest estate to generate improved greenhouse gas outcomes.

Inform measures and reporting on performance in relation to the Sustainability Indicators:

  • Conservation of biological diversity
  • Maintenance of the productive capacity of forest ecosystems
  • Maintenance of ecosystem health and vitality
  • Conservation and maintenance of soil and water resources
  • Maintaining the contribution of forests to the global carbon cycles
  • Maintenance and enhancement of long-term multiple socio-economic benefits to meet the needs of societies.

Monitoring activities

The NSW Government has developed the NSW Climate Change Policy Framework and invests heavily in research, tool development, information sharing and advice to public and private sectors.
More details here

The NSW Forest Monitoring and Improvement Program is establishing a framework to develop future scenarios for NSW forests in a repeatable, scalable and flexible manner. More details here

Monitoring activities described in all of the focus areas of the RFA MER Plan will contribute methods and the information needed to underpin evaluation of adaptation outcomes across the NSW RFA regions.


The Department of Planning, Industry and Environment coordinates climate and adaptation related research across NSW Government, including partnerships with universities and other research institutions. This includes:

  • Climate projections for NSW
    More details here
  • Impacts of climate change on biodiversity, soil, bushfires and water resources
    More details here
  • Adapting to climate change
    More details here