Adaptive Silviculture for Climate Change

The Adaptive Silviculture for Climate Change (ASCC) project is a replicated, operational-scale experiment testing the effectiveness of climate adaptation strategies in silvicultural planning and on-the-ground actions.


The Adaptive Silviculture for Climate Change (ASCC) project is a collaborative effort led by Linda Nagel at Colorado State University (but NIACS claims her, too!) to establish a series of experimental silvicultural trials in various forest ecosystem types across the United States and Canada. Scientists, land managers, and key partners have developed a network of fully-replicated operational sites with new affiliate sites underway to study long-term ecosystem responses to a range of climate change adaptation actions. Silvicultural treatments at each study site were developed using the Forest Adaptation Resources process and encompass treatments that approximate three broad climate adaptation options: resistance, resilience, and transition.

"Thank you so much for bringing a true collaborative process to the Mississippi! Bringing together such a complex team from different agencies and philosophies is so challenging and you led them all through it in a way that made them feel heard but also was successful in achieving our goals! I’m so excited for our next steps!"

- Mary Hammes, Mississippi Park Connection



The ASCC Network welcomes two new sites in 2019. Colorado State University and NIACS led workshops to develop the following new ASCC trial installations:

Mississippi National River and Recreation Area (MNRRA)

Leslie Brandt initiated the first urban affiliate ASCC site and will be located at Crosby Farm Regional Park in St. Paul, MN. The site is located in a floodplain forest ecosystem, dominated by an ash-elm mixed lowland hardwood forest type. Workshop: March 25-26, 2019

Map of the United States displaying the locations of the ascc sites



Interest in the ASCC project continues to grow. We are working with partners in the Twin Cities along the Mississippi Natural Recreation and River Area to think about what an ASCC site would look like in an urban setting. Linda and Courtney have had many other conversations with interested partners abInterest in the ASCC project continues to grow. The network is evaluating potential for new sites in six states across the country, including both urban and traditional forest-based sites. Future plans for research include complementary species interactions and the potential of using species mixtures to reduce tree mortality and an initial cross-site research project focused on differences in treatment implementation that will help unify data management across the ASCC Network. 


2019 Fast Facts

2500 acres currently being harvested (or designated no action and measured)

2 countries - US and Canada - involved in ASCC

>325,000 Seedlings Planted