EGU General Assembly 2023
© Author(s) 2023. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Long-term management actions of fire-prone Mediterranean ecosystems under climate change using fuel reduction and post-fire restoration

Mara Baudena1,2, V Ramon Vallejo3, Jaime Baeza4, Aymen Moghli5, Alejandro Valdecantos4, and Victor M Santana3
Mara Baudena et al.
  • 1National Research Council of Italy (CNR-ISAC), Turin, Italy
  • 2National Biodiversity Future Center, Palermo, Italy
  • 3Mediterranean Center for Environmental Studies (CEAM), Spain
  • 4Ecology Department, University of Alicante, Spain
  • 5Forest Science and Technology Centre of Catalonia (CTFC), Spain

Forest fires and extreme droughts will continue to be main disturbances in Mediterranean ecosystems, given the ongoing and projected climatic changes. In fact, an exacerbation of some aspects of their regime is expected. In this perspective, it is fundamental to design adaptive management strategies that can reduce the impact of disturbances and increase ecosystem resilience. To achieve this, it is necessary to develop an integrated management, able to select the best combination of restoration actions for different scenarios. Here, we address the effectiveness of the combination of several actions related to fuel reduction and restoration after fire in the long term, to increase the presence of resprouting species and mitigate fire occurrence, for different future climate change scenarios. Fuel reduction treatments include the application of shrub clearing at different intensities and frequencies. Restoration actions comprise the plantation of resprouting species, aiming to increase ecosystem resilience. We used a simple, ecological, published model, specifically developed for Mediterranean ecosystems and including species competition and post-fire responses, which we calibrated using the recorded vegetation response to treatments. Our results point out that, if we look for more resilient ecosystems in the next decades, we will need an intensification of fuel reduction treatments. Noticeably, including resprouting species has an important effect in the ecosystem. However, the success of these actions will be variable depending on the climate scenario.

How to cite: Baudena, M., Vallejo, V. R., Baeza, J., Moghli, A., Valdecantos, A., and Santana, V. M.: Long-term management actions of fire-prone Mediterranean ecosystems under climate change using fuel reduction and post-fire restoration, EGU General Assembly 2023, Vienna, Austria, 24–28 Apr 2023, EGU23-9283,, 2023.