This news article describes a recent study that utilized extensive tree ring data to assess the likely impact of climate change on forest growth rates throughout North America. The abstract for the research article is available here.
Major forecast findings included:
Negative impacts on forest growth rates in the interior west and positive impacts on forest growth along western, southeastern, and northeastern coasts
Shifts in sensitivity (how tree growth responds to climate) offset the positive effects of warming on high-latitude forests — no evidence for continued ‘boreal greening’
Increases in water-use efficiency due to CO2 fertilization where insufficient to reverse projected growth declines across much of North America
This report is a national assessment of peer-reviewed scientific research on the impacts of drought on U.S. forests and rangelands. It includes information about the response of forest physiology, insect and fungal pathogens, and forest biogeochemistry to current and future drought, as well as impacts of increasing drought on forest dynamics, structure, diversity, and management.
The Climate Smart Land Network is a voluntary network of forestland owners and managers who seek to reduce material risk to their forestland to climate change.