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Competence Network Climate Change, Risk Management and Transformation in Forest Ecosystems

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Forest Research Institut Baden-Württemberg (FVA)
Department of forest economics

Wonnhaldestr. 4
D-79100 Freiburg

Tel:  +49 761 4018 231
Fax: +49 761 4018 333


Author(s): Yvonne Chtioui, Susanne Kaulfuß, Christoph Hartebrodt
Editorial office: FVA, Germany
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Forest Crises Management Advisory Guide



Forests are exposed to various weather and environmental effects stemming from, for example, storms, water, fire, or insects. Windthrow, snowbreak, forest fires, and feeding damage are potential aftermaths with sometimes devastating consequences for forests and forest holdings. Extreme weather has always been a central risk for the forestry sector. Moreover, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), such extreme weather events will occur in the future with an increased intensity. However, this is no reason for resignation.

A wide range of damages can be avoided or at least minimized through prevention and good preparation. Therefore, this advisory guide encourages the active dealing with such risk factors. It raises awareness about adaptation strategies which can be useful and meaningful in the future with regard to changing climate conditions.

The advisory guide consists of different thematically defined manuals and is gradually expanding. Forest holdings and forest owners can find suggestions for professional forestry risk management. Because even with the best risk management extreme events will occur time and again, other aspects of crisis management also play an important role. In addition to silvicultural and technological content to cope with the damage caused in forests, increasingly more content and measures in the sphere of preventions and preparation are presented.

The Handbooks

Crisis Management Handbook Crisis Management Handbook

Crisis management – do I need this in my forest? The answer is "Yes"! Hurricanes, forest fires, public dissatisfaction or badly injured forestry workers are only some of the examples of crises and catastrophes which require crisis management by a forestry enterprise.

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Storm Handbook – Coping with Storm Damaged Timber Storm Handbook – Coping with Storm Damaged Timber

A major incident storm - lots of work has to be organised in little time. This handbook is based on the experiences coping with the storm "Lothar" and provides supporting information to relevant themes.

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Forest Fire Handbook Forest Fire Handbook

Forest fires in Central Europe usually arise from careless actions rather than from natural events. They cause significant damage throughout Europe each year. This handbook provides information about predicting, preventing and fighting forest fires.

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The Insect Pest Handbook: Prevention – Identification – Action The Insect Pest Handbook: Prevention – Identification – Action

Besides bark beetles & Co, there are many other insects that can cause considerable damage to forests. What can be done when beetles, caterpillars or aphids are threatening the forest?

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Handbook: Water in the Forest Handbook: Water in the Forest

The handbook examines the effects of excess of water, drought and snow and ice in forests. The authors cover numerous issues, recommend preventative measures and provide guidance for further information.

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Update and Maintenance of the Advisory Guide

The advisory guide is updated and further developed as part of the project KoNeKKTiW. Our network partners ensure that the content shown is practical. All content is agreed on before its release. The contributions of the guide appear in the respective section of waldwissen.net and are marked with the project logo. The following organisations participate in KoNeKKTiW:

DFWRAGDWMV LandesforstForstBWLuF ÖBundesforstThüringenForst LF RPLand BWForst SHSaarlandLandwirtschaftskammer NiedersachsenHamburg: Behörde für Wirtschaft, Verkehr und Innovation LK ÖÖBFWuH NRWFVA BWSBS

KoNeKKTiW is funded by the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture and the Federal Environment Ministry following a decision by the German Bundestag within the framework of the Forest Climate Fund.


Unless otherwise stated, the copyright for the texts and figures within the advisory guide remain with the KoNeKKTiW project or the network and alliance partners, the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture, as well as the Federal Environment Ministry.

The use of the content is only permitted by citing the source (waldwissen.net), title and authorship of the corresponding article. For further questions, please contact the Department of Forestry Economics of the FVA Freiburg (for contact information see right).

History of the Online Advisory Guide

Already after storm Lothar in 1999 it became evident that there is a lack of practical guidebooks for coping with storm damage in forests. The Storm Handbook developed in 2004 and 2005 has already helped many forest owners in coping with damage in the following years.

The high demand for practical knowledge, the increase in extreme weather, and the variety of damages gave rise to the joint project “Prevention and Management of Crisis in the Forest” (in German: Prävention und Management Forstlicher Krisen) in 2008 and with it the online advisory guidebook “Forest Crisis Management”.

The advisory guidebook “Forest Crisis Management” emerged from the cooperation of state forest holdings and administrations of the states Baden-Württemberg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatine, Saxony, and Schleswig-Holstein, as well as the Austrian Chamber of Agriculture.

Meanwhile, the KoNeKKTiW project has taken over the responsibility for maintaining and developing the online advisory guidebook and, above all, for further expanding the subject area of prevention of damage and adaptation to climate change.


The advisory guide “Forest Crisis Management” is only available online at waldwissen.net. We want to keep the information up-to-date and have thus deliberately decided against a printed version. You may of course feel free to print individual articles.

In the German version, older articles often refrain from using a gender-neutral language. Since forestry is by no means only for men, we attribute great importance to gender-appropriate language.

We welcome you to use the comment function. Your feedback will help us improve the advisory guide!