Forestry and Livestock Will Also Be Affected by Climate Change

Commercial forestry will be affected by factors similar to those affecting crop production and natural forest ecosystems. Climate models project that global timber production will increase and shift poleward due to changes in temperature, longer growing seasons, and enhanced CO2. However, as with projections of agricultural changes, these models typically exclude potentially important factors such as pests, diseases, and water availability, making the results somewhat uncertain.

Livestock respond to climate change directly through heat and humidity stresses and are affected indirectly by changes in forage quantity and quality, water availability, and disease. Because heat stress reduces milk production, weight gain, and reproduction in livestock, the production of pork, beef, and milk is projected to decline in the United States with warming temperatures, especially with increases above 5.4°F (3°C).

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