Specify that the CBC (COIN-OR branch and cut) software (Forrest & Lougee-Heimer 2005) should be used to solve a conservation planning problem(). This function can also be used to customize the behavior of the solver. It requires the rcbc package to be installed (only available on GitHub, see below for installation instructions).

  gap = 0.1,
  time_limit = .Machine$integer.max,
  presolve = TRUE,
  threads = 1,
  first_feasible = FALSE,
  verbose = TRUE



problem() (i.e. ConservationProblem) object.


numeric gap to optimality. This gap is relative and expresses the acceptable deviance from the optimal objective. For example, a value of 0.01 will result in the solver stopping when it has found a solution within 1% of optimality. Additionally, a value of 0 will result in the solver stopping when it has found an optimal solution. The default value is 0.1 (i.e. 10% from optimality).


numeric time limit (seconds) for generating solutions. The solver will return the current best solution when this time limit is exceeded. The default value is the largest integer value (i.e. .Machine$integer.max), effectively meaning that solver will keep running until a solution within the optimality gap is found.


logical attempt to simplify the problem before solving it? Defaults to TRUE.


integer number of threads to use for the optimization algorithm. The default value is 1.


logical should the first feasible solution be be returned? If first_feasible is set to TRUE, the solver will return the first solution it encounters that meets all the constraints, regardless of solution quality. Note that the first feasible solution is not an arbitrary solution, rather it is derived from the relaxed solution, and is therefore often reasonably close to optimality. Defaults to FALSE.


logical should information be printed while solving optimization problems? Defaults to TRUE.


Object (i.e. ConservationProblem) with the solver added to it.


CBC is an open-source mixed integer programming solver that is part of the Computational Infrastructure for Operations Research (COIN-OR) project. Although formal benchmarks examining the performance of this solver for conservation planning problems have yet to be completed, preliminary analyses suggest that it performs much faster than the other open-source solvers (i.e. add_rsymphony_solver(), add_rsymphony_solver()), and so we recommend using this solver if the Gurobi and IBM CPLEX solvers are unavailable.


The rcbc package is required to use this solver. Since the rcbc package is not available on the the Comprehensive R Archive Network (CRAN), it must be installed from its GitHub repository. To install the rcbc package, please use the following code:

if (!require(remotes)) install.packages("remotes")

Note that you may also need to install several dependencies -- such as the Rtools software or system libraries -- prior to installing the rcbc package. For further details on installing this package, please consult official installation instructions for the package.


Forrest J and Lougee-Heimer R (2005) CBC User Guide. In Emerging theory, Methods, and Applications (pp. 257--277). INFORMS, Catonsville, MD. doi: 10.1287/educ.1053.0020 .

See also


# \dontrun{ # load data data(sim_pu_raster, sim_features) # create problem p <- problem(sim_pu_raster, sim_features) %>% add_min_set_objective() %>% add_relative_targets(0.1) %>% add_binary_decisions() %>% add_cbc_solver(gap = 0.1, verbose = FALSE) # generate solution %>% s <- solve(p) # plot solution plot(s, main = "solution", axes = FALSE, box = FALSE)
# }