Navigation Links
Tropical forest sustainability: A climate change boon
Date:6/13/2008

The authors Dr Pep Canadell from CSIRO and the Global Carbon Project, and Dr Michael Raupach from CSIRO say the billions of tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) absorbed annually by the world's forests represents an 'economic subsidy' for climate change mitigation worth hundreds of billions of dollars.

However, concerns about the permanence of forest carbon stocks, challenges in quantifying changes in the size of those stocks, and concerns about the environmental and socio-economic impacts of reforestation programs, have limited the adoption of policies designed to foster forestry activities. "With political will and the involvement of tropical regions, forests can contribute to both climate change protection through carbon sequestration and also enhanced economic, environmental and socio-cultural benefits," Dr Canadell says.

"Forestry activities have the economic potential to offset 2-4 per cent of projected CO2 emissions by 2030, with tropical regions accounting for nearly two thirds of the total offset".

"A key opportunity is the reduction of carbon emissions from deforestation and degradation in tropical regions," he says.

An estimated 13 million hectares of the world's forested areas almost exclusively in the tropical regions are deforested annually. Dr Raupach says, however, reducing rates of deforestation by 50 per cent by 2050, and stopping further deforestation when countries reach 50 per cent of their current forested area, would avoid emissions equivalent to six years of current fossil fuel emissions by the end of this century.

"This estimate shows that even with significant continuing deforestation, the mitigation potential is large, although major changes in governance and price incentives are required to realize this potential," Dr Raupach says.

They authors also note, however, that efforts to mitigate climate change by increasing both the overall area and volume of biota in those forests, does carry the risk that events such as bushfires and insect outbreaks can release massive amounts of sequestered carbon back into the atmosphere.

"Since 2000, for example, increases in the areas of Canada's forests affected by bush fires and insect outbreaks have transformed them from a 'CO2 sink' to a 'CO2 source' a situation which is expected to continue for the next 20-30 years," Dr Canadell says.

"Forests also affect biophysical properties of the land surface, such as sunlight reflectivity and evaporation, and that climate models suggest large reforestation programs in the boreal (colder) regions of the word could have limited benefits due to the replacement of large areas of reflective snow with dark forest canopies.

"Conversely, the climate benefits of reforestation in the tropics are enhanced by positive biophysical changes such as cloud formation which further reflect sunlight," he says.


'/>"/>

Contact: Dr. Pep Canadell
Pep.Canadell@csiro.au
61-262-465-631
CSIRO Australia
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Tropical insects go the distance to inform rainforest conservation
2. New study warns limited carbon market puts 20 percent of tropical forest at risk
3. Tropical crab invades Georgia oyster reefs -- but the long-term impact cant be predicted
4. Spatial patterns in tropical forests can help to understand their high biodiversity
5. Researchers discover forests of endangered tropical kelp
6. If corn is biofuels king, tropical maize may be emperor
7. Why do so many species live in tropical forests and coral reefs?
8. Time-sharing tropical birds key to evolutionary mystery
9. Springer launches Tropical Plant Biology
10. No convincing evidence for decline in tropical forests
11. Tropical soils impede landmine detection
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/28/2016)... Calif., Jan. 28, 2016 Synaptics (NASDAQ: SYNA ), ... for its second quarter ended December 31, 2015. ... quarter of fiscal 2016 increased 2 percent compared to the comparable ... quarter of fiscal 2016 was $35.0 million, or $0.93 per diluted ... net income for the first quarter of fiscal 2016 grew 9 ...
(Date:1/22/2016)... DUBLIN , Jan. 22, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... announced the addition of the "Global ... report to their offering. --> ... of the "Global Biometrics Market in ... offering. --> Research and ...
(Date:1/18/2016)... Calif. , Jan. 18, 2016  Extenua ... software that simplifies the use and access of ... and go-to-market partnership with American Cyber.  ... brings extensive experience leading transformational C4ISR and Cyber ... and integrating the latest proven technology solutions," said ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/11/2016)... , Feb. 11, 2016  Bioethics International, a not-for-profit ... are researched, developed, marketed and made accessible to patients around ... Open had named the publication of the Good ... The publication is also featured as one of BMJ ... the last year that are most frequently read. ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... , Feb. 11, 2016  Wellcentive today announced ... Portland, Oregon -based community care organization ... population health analytics, quality reporting and care management ... strengthen its team of quality managers, analysts and ... the provider groups serving FamilyCare members. ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... CRUZ, Calif. , Feb. 11, 2016  Dovetail ... applications to its beta program for a planned metagenomic ... will present the company,s metagenomic genome assembly method in ... Advances in Genome Biology & Technology conference in ... assembly of these highly complex datasets is difficult. Using ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... BioInformant announces the February 2016 release of its ... and Technologies – Market Size, Segments, Trends, and Projections ... The first and only market research firm ... more than a decade of historical information on all ... type. This powerful 175 page global strategic report contains ...
Breaking Biology Technology: