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Sci China Life Sci. 2010 Jul;53(7):776-83. doi: 10.1007/s11427-010-4030-4. Epub 2010 Aug 10.

Biomass carbon stocks in China's forests between 2000 and 2050: a prediction based on forest biomass-age relationships.

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Department of Ecology, College of Urban and Environmental Sciences, and Key Laboratory for Earth Surface Processes of the Ministry of Education, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China.


China's forests are characterized by young forest age, low carbon density and a large area of planted forests, and thus have high potential to act as carbon sinks in the future. Using China's national forest inventory data during 1994-1998 and 1999-2003, and direct field measurements, we investigated the relationships between forest biomass density and forest age for 36 major forest types. Statistical approaches and the predicted future forest area from the national forestry development plan were applied to estimate the potential of forest biomass carbon storage in China during 2000-2050. Under an assumption of continuous natural forest growth, China's existing forest biomass carbon (C) stock would increase from 5.86 Pg C (1 Pg=10(15) g) in 1999-2003 to 10.23 Pg C in 2050, resulting in a total increase of 4.37 Pg C. Newly planted forests through afforestation and reforestation will sequestrate an additional 2.86 Pg C in biomass. Overall, China's forests will potentially act as a carbon sink for 7.23 Pg C during the period 2000-2050, with an average carbon sink of 0.14 Pg C yr(-1). This suggests that China's forests will be a significant carbon sink in the next 50 years.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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