Sustainable Forest Management and Carbon Stocks
Sustainable forest management (SFM) ensures the continuous flow of wood products and employment while improving the functionalities of forests. Until recently, many projects associated with the Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) projects focused only on reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, conservation of carbon stocks, or enhancement of carbon sinks. REDD+ projects concerned with securing timber production while reducing emissions are very few in number.
Here the authors discuss how SFM through adoption of appropriate logging practice can lead to a reduction in carbon emissions while securing timber in the tropics. Logging practices affect timber production, the structure of forests, and forest-dependent communities because of damages caused by logging itself and the large amounts of logging and wood wastes. By switching from conventional logging to reduced-impact logging practices, International Tropical Timber Organization producer countries could reduce carbon emissions by about 1.2 billion tCO2 year-1 while still producing about 100.4 million m3 of end-use wood for commercial consumption under a 50-year project cycle, results being dependent on the chosen scenario. Study results suggest that a policy of reduced-impact logging combined with a longer cutting cycle and certification scheme is appropriate for SFM projects as a part of the REDD+ scheme.
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