Special Perspectives

Managing Forests for Climate Change Mitigation

Science  13 Jun 2008:
Vol. 320, Issue 5882, pp. 1456-1457
DOI: 10.1126/science.1155458

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Abstract

Forests currently absorb billions of tons of CO2 globally every year, an economic subsidy worth hundreds of billions of dollars if an equivalent sink had to be created in other ways. Concerns about the permanency of forest carbon stocks, difficulties in quantifying stock changes, and the threat of environmental and socioeconomic impacts of large-scale reforestation programs have limited the uptake of forestry activities in climate policies. With political will and the involvement of tropical regions, forests can contribute to climate change protection through carbon sequestration as well as offering economic, environmental, and sociocultural benefits. A key opportunity in tropical regions is the reduction of carbon emissions from deforestation and degradation.

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