Reforestation to enhance the soil carbon sink

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  13 Apr 2018:
Vol. 360, Issue 6385, pp. 167-168
DOI: 10.1126/science.360.6385.167-e

Soil is a major pool of carbon and hence can play a key role as a carbon sink in strategies to mitigate climate change. For the United States, Nave et al. quantified the carbon stocks in forest topsoils, focusing on the potential of reforestation to enhance carbon sequestration. Their estimates indicate that managed reforestation of >500,000 km2 would increase the topsoil sink by 1.3 to 2.1 petagrams of carbon within a century, enhancing the forest carbon sink in the United States by 10% annually. Their results also indicate that this enhanced sink would persist for decades, contributing to the offsetting of greenhouse gas emissions and reversing a decline in the strength of the carbon sink in U.S. forests.

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 115, 2776 (2018).

Navigate This Article