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Forest biomass carbon accumulation in Korea from 1954 to 2007

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Estimating the level of forest biomass accumulation in Korea is a challenging task because of historical reasons and the later reforestation implemented at the national level. Nevertheless, systematic national forest inventories and direct field measurements make it possible to estimate the carbon (C) sinks as well as their distribution. Simple linear relationships between the stand biomass and stand volume were developed for each forest type (coniferous, deciduous and mixed forests) in Korea based on direct field measurements. These relationships were used to estimate the changes in C accumulation of the above-ground and total biomass from 1954 to 2007 based on the national forest inventories. The mean C density and C stock of the above-ground biomass for all forest types increased from 3.49 Mg C ha-1 and 16.71 Tg C in 1954 to 31.46 Mg C ha-1 and 196.45 Tg C in 2007, respectively, and the total biomass for all forest types increased from 4.29 Mg C ha-1 and 20.57 Tg C in 1954 to 38.58 Mg C ha-1 and 239.85 Tg C in 2007, respectively. Such a large C uptake in Korea is due mainly to the successfully implemented reforestation and subsequent forest management practices.

Keywords: Carbon accumulation; Korean forest type; carbon sequestration rate; forest biomass; reforestation

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: College of Forest and Environmental Sciences, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon, South Korea 2: Division of Environmental Science and Ecological Engineering, Korea University, Seoul, South Korea 3: School of Forestry Northeast Forestry University, Harbin, China

Publication date: 2010-12-01

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