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Implications of Albedo Changes Following Afforestation on the Benefits of Forests as Carbon Sinks : Volume 8, Issue 4 (24/08/2011)

By Kirschbaum, M. U. F.

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Book Id: WPLBN0004005953
Format Type: PDF Article :
File Size: Pages 27
Reproduction Date: 2015

Title: Implications of Albedo Changes Following Afforestation on the Benefits of Forests as Carbon Sinks : Volume 8, Issue 4 (24/08/2011)  
Author: Kirschbaum, M. U. F.
Volume: Vol. 8, Issue 4
Language: English
Subject: Science, Biogeosciences, Discussions
Collections: Periodicals: Journal and Magazine Collection, Copernicus GmbH
Historic
Publication Date:
2011
Publisher: Copernicus Gmbh, Göttingen, Germany
Member Page: Copernicus Publications

Citation

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Whitehead, D., Ausseil, A. E., Dean, S. M., Shepherd, J. D., Beets, P. N., & F. Kirschbau, M. U. (2011). Implications of Albedo Changes Following Afforestation on the Benefits of Forests as Carbon Sinks : Volume 8, Issue 4 (24/08/2011). Retrieved from http://www.ebooklibrary.org/


Description
Description: Landcare Research, Private Bag 11052, Palmerston North 4442, New Zealand. Increased carbon storage with afforestation leads to a decrease in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration and thus decreases radiative forcing and cools the Earth. However, land-use change also changes the reflective properties of the surface vegetation from more reflective pasture to relatively less reflective forest cover. This increase in radiation absorption by the forest constitutes an increase in radiative forcing, with a warming effect. The net effect of decreased albedo and carbon storage on radiative forcing depends on the relative magnitude of these two opposing processes.

We used data from an intensively studied site in New Zealand's Central North Island that has long-term, ground-based measurements of albedo over the full short-wave spectrum from a developing Pinus radiata forest. Data from this site were supplemented with satellite-derived albedo estimates from New Zealand pastures. The albedo of a well-established forest was measured as 13 % and pasture albedo as 20 %. We used these data to calculate the direct radiative forcing effect of changing albedo as the forest grew.

We calculated the radiative forcing resulting from the removal of carbon from the atmosphere as a decrease in radiative forcing of −104 GJ tC−1 yr−1. We also showed that the observed change in albedo constituted a direct radiative forcing of 2759 GJ ha−1 yr−1. Thus, following afforestation, 26.5 tC ha−1 needs to be stored in a growing forest to balance the increase in radiative forcing resulting from the observed albedo change. Measurements of tree biomass and albedo were used to estimate the net change in radiative forcing as the newly planted forest grew. Albedo and carbon-storage effects were of similar magnitude for the first four to five years after tree planting, but as the stand grew older, the carbon storage effect increasingly dominated. Averaged over the whole length of the rotation, the changes in albedo negated the benefits from increased carbon storage by 17–24 %.


Summary
Implications of albedo changes following afforestation on the benefits of forests as carbon sinks

Excerpt
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