Effects of stand age on carbon storage in dragon spruce forest ecosystems in the upper reaches of the Bailongjiang River basin, China

Cao, Jianjun and Gong, Yifan and Adamowski, Jan F. and Deo, Ravinesh C. and Zhu, Guofeng and Dong, Xiaogang and Zhang, Xiaofang and Liu, Haibo and Xin, Cunlin (2019) Effects of stand age on carbon storage in dragon spruce forest ecosystems in the upper reaches of the Bailongjiang River basin, China. Scientific Reports, 9 (1 - Article 3005).


At an ecosystem level, stand age has a significant influence on carbon storage (CS). Dragon spruce (Picea asperata Mast.) situated along the upper reaches of the Bailongjiang River in northwest China were categorized into three age classes (29–32 years, Y1; 34–39 years, Y2; 40–46 years, Y3), and age-related differences in total carbon storage (TCS) of the forest ecosystem were investigated for the first time. Results showed that TCS for the Y1, Y2, and the Y3 age groups were 323.64, 240.66 and 174.60 Mg ha−1, respectively. The average TCS of the three age groups was 255.65 Mg C ha−1, with above-ground biomass, below-ground biomass, litter, and soil in the top 0.6 m contributing 15.0%, 3.7%, 12.1%, and 69.2%, respectively. CS in soil and TCS of the Y1 age group both significantly exceeded those of the Y3 age group (P < 0.05). Contrary to other recent findings, the present study supports the hypothesis that TCS is likely to decrease as stand age increases. This indicates that natural resource managers should rejuvenate forests by routinely thinning older stands, thereby not only achieving vegetation restoration, but also allowing these stands to create a long-term carbon sink for this important eco-region.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to Published version, in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Life Sciences and the Environment
Date Deposited: 14 Mar 2019 05:11
Last Modified: 22 Jul 2019 00:07
Uncontrolled Keywords: stand age; carbon storage; dragon spruce
Fields of Research : 05 Environmental Sciences > 0501 Ecological Applications > 050102 Ecosystem Function
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-39626-z
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/36097

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