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Can fuel-reduction treatments really increase forest carbon storage in the western US by reducing future fire emissions?

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dc.creator Campbell, John L.
dc.creator Harmon, Mark E.
dc.creator Mitchell, Stephen R.
dc.date.accessioned 2011-12-16T22:45:14Z
dc.date.available 2011-12-16T22:45:14Z
dc.date.issued 2011
dc.identifier.citation John L Campbell, Mark E Harmon, and Stephen R Mitchell. 2011. Can fuel-reduction treatments really increase forest carbon storage in the western US by reducing future fire emissions? Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment (e-View) doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1890/110057 en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1957/26174
dc.description NEWS COVERAGE: A news release based on this journal publication, which is written for a lay audience and has been approved by an author of the study, is available online: http://bit.ly/s1SWsO en_US
dc.description.abstract It has been suggested that thinning trees and other fuel-reduction practices aimed at reducing the probability of high-severity forest fire are consistent with efforts to keep carbon (C) sequestered in terrestrial pools, and that such practices should therefore be rewarded rather than penalized in C-accounting schemes. By evaluating how fuel treatments, wildfire, and their interactions affect forest C stocks across a wide range of spatial and temporal scales, we conclude that this is extremely unlikely. Our review reveals high C losses associated with fuel treatment, only modest differences in the combustive losses associated with high-severity fire and the low-severity fire that fuel treatment is meant to encourage, and a low likelihood that treated forests will be exposed to fire. Although fuel-reduction treatments may be necessary to restore historical functionality to fire- suppressed ecosystems, we found little credible evidence that such efforts have the added benefit of increasing terrestrial C stocks. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship This work was funded, in part, by the US Forest Service, Western Wildland Environmental Threat Assessment. en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher Ecological Society of America en_US
dc.relation.ispartofseries Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment en_US
dc.title Can fuel-reduction treatments really increase forest carbon storage in the western US by reducing future fire emissions? en_US
dc.type Article en_US
dc.description.peerreview yes en_US
dc.identifier.doi 10.1890/110057d


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