Monitoring Forest Carbon Sequestration With Remote Sensing And Carbon Cycle Modeling

  • Sites: US-Me4, US-Me5
  • Turner, D. P., Guzy, M., Lefsky, M. A., Ritts, W. D., Van Tuyl, S., Law, B. E. (2004/08) Monitoring Forest Carbon Sequestration With Remote Sensing And Carbon Cycle Modeling, Environmental Management, 33(4), 457-466.
  • Funding Agency: —

  • Sources and sinks of carbon associated with forests depend strongly on the management regime and spatial patterns in potential productivity. Satellite remote sensing can provide spatially explicit information on land cover, stand-age class, and harvesting. Carbon-cycle process models coupled to regional climate databases can provide information on potential rates of production and related rates of decomposition. The integration of remote sensing and modeling thus produces spatially explicit information on carbon storage and flux. This integrated approach was employed to compare carbon flux for the period 1992–1997 over two 165-km2 areas in western Oregon. The Coast Range study area was predominately private land managed for timber production, whereas the West Cascades study area was predominantly public land that was less productive but experienced little harvesting in the 1990s. In the Coast Range area, 17% of the land base was harvested between 1991 and 2000. Much of the area was in relatively young, productive-age classes that simulations indicate are a carbon sink. Mean annual harvest removals from the Coast Range were greater than mean annual net ecosystem production. On the West Cascades study area, a relatively small proportion (< 1%) of the land was harvested and the area as a whole was accumulating carbon. The spatially and temporally explicit nature of this approach permits identification of mechanisms underlying land base carbon flux.