Climate change threatens global forest carbon sequestration, study finds

By Lauren Barnett
University of Florida
January 15, 2024
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US East

Climate change is reshaping forests differently across the United States, according to a new analysis of U.S. Forest Service data. …The study, led by UF Biology researchers J. Aaron Hogan and Jeremy W. Lichstein … reveals a pronounced regional imbalance in forest productivity, a key barometer of forest health that gauges tree growth and biomass accumulation. Over the past two decades, the Western U.S., grappling with more severe climate change impacts, has exhibited a notable slowdown in productivity, while the Eastern U.S., experiencing milder climate effects, has seen slightly accelerated growth. …”Our results highlight the need for reduced global greenhouse gas emissions,” said Lichstein. “Without the emissions reductions that scientists have been urging for decades, forest carbon sinks will likely weaken, which will accelerate the pace of climate change.”

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