Fact Sheets

Soil Carbon and Forest Management in the Northeastern US (FS-24-02)

April 25, 2024 Attachment: NCASI-NE-Soil-Carbon-Fact-Sheet_Final

Click to download: Soil Carbon and Forest Management in the Northeastern US (FS-24-02)

Soil is the foundation of forest ecosystems, including those in the northeastern US soil organic matter, for example, is mostly carbon and supports many ecosystem functions. Soil recycles nutrients critical for plant growth, is the base of a food web that supports biodiversity, and retains and releases water, protecting against erosion and improving water quality. Soil carbon is also important, as soils hold more carbon than the global atmosphere and all plants combined, thus making soils a critical component of the climate system. As carbon accounting and monitoring have become important parts of reporting initiatives and sustainability practices, forest stakeholders are increasingly focused on soils because of their carbon storage and ability to support forests’ capacity to adapt to climate change and recover from disturbances. Collectively, these reasons make it important to understand how forest management affects soil carbon overall, and in geographic regions.

Keywords: soil carbon; forest management; northeast US; carbon; soil; land use change; forest harvesting

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