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Managed ecosystems create biomass more efficiently, new study shows

An international study published in Nature Geoscience on 6 October 2015 concludes that human management increases the productivity of ecosystems, independent of vegetation, environmental and climatic drivers.  The research, which has estimated the total biomass production of forests, pastures, crops, tundra, boreal peat lands and wetlands, has confirmed this result in all these ecosystem types.


This investigation was carried out by scientists from different universities and research centres from Europe, USA, Canada and China.  According to the results of their study, natural systems transform 45% of the carbon assimilated in photosynthesis into biomass, while managed ecosystems capture 60%.


The information provided by this report could be useful to improve the quantification of the amount of carbon that ecosystems are able to sequester.  This, in turn, could enhance the design of management strategies for decreasing the quantity of atmospheric CO2.


It also comes to reaffirm the importance of sustainable forest management in the fight against climate change.


The article ‘Biomass production efficiency controlled by management in temperate and boreal ecosystems’ can be purchased from Nature Geoscience here

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