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Journal Articles Science Advances Year : 2022

Human impacts as the main driver of tropical forest carbon

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Abstract

Understanding the mechanisms controlling forest carbon storage is crucial to support “nature-based” solutions for climate change mitigation. We used a dataset of 892 Atlantic Forest inventories to assess the direct and indirect effects of environmental conditions, human impacts, tree community proprieties, and sampling methods on tree above-ground carbon stocks. We showed that the widely accepted drivers of carbon stocks, such as climate, soil, topography, and forest fragmentation, have a much smaller role than the forest disturbance history and functional proprieties of the Atlantic Forest. Specifically, within-forest disturbance level was the most important driver, with effect at least 30% higher than any of the environmental conditions individually. Thus, our findings suggest that the conservation of tropical carbon stocks may be dependable on, principally, avoiding forest degradation and that conservation policies focusing only on carbon may fail to protect tropical biodiversity.
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Dates and versions

hal-03738373 , version 1 (26-07-2022)

Licence

Attribution - CC BY 4.0

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Marcela Venelli Pyles, Luiz Fernando Silva Magnago, Vinícius Andrade Maia, Bruno X. Pinho, Gregory Pitta, et al.. Human impacts as the main driver of tropical forest carbon. Science Advances , 2022, 8 (24), ⟨10.1126/sciadv.abl7968⟩. ⟨hal-03738373⟩
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