, Volume 14, Issue 6, pp 365-372
Date: 19 Sep 2009

Allometric equations for accurate estimation of above-ground biomass in logged-over tropical rainforests in Sarawak, Malaysia

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Abstract

Although allometric equations can be used to accurately estimate biomass and/or carbon stock in forest ecosystems, few have been developed for logged-over tropical rainforests in Southeast Asia. We developed allometric relationships between tree size variables (stem diameter at breast height (dbh) and tree height) and leaf, branch, stem and total above-ground biomass in two logged-over tropical rainforests with different soil conditions in Sarawak, Malaysia. The study sites were originally classified as mainly lowland dipterocarp forest and have been selectively logged in the past 20 years. In total, 30 individuals from 27 species were harvested to measure above-ground parts. The correlation coefficients for the allometric relationships obtained for total above-ground biomass as a function of dbh had high values (0.99), although the relationships for leaf biomass had a relatively low coefficient (0.83). We also found relatively high coefficients for allometric relationships between tree height and plant-part biomass, ranging from 0.82 to 0.97. Moreover, there were no differences for allometric equations of total above-ground biomass between study sites. A comparison of equations of above-ground biomass in various previously reported tropical rainforests and pan-tropic general equations imply that our allometric equations differ largely from the equations for tropical primary forests, early successional secondary forest, and even for the general models. Therefore, choosing the biomass estimation models for above-ground biomass in the logged-over forests of Southeast Asia requires careful consideration of their suitability.