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Water, Air, and Soil Pollution

, Volume 94, Issue 1–2, pp 137–162 | Cite as

Possibilities for increased carbon sequestration through the implementation of rational forest management in Russia

  • Anatoly Shvidenko
  • Sten Nilsson
  • Vjacheslav Roshkov
Article

Abstract

Huge areas of the Russian forests suffer from insufficient forest management. A scenario has been developed for an improved management program that would be implemented over the next 40 years. Possible options have been aggregated into three interlinked groups: increase in forest productivity through improvement of the forest conditions and the structure of the Forest Fund, decrease of carbon release by mitigation of disturbance regimes, and improvement of landscape management. One prerequisite in developing this scenario was that the cost of sequestering one ton of carbon should not exceed US$3 (1992 dollar value). In this article a simple model is described to illustrate the following possibilities for increased carbon fixation by improved forest management: large-scale reforestation and afforestation, replacement of stands with low productivity and replacement of so called soft deciduous species and “climax” stands, and implementation of rational silviculture (thinning). The results indicate a potential for an increase in carbon fixation in Russian forest ecosystems of 24.4 Pg over 100 years, after the first year that the actions discussed are implemented. The net sink of carbon was determined to be 16.5 Pg in the “low” estimate and 42.5 Pg in the “high” estimate. There are, however, many uncertainties in the data and there are difficulties in adequately modeling the possibilities for implementation under current conditions in Russia. In spite of these uncertainties, we conclude that there is great potential for economically justified increased carbon fixation through improved forest management in Russia.

Key words

carbon budget forest management climate change mitigation options 

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anatoly Shvidenko
    • 1
  • Sten Nilsson
    • 1
  • Vjacheslav Roshkov
    • 2
  1. 1.International Institute for Applied Systems AnalysisLaxenburgAustria
  2. 2.Dokuchajev Soil InstituteRussian Academy of Agricultural ScienceMoscowRussia

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