Forest Soil Carbon-sink Nordic Network – University of Copenhagen

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Forest Soil Carbon-sink Nordic Network

Forest

The Forest Soil Carbon-sink Nordic Network (FSC-sink) project was a Nordic networking project aiming to integrate interdisciplinary research dealing with impacts of forest management and environmental change on soil organic carbon (SOC).

The rationalization behind the FSC-sink project related to the importance of forests as natural resource in the Nordic countries as well as elsewhere. Forests cover 60% of the land area in the five Nordic countries. These forests store massive amounts of carbon (C) and 50-80% of it is stored below ground as SOC. However, little is known about the rate of C accumulation in soils. It is generally agreed that forest soils are current sinks for C but the rate is uncertain, partially due to the inherent spatial variability of soils across the Nordic countries. Current environmental legislation promotes the protection and enhancement of these C sinks. The FSC-sink project called for the adoption of a multidisciplinary approach that can combine high quality observational data, long-term experiments and modelling approaches in order to improve our knowledge of the functioning of forest ecosystems and their role as C sinks.

The Nordic region has been leading in performing National Forest Inventories (NFI)s including also investigations of SOC. These national SOC datasets are probably the best in any region of the world and provide opportunities for analysis of controlling environmental factors on C sequestration and for up-scaling and mapping.

Furthermore, the activities of the FSC-sink project were highly relevant for the reporting on the Kyoto protocol articles No. 3.3 (afforestation, reforestation and deforestation) and 3.4 (forest management) as well as for protocols beyond Kyoto.