Potential effects of future land-use change on regional carbon stocks in the UK.

Cantarello, E., Newton, A. and Hill, R.A., 2011. Potential effects of future land-use change on regional carbon stocks in the UK. Environmental Science & Policy, 14 (1), pp. 40-52.

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DOI: 10.1016/j.envsci.2010.10.001


In order to explore the impact of land-use change on carbon (C) stocks in South West England, three scenarios were explored based on current UK national- and regional-scale policies and plans. The scenarios assessed were: (i) Rebuilding Biodiversity (RB), involving habitat restoration of 824,244 ha of strategic nature areas; (ii) Forest Strategy (FS), involving establishment of 16,000 ha of new woodlands; and (iii) Biomass Strategy (BS), involving conversion of 65,513 ha of arable land into bioenergy crops. It was assumed that each of these targets would be implemented by the year 2020, with carbon build-up times of 100, 100 and 30 years, respectively. Estimates of C-stock changes were produced by compiling vegetation and soil organic C-density data for 11 land-use types from a systematic literature review. Results indicated that FS would lead to the highest yearly potential carbon sequestration (up to 3.63 Mg C ha-1 yr-1). However, the total C-stocks would be the highest under RB (up to 20% increase), owing to the greater area of pastures and arable land being converted into broadleaved forest when compared to FS. BS would have the least effect on C (C-stock increase of up to 0.3% and up to 0.41 Mg C ha-1 yr-1 sequestered). The spatially explicit analytical approach adopted here provides an indication of which land-use changes would contribute most to C-sequestration within the South West region, and could contribute to achieving national emission reduction targets post-2012.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Carbon stock Carbon sequestration Land-use change Landscape modelling LULUCF
Subjects:Science > Biology and Botany
Geography and Environmental Studies
Group:Faculty of Science and Technology
ID Code:18778
Deposited By:Dr Elena Cantarello
Deposited On:07 Nov 2011 11:41
Last Modified:10 Sep 2014 15:53


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