Published: March 11, 2019

Assistant Professor of Integrated Biology Brian Buma and Thomas Thompson (of the US Forest Service) recently published the first spatially explicit map of carbon in one of the densest forests in the world - the coastal rainforests of Alaska (Long-term exposure to more frequent disturbances increases baseline carbon in some ecosystems: Mapping and quantifying the disturbance frequency-ecosystem C relationship. PLoS ONE 14(2): e0212526).  The largest National Forest, and one of the last wild places in the United States, it is a true national resource for carbon sequestration.  Estimates of total carbon place the region as one of the most carbon-rich regions on the planet, but dynamic - with wind and landslides driving differences on the ground. This work illustrates the value of forests to our national and international carbon strategy, as well as the need to consider the dynamics of those systems in a changing climate.