Skip to Main Content
Site productivity and forest carbon stocks in the United States: Analysis and implications for forest offset project planningAuthor(s): Coeli M. Hoover; James E. Smith
Source: Forests. 3: 283-299.
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
Station: Northern Research Station
View PDF (907.03 KB)
DescriptionThe documented role of United States forests in sequestering carbon, the relatively low cost of forest-based mitigation, and the many co-benefits of increasing forest carbon stocks all contribute to the ongoing trend in the establishment of forest-based carbon offset projects. We present a broad analysis of forest inventory data using site quality indicators to provide guidance to managers planning land acquisition for forest-based greenhouse gas mitigation projects. Specifically, we summarize two condition class indicators of site productivity within the FIA forest inventory database--PHYSCLCD and SITECLCD--as they relate to current aboveground live tree carbon stocks. Average carbon density is higher on more productive sites, but compared to the overall variability among sites, the differences are relatively small for all but the highest and lowest site classes. Some minor differences in eastern- versus western-forests were apparent in terms of how carbon on the least productive sites differed from most other forest land over time. Overall results suggest that xeric sites in most regions as well as sites that correspond to the lowest, non-productive classifications of forest land should preferentially not be used forestry-based greenhouse gas mitigation projects, but all other forest areas appear to be suitable.
- Check the Northern Research Station web site to request a printed copy of this publication.
- Our on-line publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat.
- During the capture process some typographical errors may occur.
- Please contact Sharon Hobrla, firstname.lastname@example.org if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
CitationHoover, Coeli M.; Smith, James E. 2012. Site productivity and forest carbon stocks in the United States: Analysis and implications for forest offset project planning. Forests. 3: 283-299.
KeywordsForest Inventory and Analysis database, soil moisture regime, aboveground live biomass carbon, site productivity
- FORCARB2: An updated version of the U.S. Forest Carbon Budget Model
- Past and prospective carbon stocks in forests of northern Wisconsin: a report from the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest Climate Change Response Framework
- Carbon factors and models for forest carbon estimates for the 2005-2011 National Greenhouse Gas Inventories of the United States
XML: View XML