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Revista mexicana de ciencias forestales

versão impressa ISSN 2007-1132


RAJ ARYAL, Deb et al. Carbon storage potential in forest areas within a livestock system. Rev. mex. de cienc. forestales [online]. 2018, vol.9, n.48, pp.150-180. ISSN 2007-1132.

The rapid increase in livestock production has generated environmental impacts, such as deforestation, loss of biodiversity, soil degradation and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. In Chiapas, GHG emissions have increased especially due to the conversion of forest lands to pastures and livestock enteric fermentation. The removal of atmospheric CO2 by forestry and agroforestry activities within the livestock production units can significantly reduce the net GHG emissions. The main objective of this research was to evaluate the carbon storage potential in forest areas within a livestock production unit in Villaflores, Chiapas, in order to know their contribution to GHG mitigation. Twelve sampling plots were established in forest areas and pasturelands to evaluate the carbon stocks in aboveground living biomass, root biomass, litter, dead wood and soil organic carbon. The average carbon storage in forest areas was 144.45 Mg C ha-1 compared to 75.95 Mg C ha-1 in the pasture areas. The carbon storage in living biomass was higher in forest areas than in pasturelands as expected but there was no significant differences in the soil organic carbon pool. The farm has 24.7 hectares of forest area (40 % of the total land surface) with a high diversity of tree species and if it is decided to deforest for pasture establishment, it would contribute to 6 353.95 Mg of CO2 emissions. The results will serve as a baseline for estimating annual carbon removal with future re-measurements.

Palavras-chave : Forest biomass; soil organic carbon; livestock production; greenhouse gases; mitigation; pasture.

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