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Posted Sat Dec 7 2013: from Dartmouth College:
More Logging, Deforestation May Better Serve Climate in Some Areas
... The findings suggest more frequent logging or deforestation may better serve our planet and pocketbooks in high latitude areas where snowfall is common and timber productivity is low. Such a scenario could involve including snow cover/albedo in existing greenhouse gas exchanges like the Kyoto protocol or a cap-and-trade program or ecosystem services market in which landowners are paid to maintain snow cover and produce timber rather than conserve forests and store carbon. Previous studies have put a price on many ecosystem services -- or services that nature provides to humans that have both economic and biological value, such as drinking water and crop pollination -- but the Dartmouth study is the first to do so for albedo, or the surface reflection of incoming solar energy. The findings contrast with the dominant paradigm that including forest climate mitigation services such as carbon storage on compliance markets will lead to the conservation of forests. Instead, the findings show that in some areas, it is better to have snow act as a natural mirror if you want to use forests for climate-related purposes.
[Read more stories about: anthropogenic change, climate impacts, deforestation, geoengineering, albedo effect]
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