RIEL Seminar Series - A global systemic review on the response of mangrove carbon stocks and soil GHG emissions to land use changes

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Presenter:  Sigit D. Sasmito

Date: May 17, 2019

Time: 3:30pm to 4:30pm

Contact person:  RIEL
T: +61 8 8946 6413
E: riel@cdu.edu.au

Location:  Charles Darwin University, Building Yellow 1.1.39

Coastal mangrove forests are known as one of the most efficient carbon sinks on earth. However, these C-dense wetlands are currently under threat from major land-use and land-cover changes (LULCCs), which results in large amounts of deforested and converted mangrove areas globally. Currently, little is known about the range of impacts different LULCCs have upon mangrove carbon storage.

We systematically review the global impact of LULCC activities including aquaculture, agriculture, deforestation, and regeneration to mangrove carbon stocks and soil greenhouse-gas effluxes. We gathered 5,747 study titles related to mangrove carbon and LULCCs from major scholar databases, of which only 37 articles with 487 datasets were included in our study data extraction. We extracted three main carbon stock pools (i.e., aboveground biomass (AGC), belowground biomass (BGC), and soil carbon) and soil greenhouse-gas effluxes from paired datasets of undisturbed control mangroves versus LUCs affected treatment study sites.

By using carbon stocks difference approach, we found substantial vegetation biomass carbon losses (82 ± 35 %), in which aquaculture and agriculture conversions contribute higher compared to other LULCC types. Our meta-analysis further revealed significant soil carbon stock losses with a mean of 54 ± 13 %. On the other hand, mangrove regeneration contributed a major vegetation carbon stocks increase over the first 30 years of forest ages despite unclear implication for soil carbon pool. This study implies that preventing further mangrove conversion and supporting conservation based mangrove management and restoration are essential for policy ramification with particularly to limit carbon emissions from this unique coastal wetlands.

This work is a collaborative effort between RIEL, CIFOR and NUS, and was partly supported by CIFOR Evidence-Based Forestry Initiative.

Sigit Sasmito is a PhD Candidate with RIEL Ecosystem Function Group and also affiliated with CIFOR in Indonesia. His current research explores the consequences of land-use and land-cover changes to mangrove blue carbon storage function. His research is focused in West Papua, Indonesia - home to more than 10% of the world’s mangroves.

When: Friday 17 May @ 3:30pm - 4:30pm, Followed by drinks and snacks 

Where: Charles Darwin University, Building Yellow 1.1.39