Carbon-Neutral Birding

To: John Tongue <>
Subject: Carbon-Neutral Birding
From: Penny Brockman <>
Date: Thu, 07 Jun 2007 13:42:12 +1000
John Tongue wrote:
Hi Greg and all,
While I agree with the sentiments about maintaining old growth forests and supporting those who agree never to log their plantations - from an ecological point of view - it's not true to say that only such situations are effective at sequestering Carbon. In fact, once an old growth forest reaches a mature equilibrium, it is almost carbon-neutral itself. While there are certainly ecological and water issues to be taken into account, as well as the carbon released in the harvesting process, it is only actively growing forests (or other forms of plant biomass) which are truly effective as a 'carbon-sink'. The challenge confronting the 'great minds' of our time is how to remove as much carbon dioxide and other 'greenhouse gases' from the atmosphere as possible without unduly upsetting other ecosystems.

John Tongue
Remember that once a tree has grown and absorbed its share of carbon, that carbon remains "sequestered" unless the tree is cut down. And trees help in maintaining water in the atmosphere, reduce evaporation from the soil by reducing the heating effect from direct sunlight, and assist with erosion control as well as providing habitat for countless insect, birds, reptiles and mammals. I do agree with Greg though about the sorry state of forestry with its hectares of single species trees, usually foreign to the area.

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