Deadwood is life for others!
A study by the Australian National University has found that the decaying of deadwood from forests could contribute up to 10 billion tons of CO2 emissions annually ( – https://lnkd.in/g_6r-68F )
That’s a real lot of emissions, about 30% of total CO2 emissions, which is about 35 billion tons per year. (By the way, it is not clear if this total includes these deadwood CO2 emissions – I think not – though it includes CO2 emissions from agricultural activities such as tilling and land use changes).
While it might be tempting to think of using such deadwood for our energy purposes, the story is far more intricate.
The deadwood provides a range of benefits to the forest ecosystem. A research from the UK forest dept says that about a fifth of all forest species depend on deadwood for their survival. Deadwood decomposition through composting also provides the soil with a nutrient rich compost.
A forest’s biodiversity might depend a lot on the deadwood! Deadwood is life for many others in the ecosystem.
So, deadwood emissions are a price we have to pay for maintaining the forest’s vitality. But still, 10 billion tons of CO2 is a heck a lot of emissions!