As the effects of global warming grow more substantial, the ability of old-growth forests to sequester carbon is affected. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Forest types have very different development patterns, natural disturbances and appearances. Views Read Edit View history. In some ecosystems such as the temperate rain forest of the North American Pacific coast , fallen timber may become nurse logs , providing a substrate for seedling trees. From a forest dynamics perspective, old-growth forest is in a stage that follows understory reinitiation stage. Thus, uniformly aged stands are less stable ecosystems. Consequently, using stand dynamics to define old-growth forest is more useful in cases where the species that constitute old-growth forest can have long lifespan or in ecosystem where succession is very slow. This article needs additional citations for verification.
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A scientific symposium in Canada found that defining old growth in a scientifically meaningful, yet policy-relevant, manner presents some basic difficulties, especially if a simple, unambiguous, and rigorous scientific definition is sought. Excessive logging reduces biodiversity, affecting not only the old-growth forest itself, but also indigenous species that rely upon old-growth forest habitat. Forest canopy gaps are essential in creating and maintaining mixed-age stands. The debate over old-growth definitions has been inextricably linked with a complex range of social perceptions about wilderness preservation, aesthetics, and spirituality, as well as economic or industrial values. For example, in Western Australia, the timber industry tried to limit the area of old growth in the karri forests of the Southern Forests Region; this led to the creation of the Western Australian Forests Alliance , the splitting of the Liberal Government of Western Australia and the election of the Gallop Labor Government. Consequently, using stand dynamics to define old-growth forest is more useful in cases where the species that constitute old-growth forest can have long lifespan or in ecosystem where succession is very slow. In particular, many species of dead-wood predators such as woodpeckers must have standing snags available for feeding. Proponents of harvesting the forest argue the carbon stored in wood is available for use as biomass energy displacing fossil fuel use ,  although using biomass as a fuel produces air pollution in the form of carbon monoxide , nitrogen oxides , volatile organic compounds , particulates, and other pollutants, in some cases at levels above those from traditional fuel sources such as coal or natural gas. The mixed age of the forest is an important criterion in ensuring that the forest is a relatively stable ecosystem in the long term.
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Description:Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. A forest that has attained great age without significant disturbance. Consequently, using stand dynamics to define old-growth forest is more useful in cases where the species that constitute old-growth forest can have long lifespan or in ecosystem where succession is very slow. Ten thousand hectares of tall-eucalypt RFA old-growth forest have been lost since , predominantly as a result of industrial logging operations. In , Greenpeace identified that the world's remaining intact forest landscapes are distributed among the continents as follows: Views Read Edit View history.
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