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The Future of Massachusetts Forests

November 1, 2011
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A new paper by Jonathan Thompson, David Foster, and David Kittredge describes a simulation experiment designed to evaluate Development mapMassachusetts forest change over the next 50 years (2010–2060). The authors' objective was to estimate the relative influence of continued tree growth and succession, climate change, forest conversion to developed uses, and timber harvest on aboveground biomass (carbon) and tree species composition. Continued forest growth and succession had the largest effect on biomass, increasing stores by 49% to 112% across regions over the 50 year simulation. Over the same period, land conversion reduced biomass gains by an average of 18% and timber harvest reduced gains by 4%. Climate change (temperature and precipitation) increased biomass gains by 13.5%. Read the full paper, published in Ecological Applications. 

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