Soil carbon in northern forested wetlands: impacts of silvicultural practices
In Scandinavia and the former USSR, intensive management of forested wetlands has been an integral component of commercial forest operations. Common silvicultural practices used in northern forested wetlands include clearcut harvesting, site preparation, replanting, and fertilization. This chapter reviews the distribution and function of carbon (C) in northern forested wetlands. It shows how different silvicultural practices affect soil C levels. The chapter considers the potential for recovery of soil C following disturbance by silvicultural practices. Drainage systems are used in many forested wetlands in northern Europe and Asia. Reductions in soil C pools after draining peatlands, either as gases or dissolvedorganic carbon, is a direct result of increased organic matter (OM) decomposition due to changes in soil aeration and temperature regimes. Biotic and abiotic factors which affect OM accumulation include hydrology, geomorphic setting, microclimate, and vegetation composition and production.