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Integrating carbon into Swedish forest certification schemes

Research project financed by Formas.

Forest certification schemes have emerged as a powerful market-driven tool to promote sustainable practices within the forestry industry. This project will work with forest certification providers in Sweden to devise an improved protocol for surveying forest carbon.

Head of project

Project overview

Project period:

2022-01-01 2024-12-31

Participating departments and units at Umeå University

Department of Ecology and Environmental Science

Research area

Environmental sciences

External funding

Formas
  • Project members

    External project members

    Anders Ahlström, Lund University and Gustaf Hugelius, Stockholm University.

Project description

Multiple global initiatives, and Sweden’s national goal to become carbon neutral by 2045, identify forests as a powerful resource for climate mitigation. Forest certification schemes have emerged as a powerful market-driven tool to promote sustainable practices within the forestry industry. Yet, carbon storage as a critical ecosystem service is not usually included within most certification schemes in Sweden. Further, recently proposed methods for measuring carbon do not include soil and rely on various parameters (wood density, wood carbon content, “biomass expansion factor”, root:shoot ratio) to extrapolate whole ecosystem carbon from simple measurements of tree stems which are inaccurate, outdated and often unrepresentative for northern forests.

We will work with forest certification providers in Sweden to devise an improved protocol for surveying forest carbon and update critical parameters for estimating ecosystem carbon with extensive field sampling in Swedish forests, thereby enhancing incentives for land-owners to manage their land to promote carbon storage and climate mitigation.

External funding