Biophysical considerations in forestry for climate protection

Published by Ecoss on

leshyk illustration rainforest temperate flux

Albedo, the reflectance of sunlight from earth’s surface, is an important moderator of climate because it determines whether solar energy is locally absorbed or re-radiated to space.  Ecoss-associated research characterized the albedo and other energy fluxes of various landscapes to demonstrate that human land-use decisions can alter surface energy fluxes to a meaningful extent depending on forest management practices, or when natural cover is converted for agriculture or cleared for other purposes.  Natural environmental succession can also change albedo, for instance when sun-absorbing forest is replaced by snowfields or open grassland, and is itself vulnerable to human-caused feedbacks which can drive landscape change.

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