A significant area of the oak forests in Turkey has been historically managed by short-rotation coppicing for wood production. Coppice management was almost abandoned in Turkey in 2006 and so investigating its impact on forest carbon (C) sequestration has become an important issue. Therefore, we investigated the net effect of this change in management on C sequestration by oak forests in Turkey using field measurement data and a forest C model (Forest Biomass and Dead organic matter Carbon (FBDC) model). The FBDC model estimated the annual forest C dynamics and considered the effect of the substitution of wood for fossil fuels under two management scenarios over a 100-year period: (1) abandoning coppice (no management) and (2) continuing coppice (20-year-interval harvest). The field measurement data were used to parameterize the FBDC model to the study sites and to verify the simulated C stocks. Continuing coppice management constrained an increase in the C stocks (116.0-140.3 Mg C ha-1) and showed a mean annual C sequestration of 0.6 Mg C ha-1 yr-1 if wood was substituted for fossil fuels. In contrast, abandoning coppicing practices increased the level of forest C stocks (128.1-236.2 Mg C ha-1), enhancing the mean annual C sequestration to 1.1 Mg C ha-1 yr-1. Accordingly, the abandonment of coppice management increased the mean annual C sequestration by 0.5 Mg C ha-1 yr-1 in the long-term. However, sensitivity analysis showed a possibility of a larger difference in C sequestration between the two scenarios due to a decrease in the stand productivity by repeated coppices and a high likelihood of a lower substitution effect. The verification supported the scientific reliability of the simulation results. Our study can provide a scientific basis for enhancing C sequestration in coppice forests.
Keywords: Forest carbon dynamics; Forest carbon model; Sensitivity analysis; Substitution effect; Verification.
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