Journal of Arid Land

Article Title

Above- and below-ground biomass and carbon stocks of different tree plantations in central Iran


In arid and semi-arid lands using industrial wastewater for irrigating tree plantations offers a great opportunity to fulfill the purpose of Clean Development Mechanism by sequestering carbon in living tissues as well as in soil. Selection of tree for plantation has a great effect on the goal achievements, especially when the managers deal with afforestation projects rather than reforestation projects. The objective of this study was to quantify the above- and below-ground biomass accumulation and carbon storages of the 17-year-old monoculture plantations of mulberry (Morus alba L.), black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L.), Eldar pine (Pinus eldarica Medw.) and Arizona cypress (Cupressus arizonica Greene) planted in central Iran. To assess the potential carbon storage, we destructively measured individual above- and below-ground tree biomass and developed and scaled models at stand level. Furthermore, carbon content at three soil depths (0–15, 15–30, 30–45 cm), the litter and the understory were assessed in sample plots. The results showed that the total amount of carbon stored by Eldar pine (36.8 Mg/hm2) was higher than those stored by the trees in the other three plantations, which were 23.7, 10.0, and 9.6 Mg/hm2 for Arizona cypress, mulberry and black locust plantations, respectively. For all the species, the above-ground biomass accumulations were higher than those of the below-ground. The root mass fractions of the deciduous were larger than those of the coniferous. Accordingly, the results indicate that the potential carbon storages of the coniferous were higher than those of the deciduous in arid regions.


carbon storage; biomass; coniferous; deciduous; central Iran

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