Organic carbon inventories in natural and restored Ecuadorian mangrove forests

Amanda G. DelVecchia, John F. Bruno, Larry Benninger, Marc Alperin, Ovik Banerje, Juan De Dios Morales

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 4 Citations

Abstract

Mangroves can capture and store organic carbon and their protection and therefore their restoration is a component of climate change mitigation. However, there are few empirical measurements of long-term carbon storage in mangroves or of how storage varies across environmental gradients. The context dependency of this process combined with geographically limited field sampling has made it difficult to generalize regional and global rates of mangrove carbon sequestration. This has in turn hampered the inclusion of sequestration by mangroves in carbon cycle models and in carbon offset markets. The purpose of this study was to estimate the relative carbon capture and storage potential in natural and restored mangrove forests. We measured depth profiles of soil organic carbon content in 72 cores collected fromsix sites (three natural, two restored, and one afforested) surrounding Muisne, Ecuador. Samples up to 1 m deep were analyzed for organic matter content using loss-on-ignition and values were converted to organic carbon content using an accepted ratio of 1.72 (g/g). Results suggest that average soil carbon storage is 0.055±0.002 g cm-3 (11.3±0.8% carbon content by dry mass, mean ± 1 SE) up to 1 m deep in natural sites, and 0.058 ± 0.002 g cm-3 (8.0 ± 0.3%) in restored sites. These estimates are concordant with published global averages. Evidence of equivalent carbon stocks in restored and afforested mangrove patches emphasizes the carbon sink potential for reestablished mangrove systems. We found no relationship between sediment carbon storage and aboveground biomass, forest structure, or within-patch location. Our results demonstrate the long-termcarbon storage potential of natural mangroves, high effectiveness of mangrove restoration and afforestation, a lack of predictability in carbon storage strictly based on aboveground parameters, and the need to establish standardized protocol for quantifying mangrove sediment carbon stocks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere388
JournalPeerJ
Volume2014
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2014

Fingerprint

carbon sequestration
Carbon
Equipment and Supplies
Forests
carbon
carbon sinks
mangrove forests
sediments
sampling
Contraception
carbon footprint
carbon markets
pollution control
afforestation
Ecuador
soil organic carbon
aboveground biomass
soil organic matter
climate change
markets

Keywords

  • Aquaculture
  • Blue carbon
  • Carbon sequestration
  • Carbon storage
  • Loss-on-ignition
  • Mangroves

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Medicine(all)
  • Neuroscience(all)

Cite this

Organic carbon inventories in natural and restored Ecuadorian mangrove forests. / DelVecchia, Amanda G.; Bruno, John F.; Benninger, Larry; Alperin, Marc; Banerje, Ovik; De Dios Morales, Juan.

In: PeerJ, Vol. 2014, No. 1, e388, 2014.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

DelVecchia AG, Bruno JF, Benninger L, Alperin M, Banerje O, De Dios Morales J. Organic carbon inventories in natural and restored Ecuadorian mangrove forests. PeerJ. 2014;2014(1). e388. Available from, DOI: 10.7717/peerj.388

DelVecchia, Amanda G.; Bruno, John F.; Benninger, Larry; Alperin, Marc; Banerje, Ovik; De Dios Morales, Juan / Organic carbon inventories in natural and restored Ecuadorian mangrove forests.

In: PeerJ, Vol. 2014, No. 1, e388, 2014.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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