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Mapping Above- and Below-Ground Carbon Pools in Boreal Forests: The Case for Airborne Lidar.

Kristensen T, Næsset E, Ohlson M, Bolstad PV, Kolka R - PLoS ONE (2015)

Bottom Line: We also found evidence that lidar canopy data correlated well with the variation in field layer C stock, consisting mainly of ericaceous dwarf shrubs and herbaceous plants.Increasing the topographical resolution from plot averages (~2000 m2) towards individual grid cells (1 m2) did not yield consistent models.Our study demonstrates a connection between the size and distribution of different forest C pools and models derived from airborne lidar data, providing a foundation for future research concerning the use of lidar for assessing and monitoring boreal forest C.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Ecology and Natural Resource Management, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Ås, Norway.

ABSTRACT
A large and growing body of evidence has demonstrated that airborne scanning light detection and ranging (lidar) systems can be an effective tool in measuring and monitoring above-ground forest tree biomass. However, the potential of lidar as an all-round tool for assisting in assessment of carbon (C) stocks in soil and non-tree vegetation components of the forest ecosystem has been given much less attention. Here we combine the use airborne small footprint scanning lidar with fine-scale spatial C data relating to vegetation and the soil surface to describe and contrast the size and spatial distribution of C pools within and among multilayered Norway spruce (Picea abies) stands. Predictor variables from lidar derived metrics delivered precise models of above- and below-ground tree C, which comprised the largest C pool in our study stands. We also found evidence that lidar canopy data correlated well with the variation in field layer C stock, consisting mainly of ericaceous dwarf shrubs and herbaceous plants. However, lidar metrics derived directly from understory echoes did not yield significant models. Furthermore, our results indicate that the variation in both the mosses and soil organic layer C stock plots appears less influenced by differences in stand structure properties than topographical gradients. By using topographical models from lidar ground returns we were able to establish a strong correlation between lidar data and the organic layer C stock at a stand level. Increasing the topographical resolution from plot averages (~2000 m2) towards individual grid cells (1 m2) did not yield consistent models. Our study demonstrates a connection between the size and distribution of different forest C pools and models derived from airborne lidar data, providing a foundation for future research concerning the use of lidar for assessing and monitoring boreal forest C.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Distribution of field layer C stock by canopy cover.Bars show average plot values for the field layer C stock measurements at sampling points located under and in canopy interspace. Plots are ranked by relative canopy cover (% values) derived from lidar canopy density (cd0). Whiskers indicate 95% CI for the mean. Differences in mean values are indicated by significance a (p < 0.01) and b (p < 0.05).
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pone.0138450.g006: Distribution of field layer C stock by canopy cover.Bars show average plot values for the field layer C stock measurements at sampling points located under and in canopy interspace. Plots are ranked by relative canopy cover (% values) derived from lidar canopy density (cd0). Whiskers indicate 95% CI for the mean. Differences in mean values are indicated by significance a (p < 0.01) and b (p < 0.05).

Mentions: The field layer, mosses and saplings, which comprise the understory compartment, were analyzed individually. Mean field layer C stocks varied from 0.41 to 0.88 Mg C ha-1 (Fig 3), with coefficients of variation (CV = sd/mean*100, %) within each plot ranging from 58 to 75%. The variances in the field layer C stocks between plots were heterogenic (Levene's test, p < 0.001), while differences were statistically significant, Welch's F (7, 243) = 13.03, p < 0.001. There was a negative correlation between plot basal area and field layer C stock (r(8) = -0.82 (-0.97, -0.27), p = 0.012). The influence of trees on the field layer C stock was further investigated on a point scale using a nearest neighbor analysis and neighbor densities. We found that models of tree density performed better when including a measure of tree size, such as basal area, rather than models with only stem density. Significant trends were then observed between basal area density (in a radius of 5 m around each sampling point) and the field layer C stock in the overall model Spearman’s rho (ρ(580) = -0.23 (-0.33, -0.14), p < 0.001) (Fig 5), and in six of the eight plots (results not shown). A pairwise t-test revealed significantly higher field layer C stock at sampling points situated at canopy-interspace locations than under canopy in six of the eight plots (Welch's F (1, 509) = 140.345, p < 0.001, Fig 6).


Mapping Above- and Below-Ground Carbon Pools in Boreal Forests: The Case for Airborne Lidar.

Kristensen T, Næsset E, Ohlson M, Bolstad PV, Kolka R - PLoS ONE (2015)

Distribution of field layer C stock by canopy cover.Bars show average plot values for the field layer C stock measurements at sampling points located under and in canopy interspace. Plots are ranked by relative canopy cover (% values) derived from lidar canopy density (cd0). Whiskers indicate 95% CI for the mean. Differences in mean values are indicated by significance a (p < 0.01) and b (p < 0.05).
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4591287&req=5

pone.0138450.g006: Distribution of field layer C stock by canopy cover.Bars show average plot values for the field layer C stock measurements at sampling points located under and in canopy interspace. Plots are ranked by relative canopy cover (% values) derived from lidar canopy density (cd0). Whiskers indicate 95% CI for the mean. Differences in mean values are indicated by significance a (p < 0.01) and b (p < 0.05).
Mentions: The field layer, mosses and saplings, which comprise the understory compartment, were analyzed individually. Mean field layer C stocks varied from 0.41 to 0.88 Mg C ha-1 (Fig 3), with coefficients of variation (CV = sd/mean*100, %) within each plot ranging from 58 to 75%. The variances in the field layer C stocks between plots were heterogenic (Levene's test, p < 0.001), while differences were statistically significant, Welch's F (7, 243) = 13.03, p < 0.001. There was a negative correlation between plot basal area and field layer C stock (r(8) = -0.82 (-0.97, -0.27), p = 0.012). The influence of trees on the field layer C stock was further investigated on a point scale using a nearest neighbor analysis and neighbor densities. We found that models of tree density performed better when including a measure of tree size, such as basal area, rather than models with only stem density. Significant trends were then observed between basal area density (in a radius of 5 m around each sampling point) and the field layer C stock in the overall model Spearman’s rho (ρ(580) = -0.23 (-0.33, -0.14), p < 0.001) (Fig 5), and in six of the eight plots (results not shown). A pairwise t-test revealed significantly higher field layer C stock at sampling points situated at canopy-interspace locations than under canopy in six of the eight plots (Welch's F (1, 509) = 140.345, p < 0.001, Fig 6).

Bottom Line: We also found evidence that lidar canopy data correlated well with the variation in field layer C stock, consisting mainly of ericaceous dwarf shrubs and herbaceous plants.Increasing the topographical resolution from plot averages (~2000 m2) towards individual grid cells (1 m2) did not yield consistent models.Our study demonstrates a connection between the size and distribution of different forest C pools and models derived from airborne lidar data, providing a foundation for future research concerning the use of lidar for assessing and monitoring boreal forest C.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Ecology and Natural Resource Management, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Ås, Norway.

ABSTRACT
A large and growing body of evidence has demonstrated that airborne scanning light detection and ranging (lidar) systems can be an effective tool in measuring and monitoring above-ground forest tree biomass. However, the potential of lidar as an all-round tool for assisting in assessment of carbon (C) stocks in soil and non-tree vegetation components of the forest ecosystem has been given much less attention. Here we combine the use airborne small footprint scanning lidar with fine-scale spatial C data relating to vegetation and the soil surface to describe and contrast the size and spatial distribution of C pools within and among multilayered Norway spruce (Picea abies) stands. Predictor variables from lidar derived metrics delivered precise models of above- and below-ground tree C, which comprised the largest C pool in our study stands. We also found evidence that lidar canopy data correlated well with the variation in field layer C stock, consisting mainly of ericaceous dwarf shrubs and herbaceous plants. However, lidar metrics derived directly from understory echoes did not yield significant models. Furthermore, our results indicate that the variation in both the mosses and soil organic layer C stock plots appears less influenced by differences in stand structure properties than topographical gradients. By using topographical models from lidar ground returns we were able to establish a strong correlation between lidar data and the organic layer C stock at a stand level. Increasing the topographical resolution from plot averages (~2000 m2) towards individual grid cells (1 m2) did not yield consistent models. Our study demonstrates a connection between the size and distribution of different forest C pools and models derived from airborne lidar data, providing a foundation for future research concerning the use of lidar for assessing and monitoring boreal forest C.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus