Page 14 - Georgia Forestry - Issue 4 - Fall 2020
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We are pole, piling, and mulch manufacturers, focusing on procuring wood and buying timber.
Gary Strickland, Owner
(912) 632-2800
P.O. Box 763 • Alma, GA 31510
not going to be an anti-market approach on federal lands either. We’re going to have to think about collaboration, we’re going to have to think about incentives, markets, locally led projects, how do we work with folks.
EH: What do we know now about forests and climate science and the role that forests can play? Where is there a consensus, where is there some sort of need for deeper research? What does it tell us about
AB:One of the good things is, the investment that the USDA and the university started making back in 1989 has really paid off. The U.S. Global Change Research Program started in 1990. So we’ve been really been building a knowledge base; it’s not just something [where] we snap fingers, and there we’ve
got the answers.
That’s really worked to our benefit that
we’ve been able to investigate various aspects of not only forests, but all sorts of ecosystems and what does it mean in terms of climate response, both adapta- tion and now the potential for mitigation?
Where the consensus has landed is knowing that forests do offset about 14 to 16 percent of CO2 emissions annually, so that’s been a figure that’s been tossed around and showing up many places and nobody’s really refuting.
So we know forests have a value. We know about 700 million metric tons, that’s the amount of carbon that’s sequestered annually. And so we could build from that. We know now that there are opportunities to expand the forest base, to continue to retain the high conservation value of forests as stocks of storage of carbon. Even as we are growing new stocks through plantation forestry and regeneration and reforestation. And now we can probably add about another 50 million metric tons annually of CO2, or carbon sequestration, through forestry practices.
Those are pretty solid numbers and are pretty indisputable. Some of the questions include: Where does this occur? What are the tradeoffs? Are you going to be taking land out of food production to put it into forests?
One of the really excellent conver- sations we’re having is how do we use marginal lands better and why those are the places where forests actually can — and planting trees really does — contribute to the overall growth. But it’s this allocation of lands and what goes

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