iForest - Biogeosciences and Forestry


Approaches to classifying and restoring degraded tropical forests for the anticipated REDD+ climate change mitigation mechanism

N Sasaki (1-2)   , GP Asner (3), W Knorr (4), PB Durst (5), HR Priyadi (6-7), FE Putz (8)

iForest - Biogeosciences and Forestry, Volume 4, Issue 1, Pages 1-6 (2011)
doi: https://doi.org/10.3832/ifor0556-004
Published: Jan 27, 2011 - Copyright © 2011 SISEF

Research Articles

Inclusion of improved forest management as a way to enhance carbon sinks in the Copenhagen Accord of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (December 2009) suggests that forest restoration will play a role in global climate change mitigation under the post-Kyoto agreement. Although discussions about restoration strategies often pertain solely to severely degraded tropical forests and invoke only the enrichment planting option, different approaches to restoration are needed to counter the full range of degrees of degradation. We propose approaches for restoration of forests that range from being slightly to severely degraded. Our methods start with ceasing the causes of degradation and letting forests regenerate on their own, progress through active management of natural regeneration in degraded areas to accelerate tree regeneration and growth, and finally include the stage of degradation at which re-planting is necessary. We argue that when the appropriate techniques are employed, forest restoration is cost-effective relative to conventional planting, provides abundant social and ecological co-benefits, and results in the sequestration of substantial amounts of carbon. For forest restoration efforts to succeed, a supportive post-Kyoto agreement is needed as well as appropriate national policies, institutional arrangements, and local participation.


Assisted natural regeneration, Biodiversity, Climate change agreement, Forest restoration, REDD-plus, Reduced-impact logging, Silviculture

Authors’ address

N Sasaki
Graduate School of Applied Informatics, University of Hyogo, 650-0044 Kobe (Japan)
N Sasaki
Harvard Forest, Harvard University, MA-01366 Petersham (USA)
GP Asner
Department of Global Ecology, Carnegie Institution for Science, CA-94305 Stanford (USA)
W Knorr
QUEST, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol, BS81RJ Bristol (UK)
PB Durst
Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, Bangkok (Thailand)
HR Priyadi
Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), P.O. Box 0113, BOCBD Bogor 16000 (Indonesia)
HR Priyadi
Southern Swedish Forest Research Centre, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, P.O. Box 49, SE-230 53 Alnarp (Sweden)
FE Putz
Department of Biology, University of Florida, FL 32611 Gainesville (USA).

Corresponding author


Sasaki N, Asner GP, Knorr W, Durst PB, Priyadi HR, Putz FE (2011). Approaches to classifying and restoring degraded tropical forests for the anticipated REDD+ climate change mitigation mechanism. iForest 4: 1-6. - doi: 10.3832/ifor0556-004

Paper history

Received: Aug 28, 2010
Accepted: Nov 19, 2010

First online: Jan 27, 2011
Publication Date: Jan 27, 2011
Publication Time: 2.30 months

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