Climate Smart Forestry in the Southern United States
In the United States, Climate Smart Forestry (CSF) has quickly become a popular topic within the academic, political, and industry realms, without substantial delineation of what exactly CSF is.
In this review, the aim is to provide a broad overview of CSF by highlighting one of the most productive and prolific forest systems in the United States, loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) plantations. One major objective of CSF is to increase forest carbon storage to combat rising atmospheric carbon or climate change mitigation. Fortuitously, increased forest carbon storage can work harmoniously with on-going Southern pine plantation forestry.
With a Southern commercial focus, we show (1) traditional plantation practices such as genetic improvement, site preparation, weed control, and fertilization have aided increased forest carbon storage; (2) forest products and forest product carbon are essential to increase carbon storage beyond the stand-carbon baseline; (3) forest carbon data collection must be improved to realize climate change mitigation goals; and (4) additional avenues for future CSF research.