Because of the large carbon sequestration potential, reforestation and afforestation (R&A) are among the most prominent natural climate solutions. However, while their effectiveness is well established for wet tropics, it is often argued that R&A are less advantageous or even detrimental at higher latitudes, where the reduction of forest albedo (the amount of reflected solar radiation by a surface) tends to nullify or even overcome the carbon benefits. Here, we carefully analyze the situation for R&A at midlatitudes, where the warming effects due to vegetation albedo are regarded to be almost balanced by the cooling effects from an increased carbon storage. Using both satellite data and atmospheric boundary-layer models, we show that by including cloud–albedo effects due to land–atmosphere interactions, the R&A cooling at midlatitudes becomes prevalent. This points to a much greater potential of R&A for wet temperate regions than previously considered.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America|
|State||Published - Aug 17 2021|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Carbon mitigation
- Cloud feedback