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Hedgerows as a Form of Agroforestry to Sequester and Store Carbon in Agricultural Landscapes: A Review

4th European Agroforestry Conference - Agroforestry as Sustainable Land Use

Abstract

Hedgerows are an intrinsic part of the agricultural landscape in Europe. As an anthropogenic feature it is difficult to ascertain the carbon storage potential. We performed a systematic literature review on the potential of hedgerows to take in and store carbon. Results show two emerging trends to consider. Aboveground biomass storage estimates range from 5 t C ha-1to 131 t C ha-1. Maintenance of hedges is ascribed as leading to differences in estimation as a result of continually trimming and shaping. .There has also been a decline in hedge length across Europe over the past decades leading to losses of biomass. Soil organic carbon stocks below hedgerows range from 5 t C ha-1 to 360 t C ha-1. Hedgerows can thicken soil horizons, prevent erosion and interact with soil water and nutrients. The hedgerow ecosystem is highly localised with differing levels of material input and decomposition. Therefore it is needed to ascertain carbon assimilation and storage to improve estimates for national GHG inventories.

Author(s): Blair, J, Olave, R, McAdam, J

Journal: 4th European Agroforestry Conference - Agroforestry as Sustainable Land Use

Year: 2018

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