Logged Tropical Rainforest Can Regain Lost Biodiversity in 15 Years, If Managed Properly

logging road borneo photo

photo: Rob and Stephanie Levy via flickr.

Here's a testimony to the resiliency of tropical forests: Mongabay points out that a study in the journal Conservation Biology shows that, if managed properly, forests which have been logged can return to levels of biodiversity found in untouched forests in just 15 years:Dr David Edwards of the University of Leeds examined forests in northeastern Borneo which had been logged 20 years ago. He found that when a regenerating forest is helped along by active tree-planting it can regain natural biodiversity levels more quickly than without management.

Edwards says his study should act as strong incentive to protect logged forests from further degradation by turning them into oil palm or other agricultural plantations -- which both show little biodiversity and sequester far less carbon compared to intact forests.

Connect Carbon Trading & Biodiversity Banking
Edwards went on to say that his research shows that REDD -- which aims to make intact forests more profitable than deforestation through carbon trading -- should be linked explicitly with biodiversity protection:

There are now suggestions that carbon crediting and 'biodiversity banking' should be combined...We believe this should be introduced as soon as possible.

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