Long term impacts of forest management on forest ecosystem : the case of “quart de reserve” in northeastern France

Abstract : Nowadays, fossil energy depletion and global warming get our society on the way to renewable energetic strategies: one of these is forest biomass. In north-eastern France, most of the communal forests were divided into two parts during the 18th and 19th century. One called “coupes affouagères” (CA), was devoted to firewood production. The other one, called “quart de réserve” (QR) was kept as a wood reserve. Using this opportunity, we tested the hypothesis that: higher and more regular biomass removals in CA made long term differences (1740- 2014) with QR in forest ecosystem properties. To observe differences, we studied stand structure, vegetal communities and soil organic matter. Results show relatively less pronounced effects of the former silvicultural treatment. There is a difference in soil fertility between the two treatments with a loss of organic matter in CA. We observe a trend in “coupes affouagères” to be colonizing by plant species of disturbed habitats. And stand structure tends to have slightly more very large wood in the QR. To conclude, an increase in demand for wood energy should be accompanied by recommendations for preserving mineral and organic forest soil fertility.
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Master thesis
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http://docnum.univ-lorraine.fr/public/BUS_M_2014_VAUCHELET_CAMILLE.pdf
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Camille Vauchelet. Long term impacts of forest management on forest ecosystem : the case of “quart de reserve” in northeastern France. Environmental Sciences. 2014. ⟨hal-01837055⟩

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