"In addition to cleaning the air and water, forests hold a tremendous amount of sequestered carbon. When trees die and then decay on the forest floor, that carbon is released into the atmosphere, a phenomenon that is one of the drivers of climate change. A first-of-its-kind study by a team that included the United States Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service and Purdue University scientists finds that non-native invasive insects and diseases are reducing the amount of carbon stored in trees across the United States.
The study by Forest Service scientists Randall Morin, Chris Oswalt and Andrew Liebhold with lead author Songlin Fei of Purdue University used data from 92,978 field plots sampled by the Forest Service’s Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program in is the first attempt to comprehensively quantify the cumulative losses of trees following invasion by all species of non-native insects and diseases at a national scale."
The study, “Biomass losses resulting from insect and disease invasions in USA forests,” is available at: https://www.nrs.fs.fed.us/pubs/58371.