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Research article2022Peer reviewedOpen access

More future synergies and less trade-offs between forest ecosystem services with natural climate solutions instead of bioeconomy solutions

Mazziotta, Adriano; Lundstrom, Johanna; Forsell, Nicklas; Moor, Helen; Eggers, Jeannette; Subramanian, Narayanan; Aquilue, Nuria; Moran-Ordonez, Alejandra; Brotons, Lluis; Snall, Tord


To reach the Paris Agreement, societies need to increase the global terrestrial carbon sink. There are many climate change mitigation solutions (CCMS) for forests, including increasing bioenergy, bioeconomy, and protection. Bioenergy and bioeconomy solutions use climate-smart, intensive management to generate high quantities of bioenergy and bioproducts. Protection of (semi-)natural forests is a major component of "natural climate solution" (NCS) since forests store carbon in standing biomass and soil. Furthermore, protected forests provide more habitat for biodiversity and non-wood ecosystem services (ES). We investigated the impacts of different CCMS and climate scenarios, jointly or in isolation, on future wood ES, non-wood ES, and regulating ES for a major wood provider for the international market. Specifically, we projected future ES given by three CCMS scenarios for Sweden 2020-2100. In the long term, fulfilling the increasing wood demand through bioenergy and bioeconomy solutions will decrease ES multifunctionality, but the increased stand age and wood stocks induced by rising greenhouse gas (GHG) concentrations will partially offset these negative effects. Adopting bioenergy and bioeconomy solutions will have a greater negative impact on ES supply than adopting NCS. Bioenergy or bioeconomy solutions, as well as increasing GHG emissions, will reduce synergies and increase trade-offs in ES. NCS, by contrast, increases the supply of multiple ES in synergy, even transforming current ES trade-offs into future synergies. Moreover, NCS can be considered an adaptation measure to offset negative climate change effects on the future supplies of non-wood ES. In boreal countries around the world, forestry strategies that integrate NCS more deeply are crucial to ensure a synergistic supply of multiple ES.


bioeconomy; bioenergy; boreal forest; climate change; ecosystem services; EU biodiversity strategy; EU forest strategy; GLOBIOM; natural climate solutions

Published in

Global Change Biology
2022, Volume: 28, number: 21, pages: 6333-6348
Publisher: WILEY