Socio-economic Activities that Affect the Patterns of Land Use

Influence of land management on soil vegetation atmosphere interactions

Land management alters the exchange of material and energy fluxes between soil, vegetation and atmosphere. Especially when preceded by land cover change from natural ecosystems to productive landscapes the type (e.g. forest to cropland or forest to agroforestry) and intensity (e.g. clear-cut or selective logging) of this change has a major influence on the amount of the impact. Therefore different decisions on societal levels for the type and intensity of land cover or land use change with subsequent land management practices will lead to different impacts on the climate system.

The group at the Institute for World Forestry (UHH) focuses on the impacts of different forest management practices and forest policies on ecosystem services and functioning. In particular, the carbon storage and sequestration potential are under investigation using

  • intensive field evaluations
  • and modelling approaches.

For the first method data is being collected in several projects dealing with tropical ecosystems. Each project represents a different type of forest management and different land use strategies. For the modelling approaches a global model to analyse the influence of different forest policies (e.g. the Ecosystem Approach of the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD) or the REDD+ scheme proposed under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)) is in development. The model includes effects on the land cover and land use as well as on different markets like the carbon market or timber trade.

Research Unit Sustainability and Global Change (FNU)

At Research Unit Sustainability and Global Change (Forschungsstelle Nachhaltige Umweltentwicklung - FNU), we develop a multi-scale model of land use, which links the global agricultural sector development to the development of relatively high resolved focus regions (e.g. India, Brazil, Malawi, Poland).  This model is then applied to examine the impacts of an adaptation and mititgation potentials to climate change and other developments.

Institute for World Forestry

The group at the Institute for World Forestry (UHH) focuses on the impacts forest management and forest policies on ecosystem services and functioning. In particular, the carbon storage and sequestration potential are under investigation using

  • intensive field evaluations
  • and modelling approaches.

For the first method data is being collected in several projects dealing with tropical ecosystems. Each project represents a different type of forest management and different land use strategies. For the modelling approaches a global model to analyse the influence of uncertainties and carbon prices on the accountability of CO2 emission reductions resulting from the REDD+ scheme proposed under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is in development.