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Carbon capture value of S. Korean forests reaches 2.3 tln won: report

All Headlines 16:04 April 06, 2010

SEOUL, April 6 (Yonhap) -- South Korean forests capture 2.3 trillion won (US$2.0 billion) worth of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year, a state-run research institute said Tuesday.

The Korea Forest Research Institute (KFRI) has utilized the standards of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to calculate CO2 absorption levels and applied this to carbon capture and storage costs to come up with value of local forests.

Based on the ability of biomass absorption, the country's forests that make up more than half of South Korea's land mass captured 41 million tons of CO2 on an annual basis. The trees also produce 30 million tons of oxygen that helps stem global warming cited for brining on climate change.

"Because it takes US$50 to capture and store a ton of CO2, the overall monetary value of forests can be estimated at 2.3 trillion won," a KFRI official said.

He added that if the country systematically plants trees with higher rates of CO2 capture, such as tulip trees, the contribution of forests toward cutting back on greenhouse gases could increase dramatically.

yonngong@yna.co.kr
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