Sains Malaysiana 42(8)(2013): 1041–1050


Above Ground Biomass-carbon Partitioning, Storage and Sequestration in a Rehabilitated Forest, Bintulu, Sarawak, Malaysia

(Pembahagian, Takungan, Sekuestrasi Biojisim-karbon Atas Tanah di Hutan Terpulih,

Bintulu, Sarawak, Malaysia)



J.H.R. Kueh1*, N.M. Ab. Majid2, G. Seca1& O.H. Ahmed1

1Faculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia Bintulu Sarawak Campus

P.O. Box 396, 97008 Bintulu Sarawak, Malaysia


2Faculty of Forestry, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43440 Serdang, Selangor D.E. Malaysia


Received: 10 February 2012 /Accepted: 27 March 2013



Forest degradation and deforestation are some of the major global concerns as it can reduce forest carbon storage and sequestration capacity. Forest rehabilitation on degraded forest areas has the potential to improve carbon stock, hence mitigate greenhouse gases emission. However, the carbon storage and sequestration potential in a rehabilitated tropical forest remains unclear due to the lack of information. This paper reports an initiative to estimate biomass-carbon partitioning, storage and sequestration in a rehabilitated forest. The study site was at the UPM-Mitsubishi Corporation Forest Rehabilitation Project, UPM Bintulu Sarawak Campus, Bintulu, Sarawak. A plot of 20 × 20 m2 was established each in site 1991 (Plot 1991), 1999 (Plot 1999) and 2008 (Plot 2008). An adjacent natural regenerating secondary forest plot (Plot NF) was also established for comparison purposes. The results showed that the contribution of tree component biomass/carbon to total biomass/carbon was in the order of main stem > branch > leaf. As most of the trees were concentrated in diameter size class ≤ 10 cm for younger rehabilitated forests, the total above ground biomass/carbon was from this class. These observations suggest that the forests are in the early successional stage. The total above ground biomass obtained for the rehabilitated forest ranged from 4.3 to 4,192.3 kg compared to natural regenerating secondary forest of 3,942.3 kg while total above ground carbon ranged from 1.9 to 1,927.9 kg and 1,820.4 kg, respectively. The mean total above ground biomass accumulated ranged from 1.3 × 10-2 to 20.5 kg/0.04 ha and mean total carbon storage ranged from 5.9 × 10-3 to 9.4 kg/0.04 ha. The total CO2 sequestrated in rehabilitated forest ranged from 6.9 to 7,069.1 kg CO2/0.04 ha. After 19 years, the rehabilitated forest had total above ground biomass and carbon storage comparable to the natural regeneration secondary forest. The forest rehabilitated activities have the potential to increase carbon stock through tree planting. Therefore, forest rehabilitation has shown the potential role as a carbon sink that helps to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and mitigate climate change.


Keywords: Biomass partitioning; carbon sequestration; forest biomass; forest carbon; natural regenerating secondary forest; rehabilitated forest



Degradasi dan kehilangan hutan adalah antara keprihatian global yang utama kerana ia boleh mengurangkan takungan dan kapasiti sekuestrasi karbon hutan. Pemulihan hutan di kawasan hutan yang telah terdegradasi mempunyai potensi untuk meningkatkan stok karbon, maka ia boleh mengurangkan pelepasan gas rumah hijau. Walau bagaimanapun, takungan dan potensi sekuestrasi karbon di hutan tropika terpulih adalah kurang jelas kerana kekurangan maklumat. Kertas ini melaporkan satu inisiatif untuk membuat anggaran pembahagian, takungan dan sekuestrasi biojisim-karbon di hutan terpulih. Tapak kajian adalah di Projek Pemulihan Hutan UPM-Mitsubishi Corporation, UPM Kampus Bintulu Sarawak, Bintulu, Sarawak. Plot bersaiz 20 × 20 m2 telah ditubuhkan setiap satu di tapak 1991 (Plot 1991), 1999 (Plot 1999) dan 2008 (Plot 2008). Satu plot di hutan sekunder berregenerasi secara semula jadi yang bersebelahan (Plot NF) ditubuhkan untuk tujuan perbandingan. Keputusan menunjukkan sumbangan biomass/karbon di komponen pokok kepada jumlah biomass/karbon dalam susunan batang utama > dahan > daun. Kebanyakan pokok tertumpu di saiz kelas diameter ≤ 10 cm untuk hutan terpulih yang muda, maka jumlah biojisim/karbon atas tanah adalah daripada kelas tersebut. Pemerhatian tersebut mencadangkan hutan tersebut adalah pada peringkat awal sesaran. Jumlah biojisim atas tanah untuk hutan terpulih berjulat daripada 4.3 ke 4,192.3 kg berbanding dengan hutan sekunder berregenerasi secara semula jadi dengan 3,942.3 kg manakala jumlah karbon atas tanah, masing-masing berjulat daripada 1.9 ke 1,927.9 kg dan 1,820.4 kg. Min jumlah pengumpulan biojisim atas tanah berjulat daripada 1.3 × 10-2 ke 20.5 kg/0.04 ha dan jumlah takungan karbon berjulat daripada 5.9 × 10-3 ke 9.4 kg/0.04 ha. Jumlah sekuestrasi CO2 di hutan terpulih berjulat daripada 6.9 ke 7,069.1 kg CO2/0.04 ha. Selepas 19 tahun, hutan terpulih mempunyai jumlah takungan biojisim dan karbon atas tanah yang setara dengan hutan sekunder beregenerasi secara semulajadi. Aktiviti pemulihan hutan menunjukkan potensi untuk meningkatkan stok karbon melalui penamanan pokok. Oleh yang demikian, pemulihan hutan terpulih menunjukkan potensi dalam berperanan sebagai kawasan tadahan karbon yang boleh membantu dalam mengurangkan pelepasan gas rumah hijau dan mengurangkan perubahan iklim.


Kata kunci: Biojisim hutan; hutan sekunder beregenerasi secara semula jadi; hutan terpulih; karbon hutan; pembahagian biojisim; sekuestrasi karbon


Bastien-Henria, S., Parkb, A., Ashton, M. & Messiera, C. 2010. Biomass distribution among tropical tree species grown under differing regional climates. Forest Ecology and Management 260: 403-410.

Brown, S. & Lugo, A.E. 1990. Tropical secondary forest. Journal of Tropical Ecology 6: 1-32.

Brown, S. 2002. Measuring carbon in forests: Current status and future challenges. Environmental Pollution 116: 363-372.

CBD (Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity) 2011. REDD-Plus and Biodiversity. CBD Technical Series No. 59. Canada: Secretariat for the Convention on Biological Diversity.

Elizabeth, P. & Norini, H. 2010. REDD and greenhouse gas accounting. In Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation: The Perspective of Malaysia edited by Shahruddin, M.I., Joy, J.P. & Tan, C.T. Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bangi: Institute for Environment and Development. pp. 25-30.

FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) 2010. Global Forest Resources Assessment 2010. FAO Forestry Paper 163. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Fang, S., Xue, J. & Tang, L. 2007. Biomass production and carbon sequestration potential in poplar plantations with different management patterns. Journal of Environmental Management 85: 672-679.

Gorte, R.W. 2009. Carbon Sequestration in Forests. Congressional Research Service. US: CRS Report for Congress.

Houghton, R.A. 2005. Aboveground forest biomass and the global carbon balance. Global Change Biology 11: 945-958.

Houghton, R.A., Lawrence, K.T., Hackler, J.L. & Brown, S. 2001. The spatial distribution of forest biomass in the Brazilian Amazon: A comparison of estimates. Global Change Biology 7: 731-746.

IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature). 2009. REDD-Plus: Scope and Options for the Role of Forests in Climate Change Mitigation Strategies. Washington: IUCN.

Kauffman, J.B., Hughes, R.F. & Heider, C. 2009. Carbon pool and biomass dynamics associated with deforestation, land use and agricultural abandonment in the neotropics. Ecological Applications 19: 1211-1222.

Kendawang, J.J., Ninomiya, I., Kenzo, T., Ozawa, T., Hattori, D., Tanaka, S. & Sakurai, K. 2007. Effects of burning strength in shifting cultivation on the early stage of secondary succession in Sarawak, Malaysia. Tropics 16: 309-32.

Kenzo, T., Furutani, R., Hattori, D., Kendawang, J.J., Tanaka, S., Sakurai, K. & Ninomiya, I. 2009a. Allometric equations for accurate estimation of above-ground biomass in logged-over tropical rainforests in Sarawak, Malaysia. Journal of Forest Research 14: 365-372.

Kenzo, T., Ichie, T., Hattori, D., Itioka, T., Handa, C., Ohkubo, T., Kendawang, J.J., Nakamura, M., Sakaguchi, M., Takahashi, N., Okamoto, M., Tanaka-Oda, A., Sakurai, K. & Ninomiya, I. 2009b. Development of allometric relationships for accurate estimation of above- and below-ground biomass in tropical secondary forests in Sarawak, Malaysia. Journal of Tropical Ecology 25: 371-386.

Kenzo, T., Ichie, T., Hattori, D., Kendawang, J.J., Sakurai, K. & Ninomiya, I. 2010. Changes in above- and belowground biomass in early successional tropical secondary forests after shifting cultivation in Sarawak, Malaysia. Forest Ecology and Management 260: 875-882.

Kettle, C.J. 2010. Ecological considerations for using dipterocarps for restoration of lowland rainforest in Southeast Asia. Biodiversity Conservation 19: 1137-1151.

King, D.A. 1986. Tree form, height growth, and susceptibility to wind damage in Acer saccharum. Ecology 67: 980–990.

Kueh, J.H.R., Abd. Majid, N.M., Gandaseca, S., Ahmed, O.H., Jemat, S. & Ku, K.K.M. 2011a. Forest structure assessment of a rehabilitated forest. American Journal of Agricultural and Biological Sciences 6(2): 256-260.

Kueh, J.H.R., Abd. Majid, N.M., Gandaseca, S., Ahmed, O.H., Jemat, S. & Ku, K.K.M. 2011b. Total aboveground biomass of selected age stand of a rehabilitated forest. In Proceedings of International Symposium on Rehabilitation of Tropical Rainforest Ecosystems 2011, 24-25 October, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, edited by Majid, N.M., Ahmed, O.H., Sajap, A.S. & Islam, M.M. Selangor: Faculty of Forestry, Universiti Putra Malaysia Press. pp 53-58.

Lal, R. & Augustin, B. 2012. Carbon Sequestration in Urban Ecosystems. New York: Springer.

Lim, M.T. 1986. Biomass and productivity of 4.5 year-old Acacia mangiumin Sarawak. Pertanika 9(1): 81-87.

Litton, C.M., Ryan, G.M. & Knight, D.H. 2004. Effects of tree density and stand age on carbon allocation patterns in Postfire Lodgepole Pine. Ecological Applications 14(2): 460-475.

Malhi, Y.R., Aragao, L.I.E.O.C., Metcalfe, D.B., Paiva, R., Quesada, C.A., Almeida, S., Anderson, L., Brandok, P., Chambers, J.Q., Costa, A.C.L., Hutyra, L.R., Oliveira, P., Patino, S., Pyle, E.H., Robertson, A.L. & Teixeira, L.M. 2009. Comprehensive assessment of carbon productivity, allocation and storage in three Amazonian forests. Global Change Biology: 1-19.

Miyawaki, A. 1999. Creative ecology: Restoration of native forests by native trees. Plant Biotechnology 16(1): 15-25.

Montagu, K.D., Duttmer, K., Barton, C.V.M. & Cowie, A.L. 2005. Developing general allometric relationship for regional estimates of carbon sequestration-an example using Eucalyptyus polularisfrom seven contrasting sites. Forest Ecology and Management 204: 113-127.

Munoz, F., Rubilar, R., Espinosa, M., Cancino, J., Toro, J. & Herrera, M. 2008. The effect of pruning and thinning on above ground aerial biomass of Eucalyptus nitens(Deane & Maiden) Maiden. Forest Ecology and Management 255: 365-373.

Netto, A. 2009. Climate Change: Copenhagen Talks Create Hardly a Ripple in Malaysia. IPS-Inter Press Service. Retrieved 13 July 2011 from asp?idnews=49744.

Niklas, K.J. 1993. The scaling of plant height: A comparison among major plant cades and anatomical grades. Annals of Botany 72: 165-172.

Niklas, K.J. 1994. The allometrics of critical buckling height and actual plant height. American Journal of Botany 81: 345-351.

Nirmal Kumar, J.I., Sajish, P.R., Kumar, R.N. & Patel, K. 2011. Biomass and net primary productivity in three different aged Butea forest ecosystems in Western India, Rajasthan. Iranica Journal of Energy and Environment 2(1): 01-07.

NRE (Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment) 2009. Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak’s Speech at U.N. Climate Change Conference 2009 - 15th Conference Of Parties (COP 15). Retrieved 4 September, 2011 from aspx?ID=63.

Sabatia, C.O., Will, R.E. & Lynch, T.B. 2010. Effect of thinning on partitioning of aboveground biomass in naturally regenerated shortleaf pine (Pinus Echinata Mill.). In Proceedings of the 14th Biennial Southern Silvicultural Research Conference edited by Stanturf, J.A. General Technical Report. Srs-121. Asheville: U.S. Department Of Agriculture, Forest Service, Southern Research Station. pp. 577-578.

Schumacher, B.A. 2002. Methods for the Determination of Total Organic Carbon (TOC) in Soils and Sediments. Las Vegas: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Sheriff, D.W. 1996. Responses of carbon gain and growth of Pinus radiatastands to thinning and fertilizing. Tree Physiology 16: 527-536.

Silver, W.L., Ostertag, R. & Lugo, A.E. 2000. The potential for carbon sequestration through reforestation of abandoned tropical agricultural and pasture lands. Restorative Ecology 8: 394-407.

Sohngen, B. 2009. An Analysis of Forestry Carbon Sequestration as a Response to Climate Change. Denmark: Copenhagen Consensus Center.

Son, Y., Hwang, J.W., Kim, Z.S., Lee, W.K. & Kim, J.S. 2001. Allometry and biomass of Korean pine (Pinus koraiensis) in Central Korea. Bioresource Technology 78: 251-255.

Swaine, M.D. & Agyeman, V.K. 2008. Enhanced tree recruitment following logging in two forest reserves in Ghana. Biotropica 40: 370-374.

Tadaki, Y. 1977. Aboveground and total biomass. In Primary Productivity of Japanese Forest: Productivity of Terrestrial Communities edited by Shidei, T. & Kira, T. Tokyo: University of Tokyo Press. pp. 53-63.

UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) 2008. Report of the Conference of the Parties on its Thirteenth Session, held in Bali from 3 to 15 December 2007. Addendum, Part 2. Document FCCC/CP/2007/6/Add.1. Bonn: UNFCCC.

Van Breugel, M., Ransijn, J., Craven, D., Bongers, F. & Hall, J.S. 2011. Estimating carbon stock in secondary forests: Decisions and uncertainties associated with allometric biomass models. Forest Ecology and Management 262: 1648-1657.

Whitmore, T.C. 1984. Tropical Rain Forest of the Far East. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Yusuf, H. & Abas, S. 1992. Planting indigenous tree species to rehabilitate degraded forest lands: The Bintulu project. In Proceedings of a National Seminar on Indigenous Species for Forest Plantation 23-24 April, 1992, Universiti Pertanian Malaysia, Serdang, Selangor, edited by Ahmad, S.S., Razali, A.K., Mohd Shahwahid, O., Aminuddin, M., Faridah, H.I. & Mohd Hamami, S. Serdang: Universiti Putra Malaysia. pp. 36-44.



*Corresponding author; email: