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The Paradigm of Forests and the Survival of the Fittest


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This book demonstrates the social, historical, and environmental framework within which humans have developed a relationship with the forest and its resources. Starting from the biological basis that permits the existence of forests to the use of forest resources in a modern human context, this book summarizes the interaction between humans and forest ecosystems. Designed for readers from a broad range of disciplines and interests including those from environmental sciences, environmental economics, sociology, anthropology, biology, forestry and human ecology and other related disciplines, the book evokes interest in the development of an integrated approach towards forest ecosystems and natural resources in the context of sustainability.
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The Paradigm of Forests and
the Survival of the Fittest
Sergio A. Molina-Murillo
Associate Professor/Researcher
Department of Environmental Sciences
National University of Costa Rica (UNA);
Forest Resources Unit
University of Costa Rica (UCR)
Costa Rica
Carlos Rojas
Coordinator and Researcher/Professor
Forest Resources Unit/Dpt. of Agricultural Engineering
University of Costa Rica (UCR)
San Pedro de Montes de Oca
Costa Rica
GL--Prelims with new title page.indd ii 4/25/2012 9:52:40 AM
GL--Prelims with new title page.indd ii 4/25/2012 9:52:40 AM
iv The Paradigm of Forests and the Survival of the Fittest
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Preface v
Introduction ix
Sergio A. Molina-Murillo and Carlos Rojas
1. Forests in a Changing World 1
John Markham and Mauricio Fernández Otárola
2. How Do Forests Work? Primary Production, Energy and 17
Forest Growth
Gerardo Avalos
3. Forest Carbon Sequestration and Global Change 39
Achim Häger and Luitgard Schwendenmann
4. Forest Ecosystems and Civilization: An Overview of the 87
Footprint of Modernity in the Exploitation-Conservation
Anthony Goebel McDermott
5. The Economy of Forests 116
Sergio A. Molina-Murillo and Timothy M. Smith
6. Silviculture and Forest Management 137
Adrián A. Monge Monge
7. Challenges of Forest Conservation 172
J. Edgardo Arévalo and Richard J. Ladle
8. Forests, Sustainability, and Progress: Safeguarding the 196
Multiple Dimensions of Forests through Sustainable Practices
Robin R. Sears
Conclusions: The Survival of the Fittest 221
Carlos Rojas, Adam W. Rollins and Sergio A. Molina-Murillo
Index 229
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... Os mais altos índices de biodiversidade e estocagem de C convergem nas florestas tropicais, as quais também enfrentam as mais elevadas taxas de desflorestamento e degradação (HÄGER; SCHWENDENMANN, 2016). Debate-se atualmente se as florestas tropicais representam hoje uma fonte ou um sumidouro de carbono, dadas as inúmeras incertezas sobre os fluxos de carbono que ainda persistem e que resultam de informação imprecisa da cobertura florestal, métodos inconsistentes de estimativa de biomassa, ou dificuldades de se medir os estoques de carbono abaixo do solo (HÄGER; SCHWENDENMANN, 2016). ...
... Os mais altos índices de biodiversidade e estocagem de C convergem nas florestas tropicais, as quais também enfrentam as mais elevadas taxas de desflorestamento e degradação (HÄGER; SCHWENDENMANN, 2016). Debate-se atualmente se as florestas tropicais representam hoje uma fonte ou um sumidouro de carbono, dadas as inúmeras incertezas sobre os fluxos de carbono que ainda persistem e que resultam de informação imprecisa da cobertura florestal, métodos inconsistentes de estimativa de biomassa, ou dificuldades de se medir os estoques de carbono abaixo do solo (HÄGER; SCHWENDENMANN, 2016). Entretanto, aponta-se o desflorestamento como a causa mais importante de distúrbio nos fluxos de carbono em florestas tropicais, e como principal responsável pelas emissões causadas pelas mudanças de uso da terra (LORENZ;LAL, 2010;MALHI, 2010). ...
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Mangroves form important intertidal ecosystems that link terrestrial and marine systems typically in tropical and subtropical regions, presenting physiological and morphological adaptations to environmental stresses of high salinity and flooding by tides. Mangroves perform essential ecological functions for the maintenance of terrestrial and marine life and the livelihoods of coastal communities. They provide valuable ecological and economical ecosystem goods and services transforming nutrients in organic matter, contributing to coastal erosion protection, pollution control, atmospheric carbon sequestration and climate regulation, among many other factors. Nevertheless, mangroves have experienced a dramatic decline in area caused by overexploitation and conversion to other uses. Their restoration and conservation are important not only for the regulation of carbon fluxes and climate change control, but also to maintain their valuable services for the coastal zone. Remote sensing techniques offer a useful tool of estimating forest biomass contributing with the monitoring of land use and land cover dynamics and the effectiveness of environmental policies. In the present work a relatively large area (~58.2 km²) of mangroves inserted in the Environmental Protection Area of Guapimirim, Guanabara Bay, RJ was studied. The main goal of this study is to investigate the potential use of discrete return LiDAR data to estimate the aboveground biomass (AGB) of a mangrove forest with different degrees of disturbance, and comparatively investigate the potential use of textural indices derived from a high resolution WorldView-2 image to estimate AGB and to distinguish types of mangrove coverage. Twenty-six descriptive LiDAR metrics were extracted from the normalized height of the LiDAR point cloud data together with the Fourier-based textural ordination (FOTO) and Grey-Level Co-occurrence Matrix (GLCM) textural indices from the panchromatic optical image. Random Forest, AutoPLS and PLS regression methods were tested to estimate AGB. The results obtained using LiDAR data for estimating AGB were effective and superior to the results obtained using the textural indices. The most accurate predictive model of AGB using LiDAR data (M2a) presented R²(CAL) = 0.89, R²(LOO) = 0.80, RMSE(CAL) = 11.20 t/ha, RMSE(LOO) = 14.80 t/ha and RSE% = 8.90%. The most important predictor variables for the M2a model were avg, min, max, d02, d03, d04, d05 and d08 demonstrating that point density relative to the forest structural strata are important variables for the AGB estimation in mangrove forests with different degrees of disturbance as well as for detecting more altered or preserved areas. The textural variability pattern associated with the canopy characteristics with different degrees of disturbance measured by FOTO and GLCM indices showed weak relationships with AGB values. However, the Random Forest classification based on the textural indices showed good results on the discrimination of different types of coverage such as nonmangrove, altered and preserved mangroves. This thesis demonstrates the effectiveness use of remote sensing techniques, particularly discrete return LiDAR data to accurately estimate and map the AGB and to discriminate types of mangrove coverage. The results presented here can contribute to the analysis and structural characterization of mangroves, its AGB and carbon stocks quantification and qualification, also contributing with the monitoring and formulation of public policies for the conservation and protection of this ecosystem. Keywords: LiDAR. High resolution optical image. Textural analysis. Biomass estimation. Mangrove.
The search for fuel sources that provide alternatives to crude oil has been a continuing priority. The research described investigates material property-reactivity relationships that influence the catalytic performance of early transition-metal carbides and nitrides for reactions involved in the conversion of biomass to liquid transportation fuels, namely selective hydrogenation of oxygenates, water-gas shift, and Fischer-Tropsch synthesis. In particular, this work focuses on understanding the role of three main physical properties on catalyst chemistry, composition, structure, and catalytic reactivity: hydrogen adsorption sites; surface redox chemistry; and strong metal-catalytic support interactions. Experimental and computational results indicate that molybdenum nitride contains hydrogen adsorption sites both on the surface (NH) and in the subsurface layers (MoH). The relative density of surface versus subsurface hydrogen was found to have a direct effect on the hydrogenation of crotonaldehyde, with materials consisting of 95% subsurface hydrogen yielding ~93% selectivity to crotyl alcohol (C=O hydrogenation). Another study compared the synthesis, structural and compositional properties, and water gas shift activities of catalysts produced by depositing platinum onto unpassivated and passivated molybdenum carbide. Passivation (controlled surface oxidation) had a profound effect on the character of interactions between the Pt and support resulting in deleterious effects on Pt loadings, structures, and water gas shift rates. In particular, the unpassivated support adsorbed 3 times as much Pt and exhibited water-gas shift turnover frequencies nearly 4 times higher than those for the passivated support. These differences were determined to result from redox chemistry occurring between molybdenum carbide and the depositing Pt. Lastly, the presence of strong interactions, facilitated at high temperatures, between a molybdenum carbide support and deposited early transition metals was probed using Fischer-Tropsch synthesis. Ruthenium and cobalt were found to be inactive when supported on molybdenum carbide but not on silica, a typical Fischer-Tropsch support. By avoiding high temperature treatments, addition of ruthenium to molybdenum carbide resulted in turnover frequencies 18 times higher than those of bare molybdenum carbide alone and 4 times that of ruthenium on silicon dioxide. These relationships between material properties and reactivity will help inform the design and synthesis for specific applications of these catalysts.
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Costa Rica is a small country in Central America with a recent history of fungal research. However, comparativedifferences with other territories in the Mesoamerican Biodiversity Hotspot region have promoted the study of fungi and the integration of fungal information with natural resource management. Even though there is still a large number of ultidisciplinary aspects to cover in Costa Rica for robust incorporation of fungal data in conservation and political and developmental agendas, regional advantages have allowed this country to move towards such goal more rapidly than other countries in this part of the world. Mycoliteracy-centered and citizen science initiatives seem to be the next step in order to normalize disparities in fungal perception across regions within the country and promote social interaction with fungi. However, in general terms, the Costa Rican society seems to be aware of the potential of fungi as a source of food and medicines and their remarkable contribution through ecosystem services. In this manner, fungal conservation and management seem easier to conduct in this territory than in other regions of the world where less information on fungi has reached the general population.
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