Does degradation from selective logging and illegal activities differently impact forest resources? A case study in Ghana


Degradation, a reduction of the ecosystem’s capacity to supply goods and services, is widespread in tropical forests and mainly caused by human disturbance. To maintain the full range of forest ecosystem services and support the development of effective conservation policies, we must understand the overall impact of degradation on different forest resources. This research investigates the response to disturbance of forest structure using several indicators: soil carbon content, arboreal richness and biodiversity, functional composition (guild and wood density), and productivity. We drew upon large field and remote sensing datasets from different forest types in Ghana, characterized by varied protection status, to investigate impacts of selective logging, and of illegal land use and resources extraction, which are the main disturbance causes in West Africa.

iForest-Biogeosciences and Forestry