Forest and Climate Change
Healthy forests provide many benefits, including clean air and water, essential wildlife habitat, recreational opportunities, and a range of forest products. Just as importantly, forests may also serve as a substantial carbon sink.
Carbon is stored in living trees, understory vegetation, forest soils, standing and downed dead trees, and forest floor litter. California’s forests sequester an estimated 25.2 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent per year , equivalent to nearly 7% of California’s total greenhouse gas emissions reported in 2020 .
State policies such as the Climate Change Scoping Plan , Forest Carbon Plan , and Natural and Working Lands Climate Smart Strategy seek to maintain natural and working lands, including forests, as a carbon sink.