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A global database of woody tissue carbon concentrations

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Doraisami, Mahendra ; Kish, Rosalyn ; Paroshy, Nicholas J.; Domke, Grant M.; Thomas, Sean C.; Martin, Adam R.

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Scientific Data


Woody tissue carbon (C) concentration is a key wood trait necessary for accurately estimating forest C stocks and fluxes, which also varies widely across species and biomes. However, coarse approximations of woody tissue C (e.g., 50%) remain commonplace in forest C estimation and reporting protocols, despite leading to substantial errors in forest C estimates. Here, we describe the Global Woody Tissue Carbon Concentration Database (GLOWCAD): a database containing 3,676 individual records of woody tissue C concentrations from 864 tree species. Woody tissue C concentration data—i.e., the mass of C per unit dry mass—were obtained from live and dead woody tissues from 130 peer-reviewed sources published between 1980–2020. Auxiliary data for each observation include tissue type, as well as decay class and size characteristics for dead wood. In GLOWCAD, 1,242 data points are associated with geographic coordinates, and are therefore presented alongside 46 standardized bioclimatic variables extracted from climate databases. GLOWCAD represents the largest available woody tissue C concentration database, and informs studies on forest C estimation, as well as analyses evaluating the extent, causes, and consequences of inter- and intraspecific variation in wood chemical traits.


Doraisami, Mahendra; Kish, Rosalyn; Paroshy, Nicholas J.; Domke, Grant M.; Thomas, Sean C.; Martin, Adam R. 2022. A global database of woody tissue carbon concentrations. Scientific Data. 9(1): 284. 12 p.

Last updated on: June 27, 2022