Study of plant diversity and carbon sequestration potential in Mansamata sacred grove (SG), Paschim Medinipur, West Bengal, India
Tridib Kumar Sahoo
Today global warming is a tremendous environmental problem in our earth. Carbon emission is the main causal factor for the global warming. The amount of the greenhouse gasses (GHGs) in the atmosphere has been increased due to the industrial revolution, particularly in the last 40-50 years. Among the GHGs the carbon dioxide (CO2) and carbon monoxide (CO) emission are the major problems. Carbon sequestration is the process through which CO2 from the atmosphere is absorbed naturally through photosynthesis by the green plants and store carbon for as long as they live in terms of live biomass. India is a mega-biodiversity country due to its different climatic conditions from north to south and east to west. It has direct effect in carbon sequestration; more than 116 million tonnes of CO2 is sequestered per year contributing to reduce the atmospheric carbon (Jasmine and Birundha-2011). The green trees have the high potential of tapping atmospheric carbon through photosynthesis. The sequestrated carbon is stored in the plant tissues which perform the growth of this plant. So in this study the species diversity of plants and the carbon sequestration potential of tree species were measured. The species number of tree, shrubs and herbs are respectively 9, 5 and 15 in Jakpur sacred groove area. The highest IVI found in Terminilia arjuna (Roxb.) Wight & Arn. (IVI-55.46), in Lippia geminata H.B. & K. (IVI- 59.63) and in Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers. (IVI- 34.94) respectively among the tree, shrubs and herbs. The diversity index of tree species is 0.88, shrubs 0.78 and herbs 1.09. The total amount of carbon sequestered by the tree species in this SG is 12.644 tonnes. The study reveals that a higher amount of organic carbon become deposited in the soil in this SG. So such type of SGs play an important role for carbon sequestration in the atmosphere.