Forests and forest soils are important to climate change because they contain a lot of carbon. Globally, forests contain over 800 gigatons (Gt) of carbon and forest soils, another 1,500 Gt (a Gt is 2.2 trillion pounds).
Forests have been headline news in the past few years, some good and some not so good. The not-so-good headlines are the large and severe forest fires that have burned across the American west, Australia, Brazil, Siberia, Southeast Asia, and other parts of the world. The Marshall fire in Boulder County, Colorado, in the final days of 2021 is the latest example of increasingly severe fire behavior. Fortunately, in this case there were few fatalities, but thousands of people lost their homes.