ECOLOGICAL VALUATION TOOLS TO APPRAISE BIOMASS, NECROMASS AND SOIL ORGANIC MATTER IN A NATURAL FOREST ECOSYSTEM
Inocencio E. Buot Jr.
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The need to devise the monetary value of the ecological contribution of carbon pools for the ecosystem increases as there is a limited baseline of immeasurable value of the natural ecosystem. This study has been undergone to develop ecological tools for assigning forest biomass, necromass, and soil organic matter to a natural forest ecosystem. Comprehensive analysis and review of many publications, and reports about ecological valuation, tree appraisals, and any appraisal methods were performed to determine the parameters of ecological contribution for the appraisal equation. Cost based approach and simple mathematical methods were used to propose the equations. Three equations for biomass, necromass, and soil organic matter (SOM) were developed as ecological valuation tools to assign their ecological values or ecovals (Ѥ). This Ѥ value was the sum of ecological structure (S) and function (F) values. S value was deducted from the ecological base value of structure (bS) and dimension (D). F value was derived from the ecological base value of F (bF) and carbon content weight, and additional parameter of existence factor (Ef) of species or decay class factor for necromass (d). The bS and bF prices or costs were taken from the national or international standard price/costs in USD currency. The equations are applicable to appraise the ecological values of any natural ecosystems. People may obtain information about the worth of the ecoval based on its carbon pool as a reflection of ecosystem structure and function. The information of ecoval can be used as database or ecological consideration to generate policy or make a decision for sustainable natural ecosystems.