Multidimensional tropical forest recovery

Multidimensional tropical forest recovery


Tropical forests are disappearing at a high rate due to deforestation. They also have the potential to regenerate to diverse and high-quality forest once more. The authors analyze 12 forest attributes to assess how forest recovery and succession progresses. This review is a compiled analysis done in a chronosequence across three continents and multiple latitudes globally.

Conclusions and Takeaways

Tropical forests and the soil they grow in are highly resilient. Plants require about 25 years to recover while soils take about 10 years to recover. Forest structure, species composition, and species diversity are the top three drivers of recovery pathways. The authors conclude that secondary forests in tropical landscapes hold high value for biodiversity and climate change mitigation and should be embraced as a main ecosystem restoration technique.


Poorter L, Craven D, Jakovac CC, et al. Multidimensional tropical forest recoveryResilient secondary tropical forests?. Science. 2021;374(6573):1370 - 1376. doi:10.1126/science.abh3629.