Trees absorb and sequester the greenhouse gas (GHG), carbon dioxide (C02), from the atmosphere through the process of photosynthesis. The carbon is stored in the wood, branches, bark and leaves and also through the soil in the roots and from leaves falling.
The amount of C02 sequestered depends on a number of factors which include: the soil type, the species planted and the age of the trees. If the mix is correct (right trees, right place and right age!) then the trees act as a carbon sink which means that they absorb more GHG from the atmosphere than they emit.
For example trees planted on a bog or very peaty soil will have lower growth and act as a carbon contributor and release GHG to the atmosphere as respiration occurs and from decomposition of leaves.
Therefore it is essential that trees planted with the intention of optimising their effect on climate change need to be planted in accordance with best management practices before the trees are planted, during the life of the trees and at harvesting.