Carbon sequestration in urban ecosystems is becoming an international climate change initiative for sustainable development. Drawing upon field work undertaken in the author's native Shenyang, China, this research reports upon the natural process of carbon sequestration from the atmosphere into urban ecosystems. The risks associated within carbon sequestration in urban ecosystems are investigated and utilised the analysis of ecological carbon cycle status and integrated climate policy with reference to the sustainable development of urban planning. The primary method of this paper is the ecologically–based life assessment of urban ecosystems relevant to tackling barriers for developing carbon sequestration. A geographical information system (GIS) tool is used in the analysis of risk appraisal from the field of ecological distribution in urban areas. The collected data from a series of calculations related to urban ecological footprint and industrial metabolism analysis prove that the risks to develop carbon sequestration are caused by human activities and urban carbon cycle imbalance. Consequently, the current urban terrestrial ecosystems are inadequate for reducing air pollution and achieving environmental sustainability in the urban area of Shenyang, China. Climate policy and reforestation plans are proposed for ultimately reducing carbon emissions to city planners.
Keywords: carbon sequestration, ecological carbon cycle, geographic information systems, GIS, ecological–based LCA, life cycle assessment, ecological footprint, environmental footprint, Shenyang, China, urban ecosystems, climate change, sustainable development, urban planning, air pollution, environmental sustainability, climate policy, reforestation, carbon emissions