It is estimated that in the 1990’s the Amazon absorbed up to two billion tons of CO2 each year but since then, according to the study now absorbs less than half of that.
The study was limited to primary and undisturbed forests, which makes up about 80% of the Amazon. So it doesn’t account for carbon changes, regrowth or deforestation so more research will have to be done in order to provide a more rounded result set but Lars Hedin, a professor of ecology at Princeton University suggests that the research done thus far will form an excellent springboard for a future research and understanding.
He writes: “The CO2 component of climate change may become substantially more difficult to manage and abate in the future if the findings from the Amazon basin apply more generally to the land carbon sink.”
Ian Morgan Arb is committed to Forestry conservation and growth promotion and correctly managing the trees that we have.
A 30 year study has revealed that the Amazon long absorbed more carbon than it releases and it suggests that the trees and leaves are losing ability to effectively suck up the excess carbon dioxide being pumped into the atmosphere by human activities.
The study shows that Increased mortality rate is the main reason for this with an increase by more than a third since the mid-1980s.
Carbon dioxide is necessary for photosynthesis to take place … the rather cool way that plants convert light into energy.
Oliver Phillips, professor of tropical ecology at the University of Leeds in England and a co-author of the study says that “because they take up a significant amount of our carbon-dioxide emissions. This is a first indication that the process is saturating”.
The Amazon is roughly 15 times the size of California and accounts for at least half the Global tropical Forrest area and with over 300 hundred billion trees store one fifth of all carbon in the earth’s biomass.
Each year, we humans contribute 35 billion tons of CO2 into the atmosphere and while a quarter is thought to be absorbed by the water masses (the oceans), a quarter is absorbed by the forests and trees the remaining half is thought to be the main forces of the man-made climate change.
While the increase in our planets emissions of carbon-dioxide fuelled and surged the growth of the rain forests tress, sadly it has also decreased their life time and increased the trees’ death rate.