. Energy News .

Plants and soils could exacerbate climate change as global climate warms
by Staff Writers
Washington DC (SPX) Nov 16, 2012

File image.

November 13, 2012 - Scientists from the American Meteorological Society (AMS) and University of California, Berkeley have demonstrated that plants and soils could release large amounts of carbon dioxide as global climate warms. This finding contrasts with the expectation that plants and soils will absorb carbon dioxide and is important because that additional carbon release from land surface could be a potent positive feedback that exacerbates climate warming.

"We have been counting on plants and soils to soak up and store much of the carbon we're releasing when we burn fossil fuels," Paul Higgins, a study co-author and associate director of the AMS Policy Program, said. "However, our results suggest the opposite possibility. Plants and soils could react to warming by releasing additional carbon dioxide, increasing greenhouse gas concentrations and leading to even more climate warming."

The research team used a computer model of Earth's land surface to examine how carbon storage might react to a warmer planet with higher atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations. The experimental design helps quantify the possible range in future terrestrial carbon storage.

Results indicated that the potential range of outcomes is vast and includes the possibility that plant and soil responses to human-caused warming could trigger a large additional release of carbon. If that outcome is realized, a given level of human emissions could result in much larger climate changes than scientists currently anticipate. It would also mean that greater reductions in greenhouse gas emissions could be required to ensure carbon dioxide concentrations remain at what might be considered safe levels for the climate system.

These findings could pose additional challenges for climate change risk management. Recognizing such challenges will afford decision makers a greater chance of managing the risks of climate change more effectively.

Dr. Higgins works on climate change and its causes, consequences, and potential solutions. His scientific research examines the two-way interaction between the atmosphere and the land-surface, which helps quantify responses and feedbacks to climate change. Dr. Higgins's policy analysis helps characterize climate risks and identify potential solutions. He also works to inform policy makers, members of the media, and the general public about climate science and climate policy.

Dr. John Harte, the study's other co-author, is a professor of energy and resources and of environmental science, policy and management at University of California, Berkeley. His research interests include climate-ecosystem interactions, theoretical ecology and environmental policy.

The study was published in a Journal of Climate paper titled, "Carbon cycle uncertainty increases climate change risks and mitigation challenges."


Related Links
American Meteorological Society
Farming Today - Suppliers and Technology

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review

Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Get Our Free Newsletters
Space - Defense - Environment - Energy - Solar - Nuclear


Scientists Find Aphid Resistance in Black Raspberry
Corvallis OR (SPX) Nov 16, 2012
There's good news for fans of black raspberries: A U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientist and his commercial colleague have found black raspberries that have resistance to a disease-spreading aphid. Agricultural Research Service (ARS) horticulturist Chad Finn with the agency's Horticultural Crops Research Unit in Corvallis, Ore., and colleague Michael Dossett of Agriculture and Ag ... read more

What lies beneath? New survey technique offers detailed picture of our changing landscape

Surveying Earth's interior with atomic clocks

Storms, Ozone, Vegetation and More: NASA-NOAA Suomi NPP Satellite Returns First Year of Data

NASA's SPoRT Team Tracks Hurricane Sandy

Quattro Group Gains Visibility And Control With Ctrack

Saudi Arabia to Launch Two Satellites

Nokia buys 3D mapping firm in location services push

Gazprom to Launch Two Satellites by Yearend

Massive deforestation risks turning Somalia into desert

Inspiration from Mother Nature leads to improved wood

Action needed to prevent more devastating tree diseases entering the UK

Texas A and M scientist taking infrared laser look at forests

14,000 Jobs Possible from Military Biofuels Initiative

Airbus, EADS and ENN make a push for new generation aviation fuels

A Better Route to Xylan

More Bang for the Biofuel Buck

Solar vehicles in Chile race across world's driest desert

Peru solar power program makes headway

Survey: California schools going solar

2012 National Solar Jobs Census Finds Installers Leading the Way

AREVA deploys its industrial plan to produce a 100 percent French wind power technology

Gannets could be affected by offshore energy developments

Scotland approves 85MW Highlands wind farm

China backs suit against Obama over wind farm deal

US shale gas drives up coal exports

Coal investment in Queensland unlikely

Australian coal projects mega polluters?

Australian coal basin may be top 10 polluter: Greenpeace

China's Xi hammers home graft warning: media

Chinese street children found dead in dumpster

New Tibetan self-immolation in China: rights groups

China's Xi says party faces problems including graft

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2012 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement