HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Changes in North American land use have had major impact on global environment

The reforestation of former farmland over the last century has played an important role in reducing the accumulation of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere, according to Princeton scientists.

The scientists, publishing in the Nov. 10 issue of Science, reported that changes in land use have been critical in allowing North American forests to regrow and soak up large amounts of carbon dioxide. Previous studies had suggested that other factors, such as the fertilizing effects of carbon dioxide, were spurring forests to absorb more carbon dioxide.

"Changes in the way we manage our land have had a real impact on the global environment," said the paper's lead author, John Caspersen.

The finding makes it clear, however, that this benefit will not continue indefinitely, because the regrowth of forests will slow as they mature. The results could have important implications for policymakers wrestling with the question of how to reduce the accumulation of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

Scientists have been trying for more than a decade to track the fate of carbon dioxide pumped into the atmosphere as a result of burning fossil fuels. Early studies showed that despite six billion tons of the gas emitted each year, only three or four billion tons accumulate in the atmosphere. Landmark studies from Princeton and elsewhere showed that trees and other land plants, which absorb carbon dioxide during photosynthesis, were taking up a large part of the "missing" carbon. Then, in 1996, a Princeton-led group reported that much of this absorption was happening in the United States and neighboring countries - a phenomenon called the "North American carbon sink."

Still, it was not clear what was causing North America to absorb so much carbon. Some evidence suggested that carbon dioxide itself would stimulate plant growth, thus causing more carbon dioxide uptake. Increased nitrogen pollution and global warming also could stimulate plant growth. Studies publis
'"/>

Contact: Steven Schultz
sschultz@princeton.edu
609-258-5729
Princeton University
9-Nov-2000


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Changes to insect-seeking calls of horseshoe bats may drive new species formation
2. Changes in shape of single protein plays key role in the spread of cancer cells
3. Changes in arctic ice affect life around the globe
4. Changes in jet stream, storm tracks, linked to prairie drought patterns, study finds
5. Changes in prevalence of mutations associated with HIV treatment failure
6. Changes in rainfall patterns spur plant growth, carbon absorption across U.S.
7. Changes in agricultural practices help clean up Lake Erie
8. Changes in Lake Erie fish population suggest lakes recovery
9. Changes in Australian ecosystems tied to arrival of exotic animals
10. Changes in diet related to prevalence of asthma and allergies
11. Changes for chickens? New hybrid corn helps reduce phosphorus in poultry litter, UD scientists report

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:3/15/2016)... Yissum Research Development Company of the ... the Hebrew University, announced today the formation of ... various human biological indicators. Neteera Technologies has completed its ... investors. ... electromagnetic emissions from sweat ducts, enables reliable and speedy ...
(Date:3/10/2016)... -- --> --> ... Access Management Market by Component (Provisioning, Directory Services, Password ... Size, by Deployment, by Vertical, and by Region - ... is estimated to grow from USD 7.20 Billion in ... Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 12.2% during the ...
(Date:3/8/2016)... N.C. , March 8, 2016   ... sensor technology, today announced it has secured $11M ... by GII Tech, a new venture fund being ... with additional participation from existing investors TDF Ventures ... the funds to continue its triple-digit growth and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/6/2016)... AUSTIN, Texas , May 6, 2016 ... risk drug addiction from prescription pain medication when treating ... in adult stem cell therapy, doctors can go right ... potentially dangerous drugs. MedRebels, an educational organization, provides physician ... therapy and a search feature to find physicians across ...
(Date:5/5/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 05, 2016 , ... ... on a definitive agreement to acquire Algynomics, a research-stage pain diagnostics company. The ... to identify individuals at increased risk for the development of chronic pain, which ...
(Date:5/5/2016)... ... May 05, 2016 , ... ProMIS ... of its first three targets, it has identified a fourth in a series ... in the development and progression of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). , “This ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... May 04, 2016 , ... Proove Biosciences, Inc. , the ... partnership with McGill University . The partnership is designed to advance research in ... to help patients in pain. With the new agreement, researchers at Proove Biosciences are ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: