The ability of forests to sequester carbon from the atmosphere depends on nutrients available in the forest soils, shows new research from an international team of researchers, including the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis.
The study showed that forests growing in fertile soils, with ample nutrients, are able to sequester about 30 percent of the carbon that they take up during photosynthesis. In contrast, forests growing in nutrient-poor soils may retain only 6 percent of that carbon. The rest is returned to the atmosphere as respiration.
This miniature ecosystem has been thriving in an almost completely isolated state for more than forty years. It has been watered just once in that time.
The original single spiderwort plant has grown and multiplied, putting out seedlings. As it has access to light, it continues to photosynthesize. The water builds up on the inside of the bottle and then rains back down on the plants in a miniature version of the water cycle.
As leaves die, they fall off and rot at the bottom producing the carbon dioxide and nutrients required for more plants to grow.
Authorities say unemployment and drug addiction have spurred an increase in the destructive practice of cutting off the knobby growths at the base of ancient redwood trees to make decorative pieces like lacey-grained coffee tables and wall clocks.
The practice — known as burl poaching — has become so prevalent along the Northern California coast that Redwood National and State Parks have started closing the popular Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway at night in a desperate attempt to deter thieves.
TODAY IN BIOLOGY CLASS WE LEARNED THAT WHEN YOU MOW THE GRASS THE BLADES RELEASE A CHEMICAL THAT MAKES THAT GLORIOUS SMELL BUT THE REASON WHY THEY RELEASE THE CHEMICAL IS TO WARN OTHER GRASS BLADES OF DANGER SO WHEN WE SMELL THE FRESHLY CUT GRASS SMELL IT’S NOT JUST A GOOD SMELL…
These vegetated surfaces don’t just look pretty. They have other benefits as well, including cooling city blocks, reducing loud noises, and improving a building’s energy efficiency.What’s more, a recent modeling study shows that green walls can potentially reduce large amounts of air pollution in what’s called a “street canyon,” or the corridor between tall buildings.
For the study, Thomas Pugh, a biogeochemist at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany, and his colleagues created a computer model of a green wall with generic vegetation in a Western European city. Then they recorded chemical reactions based on a variety of factors, such as wind speed and building placement.
The simulation revealed a clear pattern: A green wall in a street canyon trapped or absorbed large amounts of nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter—both pollutants harmful to people, said Pugh. Compared with reducing emissions from cars, little attention has been focused on how to trap or take up more of the pollutants, added Pugh, whose study was published last year in the journal Environmental Science & Technology.
That’s why the green-wall study is “putting forward an alternative solution that might allow [governments] to improve air quality in these problem hot spots,” he said.Compared with reducing emissions from cars, little attention has been focused on how to trap or take up more of the pollutants, added Pugh, whose study was published last year in the journal Environmental Science & Technology.
That’s why the green-wall study is “putting forward an alternative solution that might allow [governments] to improve air quality in these problem hot spots,” he said.