In the Media
Rising CO2 in atmosphere also speeds carbon loss from forest soils
July 12, 2012
Elevated levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide accelerate carbon cycling and soil carbon loss in forests, new research led by an Indiana University biologist has found.
The new evidence supports an emerging view that although forests remove a substantial amount of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, much of the carbon is being stored in living woody biomass rather than as dead organic matter in soils.
Richard P. Phillips, lead author on the paper and an assistant professor of biology in the IU College of Arts and Sciences, said that after nearly two decades of research on forest ecosystem responses to global change, some of the uncertainty has been lifted about how forests are storing carbon in the wake of rising carbon dioxide levels.
“It’s been suggested that as trees take up more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, a greater amount of carbon will go to roots and fungi to acquire nutrients, but our results show that little of this carbon accumulates in soil because the decomposition of root and fungal detritus is also increased,” he said.
Please click here to read the original news item.
Keywords: carbon loss, forest carbon, soil carbon, woody biomass