Tree Frog Forestry News

Long-term resilience of Earth’s tropical forests in warmer world

By The American Association for the Advancement of Science
May 21, 2020
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

A long-term assessment of the sensitivity of hundreds of tropical forest plots to increasing temperatures brings encouraging news: in the long run, Earth’s tropical forests may be more resilient to a moderately warming world than short-term predictions have suggested. According to the new biome-wide study, tropical forests worldwide and their carbon storage capacities are likely to remain intact in moderate climate warming scenarios – so long as they’re not further impacted by other human disturbances such as clearance, logging or fires. As plants and trees grow, they convert inorganic carbon into biomass, effectively storing vast amounts of atmospheric carbon dioxide into terrestrial flora. Understanding the land-atmosphere carbon flux of tropical forests – where nearly 40% of the world’s carbon-hoarding vegetation resides – is particularly important to understanding potential climate change scenarios.

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