Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Mother Earth comes to mankind's rescue

Oh, no!

What a disaster!

What will we do?

How will we control ourselves?

What is the meaning of our lives?

And our message?

If it's true?

Wailed the Climate Faithful.

Apparently, Mother Earth is doing a pretty good job of protecting us from ourselves...
Africa's tropical forests have stored huge amounts of carbon over the last four decades and become a critical sponge for greenhouse gases, according to a study published Thursday.

Long-term measurements taken across the continent's tropical belt showed that African forests absorb as much carbon dioxide as those in the Amazon.

Tropical forests only account for seven-to-ten percent of the Earth's land area. But they hold up to half of the carbon locked inside the planet's terrestrial vegetation, giving them an outsized role in regulating greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

Previous studies in South America have shown that Amazonian old-growth forests have absorbed, on average, an extra 620 kilogrammes (1,364 pounds) of carbon per hectare (2.47 acres) per year.

This adds up to some 650 billion kilos every year for the entire Amazon basin, which sits astride eight nations.

Before the new study, however, it was not known whether this trend was common to all tropical forests, or varied from one continent to another, especially in Africa.

Having this information is important to broader attempts to project changes wrought by global warming, and how quickly temperatures are likely to rise.

Two dozen international researchers led by Simon Lewis of the University of Leeds in northern England pulled together data from 79 monitoring plots scattered across 10 countries in western and central Africa.

Sifting through the data, the scientists found that the region's rain forests had pumped progressively more carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere as trees underwent photosynthesis and grew.

The average increase was almost identical to those for Amazonia, a net plus of 630 kilos per hectare each year between 1967 and 2007, reported the study, published in the British science journal Nature.

"African tropical forests are providing important ecosystem services by storing carbon and being a carbon sink, thereby reducing the rate of increase in atmospheric CO2," the main driver of global warming, the authors note.

At least one puzzle remains. Left alone, forests will eventually reach a point at which tree growth and death are in equilibrium, meaning they neither take in or give off extra carbon.

The question, then, is why these tropical forests are continuing to draw down ever more CO2.

"There are two possible explanations," said Helen Muller-Landau in a commentary published in Nature.

One is that major disturbances hundreds, or thousands, of years ago -- massive fires, drought, changes in land use -- destroyed portions of the forest which have been growing back ever since.

The second is that climate change has knocked tropical forests in South America and Africa off balance. "Perhaps the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide is effectively fertilizing tropical tree growth," speculated Muller-Landau.

It is probable, she added, that both factors were at play.

Whether remaining intact forests will continue to sequester carbon is unknown, and will depend in part on how humans manage this precious resource, Lewis and colleagues conclude.

"With adequate protection, these forests are likey to remain large carbon stores in the longer term," they wrote.
We have spent tens of billions of dollars on climate change and now they tell us that there's some new carbon sink of hitherto unknown capacity?

These people are crazy.

(Nothing Follows)


Anonymous said...

It's not stopping CO2 rising at record rates, though, is it?

Jack Lacton said...

Rising at record rates?

I think you've wandered completely off the ranch, Fudgie.

Anonymous said...

How about you do this: look up the measurements of CO2 in the Earth's atmosphere. Work out the increment over the last five years. See if you can find any other five year period with as high an increment.

Ayrdale said...

...so what ? Ask a sudent of geology about CO2 levels when the atmosphere had 10 times more, no runaway global warming then...and in spite of increasing levels the planet's showing a cooling trend.

Have a look at the online petition at...


Anonymous said...

Well, guess what? When CO2 levels were 10 times higher, the planet was warmer!

Please tell us the time over which you are calculating a 'cooling trend', which dataset you are using, and what the errors on the 'trend' are.

Jack Lacton said...

Piss off, Fudgie, and go and get my 2008 Fudgie back.

You're nothing but a lying piece of human excrement.

Kaboom said...

JacLac, your 2008 Fudgie was a much better opponent.

This one is just dog shit-dumb, and should be used as ammunition on the M.S. Steve Irwin.

Bring back Scientist!

hoppers said...

Fudgie got promoted due to sterling performance on KER-PLUNK despite the fact he was 100% wromg on everything he posted. - He was so aggressibe and nasty that the resident leftie controllers saw something they liked.(Even though he had the sad habit pretending he was a scientist)

The new Fudgie is a trainee looking to earn his spurs in the big wide blogesphere, and gain advancement and presumably a bigger pay-check if he succeeds.

The old Fudgie has presumably been promoted to disrupting Steve Mac's blog or similar.

Sorry Jack. I'm afraid it seems that your site is a designeted training ground for the hard left.

Anonymous said...

Oooh, good arguments, Lacton! So many figures. So much science.

hoppers said...

Here we go again...Looks like this newbie is going to pretend to be a scientist as well.

plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose

Jack Lacton said...

It's amazing, isn't it, that my blog is targeted by the organised left to have a 'minder' attached?

hoppers said...

Yeah, but the quality of the minder matters.

The last one had his moments - even made me laugh at times.

This new one is pathetic.

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