For forests, it really does help to be young. British scientists who have identified the vital factor that shows what makes a forest a good carbon sink say young forests use carbon best and absorb it most efficiently. They identified an age effect in stands of timber less than 140 years old: big enough to account for 25 percent of forest carbon uptake from the atmosphere.
New and young forests make the most efficient and effective carbon sinks. And although the great tropical rainforests are regarded as the "lungs" of the planet, and invaluable resources and homes for biodiversity, in fact the most efficient carbon dioxide consumers were forests in the middle and high latitudes.
Humans burn fossil fuels and emit vast quantities of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. The felling, burning and clearing of natural forest releases ever more carbon.
It is an axiom of global response to climate change that forests should be protected and restored.
Humans must still find ways to drastically cut fossil fuel use, and greenhouse gas emissions. As of 2019, there is no sign that this is happening.
The latest research confirms the value of some investments: the vast reforestation programmes launched in China, and the huge boreal forests of Canada, Russia and Europe, are playing an important role in climate management.
It's important to get a clear sense of where and why this carbon uptake is happening, because it helps us make targeted and informed decisions about forest management. The amount of CO2 that can be taken up by forests is a finite amount; ultimately reforestation programmes will only be effective if we simultaneously work to reduce our emissions. (source: Ecowatch.com)
What are you doing to reduce your emissions and to protect the forests?
Use renewable energy, walk more and use public transportation, buy local organic food and go vegan, ditch single use plastics, plant a tree!
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