Building a world of
resilient communities.

MAIN LIST

 

Alaska's tundra now releasing carbon dioxide

WHITEHORSE - Scientists say they've found evidence the North has now become a source of atmosphere-warming carbon dioxide. A new study from the Pew Center on Global Climate change says the Arctic tundra is no longer absorbing carbon dioxide, but it rather releasing it.

Scientists have estimated that soils in the Arctic have accumulated up to one-third of the entire earth?s organic carbon.

When the climate warms, carbon that had been locked in frozen peat and other permafrost zones is released through melting.

Camille Parmesan of the University of Texas says the tundra has changed from being a carbon sink to a carbon source.

"For many thousands of years Alaska has sucked up quite a lot of carbon from the atmosphere and put it into long-term storage as part of the frozen tundra," she says. "The carbon bank has now turned into a carbon exhaust."

Parmesan says the changes are because winters have become warmer and drier, allowing more plants to decompose.

The study came out on the heels of a major global warming report that was released earlier this week.

That report says the rate of warming in the North is rising rapidly.

What do you think? Leave a comment below.

Sign up for regular Resilience bulletins direct to your email.

Take action!  

Make connections via our GROUPS page.
Start your own projects. See our RESOURCES page.
Help build resilience. DONATE NOW.

Tags:  

Climate Comeback: A Grassroots Movement Steps Back Into the International Arena

The citizens’ movement for action on the global climate crisis has, …

Mideast Water Wars: In Iraq, A Battle for Control of Water

Conflicts over water have long haunted the Middle East. Yet in the current …

What the Anti-Fracking Movement Brings to the Climate Movement

It turns out that the same unfixable engineering problem that sets the table …

Giant Mats of Green Slime in Lake Erie Signal a Need for New Economic Approaches to Pollution

So, what is the link between this latest water pollution debacle, economic …

Beekeeping Takes Flight at Sea-Tac Airport     

Raising bees around Seattle’s Sea-Tac airport.

Towards a New Co-Existence: On Reframing Our Ecological Crises

How we think about and talk about ecological crises and our role in them …

The Jargonaut: What’s a Rossby Wave?

This is the year of obscure atmospheric phenomenon.