Sunday 6 January 2008

Trees absorbing less CO2 as world warms, study finds

For all those people who were hoping to offset their carbon rich lifestyles by planting a few more trees, there's some bad news. According to Thursdays Guardian

"The ability of forests to soak up man-made carbon dioxide is weakening, according to an analysis of two decades of data from more than 30 sites in the frozen north.

The finding published today is crucial, because it means that more of the CO2 we release will end up affecting the climate in the atmosphere rather than being safely locked away in trees or soil.

The results may partly explain recent studies suggesting that the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is increasing faster than expected. If higher temperatures mean less carbon is soaked up by plants and microbes, global warming will accelerate"

It appears to be part of the long awaited and feared feedback loop whereby the increasing temperature has an impact on the surrounding environment and quickens the change.

An example of this is Siberian frozen tundra which currently has millions of tonnes of methane gas locked away. However as temperatures rise, the tundra melts and releases the methane gas. Methane is a worse climate gas than CO2 and again will help increase the planets temperature.

The full Guardian article is Trees absorbing less CO2 as world warms, study finds

An fuller description of how feedback loops can effect the enviroment can be found in James Lovelock book - The Revenge of Gaia: Why the Earth Is Fighting Back - and How We Can Still Save Humanity

Jamie, Hugh and Gordon's Big Food Fight Trailer

As part of Channel 4 Big Food Fight season which looks at the state of the British Food industry, Channel 4 have been running this great trailer, where Gordon Ramsey, Jamie Oliver and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall appear to be taking part in team building exercise, while slying taking the mikey out of each other.