Climate change: Amazon may be turning from friend to foe

By | May 7, 2021

Brazil’s Amazon absorbed about 20 percent more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than in the previous decade, according to an astonishing report that shows humanity that the world’s largest tropics is helping to absorb man-made carbon pollution. One cannot depend on the forest.

From 2010 to 2019, Brazil’s Amazon basin dumped 16.6 billion tons of CO2, while dropping only 13.9 billion tons, the researchers reported in a journal called Nature Climate Change on Thursday.

The study looked at the volume of CO2 and stored as the forest grew, and was converted back into the atmosphere as it burned back or destroyed.

Jean Pierre Vignanon, scientist co-author of France’s National Institute of Agronomic, said, “We expected this, but this is the first time we have statistics that show that Brazil’s Amazon has flipped and is now a net emitter . ” Research (INRA).

“We don’t know at what point the change may be irreversible,” he told AFP in an interview.

The study also showed that deforestation – through fires and clear-cut harvesting – increased by almost one million hectares (2.5 million acres) to 3.9 million hectares in 2019, an increase in size from approximately one million hectares (2.5 million acres) in 2019 Netherlands.

“Brazil saw a steep decline in the application of environmental protection policies after changing the government in 2019,” INRA said in a statement.

On January 1, 2019, the President of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro, was sworn in for office.

Terrestrial ecosystems around the world have been an important ally as the world struggles to curb CO2 emissions, exceeding 40 billion tonnes in 2019.

In the last half century, plants and soil have consistently absorbed 30 percent of emissions, even those emissions have increased by 50 percent over the period.

Oceans have also helped, increasing by more than 20 percent.

Tipping points

The Amazon Basin comprises about half of the world’s tropical rainforests, which are more effective at soaking and storing carbon that other types of vegetation.

If the region is to come from a pure source of CO2 rather than a “sink”, the climate crisis will be much harder to deal with.

Using new methods of analyzing satellite data developed at the University of Oklahoma, the international team of researchers also showed for the first time that deforestation was an important source of deforestation planet-emitting CO2 emissions.

Over the same 10-year period, fission — caused by fission, selective pruning, or fire damage, but does not destroy trees — leads to three times more emissions due to outright destruction of forests.

The data examined in the study cover only Brazil, which accounts for about 60 percent of the Amazonian rainforest.

Wigneron said that keeping the rest of the region in mind, “the Amazon basin is probably (carbon) neutral as a whole.”

“But in other countries along the Amazon rainforest, deforestation is also increasing, and the drought has become more intense.”

Climate change looms as a major threat, and may be above a certain threshold of global warming – see the tip of the continent’s rainforest in a much drier savann state, recent studies have shown.

This would have disastrous consequences not only in the region that currently harms a significant percentage of the world’s biodiversity, but globally.

The Amazon rainforest is one of a dozen so-called “tipping points” in the climate system.

CO2 and methane-filled ice sheets in Greenland and the West Antarctic, Siberian permafrost, monsoon rains in South Asia, coral reef ecosystems, jet streams — all of which are vulnerable to point-of-no-return infections that are fundamental to the world Will change form. We know.

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