The tropical rain forests in the Amazon and in Africa, to take up less CO2 emissions than 30 years ago, the tropical rainforest, in the buffer, you will lose the effect of scinexx

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An alarming new Trend: The “green lung” of our planet will begin to fade. In the large tropical forests of Africa and South America in order to take in a lot less carbon dioxide than 30 years ago. Well, you’ve already lost a third of its buffering effect on the climate system, such as the researchers in the journal “Nature,” he says. In the year 2035, a region can be in the rain forest, or even as a CO2 sink.

A Tree Tropical
In particular, the large forest-trees, such as this one are an effective way of Reducing CO2 emissions. © Sophie Fauset and the University of trinidad and tobago

The tropical rain forests are the “green lung” of our planet – and it is important for the buffer memory in the climate system. Because trees absorb CO2 from the air and store the carbon in their tissues. This makes tropical rain forests one of the major Sinks for the greenhouse gas emissions. However, there is some evidence to suggest that this Reduction may be less stable than previously thought. The researchers also fear that the rain forests could be lost and the effect of a buffer because of the changing climate on a permanent basis.

“While it is true that the additional CO2 promotes plant growth, but this positive effect is made stronger, and the negative effects of rising temperatures and drought have destroyed,” explains first author William Hubau of the Royal Belgian Central Museum in the world.

The uptake of CO2 will decrease

What does this mean for the role of tropical forests as Sinks, have a Hubau, and his colleagues, in a study of the long-term has been investigated. Since 1968, the survey of the trees in the 565-intact rain forests in the Amazon and in Africa. From the Measurement and the model, the researchers have closed in the biomass reaction of the carbon and, therefore, the absorption of CO2 by the trees.

The result: The rain forests in South America, and Africa have lost a portion of its buffer. The monitoring data show that in the forest, absorbed in 1990 to nearly 46 billion metric tons of CO2 out of the air, this corresponds to about 17 per cent of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. 20 years later, however, the uptake of CO2 from the forest, it had fallen to only 25 million tons, the researchers report.

Not affected by heat and drought

As it is the main cause of the development of Hubau and his colleagues see it, especially with the injuries and the loss of the trees due to the drought and the heat. As a result, the CO2 emissions have a connection in each of the areas of the forest are to be reduced by 33%. They concluded that the negative effects of heat and drought, make the most of the fertilizing effect of increased CO2. In addition to this, the surface area of an intact forest, low areas, with a total of 19 per cent.

“The speed and extent of change in these forests suggests that the effects of climate change in the tropics are more severe than expected,” says co-author, Bonaventure Sonké, University of yaoundé, Cameroon. This is the sensitivity of the CO2-to confirm to the Lowest, as compared to the contribution to global warming.

The Amazon most affected

Particularly significantly, and quickly, for the absorption of CO2 in the Amazon has decreased in the area: the buffering effect of the trees has been in decline since the late 1990s. In the tropical rain forests of tropical Africa, the effect has been only about 15 years later, the researchers report. They attribute this to the fact that the Amazon rainforest is the most exposed to the heat and the dryness, which is usually the biggest lie in the forests of Africa.

“By combining data from Africa and the Amazon, we can begin to understand why it is that these forests are changing, and that the concentration of CO2, temperature, drought, and forest dynamics play a vital role,” he says Hubau. In addition to the pure effects on the Climate of the Amazon rainforest was affected in recent years by deforestation and forest fires. Both of these are likely to have a limited buffer, and therefore, in addition to.

The loss-of-function in the bottom from the 2035?

But what does this mean for the future? The polished Hubau, and his colleagues, using a model based on the Trends observed, the extra. Thus, the CO2 emissions will decrease in the intake of Africa’s tropical forests, up to the year 2040, and by about 14 per cent on the figures from 2010 to 2015 decrease.

Even more dramatic, but the future development of the Amazon region, you could say: “At Amazon, the sink is expected to weaken quickly, and can fall as early as 2035 to Zero,” the researchers say. At this point, Amazon would be in the rain forest of the CO2 sink to a potential source of CO2 emissions.

“There is an urgent need to stabilize the earth’s climate, in order to maintain the carbon Balance of intact tropical forests has been stable,” stresses the author or co-author Simon Lewis of the University of Leeds. “If we don’t take action to do so, it is only a matter of time before these forests to store carbon again.” A quick and efficient measures of climate protection, it is urgent, especially for the ‘green lung’ of the planet. The nature, 2020; doi: 10.1038/s41586-020-2035-0)

Source: University of Leeds, and the Nature