Emissions from the edge of the forest
March 30, 2017 04:08 PM - Helmholtz Centre For Environmental Research - UFZ
When talk is of important ecosystems, tropical forests are top of the list. After all, half of the carbon stored in all of the Earth's vegetation is contained in these ecosystems. Deforestation has a correspondingly fatal effect. Scientists estimate that this releases 1000 million tonnes of carbon every year, which, in the form of greenhouse gasses, drives up global temperatures. That is not all, however, reveals a new study by the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) and the University of Maryland. A team of scientists has discovered that fragmentation of formerly contiguous areas of forest leads to carbon emissions rising by another third. Researchers emphasise in the scientific journal Nature Communications that this previously neglected effect should be taken into account in future IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) reports.