Does Carbon in Wetland Soils Go With the Flow?

 

forested_wetland3.jpgAmong the various providers of ecosystem services, forested wetlands might be the champions. With their sponge-like abilities, they supply and purify water, protect communities from flooding, offer habitat for diverse species, produce timber and other goods, and present many opportunities for recreation and general enjoyment. Hidden in wetland soils is another critically important benefit: storage of carbon that would otherwise enter the atmosphere as carbon dioxide (CO2), a climate-warming greenhouse gas. But what happens to this carbon when wetlands dry out because of seasonal water level fluctuations, climate variability, or land use changes related to human development? A team of researchers from North Carolina State University (NCSU) and the Eastern Threat Center may have the answer. Read more in CompassLive...

Pictured: While wetland soils cover only 2 to 3 percent of the total land area across the world, they may store up to 30 percent of global soil carbon.

 

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