Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Florida’s Climate Boosts Soil-Carbon Storage, Cuts Greenhouse Emissions

30.09.2014

Warm temperatures and a wet landscape increase soil’s ability to store carbon, which in turn helps mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new University of Florida study covering 45 years of data.

Soil-stored carbon can slow the build-up of carbon-based gases in the atmosphere, a phenomenon believed to be a cause of global climate change. So it’s vital to preserve soil carbon, said Sabine Grunwald, a UF soil and water science professor who led the research.

“The conservation of the ‘black gold’ below our feet, which is not only a natural part of Florida’s soils but also helps to improve our climate and agricultural production, is a hidden treasure,” said Grunwald, a member of the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences faculty. “Soils serve as a natural container to hold carbon that would otherwise be emitted into the atmosphere as greenhouse gases that accelerate global climate change.”

In addition to environmental stewardship, landowners can make money by storing carbon. Participants in the state’s Florida Stewardship Program are sitting on an estimated $300 million worth of carbon.

Because it’s so wet, Florida’s soil has historically stored more carbon than any state, except perhaps Alaska, which has not been studied extensively, Grunwald said.

With Florida’s rapid population growth in the past 45 years, from 5 million to about 18 million, land use has changed considerably. More urban areas have sprung up, while agricultural, rangeland and forests have declined, Grunwald said. That change has caused carbon-rich wetlands to increase 140 percent, while carbon-poor agricultural land decreased about 20 percent, according to the study.

In the first study of its kind, UF researchers reviewed data from 1,251 soil samples collected across Florida from 1965 to 1996. They also collected 1,080 new soil samples statewide in 2010. They studied carbon sequestration rates from 1965 to 2010.

Researchers studied land use, land cover and climate change to see how those factors affect the soil’s ability to store carbon. Organic carbon in soil includes dead plant and animal tissue and makes up most global soil carbon.

Land cover is what’s on the Earth’s surface, whether it’s dirt, pavement, water or trees, among other things. Land use means how people utilize public and private land, such as agriculture, forestry or conservation land.

Together, land use, land cover and climate change account for 46 percent of soil carbon sequestration, the study showed. Of that, land use and land cover account for 27 percent, while climate change account for 19 percent.

Researchers used temperature and rain to determine the effect of climate change. They found higher average annual temperatures correlated with higher soil carbon sequestration, specifically in crops, mesic upland forest, pineland and land converted from pine forests to urban use. Areas with higher average annual precipitation showed less sequestration in agricultural crops and pine forests.

Among land-use types, researchers also found sugarcane in the soils of the Everglades Agricultural area near Lake Okeechobee and wetlands stored the most soil carbon while crop, citrus and relatively dry upland forest sequestered the least.

Results of the study appear in the September issue of the journal Science of the Total Environment

By Brad Buck, 352-294-3303, bradbuck@ufl.edu
Source: Sabine Grunwald, 352-294-3145, sabgru@ufl.edu

Brad Buck | newswise

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product
02.12.2016 | Purdue University

nachricht New findings about the deformed wing virus, a major factor in honey bee colony mortality
11.11.2016 | Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Closing the carbon loop

08.12.2016 | Life Sciences

Applicability of dynamic facilitation theory to binary hard disk systems

08.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

Scientists track chemical and structural evolution of catalytic nanoparticles in 3-D

08.12.2016 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>