CO2 Fears After Amazon Rainforest Droughts
Researchers calculate that millions of trees died in 2010, which means the Amazon is soaking up much less CO2 from the atmosphere, and those dead trees will now release all the carbon they've accumulated over 300 or more years.Amazon Drought Accelerating Climate Change
The widespread 2010 drought follows a similar drought in 2005 which itself will put an additional five billion tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere, Simon Lewis of University of Leeds in the UK and colleagues calculate in a study published Thursday in Science. The United States emitted 5.4 billion tonnes of CO2 from fossil fuel use in 2009.
The two droughts will end up adding an estimated 13 billion tonnes of additional CO2 - equivalent to combined emissions in 2009 from China and the U.S. - and likely accelerating global warming.
"New growth in the region will not offset those releases," Lewis told IPS.