Tuesday, January 7, 2015 — Lake Erie just can’t catch a break. The lake has experienced harmful algal blooms and severe oxygen-depleted “dead zones” for years, but now a team of researchers led by DGE’s Anna Michalak and Yuntao Zhou has shown that the widespread drought in 2012 was associated with the largest dead zone since at least the mid-1980s. more »
Wednesday, December 3, 2014 — The climate warming caused by a single carbon emission takes only about 10 years to reach its maximum effect. This is important because it refutes the common misconception that today’s emissions won’t be felt for decades and that they are a problem for future generations.
For the first time, a study conducted by DGE's Katharine Ricke and Ken Caldeira has evaluated how long it takes to feel the maximum warming effect caused by a single carbon emission. Their work is published in Environmental Research Letters. more »
Monday, November 17, 2014 — New work from a team led by DGE’s Greg Asner shows the limitations of long-used research methods in tropical rainforest ecology and points to new technological approaches for understanding forest structures and systems on large geographic scales.
When forests grow, they absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and store the carbon in plant branches, trunks, roots, and soils. Tropical forests, in particular, store more atmospheric carbon as biomass than any other land ecosystem on Earth. As a result, the importance of large-scale measurements and monitoring of tropical forest structure and biomass has rapidly increased throughout the science, conservation and climate change-policy communities. more »
Monday, November 10, 2014 — A new high-resolution mapping strategy has revealed billions of tons of carbon in Peruvian forests that can be preserved as part of an effort to sequester carbon stocks in the fight against climate change. Tropical forests convert more carbon from the atmosphere into biomass than any other terrestrial ecosystem on Earth. However, when land is used for agriculture, as a wood source, or for mining, carbon is often released into the atmosphere where it contributes to climate change. Tropical deforestation and forest degradation account for about 10 percent of the world’s carbon emissions annually. more »
Sunday, November 2, 2014 — Human influence on the climate system is clear and growing, with impacts observed on all continents. If left unchecked, climate change will increase the likelihood of severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems. However, options are available to adapt to climate change and implementing stringent mitigations activities can ensure that the impacts of climate change remain within a manageable range, creating a brighter and more sustainable future. more »