Navigation Links
A future with or without trees
Date:7/27/2010

MBL, WOODS HOLE, MAIn some cases, it can be difficult for scientists to see the deforestation for the trees.

Not so for Gillian Galford, a recent graduate of the Brown-MBL Graduate Program in Biological and Environmental Sciences (and now a post-doctoral fellow at Columbia University's Earth Institute) and her colleagues, who take a big-picture approach to greenhouse gas emissions.

In a study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the team estimates future emissions of carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, and methane in the Brazilian Amazon state of Mato Grosso. The estimates were made by combining 105 years of historical data on land-use changes with possible scenarios for future deforestation and land use in the region.

The results indicate that a recent pledge by the government of Mato Grosso to reduce deforestation rates by 89 percent by 2020 would be an effective way to minimize future greenhouse gas emissions.

"Our study shows not only that Mato Grosso can perhaps achieve this goal, but, if they stick with it, we now have an estimate of what their greenhouse gas emissions would be," says Galford, who completed the research as part of her Ph.D. thesis for the Brown-MBL joint graduate program. "If they can adhere to their own goal, they are going to have much lower net emissions than they would if they followed the trajectory they were on."

Galford and her colleagues considered two scenarios for future land-use change in Mato Grosso. In the business-as-usual scenario, deforestation and land-use changes occur at the same rapid rates associated with the early 21st century, when native forest and grasslands were being rapidly converted for agricultural uses. The governance scenario, which better reflects trends of the past few years, takes into account the state pledge to reduce deforestation. This scenario results in over 2 times lower greenhouse gas emissions estimated through 2050 (6.3 Pg CO2-e for the governance scenario, vs. 15.8 Pg CO2-e for the business-as-usual scenario, where Pg are Petagrams and CO2-e means carbon dioxide equivalents).

While previous models for future greenhouse emissions in the area have focused only on emissions resulting from deforestation, this is the first to also incorporate post-clearing land management by considering whether cleared land is used for crops or pasture. According to the study, the choice between crops and pasture can be significant for certain regions, but has little global effect.

Greenhouse gas emissions are of great concern in the Brazilian Amazon region. "This is one of the most dynamic places of changing land cover on the planet," says John Mustard, a co-author of the study and Galford's co-advisor in the Brown-MBL joint graduate program, along with Jerry Melillo of the MBL Ecosystems Center. "How does this affect carbon emissions now, and what does the future hold? Through observation and modeling we are now able to bring a strong focus to these questions," Mustard says.

Galford says that the strategies used in this study could be used in other tropical regions to predict the results of land-use changes. "With this type of exercise you could analyze a few different scenarios to determine what the consequences for your greenhouse gas emissions would be," she says.


'/>"/>

Contact: Diana Kenney
dkenney@mbl.edu
508-289-7139
Marine Biological Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Unaccounted feedbacks from climate-induced ecosystem changes may increase future climate warming
2. Food for our future -- its more than whats for dinner
3. Big science future for Australia
4. Business as usual crop development wont satisfy future demand
5. Research helps predict future impact of climate change
6. Climate change complicates plant diseases of the future
7. Pumping up the heat for a climate-friendly future
8. Symposium: Implications for the future of personalize medicine
9. Return of top predators is key to ecological future
10. Bionanotechnology has new face, world-class future at Florida State
11. From bacteria to electricity: The future of green energy
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
A future with or without trees
(Date:2/2/2016)... , Feb. 2, 2016  Based on ... Frost & Sullivan recognizes US-based Intelligent Retinal Imaging ... & Sullivan Award for New Product Innovation. IRIS, ... North America , is poised ... rapidly growing diabetic retinopathy market. The IRIS technology ...
(Date:2/1/2016)... 2016  Today, the first day of American Heart ... develop a first of its kind workplace health solution ... In the first application of Watson ... ), and Welltok will create a new offering that ... analytics, delivered on Welltok,s health optimization platform. The effort ...
(Date:1/28/2016)... SAN JOSE, Calif., Jan. 28, 2016 Synaptics (NASDAQ: ... financial results for its second quarter ended December 31, 2015. ... the second quarter of fiscal 2016 increased 2 percent compared to ... the second quarter of fiscal 2016 was $35.0 million, or $0.93 ... Non-GAAP net income for the first quarter of fiscal 2016 ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/3/2016)... DIEGO , Feb. 3, 2016   ... company with the first pluripotent stem cell-derived islet ... diabetes in clinical-stage development, today announced that ViaCyte ... Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson, have agreed ... group into ViaCyte.  The agreement provides ViaCyte with ...
(Date:2/3/2016)... , Feb. 3, 2016 Ascendis Pharma ... company that applies its innovative TransCon technology to address ... at an upcoming investor conference.Event:2016 Leerink Partners Global Healthcare ... Date:  , Wednesday, February 10, 2016 Time:  , ... www.ascendispharma.com . --> An audio webcast of ...
(Date:2/3/2016)... Colorado (PRWEB) , ... February 03, 2016 , ... ... hospitals, has established a new office dedicated to the North American healthcare market. ... turnkey solutions to healthcare facilities. The company will provide new pneumatic tube ...
(Date:2/3/2016)... ... February 03, 2016 , ... Resilinc ... summarizes and analyzes nearly 750 unique supply chain notifications and alerts generated by ... , Supply chain risk management practitioners subscribe to the EventWatch service to receive ...
Breaking Biology Technology: