Navigation Links
'Black carbon' flowing from soil to oceans

A smaller proportion of black carbon created during combustion will remain in soil than have been estimated before. Contrary to previous understanding, burying black carbon in the ground in order to restrain climate change will not create a permanent carbon reserve. Instead, a part of black carbon will dissolve from soil to rivers. The flux of dissolved black carbon from the rivers to the ocean was estimated in a research article published in Science on 19 April.

The burning of organic matter creates 40 million tons of black carbon every year. Black carbon is formed through the incomplete combustion of organic matter, e.g. in forest fires, slash-and-burn and controlled burning of fields. The general assumption has been that black carbon would remain in soil even for millions of years.

However, recently published research indicates that a remarkable proportion of black carbon in soil will dissolve to the water system. In the light of new research results, much discussed "bio-carbon" may not be that beneficial in terms of mitigating climate change. Carbon is given the prefix "bio" when it is used both for energy production and soil enrichment. In any case, the stability of carbon in soil has been a central factor of bio-carbon applications.

By sampling rivers all around the world, the researchers estimated that the annual amount of black carbon flowing via rivers to the ocean is 27 million tons per year.

"Each sample included a significant amount of black carbon," says a research participant Anssi Vhtalo, Senior Lecturer from the University of Jyvskyl.

"On average, the amount of black carbon was ten per cent of the amount of dissolved organic carbon. The results prove that the proportion of water soluble black carbon may be as much as 40 per cent of black carbon created annually.

Water samples from the largest rivers in the world

The basis of the research was the 'Big river'-project started by Senior Lecturer Anssi Vhtalo while he was working as an Academy Research Fellow at the University of Helsinki before moving to the University of Jyvskyl. For this project, water samples were collected from the ten largest rivers in the world.

"These rivers carry one third of fresh water running to oceans, and their catchment area covers 28% of the whole land area in the world. Water samples were taken, e.g. from Amazon, the largest river in the world," says Vhtalo.

In addition to the samples used in the river project, the research published in Science was supplemented with samples from many other rivers all over the world. The total number of researched samples was 174.


Contact: Anssi Vähätalo
Academy of Finland

Related biology news :

1. Autism in black and white: NIH grant helps scientist study disorder in African Americans
2. Astronomer gets grant to better measure mysterious black holes
3. Black silicon can take efficiency of solar cells to new levels
4. Clamorous city blackbirds
5. Biologists unlock black box to underground world
6. Strength training improves vascular function in young black men
7. Black piranha, megapiranha have most powerful bites of fish living or extinct, finds GW researcher
8. The dark side of kerosene lamps: High black-carbon emissions
9. Study IDs kerosene lamps as big source of black carbon
10. Le Rouge et le Noir: Where the black dahlia gets its color
11. Lack of vitamin D contributes to pain in black Americans with knee osteoarthritis
Post Your Comments:
(Date:4/15/2016)... , April 15, 2016  A new partnership ... more accurate underwriting decisions in a fraction of ... competitively priced and high-value life insurance policies to ... With Force Diagnostics, rapid testing (A1C, ... data readings (blood pressure, weight, pulse, BMI, and ...
(Date:3/31/2016)...   LegacyXChange, Inc. ... LegacyXChange is excited to release its first ... be launched online site for trading 100% guaranteed authentic ... also provide potential shareholders a sense of the value ... industry that is notorious for fraud. The video is ...
(Date:3/22/2016)... 2016 According to ... for Consumer Industry by Type (Image, Motion, Pressure, ... & IT, Entertainment, Home Appliances, & Wearable ... 2022", published by MarketsandMarkets, the market for ... USD 26.76 Billion by 2022, at a ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... TORONTO , June 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - ... Ontario biotechnology company, Propellon ... the development and commercialization of a portfolio of ... cancers. Epigenetic targets such as WDR5 represent an ... contribute significantly in precision medicine for cancer patients. ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... NEW YORK , June, 23, 2016  The ... students to envision new ways to harness living systems ... of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York ... more than 130 participating students, showcased projects at MoMA,s ... included Paola Antonelli , MoMA,s senior curator of ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Apellis ... Phase 1 clinical trials of its complement C3 ... single and multiple ascending dose studies designed to ... (PD) of subcutaneous injection in healthy adult volunteers. ... (SC) either as a single dose (ranging from ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... on quality, regulatory and technical consulting, provides a free webinar on ... on July 13, 2016 at 12pm CT at no charge. , Incomplete investigations ...
Breaking Biology Technology: