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Earth is (mostly) flat: Apportionment of the flux of continental sediment over millennial time scales
Jane K. Willenbring et al., Dept. of Earth and Environmental Science, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA, and National Center for Earth-Surface Dynamics, 2 Third Ave. SE, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55414, USA. Posted online 4 Jan. 2013; http://dx.doi.org/10.1130/G33918.1.
Although churning smokestacks and gasoline-burning vehicles are contributing to greenhouse gas emissions, some natural processes do the reverse by pulling carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. One of these processes is chemical weathering, which occurs when rock turns into soil. Carbon dioxide molecules and rain combine and dissolve rocks; the weathering products eventually become sequestered in the ocean. For years, geologists believed that mountains, due to their steep slopes and high rates of erosion, were large contributors to this "carbon drawdown" effect. Here, Jane K. Willenbring and colleagues suggest that mountains do not play a significant role in this activity. They analyzed published cosmogenic nuclide-derived erosion rat
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