Navigation Links
US rivers and streams saturated with carbon
Date:10/17/2011

New Haven, Conn. Rivers and streams in the United States are releasing enough carbon into the atmosphere to fuel 3.4 million car trips to the moon, according to Yale researchers in Nature Geoscience. Their findings could change the way scientists model the movement of carbon between land, water and the atmosphere.

"These rivers breathe a lot of carbon," said David Butman, a doctoral student and co-author of a study with Pete Raymond, professor of ecosystem ecology, both at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. "They are a source of CO2, just like we breathe CO2 and like smokestacks emit CO2, and this has never been systematically estimated from a region as large as the United States."

The researchers assert that a significant amount of carbon contained in land, which first is absorbed by plants and forests through the air, is leaking into streams and rivers and then released into the atmosphere before reaching coastal waterways.

"What we are able to show is that there is a source of atmospheric CO2 from streams and rivers, and that it is significant enough for terrestrial modelers to take note of it," said Butman.

They analyzed samples taken by the United States Geological Survey from over 4,000 rivers and streams throughout the United States, and incorporated highly detailed geospatial data to model the flux of carbon dioxide from water. This release of carbon, said Butman, is the same as a car burning 40 billion gallons of gasoline.

The paper, titled "Significant Efflux of Carbon Dioxide from Streams and Rivers in the United States," also indicates that as the climate heats up there will be more rain and snow, and that an increase in precipitation will result in even more terrestrial carbon flowing into rivers and streams and being released into the atmosphere.

"This would mean that any estimate between carbon uptake in the biosphere and carbon being released through respiration in the biosphere will be even less likely to balance and must include the carbon in streams and rivers," he said.

The researchers note in the paper that currently it is impossible to determine exactly how to include this flux in regional carbon budgets, because the influence of human activity on the release of CO2 into streams and rivers is still unknown.


'/>"/>

Contact: David DeFusco
david.defusco@yale.edu
203-436-4842
Yale University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. UC Riverside biochemists devise method for bypassing aluminum toxicity effects in plants
2. Vitamin D a key player in overall health of several body organs, says UC Riverside biochemist
3. Similar survival rates for Pacific salmon in Fraser, Columbia Rivers raises new questions
4. UC Riverside scientist to explore how vegetation affects urban heat islands
5. Salmon smolt survival similar in Columbia and Fraser rivers
6. Alpine rivers hold important clues for preserving biodiversity and coping with climate change
7. Rivers are carbon processors, not inert pipelines
8. UC Riverside rice geneticist receives high honor from US Department of Agriculture
9. Climate change setback for acidified rivers
10. Climate-change set-back for acidified rivers
11. U of Minnesota research finds most road salt is making it into the states lakes and rivers
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/3/2016)... VILNIUS, Lithuania , May 3, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... today released the MegaMatcher Automated Biometric Identification ... deployment of large-scale multi-biometric projects. MegaMatcher ABIS can ... and accuracy using any combination of fingerprint, face ... of MegaMatcher SDK and MegaMatcher ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... , April 27, 2016 ... "Global Multi-modal Biometrics Market 2016-2020"  report to their ... , The analysts forecast the global ... of 15.49% during the period 2016-2020.  ... of sectors such as the healthcare, BFSI, transportation, ...
(Date:4/14/2016)... BioCatch ™, the global ... the appointment of Eyal Goldwerger as CEO. ... Goldwerger,s leadership appointment comes at a time of significant ... of its platform at several of the world,s largest ... unique cognitive and physiological factors, is a winner of ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/18/2016)... ... ... Ryan Benton was diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) at the age of ... is a relatively common progressive genetic disorder, which causes aggressive deterioration of the muscles. ... met with the founder of the Stem Cell Institute in Panama City, ...
(Date:5/17/2016)... ... May 17, 2016 , ... ResearchDx, the premier ... based in Saudi Arabia, have formed a partnership to bring their expertise in ... Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). , The partnership addresses the specific needs ...
(Date:5/17/2016)... , May 17, 2016 ... in Basel, Switzerland announced ... inhibitor of P38 mitogen-activated protein kinase. ... Strekin will build the necessary research foundation ... in which MAP Kinases play fundamental roles. Pamapimod ...
(Date:5/17/2016)... ... May 17, 2016 , ... HOLLOWAY AMERICA, a stainless steel ... Chapter’s Tech Ed Day on Thursday, May 19 in St. Louis, Missouri. The event ... AMERICA will participate in a vendor showcase during the early afternoon of the event, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: