The Earth’s ability to absorb almost a third of anthropogenic carbon emissions through plants will halve over the next 20 years at current rates of warming. Such conclusions were reached by scientists from the USA and New Zealand. Science Advances publish the results.
Scientists at Northern Arizona University, Woodwell Climate Research Center, and the University of Waikato, New Zealand, have used data from the past 20 years from measuring instruments in every major biome around the world. As a result, the researchers determined the critical temperature mark, beyond which plants’ ability to capture and store atmospheric carbon decreases.
As a result, the researchers determined the temperature threshold, above which the absorption of carbon by plants is slowed down, and the release of carbon is accelerated. Exceeding this threshold means that the Earth will reach a critical temperature mark.
This study is the first of its kind. Previously, no one was involved in determining the temperature threshold for photosynthesis based on observational data on such a global scale. Temperature thresholds for photosynthesis have been studied only in the laboratory.