The Amazon will no longer be the lung of the planet, according to a study

The Amazon will no longer be the lung of the planet, according to a study

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The results of the investigation showed that in the drought year, what until now was considered the "lung of the planet" released "substantial" amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, while in the wet year it released and absorbed the same amount .

In 2011, the CO2 balance in the Amazon basin remained neutral, but in neither case did it reduce the amount of this polluting gas in the atmosphere or promote its cooling.

"The Amazon is changing as we see more very dry years and more very wet years.

If this trend continues, the region will become a source of carbon dioxide for the atmosphere that will accelerate global warming, "said John Miller, from the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado (USA), a participant in The drought conditions of 2010 caused, on the one hand, that the Amazon rainforest did not grow and that, by reducing photosynthesis, the vegetation absorbed less carbon dioxide, and, on the other, that fires and the emission of carbon dioxide.

In contrast, in 2011, rainfall did encourage the growth of vegetation, which absorbed more carbon dioxide than it emitted.

Climate change, extreme variations in rainfall and increased temperature caused an increase in the carbon dioxide emitted in the Amazon and could turn that green area of ​​the planet, which previously contributed to cooling, into an emitter of that accelerating gas of the global warming.

Developed around the Amazon River and its vast river basin, the extension of the forest reaches 6 million km². The Amazon is the place with the greatest biodiversity on the planet. An average of 400 different species of trees and plants were recorded in a single hectare of forest.

With a fifth of all the species of birds on earth, 2000 species of mammals and 2000 of fish, in addition to 2.5 million species of invertebrates, the South American tropical rainforest is considered the most precious biodiverse place in the world.

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