Climate change is predicted to have many impacts, including increases in extreme weather events (with higher highs and more severe storms), rising sea levels and extreme tidal events, along with long-term change to significant natural ecosystems such as old growth forests, reefs and estuaries. All of these impacts will affect our communities in different ways. I think the potential severity of these impacts is part of why the government fudged over climate change for so long. It’s scary and the issues seem too big to deal with.
Ben Cubby, Environment Editor for the Sydney Morning Herald recently wrote about a Science study which revealed that drier conditions in many of world’s rainforests were leading to changes in leaf density and forest cover, and therefore an overall decline in the total amount of Carbon dioxide absorption.
This sort of effect places us in real danger. Trees are one of the world’s best guardians against climate change, absorbing Carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and delaying the warming effect. If forests are losing their capacity, C02 concentration could rise to unpredicted levels in the atmosphere.
I guess this brings us back to the real root of the issue – we need to reduce our emissions. We can’t be dependent on sequestration to solve the problems of a warming planet.
- Declining trees spell gloom for the planet | Sydney Morning Herald
- Drought-induced Reduction in Global Terrestrial Net Primary Production from 2000 through 2009 | Science