Global warming makes tundra greener

Sep 15, 2005

Satellite images taken over decades show two seemingly contradictory events that indicate global warming is affecting Alaska.

Thousands of satellite images show Alaskan tundra becoming greener, while also indicating that forests stretching from Alaska's interior into northeast Canada are becoming less green, the Anchorage (Alaska) Daily News reported Thursday.

"Everyone (assumed) these forests were (also) going to continue to green, and it turns out that there may be other factors that are causing unexpected results," Scott Goetz, a senior scientist at Woods Hole Research Center in Massachusetts and one of four scientists analyzing the satellite data told the newspaper.

Alaskan snow researcher Matthew Sturm said some scientists theorize tundra bushes that grow above the snow make the surface darker, accelerating heating by up to 70 percent and, therefore, increasing tundra greening,

Fairbanks ecologist Glenn Juday said the forests are becoming less green because the trees are rapidly drying in the increasing warmth.

The study appears online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

Explore further: Chilly end for sex geckos sent into space by Russia

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Permafrost thaw exacerbates climate change

Mar 21, 2014

The climate is warming in the arctic at twice the rate of the rest of the globe creating a longer growing season and increased plant growth, which captures atmospheric carbon, and thawing permafrost, which ...

Recommended for you

Caterpillar comet poses for pictures en route to Mars

14 hours ago

Now that's pure gorgeous. As Comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring sidles towards its October 19th encounter with Mars, it's passing a trio of sumptuous deep sky objects near the south celestial pole this week. ...

Hoisting a telescope with helium

14 hours ago

Many a child has forgotten to hold tight to the string of a helium balloon only to have it escape and rise until it disappeared in the glare of the sun. Helium balloons want to rise, but launching a balloon ...

User comments : 0