Study: Fallen leaves found less polluting

Mar 21, 2007

U.S. government scientists say freshly fallen leaves contribute less to the levels of carbon in mineral soil than was previously believed.

A team led by Mats Froberg and Paul Hanson at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory used the local release of carbon-14 to track dissolved organic carbon movement from canopy leaves, or litter, sources.

The scientists said they were able to quantify the proportion of dissolved organic carbon that originated from decomposing fresh litter. Dissolved organic carbon has an important role in the soil carbon cycle, since it represents a key transport pathway for carbon in solution to move from forest floor carbon sources to the mineral soil, where it can contribute to the buildup of carbon stocks.

The research, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science, is said to provide another step toward predicting the fate of terrestrial carbon.

The study appears in the March-April issue of Soil Science Society of America Journal.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

Explore further: Climate censorship gains steam in red states

Related Stories

More food, low pollution effort gains traction

Apr 09, 2015

Nitrogen fertilizers make it possible to feed more people in the world than ever before. However, too much of it can also harm the environment. Professor Eric Davidson, director of the University of Maryland ...

Recommended for you

China's struggle for water security

4 hours ago

Way back in 1999, before he became China's prime minister, Wen Jiabao warned that water scarcity posed one of the greatest threats to the "survival of the nation".

Canada revises upward CO2 emission data since 1990

5 hours ago

Canada revised its greenhouse gas emission data from 1990 to 2013 in a report Friday, showing it had higher carbon dioxide discharges each year, and a doubling of emissions from its oil sands.

Climate censorship gains steam in red states

18 hours ago

While plenty of people found humor in the recent news that officials in Florida and Wisconsin are censoring state workers' ability to talk about, much less work on, climate change, other states are not necessarily laughing. ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.