Adrien Finzi, Professor of Biology and principal investigator of Finzi Laboratory of Biogeochemistry, and Marc-André Giasson, the manager of Finzi Lab, published a cover article in Ecological Monography, a journal launched by the Ecological Society of America (ESA).
Their article, “In a warming world, New England’s trees are storing more carbon”, reveals that climate change has increased the productivity and storage capacity of forests. The rate at which carbon is captured from the atmosphere at Harvard Forest nearly doubled between 1992 and 2015. The Harvard Forest is a Long-Term Ecological Research site, one of the most intensively studied forests in the world.
From the article: “the scientists attribute much of this phenomenon to the growth of 100-year-old oak trees, still vigorously rebounding from colonial-era land clearing, intensive timber harvest, and the 1938 Hurricane – and bolstered more recently by increasing temperatures and a longer growing season due to climate change. Trees have also been growing faster due to regional increases in precipitation and atmospheric carbon dioxide, while decreases in atmospheric pollutants such as ozone, sulfur, and nitrogen have reduced forest stress.”
“It is remarkable that changes in climate and atmospheric chemistry within our own lifetimes have accelerated the rate at which forests are capturing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere,” says Finzi.
Read the full paper here.