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As inportant as carbon emissions are (extremely) they are only one side of the coin. The other is carbon sequestration. I first became concerned about global warming in the 1980's. It was immediately obvious to me that the more logging we do, not only in tropical rainforests but in the forests of the northern hemisphere, the more we are crippling our planet's ability to absorb CO2. My arguments regarding the need to cease logging old-growth forests initially fell on deaf ears, but more recently the inportance of old-growth forests as a means of carbon absorbtion and storage has enjoyed wider recognition. In the 1980's and 90's (and even today) some people (such as some politicians from Alaska) were arguing that we should clearcut old-growth and replace them with fast growing seedlings which would absorb carbon more quickly. There are two things wrong with that idea: First, when old-growth forests are logged an enormous amount of carbon is released into the atmosphere; second, even very fast growing seedlings require many years to equal the rate of carbon sequestration of the old-growth they replaced. We need to curb our reliance on fossil fuel AND cease logging old-growth forests in the northern hemisphere AND work to stop the cutting and burning of tropical rainforests. If there is any hope of putting the brakes on global warming all of these concerns (and more) must be addressed.
posted 3 years, 8 months ago
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