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Jakarta Post

Carbon absorbing tropical forests a potential gold mine

  • Adianto P. Simamora


JAKARTA   /   Wed, February 25 2009   /  10:19 am

Indonesia could reap huge financial benefits from carbon sales after international scientists discovered that trees in tropical forests can absorb greater levels of carbon than those in the other parts of the world.

The study, conducted in the African tropics, revealed tropical forest trees absorb about 18 percent of the CO2 added to the atmosphere each year from burning fossil fuels. The report’s lead author, Simon Lewis from the University of Leeds, said the rainforest would substantially buffer the rate of human-induced climate change. “It’s well known that about half of the ‘missing’ carbon is being dissolved into the oceans, and that the other half is going somewhere on land in vegetation and soils, but we were not sure precisely where. According to our study, about half the total carbon ‘land sink’ is in tropical forest trees,” Lewis said ...