In a paper published in the journal Nature Communications, researchers have found that plant respiration causes more carbon emissions than was previously thought. As the climate warms, this could reduce the ability of the earth’s surface to absorb carbon emissions from fossil fuels.
MSI PI Peter Reich (Forest Resources) is a co-author on this study, as are some of the members of his MSI research group: post-doc Ethan Butler, research fellow Kirk Wythers, and research associate Ming Chen. The Reich group uses MSI for development of a new global land model based on plant functional traits. These models are used for making predictions about the climate system.
An article about the research can be found on the University’s News website: Carbon Emissions by Plant Respiration Will Have Large Impact on Climate. The paper can be read on the Nature Communications website: Implications of Improved Representations of Plant Respiration in a Changing Climate.