Fungi pull carbon into northern forest soils | Science News


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Fungi pull carbon into northern forest soils

Organisms living on tree roots do lion’s share of sequestering carbon

1:33pm, March 28, 2013

Sequestration may be questionable fiscal policy, but it means good news in the context of carbon cycles. Vast underground networks of fungi may sequester heaps of carbon in boreal forest soil, a study suggests. By holding onto the element, the fungi do the environment a favor by preventing carbon dioxide from escaping into the atmosphere and warming the planet.

Mycorrhizal fungi, which grow underground in and on tree roots, hold 50 to 70 percent of the total carbon stored in leaf litter and soil on forested islands in Sweden, researchers report March 28 in Science. The new findings poke holes in a long-held idea that carbon in b

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