Feature Reports

Forests and Oceans: Natural Carbon Sinks

Forêts et océans : les puits naturels de carbone
The Earth is humankind's best ally in reducing CO2 emissions. © THINKSTOCK

Earth is humankind's best ally in reducing the concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere. But to sustain the planet's carbon absorption capacity, we need to keep deforestation under control and protect the oceans from multiple aggressions.

Forêts et océans : un rôle irremplaçable

The Earth naturally captures more than half of the CO2See Carbon Dioxid released into the atmosphere, with its forests and oceans playing a critical role as carbon sinks. However, this role is being compromised by deforestation and ocean acidification – two issues that are squarely on the agenda for climate change negotiations.

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Comment maîtriser la déforestation ?

While deforestation is still a necessity in many of the world's poorest regions due to the need for farmland and energy resources, it reduces the carbon capture capacity of plants and soil and makes it harder to fight against climate change. A global governance system is beginning to emerge to deal with deforestation.

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L'acidification des océans

The amount of CO2See Carbon Dioxid absorbed by the world's oceans and seas has increased over the decades. This would be good news if the process didn't also mean a galloping rise in seawater acidity that is threatening marine biodiversityRefers to the natural diversity of living organisms. It can be measured through the study of species, genes and ecosystems. and, in the long term, the global economy.  Humans have only indirect means at their disposal to rectify this situation.

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