Forests keep earth cool: researchers say

In addition to absorbing heat-trapping carbon dioxide (CO2) gas, forests play a crucial role in keeping our planet cool, a team of international researchers found in a new research.

Until now, researchers have had a partial picture of how, when and where ecosystems influence climate locally. But, the new study addressed all three questions simultaneously and revealed that forests play a more vital role in cooling the planet’s surface than previously thought.

Kaiguang Zhao, assistant professor of environment modeling at the OSU, said, “Forests play a more important role in cooling the surface in almost all regions of the Earth than was previously thought. This really affirms the value of forest conservation and protection policies in the fight against climate change.”

Researchers reached the conclusion after analyzing a new model that combined locally gathered meteorological data with stats collected from satellites and other planet observation systems.

Furthermore, the researchers found that mechanisms that are responsible for regulating surface temperature, especially the transfer of heat and water and heat from the land to atmosphere by evapotranspiration and convection, were more vital than formerly thought.

Findings of the new study appeared in the latest edition of the journal Nature Climate Change.