Forests Emerge as a Major Overlooked Climate Factor | Portside\...
Very interesting article - here's a taste:
The key features of this molecular wizardry are pores, called stomata, in plant leaves. A single leaf can contain more than 1 million of these specialized structures. Stomata are essentially microscopic mouths that simultaneously take in carbon dioxide from the air and let out water. As Swann notes, the gas exchange from each stoma — and indeed from each leaf — is, on its own, tiny. But with billions of stomata acting in concert, a single tree can evaporate hundreds of liters of water per day — enough to fill several bathtubs. The world’s major forests, which contain hundreds of billions of trees, can move water on almost inconceivably large scales. Antonio Nobre, a climate scientist at Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research, has estimated, for example, that the Amazon rainforest discharges around 20 trillion liters of water per day — roughly 17 percent more than even the mighty Amazon River.
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