• Gustavo Bernal Torres

How Elephants Help Pump Planet-Warming Carbon Underground

The hungry and rowdy herbivores are eating and trampling the vegetation that stores carbon and keeps it from heating the atmosphere.

  • You’d be forgiven for thinking that their voracious appetites and blundering steps might be disturbing and releasing the carbon stored in this ecosystem in much the same way wildfires do. But, incredibly, the way herbivores disturb the landscape actually helps it lock up more carbon in durable stores that are difficult to reach.

  • Large animals seem adept at reorganising where ecosystems store carbon, directing a larger fraction towards persistent and stable reservoirs underground. This shows how valuable intact wildlife communities can be, and should urge us to protect the few remaining herbivore-rich ecosystems on Earth, such as the African savanna.


Source: https://theconversation.com/climate-change-how-elephants-help-pump-planet-warming-carbon-underground-170415

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