Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Can Genetically Altered Plants Prevent Global Warming?

Could forests of genetically altered plants help sequester billions of carbon from the atmosphere annually and stave off global warming? That's the focus of research by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Oak Ridge National Laboratory scientists.

Besides increasing the efficiency of plants' absorption of light, researchers might be able to genetically alter plants so they send more carbon into their roots--where some may be converted into soil carbon and remain out of circulation for centuries. Other possibilities include altering plants so that they can better withstand the stresses of growing on marginal land, and so that they yield improved bioenergy and food crops. Such innovations might, in combination, boost substantially the amount of carbon that vegetation naturally extracts from air, according to the authors' estimates.
Read more here.

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