By Nicholas Cordero | September 13, 2018 09:52:37California is the poster child for the CO 2 effect, with an average of 4.8 billion metric tons of CO 2 emitted per year, compared to the national average of just 2.5 billion.
As the US’s CO 2 emissions increase, the Shawanok grasslands will continue to lose ground.
And for the first time, researchers are using data from a state-run forest survey to see if this trend will continue.
According to a new study from the University of California-Irvine, the future of the Shawank grasslands, which are located in the northern part of the state and provide the state’s primary source of carbon storage, depends on cutting down on the number of cattle grazing on the land.
In addition to providing the state with an income, cattle grazed on the Shawenok Plains also generate carbon dioxide.
The study found that in the years that have followed, livestock on the pasturelands have emitted as much as 18 times more CO 2 per unit of land area as compared to pasturelands that did not graze.
“When the land was not grazed, the soil carbonate level on the surface was about one and a half times greater than it was in previous years, but this difference disappeared over time,” said Mark Siegel, a co-author and professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at UCI.
The researchers found that cattle-only grazing has reduced the amount of CO2 stored on the soils of the entire area, and this is the reason why, even though there are more cattle on the ground, there is less soil carbon in the Shawinok Grasslands.
“In contrast, the amount stored on pasturelands increased significantly over the past year,” said Siegel.
“This suggests that the soil on the plateau is being more effective at capturing CO 2 and storing it for later use.”
The research team also found that livestock grazing on pasture increased the amount carbon stored on top of the soil, with cattle on top being a major driver of this.
“We have been working on this for decades and this was a very exciting study,” said co-lead author Chris J. Bailis, a postdoctoral fellow at UC-Irving and a coauthor on the paper.
“It really is a demonstration of how important cattle are to the future sustainability of the land and how important they are for the long-term health of the landscape.”
The study, published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, looked at cattle on an area of Shawank Plains that had not been grazed for decades.
“For a while, the area was pretty degraded, and cattle were grazing in the area without being able to take care of the plants,” said Bailes.
“But then we started to get more information and we found that over time, cattle actually had a big effect on carbon sequestration.
It was like they were really reducing the amount we were able to store.”
According to the team, this type of research is important to understand the effect of grazing on soil carbonation.
“When you start looking at how the carbonate levels change over time and how much of that carbonate is being sequestered by the soil at the surface, it’s really hard to get a good picture of how much the carbon dioxide that is stored is being stored at the soil,” said Dr. Corderol.
The research shows that cattle have a significant effect on how carbonate in the soils is being absorbed by the land, and it’s important to make sure that those cows are eating the right kinds of grasses to do that.
“We can’t just say that the carbon in your grass is being captured, but that it’s being transported to the soil through a process called microbial transport,” said J. Scott Gorman, a doctoral candidate in ecology and evolution at UCIrving.
“That’s the way that the bacteria in the soil move it from the grasses they’re eating to the food that’s in the food chain.
That’s what’s being lost, and that’s what we want to know.”