Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

Estuaries Sock Away Carbon from the Air

Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

Estuaries Sock Away Carbon from the Air

Article excerpt

AUSTRALIAN estuaries may be more important than previously thought in capturing and storing carbon from the atmosphere, according to new research from Southern Cross University's Centre for Coastal Biogeochemistry Research.

Dr Damien Maher and centre director Professor Bradley Eyre published a paper in Global Biogeochemical Cycles that measured carbon flows and CO2 fluxes in three temperate Australian estuaries.

aKnowing carbon fluxes from these ecosystems is important in understanding what will happen in the future as far as atmospheric CO2 concentrations are concerned,a Dr Maher said.

aGlobal warming and other climate change issues like ocean acidification make carbon cycling an important topic to study.a

In order to get a range of different conditions, the study examined carbon fluxes in three estuaries along the mid New South Wales coast. Hastings River near Port Macquarie was the northernmost estuary, followed by Camden Haven south of Port Macquarie. The third estuary was Wallis Lake, 156km north of Newcastle.

aThese estuaries were selected because they represent a natural gradient in estuarine types in terms of geomorphology, river flow and habitat coverage,a Dr Maher said. …

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