(TibetanReview.net, Aug11’22) – Scientists have expressed surprise at the significant amount of carbon loss, and therefore contribution to global warming, that had resulted from the melting of one of the continental glaciers located on the Tibetan Plateau, according to the natureworldnews.com Aug 9.
Tibet is a region holding one of the world’s largest carbon sinks through one of its continental glaciers called the Laohugou Glacier No. 12, the report said. However, scientists in their new study recently discovered the unprecedented high carbon losses in the glacier located in Tibetan Plateau on the northern part of the Himalayas Mountain region, the report said.
The scientific team was stated to have arrived at their conclusion by analyzing soil bacterial community structure in the said glaciers, described to be in dry conditions with low temperature compared to their counterparts in the polar continents of the Arctic and Antarctica.
The report said the carbon loss findings were based on the depletion of carbon dioxide in the icy structure’s carbon sink, considered by the new research to be closely related to microbial activities and soil developments along the glacier forelands.
Acting as natural reservoirs of the environment-damaging greenhouse gas, carbon sinks around the world are said to have been deemed by climate scientists to accelerate climate change and global warming. Recent research suggests that ice melting could release an insurmountable content of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, accelerating the greenhouse effect and heating of the planet, the report said.
Related losses of carbon stored in ice sheets and permafrost soils have been reported in recent years in the Arctic and Antarctica, located both at Earth’s most extreme ends. And previous studies were stated to have shown that the brunt of the ongoing climate crisis had affected the northern and southern icy continent.
And now, the new discovery is stated to shed light on the warming planet’s expanding impact, which is taking a toll on areas leaning towards the equator. The invisible line around the center of the Earth includes countries and regions, including the Tibetan Plateau, where the climate is relatively warmer.
The report said the new paper published in ISME Communications (Official Journal of the International Society for Microbial Ecology) on Aug 9, highlight this emerging threat, which has been decades in the making.
This trend is also stated to be supported by various research in the past, attributing the worsening of the crisis to human-related activities such as greenhouse gas emissions and burning of fossil fuels.
The new study was led by scientists from China, including researchers at the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing.
The research team was stated to have discovered that soil organic carbon decreased from 22.21 g kg-1 to 10.77 g kg-1 (showing organ-weight-to-body-weight ratio) after receding for 50 years.
The American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) has emphasized that the process of carbon losses are hastened when humans burn fossil fuels and cut down forests, which disturbs the balance currently in place in the environment.