Gas emissions

Published: Thursday 31 July 1997

According to Canadian researchers, flooded wetlands emit greenhouse gases in large quantities. Worse, their studies have confirmed that the creation of reservoirs in wetlands unleash poisons into the human food supply. Several studies of reservoirs have suggested that they release large quantities of carbon dioxide and methane. But in the existing reservoirs, it has been impossible to quantify the problem because no one knew as to how much gas the land emitted before the reservoir was built. Carol Kelly of the University of Manitoba and her colleagues created an experimental 'reservoir' and studied the way the gases are exchanged between the atmosphere and a 17 ha patch of partly forested bog in northern Ontario. Her report reveals that the wetland released 130 gm of carbon dioxide and methane. The greenhouse gas emissions far exceed those from natural lakes. The sources of these gases were peat, rotting sphagnum moss, submerged shrubs and trees ( New Scientist , Vol 154, No 2084).

Subscribe to Daily Newsletter :

Comments are moderated and will be published only after the site moderator’s approval. Please use a genuine email ID and provide your name. Selected comments may also be used in the ‘Letters’ section of the Down To Earth print edition.