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August 23 2013

News in Brief: Aging European forests full to the brim with carbon


Europe’s forests are nearing their capacity to stockpile carbon, researchers warn August 18 in Nature Climate Change. Full forests mean more carbon dioxide — a greenhouse gas — in the atmosphere.

Centuries of deforestation shrunk Europe’s forests, but since the 1950s the continent’s woods have been steadily recovering. More than 60 years of growth have turned the forests into major carbon caches, or sinks: A hectare of mature forest can hold 65 metric tons of carbon.

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