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Grasses vie for carbon sink crown


You might have heard of seaweed – sweet, sweet seaweed – being suggested as a potential carbon sink. Now it could be about to duke it out with wheat and sorghum as the would-be king of plant-based carbon eating.

According to it goes like this:

Grasses such as wheat and sorghum can store large amounts of carbon in microscopic balls of silica, called phytoliths, that form around a plant’s cells as they draw the mineral from the soil, a report in the latest issue of New Scientist says.

When a plant dies, the phytoliths, or plantstones, enter the soil and lock in the carbon for potentially thousands of years, said the Southern Cross University agricultural scientists Leigh Sullivan and Jeff Parr. The next step would be to see if plants that best store carbon in plantstones have higher or lower crop yields and quality.

1 Comment

  • Jamie
    Posted January 11, 2008 at 12:28 am

    The electricity use of Maglevs is pretty high unfortunately, and at the moment the best thing we can do to reduce the climate impact of our travel is to slow down: slower trains will generally have a lower per passenger km CO2 output than Maglevs and unless we *really* ramp up renewables then there’s other things we’re going to want to use our electricity for. For more low carbon travel thoughts, have a read of my blog:

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