ALN logo; link to Arid Lands Newsletter home page No. 49, May/June 2001
Linkages between Climate Change and Desertification

About the cover image

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The cover image for this issue of the Arid Lands Newsletter is a graphic produced by author Petra Tschakert listing some of the benefits of carbon sequestration in dryland soils.

As Tschakert explains, "carbon exists in various chemical forms and can be found in five distinct reservoirs or pools: the atmosphere, the oceans, the terrestrial biomass, soils, and geologic formations. While oceans and geologic formations store the highest amounts of carbon, organic carbon in soils contain roughly twice as much carbon as the atmosphere and 2.5 times as much as the biota.

"Carbon sequestration can be described as the facilitated redistribution from the air to other pools. This redistribution will reduce the rate of CO2 increase in the atmosphere, thereby mitigating global warming."

Tschakert's article on the human dimensions of carbon sequestration for this issue of ALN reports on research she is conducting in Senegal concerning the importance of considering local sociopolitical realities and environmental knowledge when planning potential carbon sequestration projects. The text quoted above, and the cover graphic for this issue, come from an unpublished brochure that Tschakert produced for the EROS Data Center.

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