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Interlude A
Unit 2:
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Interlude B
Unit 3:
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Interlude C
Unit 4:
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Interlude E
Unit 6:
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Interlude G

Grasslands Can Act as Carbon Sinks
(Nature, 1-11-01)

Scientists have long known that forests sometimes act as "carbon sinks," absorbing more of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide than they release. Now, a team of researchers has identified a mechanism through which grasslands appear to act in the same way.

» Read the full article

Active Reading Questions

  1. fiogf49gjkf0d
    Grasslands are an example of one of the earth’s _________.
    a) biospheres.
    b) biomes.
    c) climates.
    d) convection cells.
  2. fiogf49gjkf0d
    According to the article, grasslands may serve as carbon sinks or sites where excess atmospheric carbon is sequestered in the plant material. A carbon sink occurs when
    a) carbon dioxide produced exceeds carbon dioxide taken up by plants.
    b) carbon dioxide produced is less than carbon dioxide taken up by plants.
    c) there is more carbon dioxide available than oxygen.
    d) there is more oxygen available than carbon dioxide.
  3. fiogf49gjkf0d
    Understanding that grasslands can serve as carbon sinks may help shape future environmental policy. Most existing grasslands have been converted to farmland or housing, thus depleting the native grasslands around the world. How might you address this issue if you were a member of the U.S. Congress?
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