The European research infrastructure ICOS, of which CzechGlobe is also a founding member, published the second issue of the European Greenhouse Gas Bulletin – FLUXES in July 2023.
The publication aims to alert policy makers, political advisors and journalists to current climate-related issues.
The main message of this issue is a warning to European climatologists against overconfidence in nature’s ability to save us from climate change. ICOS General Director Werner Kutsch draws attention to the vulnerability of terrestrial and oceanic ecosystems as carbon sinks. Their ability to absorb and store carbon is decreasing due to human activity and climate change.
The publication deals in detail with forest ecosystems in the EU, whose capacity to store carbon has decreased by a third over the last decade. Some forests have even become a source of carbon. According to Manuel Acosta of CzechGlobe, in addition to logging and the natural aging of forests, climate change and the associated greater risks of drought periods, fires, and pests also contribute to this.
The text also notes the potential of oceans and coastal ecosystems to sequester carbon, and a significant chapter is devoted to greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture which cannot be eliminated by phasing out fossil fuels. Carbon farming is mentioned in this context.
A Carbon Removal Certification System is currently being discussed by the European Parliament, which should encourage the use of innovative solutions for capturing, recycling and storing CO2 by farmers, foresters and industries. It is the data and knowledge of ICOS scientists that offer great potential to be used in the development of the carbon uptake and storage monitoring system required for carbon removal certification.
Download the FLUXES bulletin.