Science & Tech
Study shows chemical weathering causes CO2 consumption in glacier-fed freshwater systems.
Glacier-fed rivers in Northern Canada may be consuming significant amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, according to new research by University of Alberta biologists.
The researchers examined the Lake Hazen watershed in Quttinirpaaq National Park on Ellesmere Island in Nunavut to study the impact of melting glaciers on freshwater systems.
“We observed that concentrations of carbon dioxide in the rivers were much lower than in the atmosphere, meaning that rivers are actively consuming carbon dioxide from the atmosphere,” explained Kyra St. Pierre, who conducted the study as a PhD student under the supervision of professor Vincent St. Louis.RELATED: Why even a small change in Earth’s carbon dioxide makes a big difference
The researchers attribute the difference in CO2 levels to a process called chemical weath...