Power of trees and soil to absorb carbon may be waning

A portion of the Amazon rainforest near Presidente Figueiredo, Amazonas state, Brazil, is shown on Feb. 3, 2019. . Dado Galdieri/ Bloomberg

All the carbon dioxide that’s accumulating in the atmosphere and heating the planet has given carbon-munching things on the ground plenty to eat. Land ecosystems have taken more CO2 out of the atmosphere in the last few decades than they did before — a “bonus” that essentially cleans up some pollution for us.

Scientists hope it lasts, but they’re increasingly worried it won’t: Stressed forests and other ecosystems may be sending us advance warnings that they are transforming under pressure.

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