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Project to study carbon cycle in an arid region

Dec 01, 2008     Email"> PrintText Size

According to a recently-approved national basic research program, scientists from the CAS Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography (XIEG) will join efforts with domestic and overseas colleagues to investigate carbon cycle in salt-alkali soil in arid regions and some issues concerning global change.

The project will focus on the evolution of salt-alkali soils in the desert-oasis complex of Asia and Europe's inland arid regions, the soil-surface and underground carbon cycle processes, the exchange of carbon dioxide between land surface and atmosphere, and carbon assimilation as well as the interactions between these effects.

Combing field investigation with system simulation, XIEG scholars will carry out research from localities, belt transects, observation stations and laboratories with the help of remote sensing inversion technology, ground and under-ground monitoring, quadrat sampling, and the screening, sequencing and positioning of functional genes.

Set against the global trend of climate change, this study may shed light on the "missing carbon mystery" and contribute to a much comprehensive theory about carbon cycling in drought areas. It also aims at rendering S&T support to China's participation in international negotiations on carbon balance and mitigation. Still, the research shall lay a theoretical foundation to the nation's energy saving and emission reduction strategy.

The XIEG is going to work as principal participant of the project. Their collaborative scientists include those from Shihezi University, the CAS Institute of Botany, China Agricultural University, the University of Kassel, the University of Trier, the Catholic University of Leuven and the Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg. Therefore, the major program also gives strong impetus to Sino-EU cooperation, and boost China's role within the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

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