Carbon Dioxide Uptake by an Undisturbed Tropical Rain Forest in Southwest Amazonia, 1992 to 1993

Science  03 Nov 1995:
Vol. 270, Issue 5237, pp. 778-780
DOI: 10.1126/science.270.5237.778


Measurements of carbon dioxide flux over undisturbed tropical rain forest in Brazil for 55 days in the wet and dry seasons of 1992 to 1993 show that this ecosystem is a net absorber of carbon dioxide. Photosynthetic gains of carbon dioxide exceeded respiratory losses irrespective of the season. These gains cannot be attributed to measurement error, nor to loss of carbon dioxide by drainage of cold air at night. A process-based model, fitted to the data, enabled estimation of the carbon absorbed by the ecosystem over the year as 8.5 ± 2.0 moles per square meter per year.