种植耐旱小麦,应对气候变化 分享到
Prepping for Future With Drought-resistant Wheat 2017-09-0252290

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When people think of climate change, they often think of a future with extreme storms, bringing too much water.But scientists in Texas and California are planning for a future with a lot less.USC professor Sarah Feakins spoke to VOA by Skype.“It’s always a challenge having enough water for plants to grow, and especially in dry years,so that’s the motivation behind trying to figure out if we can develop crops that are more resistant to drought.”
想到气候变化,人们大脑中所设想的未来通常是极端暴雨天气频繁,雨水泛滥。但德克萨斯州和加利福尼亚州的科学家们认为未来有可能降雨锐减,并为此在做准备。南加利福尼亚大学(USC)教授萨拉·费金思通过Skype接受了美国之音的采访。“植物生长需要足够的水,特别是在干旱时期,一直以来这都是一大挑战,因此这也是推动我们努力研究的动力,即:弄清楚我们是否能种植出更为耐旱的作物。”
Feakins says higher temperatures mean higher rates of evaporation and that means potentially less water for everyone.So the research team began planting crops and not giving them enough water.“So here we are looking at these...these wheat varieties and they have been bred.They’ve been bred also about ten years selecting for traits that mean that they will grow well in the dry conditions of Texas.And so we’re simply saying which of these ten cultivars perform better in dry conditions,in the different sites, in the different soils, and in the different climates.”
费金思表示,温度越高,意味着蒸发速率越快,也就意味着今后平均到每个人的水量将减少。因此该研究团队开始种植作物,且并不给这些作物足够的水分。“所以我们现在看到的这些...这些小麦品种,它们是经过培育的。育种时间前后经历了约十年,选择最优良的性状才能确保小麦在德克萨斯州这样的干旱条件下保持良好生长。所以我们说的只是在这十个栽培品种中,哪一个品种能在干燥条件下、在不同的地点、不同的土壤和不同的气候中生长态势更好。”
What Feakins and her team learn is that when things get hot, or plants get deprived of water,they produce more of the natural wax that coats their leaves, the more wax on the leaves, the more water stays in the plant.
费金思和她的团队了解到,当物体变热,或者植物缺水时,植物会分泌出一种天然植物蜡,覆盖在叶面上。叶面上植物蜡越多,留存在植物内的水分就越多。
“So at the higher and drier location when we grow the same crops, ten different cultivars, all of them produce more wax.It’s a little bit like on a dry day. You know, you might put some lip balm on your lips.Plants actually put more wax on the surface of their leaves at the drier location.”
“所以,当我们在海拔更高、更干燥的地方种植相同作物的时候,这十个不同的栽培品种所分泌出的植物蜡也全部随之增多。就好比是天气比较干的时候,你可能会涂点唇膏。对于植物来说,生长在更为干燥的地区,它们也会在叶面上分泌出更多的植物蜡。”
The team was able to grow bountiful crops with 25 percent less water.And they learned one other surprising thing: The wax that coats plant leaves also holds carbon.
该团队成功种植出了大量的作物,而植物需水量则减少了百分之二十五。他们还发现了另外一件令人惊讶的事情: 植物叶面上的植物蜡也能将碳留存于其中。
“If we can double the wax in these plants, it might actually help the sequestrate carbon in the soils.”That’s an added bonus in a future that will likely have too much carbon and not enough water.
“如果我们可以使植物中的植物蜡含量增加一倍,实际上就有助于封存土壤当中的碳。”未来极有可能碳排放过多、而用水不足,这一发现绝对是一大福音。
Kevin Enochs, VOA News.
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