酒瓶塞可以帮助对抗全球变暖 分享到
How Wine Corks Help Fight Global Warming 2018-10-1683646




A photosynthesis plant uses the energy in sunlight to absorb carbon dioxide from the air and combine it with water to create sugars to use for growth. In the process, they release oxygen and store the carbon in their tissues including the roots. It’s gradually released as the plants grow and when they die and decay, but some carbon stays in the soil. This inspired scientists from the Salk Institute in San Diego California to program plans to make more stable forms of carbon which would be stored long-term deep in the soil.
光合作用植物利用阳光中的能量从空气中吸收二氧化碳,并将其与水结合生成糖分用于生长。在这个过程中,它们会释放氧气,并将碳储存在组织中,包括其根部。随着植物的生长、死亡以及腐烂,碳会逐渐释放,但有些碳会留在土壤中。 这激发了加州圣迭戈索尔克生物研究所的科学家们,他们由此计划制造出更稳定的碳,使其可以长期储存在土壤深处。
When I was a child growing up in western Pennsylvania, I was an avid gardener. My grandmother and great-grandmother taught me to have a vegetable garden every summer. And then that progressed into an extensive composting regime. And I’m 54 years old, so this is this is back in the 70s. And I do remember from my childhood trying to put cork because I knew it was a natural substance. So when my parents or friends of theirs had wine and they...they pulled the cork out, I knew it was a natural substance. I thought it was just like wood, but a slightly different form. I put it in my compost heaps and it never decayed. And so that kind of came back to me when I started to think about plants.
Cork contains a high level of suberin, a waterproof waxy substance found in most plants that prevents roots from decomposing. It’s this quality that scientists hope to use to keep carbon buried underground and well to save the world.
That enriches the soil, so it turns out that by leaving some plant carbon behind in the soil, the plants actually grow better. So, an ecosystem or a farmer’s field, etc. that has a higher carbon content in the soil, it’s a healthier environment. Today, scientists are working to create mechanisms that will allow plants to produce more suberin.
Salk Institute Labs imitates various climate zones to find a perfect plan for each region.This process takes time and energy. Recently the Institute purchased a robot that in one day does more than a team of scientists can accomplish in five weeks. They’re using conventional breeding to create crops that are carbon storage powerhouses, but may one day use genetic engineering. In our project, we basically are very open, so we use the natural variation, the natural genetic variation that exists in natural strains to increase the amounts of suberin. So we are not necessarily in need to use genetic engineering.
However, if we were to use genetic engineering, it would be much faster. I think it will be a very interesting question in the future whether the pace of climate change can wait for traditional breeding. In the next five years, the scientists planned to have an array of plans for different regions that would help lower level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. The effect wouldn’t be felt for another decade or two, but the scientists say they hope by then humanity will have figured out how to slow down climate change.
Jennie Duelo for VOA News San Diego California