“For the first time ever, scientists have made a complete map of the “wood wide web,” the underground network of bacteria and fungi that connects trees and passes nutrients from the soil to their roots, as Science Magazine explained.
“The paper, published in Nature Thursday, draws on a database of more than 1.1 million forest inventory plots including more than 28,000 species of trees in more than 70 countries.
“It’s the first time that we’ve been able to understand the world beneath our feet, but at a global scale,” report co-author Prof. Thomas Crowther of ETH Zurich told BBC News.
“The map also has important implications for climate change, BBC News explained. That’s because EM fungi, more common in temperate forests, store more carbon in the soil. AM fungi, more prevalent in the tropics, release carbon back into the atmosphere more quickly. The database found that 60 percent of trees are connected to EM fungi, but these fungi are also more vulnerable to climate change. As temperatures warm, they will be replaced with species favoring AM fungi, which will release more carbon. If greenhouse gas emissions aren’t lowered by 2100, EM fungi could decline by 10 percent, the paper’s authors concluded.”
Read the full story by Olivia Rosane….