UCI News

Drought, deforestation link fuels climate change

In the rainforests of equatorial Asia, the practice of using fire to clear forests and destroy organic soil increases substantially…

December 10, 2008

In the rainforests of equatorial Asia, the practice of using fire to clear forests and destroy organic soil increases substantially in dry years, releasing huge amounts of climate-warming carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, finds a study co-authored by James Randerson (pictured), UC Irvine climate scientist. In 2006, the climate was three times drier in the region than it was in 2000, and the carbon emissions were 30 times greater – exceeding emissions from fossil fuel burning. The study appears online the week of Monday, Dec. 8, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.