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K-State Today

August 17, 2016

K-State collaboration highlights urban parks for carbon sequestration

Submitted by Ari Jumpponen

Collaborative research between Kansas State University and Helsinki University that focused on urban green spaces and ecosystem services was published in the Frontiers of Ecology and Evolution.

The authors tested whether ecosystem properties depend on plant species portfolios in urban systems. Analyses of samples collected from 41 parks in Finland indicate plant functional groups, selected for urban planting, modify soils differently. Specifically, soils under evergreen trees sequester more carbon and maintain larger nitrogen stocks than those under lawns or deciduous trees.

Further, in urban park soils in cold environments above 60 degrees north of Earth's equator, the evergreen trees can store considerably more carbon and nitrogen than urban soils in warmer climates.

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