Know the risks of investing in forests

Some governments are counting on planted forests as offsets for greenhouse gas emissions—a sort of climate investment. But as with any investment, it’s important to understand the risks. If a forest goes bust, researchers say, much of that stored carbon could go up in smoke.
Forests can be best deployed in the fight against climate change with a proper understanding of the risks to that forest that climate change itself imposes.

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Atomic fingerprint identifies emission sources of uranium

Uranium is not always the same: depending on whether this chemical element is released by the civil nuclear industry or as fallout from nuclear weapon tests, the ratio of the two anthropogenic, i.e. man-made, uranium isotopes 233U and 236U varies. These results were lately found by an international team grouped around physicists from the University of Vienna and provides a promising new “fingerprint” for the identification of radioactive emission sources.

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Study Maps 1790s Distribution of American Chestnut in WNY

The American chestnut tree was made functionally extinct by an invasive blight fungus in the early 1900s. Work is currently underway to develop a blight-resistant variety through breeding and genetic engineering. With the potential reintroduction of American chestnut in the Eastern United States, SUNY Geneseo assistant professor of geography Stephen Tulowiecki, mapped the historical location of chestnut using land surveyors from 1797–1799. His research appears in the journal Forest Ecology and Management.

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UK Partners With Bourbon Industry Leaders to Map White Oak Genome

Bourbon isn’t bourbon without the mighty white oak. Distillers have been aging bourbon in oak barrels as far back as the Roman Empire. Oak barrels give bourbon its unique caramel, vanilla, nutty and toasted flavors. Kentucky distillers rely especially on the white oak. But what if disease hits the species? How would industry professionals protect it? The University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment is partnering with Maker’s Mark Distillery Inc. in Loretto, Kentucky, and Independent Stave Company to research the DNA of the white oak.

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