Lancaster University - Gas guzzlers

July 24, 2008

A £2.5 million research project into how rainforests control the composition and chemistry of the atmosphere is being led by Lancaster University. The three-year venture, funded by the Natural Environment Research Council, is based in Malaysia's Danum Valley, one of the largest areas of pristine lowland rainforest in Southeast Asia. Nick Hewitt, professor of atmospheric chemistry at Lancaster and project leader, said: "Tropical forests take up gases from the atmosphere but also give out huge amounts of other reactive chemicals - the ones you smell walking through a pine forest, for example. Our project aims to understand how forests control the composition and chemistry of the atmosphere, what their impact is on climate and how this might change in the future."

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