PHOTOS: Ten Environmental Losses of 2009

PHOTOS: Ten Environmental Losses of 2009
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Oceans Begin to Lose Appetite for Carbon

As the world's greenhouse gas emissions continued to rise this year and further disrupt the global climate, the oceans appeared to lose some of their appetite to absorb carbon dioxide, a key gas implicated in the planet's warming, according to a November study.

(Read more about the effects of ocean acidification.)

The study spanned the years between 2000 and 2007. In that time the amount of carbon from human activity absorbed by the oceans fell from 27 to 24 percent. Why the oceans are less hungry for carbon is unclear, but it may be related to the acidification of the oceans due to too much carbon, according to the study, led by Samar Khatiwala, an oceanographer at Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.
—Photograph by Irwin Fedriansyah, AP
 
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