MAINTAINING THE BALANCE
- Biofuels – fuels directly from biomass which are burnt to release energy, producing carbon dioxide. Because the amount of carbon dioxide released when burnt is the same removed by photosynthesis, plants are carbon neutral so have no net increase. Plants can be grown all the time so are a renewable energy source. Examples are wood, straw and vegetable oil. They can reduce the use of limited fossil fuels, reducing carbon emissions. However they cause the destruction of forests, causing the loss of habitats and reducing biodiversity.
- Reforestation – the planting of new trees in existing forests that have been depleted – more carbon dioxide is removed from the atmosphere by photosynthesis – carbon store as carbon dioxide is converted into carbon compounds and stored as plant tissues in trees – more carbon is kept out of the air.