Soil Microorganisms and Global Climate Change
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Type of Work8 p.
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SubjectsResearch -- Periodicals.
Humanities -- Research -- Periodicals.
Social sciences -- Research -- Periodicals.
As critical components to the carbon and nitrogen cycles, microorganisms contribute significantly to the production and consumption of greenhouse gases, including carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), and nitric oxide (NO). Although not often found in the forefront of climate change dialogues, changes such as increased temperature and atmospheric CO2 concentrations can significantly impact microbial processes in the soil and may increase or decrease microbial greenhouse gas emissions. However, the extent of these effects is unknown. In this literature review paper written for Dr. Birthe Kjellerup's Microbiology course, I look at the role that soil microorganisms play in the release of greenhouse gases and the effects that climate change may have on soil microbial processes. In doing so, I review several recent studies that examine the potential positive and negative feedback effects of soil microbes on climate change in order to contribute to a more complete understanding of global climate change.