Apparently, 4 degrees spells climate doom

One has to wonder though, since CO2 residence time has been said to be anywhere from  five year to hundreds, or even thousands of years, with no solid agreement yet, how they can be so sure of themselves?

CO2_residence_times

From the University of Cambridge

4 degree rise will end vegetation ‘carbon sink’

Latest climate and biosphere modelling suggests that the length of time carbon remains in vegetation during the global carbon cycle – known as ‘residence time’ – is the key “uncertainty” in predicting how Earth’s terrestrial plant life – and consequently almost all life – will respond to higher CO2 levels and global warming, say researchers.

Carbon will spend increasingly less time in vegetation as the negative impacts of climate change take their toll through factors such as increased drought levels – with carbon rapidly released back into the atmosphere where it will continue to add to global warming.

Researchers say that extensive modelling shows a four degree temperature rise will be the threshold beyond which CO2 will start to increase more rapidly, as natural carbon ‘sinks’ of global vegetation become “saturated” and unable to sequester any more CO2 from the Earth’s atmosphere.

They call for a “change in research priorities” away from the broad-stroke production of plants and towards carbon ‘residence time’ – which is little understood – and the interaction of different kinds of vegetation in ecosystems such as carbon sinks.

Carbon sinks are natural systems that drain and store CO2 from the atmosphere, with vegetation providing many of the key sinks that help chemically balance the world – such as the Amazon rainforest and the vast, circumpolar Boreal forest.

As the world continues to warm, consequent events such as Boreal forest fires and mid-latitude droughts will release increasing amounts of carbon into the atmosphere – pushing temperatures ever higher.

Initially, higher atmospheric CO2 will encourage plant growth as more CO2 stimulates photosynthesis, say researchers. But the impact of a warmer world through drought will start to negate this natural balance until it reaches a saturation point.

The modelling shows that global warming of four degrees will result in Earth’s vegetation becoming “dominated” by negative impacts – such as ‘moisture stress’, when plant cells have too little water – on a global scale.

Carbon-filled vegetation ‘sinks’ will likely become saturated at this point, they say, flat-lining further absorption of atmospheric CO2. Without such major natural CO2 drains, atmospheric carbon will start to increase more rapidly – driving further climate change.

The researchers say that, in light of the new evidence, scientific focus must shift away from productivity outputs – the generation of biological material – and towards the “mechanistic levels” of vegetation function, such as how plant populations interact and how different types of photosyntheses will react to temperature escalation.

Particular attention needs to be paid to the varying rates of carbon ‘residence time’ across the spectrum of flora in major carbon sinks – and how this impacts the “carbon turnover”, they say.

The Cambridge research, led by Dr Andrew Friend from the University’s Department of Geography, is part of the ‘Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project’ (ISI-MIP) – a unique community-driven effort to bring research on climate change impacts to a new level, with the first wave of research published today in a special issue of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“Global vegetation contains large carbon reserves that are vulnerable to climate change, and so will determine future atmospheric CO2,” said Friend, lead author of this paper. “The impacts of climate on vegetation will affect biodiversity and ecosystem status around the world.”

“This work pulls together all the latest understanding of climate change and its impacts on global vegetation – it really captures our understanding at the global level.”

The ISI-MIP team used seven global vegetation models, including Hybrid – the model that Friend has been honing for fifteen years – and the latest IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) modelling. These were run exhaustively using supercomputers – including Cambridge’s own Darwin computer, which can easily accomplish overnight what would take a PC months – to create simulations of future scenarios:

“We use data to work out the mathematics of how the plant grows – how it photosynthesises, takes-up carbon and nitrogen, competes with other plants, and is affected by soil nutrients and water – and we do this for different vegetation types,” explained Friend.

“The whole of the land surface is understood in 2,500 km2 portions. We then input real climate data up to the present and look at what might happen every 30 minutes right up until 2099.”

While there are differences in the outcomes of some of the models, most concur that the amount of time carbon lingers in vegetation is the key issue, and that global warming of four degrees or more – currently predicted by the end of this century – marks the point at which carbon in vegetation reaches capacity.

“In heatwaves, ecosystems can emit more CO2 than they absorb from the atmosphere,” said Friend. “We saw this in the 2003 European heatwave when temperatures rose six degrees above average – and the amount of CO2 produced was sufficient to reverse the effect of four years of net ecosystem carbon sequestration.”

For Friend, this research should feed into policy: “To make policy you need to understand the impact of decisions.

“The idea here is to understand at what point the increase in global temperature starts to have serious effects across all the sectors, so that policy makers can weigh up impacts of allowing emissions to go above a certain level, and what mitigation strategies are necessary.”

###

 

The ISI-MIP team is coordinated by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany and the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Austria, and involves two-dozen research groups from eight countries.

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It’s worse than we thought.

talldave2

My area experiences a 100-degree annual temperature swing. The notion 4 degrees would have any noticeable effect on vegetation is laughable.

They put in “real” data and get what-if scenarios showing total drought with a 4C temperature rise and plants not functioning? And we are modeling “how the plant” grows? How does one get data on photosynthesis where one size fits all plants? Sounds like most of their “data” are computer output with pre-determined end points. Are the results more believable when you have a super computer in a model comparison project?
I’m just a bit skeptical.

talldave2

“We then input real climate data up to the present”
Ha.

German and Austrian taxpayers who are funding this sort of alarmist nonsense from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany and the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Austria should feel savagely aggrieved. One glance at the chart of peer reviewed literature would tell one that CO2 remains in the atmosphere for less than 10 years, not 100 years. The IPCC might as well claim 1,000 years and make a real meal of it all.

RHS

I’m with talldave2, being in Denver, we’ve experience lows last week of minus 10 and an expected high today of 60. With a swing of 70 degrees in about 7 days, it is hard to imagine we’d notice a thing with a 4 degree difference.

Bulaman

Scroll down this list and you will find a series of 4 degree papers delivered by the NZ Primary Industry ministry. Main reference 2007 IPCC
http://www.mpi.govt.nz/news-resources/publications

Its important to distinguish between the average residence time of a single molecule and the time needed to remove an accumulated stock of carbon. I wrote a brief article a few years back that might be helpful: http://www.yaleclimatemediaforum.org/2010/12/common-climate-misconceptions-atmospheric-carbon-dioxide/
Most estimates of CO2 residence time are based either on carbon cycle models or on paleoclimate estimates.

Mike86

Every 30 minutes right out there for over 50 years. Yep, that little sucker will be right accurate.

talldave2

Actually now that I read it again this makes perfect sense, they just forget a term.
“Researchers say that extensive modelling shows a four 4+/-25 degree temperature rise will be the threshold beyond which CO2 will start to increase more rapidly, as natural carbon ‘sinks’ of global vegetation become “saturated” and unable to sequester any more CO2 from the Earth’s atmosphere.”
There. Totally plausible now.

Bill Illis

Temperatures were about 3.0C to 4.0C higher in the Miocene from about 15 Mya to 20 Mya. The Carbon cycle does not appear to have been any different since CO2 was about 250 ppm to 280 ppm in the period (although there a few random estimates at 400 ppm but these are just a few random estimates amongst hundreds of others in the 250 to 280 range).

Richard111

A warmer world will create drought??? I stopped reading at that point.

Gene Selkov

From Wikipedia: “Clare is known as a liberal and progressive college.”
That figures. Science is never sufficiently progressive or liberal.

Rob Potter

Wait a minute, all the discussion of residence time has referred to CO2 in the atmosphere, not plants. In the very first sentence they have re-defined this as “the length of time carbon remains in vegetation during the global carbon cycle – known as ‘residence time’ -“. This is a bait and switch as non-one is concerned with residence time in plants, only in the atmosphere.
And even more junk when they use 4 degrees as the end of the world scenario, but the effect on plants is the supposed widespread drought that this 4 degree rise creates. Really? Such a rise in temperature is going to remove water vapour from the atmosphere? Despite the fact that such an increase would release a great deal of frozen water from glaciers and get it into liquid form where it will evaporate easier? The simplistic idea that warmer equals drier is the complete opposite of the basic CAGW meme that CO2 effect in the atmosphere is amplified by the increased water vapour which it causes.
No, pile of junk from the first to the last. No basis in physical or biological fact (as the people who have pointed out how well plants grow at a wide range of temperatures have already pointed out).

usurbrain

If that is true, then how did we have the Carboniferous period?

jai mitchell

When a single molecule of carbon dioxide containing an atom of light carbon (carbon-12) is released into the atmosphere from fossil fuel burning, it remains in the atmosphere for about 5 years. During that 5 year period it has a 50% chance of being absorbed by the ocean’s surface every 12 months. So, after 5 years, there is only a 3.5% chance that that same molecule still exists.
of course, when a carbon dioxide molecule is absorbed by a liquid at saturation (the surface of the ocean is operating at saturation) concentrations, the liquid immediately outgasses another molecule of CO2 so that it stays in partial pressure equilibrium with the atmospheric concentration.
so, yes, the individual molecule is removed, but it is replaced by another molecule, so the essential increase in the atmospheric concentration of CO2 caused by burning fossil fuel is preserved, for about 1000 years (the time it takes for the deep water ocean convection to produce a single overturn.
I hope that this has laid to rest your concerns on the issue. . .

Somehow Bruce Cockburns’ lyrics of ‘If I had a rocket launcher’ come to my mind although the context is a little different.

Resourceguy

@usurbrain
Answer: There was no one to redistribute wealth from and to back in the days of the Carboniferous. That is the only difference.

RockyRoad

There’s somehow a limit to how many trees grow, or how much grass the earth supports, or how many newspapers end up in landfills, or….
These guys are lying like a lot of other politicians I’m familiar with.

joe

“talldave2 says:
December 16, 2013 at 1:04 pm
My area experiences a 100-degree annual temperature swing. The notion 4 degrees would have any noticeable effect on vegetation is laughable.”
The answer is yes and no – many plant species have quite large geographical ranges. Some plant species have very narrow geographical ranges due to limits in ability to live at temps over or below certain levels. Most citrus trees have northern limit whereby they can survive once temps go below a certain level.
The norway/red pines common in north central minnesota and wisconsin have a very narrow range whereby the species has a very definite upper and definite lower temp limits. The species only has a north-south range of 200 or so miles. So a change of 4 degrees would be significant for that species and other species that have narrow ranges. Most all other plant species would be significantly less affected by 4 degrees

Greg

” Hybrid – the model that Friend has been honing for fifteen years – and the latest IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) modelling. …. and that global warming of four degrees or more – currently predicted by the end of this century – marks the point at which …..”
So all this is based on known to be broken models referred to by the IPCC and especially the hot end of the range that estimate 4C by 2100.
We know we’re wrong but we’ll just keep on repeating it long enough maybe people won’t notice the snow drifts in the middle east and will start to believe us. Got to give credit for trying.
“The ISI-MIP team is coordinated by the Potsdam Institute “. AH! right , now I see. Ramsdorf behind this by any chance? Sounds like his kind of fairy tale numbers.

a jones

jai mitchell says:
December 16, 2013 at 1:39 pm
Balderdash
Kindest Regards

Rob Dawg

““This work pulls together all the latest understanding of climate change and its impacts on global vegetation – it really captures our understanding at the global level.””
Back tested that did ya? I am satisfied. Now that everything is understood you won’t be needing any more funding. Right? Right?

davidmhoffer

Rob Potter says:
December 16, 2013 at 1:29 pm
Wait a minute, all the discussion of residence time has referred to CO2 in the atmosphere, not plants. In the very first sentence they have re-defined this as “the length of time carbon remains in vegetation during the global carbon cycle – known as ‘residence time’ -”. This is a bait and switch
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Yeah, I noticed that too. Plus, their whole analysis depends on uptake of CO2 by the biosphere becoming saturated due to a “moisture deficit) in the mid latitudes. Well, most of the biosphere actually lives in the oceans, which in turn comprise 2/3 of the earth surface. So, “mid latitudes” is a small portion of 1/4 of the earth’s surface… in other words, diddly squat. Not to mention that a “moisture deficit” actually increases the rate at which energy is lost to space as water vapour accounts for 80+ % of the greenhouse effect in the first place, so increased aridity actually = global cooling. If you’ve ever been in a desert at night, it cools off very fast because there is no water vapour and so once the sun goes down it gets cold fast. Then there’s the problem of assuming a sensitivity that is way higher than actual evidence supports and extrapolating from what amounts to a fiction with no basis in reality. I didn’t read the paper, but expect they also didn’t factor in positive feedback from increased biosphere activity in places currently frozen (ie they cannot claim both that the ice caps will melt AND that nothing will grow there because it is too cold).
This paper is so sad that mocking it gives it more credibility than it deserves.

Greg

jai Mitchel: says: “.. of course, when a carbon dioxide molecule is absorbed by a liquid at saturation (the surface of the ocean is operating at saturation) concentrations, the liquid immediately outgasses another molecule of CO2 so that it stays in partial pressure equilibrium with the atmospheric concentration.”
Garbage, very little of the ocean is in equilibrium with the atmophere, where did you get that from? Oh, you just made it up because it sounded right. Sorry.
http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=715

George

Why don’t we take a close look at what vegetation and biodiversity were like the last time it was 4 degrees Celsius warmer than now? Say, in the early Miocene? Were things really as bad as these guys forecast?

Greg

Rob Potter says:
Wait a minute, all the discussion of residence time has referred to CO2 in the atmosphere, not plants. In the very first sentence they have re-defined this as “the length of time carbon remains in vegetation during the global carbon cycle – known as ‘residence time’ -”. This is a bait and switch as non-one is concerned with residence time in plants, only in the atmosphere.
====
There’s no reason why you can’t define a “residence time” for the terrestrial reservoir but it does sound like an almost deliberate attempt to reframe the question.
In essense I think you’re right. The ocean is the major sink/source and the volume of exchange with the oceans is far greater than that with land based biosphere. While attempts to better understand any part of the system should be helpful in building the overall picture, it’s the ocean interaction that will be determinant.

I’m with Dietze, Motl and Engelbeen,

jai mitchell

Greg:
Garbage, very little of the ocean is in equilibrium with the atmophere, where did you get that from? Oh, you just made it up because it sounded right. Sorry.
I actually said, the surface of the ocean is operating at saturation
the surface of the ocean is, indeed, “very little of the ocean” as you say.
equilibrium concentration at the surface of the ocean is based on the solubility of CO2 in that particular location, at a given temperature and atmospheric concentration, the solubility of CO2 in the surface layer will indeed be at saturation.
You are confusing the terms “solubility” (from your link) with “saturation”, these are two very different terms.
http://www.rocketscientistsjournal.com/2006/10/_res/CO2-06.jpg

DHR

So the Amazon is already saturated and Missouri is not?
The theory of plant residence time would seem to be eminently testable. Some greenhouses, some CO2, temperature controllers, and plants. And see what happens, every 30 minutes if you want. It’l be right there in front of you.
Is Potsdam going to pay for that, or perhaps a computer model is cheaper and more moldable to ones’ expectations.

Duster

Zeke Hausfather says:
December 16, 2013 at 1:12 pm …

That might be more impressive if it were supported by any evidence at all from historical geology. It is not. No model that does not handle the Phanerozoic changes can seen as serious in any fashion other than as a bad example. No evidence of catastrophic effects due to CO2 changes exists on earth. The only evidence of effects on plant productivity in historical geological data show that profound increases in atmospheric CO2 accompany increased biological productivity. It is vastly more likely that halving atmospheric CO2 would be more damaging than a doubling. Available empirical evidence indicates that a drop to 180 ppm would be very seriously damaging for agricultural and for natural productivity. Gardening advice generally recommends CO2 enrichment of anywhere from double current “natural” levels to as much as 1,500 ppm in green houses. Roses for example like high levels of CO2 >1,000 ppm.

Richard M

It isn’t going to warm anywhere near 4° which makes the entire paper a big s0-what. We will likely experience two cool PDOs this century and a solar minimum of some unknown degree. Chances are it won’t be any warmer in 2100 then it is right now, and it could be cooler.
The long term warming impact of the MOC is likely to end during this century given the cycle length over the last 2000 years. At that point the planet begins slowly cooling.

tom0mason

I am very saddened to know that good money was wasted on this speculation.
Science, what science?

Bruce Hall

Meanwhile, in Michigan, our lake froze much earlier than usual as temperatures have been -10 to -20 degrees below average this month. That, of course, is consistent with *global warming*. It is also consistent with releasing more CO2 into the atmosphere which will lead to more cold weather consistent with *climate change*. But we are doing our part by increasing the number of land-based wind turbines that kill off predatory birds and bats while causing psychological problems in humans. We’d use solar power, but the Great Lakes keeps this region pretty cloudy for during the winter and when the sun shines it is only for 10 hours a day. Regardless, we are looking forward to helping the third world countries and friends of our president by paying large carbon taxes. That about covers it.

Henry Clark

Warming a mostly water covered object (Earth) increases precipitation, with more evaporated from the oceans onto land, for not land alone warms.
That happened during the warm lush age of the dinosaurs and, to a lesser degree, when measured precipitation slightly increased by ~ 2% (not decreased) over the 20th century.
In contrast, during the cold last glacial maximum, there was “there was much less closed forest and more desert than at present,” for deserts are made by lack of precipitation: an area can even be cold but yet a desert if arid enough. http://www.esd.ornl.gov/projects/qen/nerc.html
The water usage efficiency of plants also goes up enormously with elevated CO2.
The above is aside from how, in reality, there is no coming 4 degree warming anyway, rather incoming cooling.

RoHa

“4 degrees spells climate doom”
What doesn’t?

Just watched a good portion of the Discovery Channel (Canada/UK) production “Earth from Space”. It was actually pleasantly short on the doom being perpetuated by the human species in the planet – in favour of describing the many complex mechanisms that have created climate stability – and thus protected life – for several billion years.
What struck me most from the show relative to the “4 degrees of doom” post was the dominant role of plankton (called the “most important plant life on this planet”) in the carbon cycle – and thus how silly it is to think that the follies of the human species could ever have any significant ffect. Plankton are attributed with a full 50% of the O2 regeneration of the planet. Thus it follows that the life and death of this diminutive species has a similarly large role in locking up carbon. The Discovery Channel folks say the deposits of dead plankton that rain down on the ocean floor are up to a kilometre thick.
The Cambridge study focuses on land and drought with nary a mention of the role of the remaining 70% of the planet (by area – volume notwithstanding). Oops.
No droughts to worry about under water. And warmer water ought to create real “plankton party?”
Nominees for the STOTY award? (Siloed Thinking Of The Year)
PS. Despite its obligatory reference in the final minutes of the show to the impact of man – including the production of “gases” (anthropogenic CO2 was not specifically identified) – I don’t see how anyone could watch “Earth from Space” and think we are not but a bit player in the carbon equation. Note the show was reproduced by PBS for its Nova series – available on YouTube – sorry I don’t know how to insert the link.

Bart

Zeke Hausfather says:
December 16, 2013 at 1:12 pm
Your link simply propagates the myth that CO2 in the atmosphere just happens to have been finely balanced for centuries with no apparent mechanism enforcing that balance, as though it were just an accident of nature. This is a narrative, an assertion of how you would like to imagine things to be, and which may sound nice and pleasant to you and some others, but it is not proven, is in fact highly unlikely on its face, and is bereft of physical insight.
Nature just does not work that way. If there are no powerful forces opposing one another, then an equilibrium does not become established until a fundamental limit has been reached. At best, in such a situation, a natural system will wander randomly and far afield in search of a boundary, like the particles suspended in a fluid which undergo Brownian motion. This hypothesis, according to which a delicate balance has been established for an extended time interval until upset by a tiny external forcing, is fundamentally self-contradictory.

Sal Minella

I predict that a four degree rise will increase rainfall and vegetation density. Result will be an increase in atmospheric Oxygen causing animal life to increase in size and longevity. Over time, larger populations of larger animals will increase atmospheric CO2 further increasing vegetation density, etc., etc., and so on.
Then, something Milankovitchian will happen causing the climate to turn sharply colder. Many animal species will die along with a large percentage of the vegetation. That’s what my models show.

DesertYote

“Earth’s terrestrial plant life – and consequently almost all life”
I stopped reading after this.

jimmi_the_dalek

I am pretty certain that different definitions of ‘residence time’ are being mixed up here (again).
What is being talked about – the time a given CO2 molecule stays in the atmosphere before being exchanged with one from the ocean and/or biosphere? Or the time that would be required to reach a new equilibrium if we stopped emitting CO2 now?

otsar

As I understand the paper, it is about terrestrial and not aquatic plant carbon dioxide consumtion. I guess aquatic autotrophs don’t count. Last time I took an oceanography class it was mentioned that 80% of the oxygen we breathe comes from aquatic autotrophs. I would presume that this means that at least 80% of the CO2 is consumed by aquatic autotrophs.

Remember a couple of doomsdays ago when R-12 for the car was 68 cents per pound and we banned it to “save the ozone hole” so they could jack up the price to $8/12oz of R-134a? Here’s today’s NASA findings:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/12/13/hole-ozone-layer-recovery-2070_n_4441460.html?utm_hp_ref=green
Pay particular attention to the actual wording that says they cannot connect the two since.
Isn’t this article and its hypothetical baloney load politically similar to that old baloney load?
Would somebody PLEASE kidnap the lot and take them to a HOTHOUSE so they can see what the plants think of HOT!

jai mitchell

Jimmi,
The caption under the image states that human caused CO2 only stays in the atmosphere about 5 years. While this is technically true, it doesn’t mean that the concentration of CO2 goes down after 5 years (as many on this site have suggested). The CO2 that goes into the surface of the ocean indeed switches out with another CO2 molecule that was previously in the water under saturation.

james griffin

At least one of the previous five Holocene’s had temperatures 5C higher than today….as soon as one sees the words “climate models” we know it is a waste of time

rogerknights

The ISI-MIP team is coordinated by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany and the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Austria, and involves two-dozen research groups from eight countries.

Good, so we can blacklist the whole bunch when their forecast falls flat.

William Astley

In reply to:
Socket puppet & Hollywood wan bee good doers.
Rusty Shackleford says:
December 16, 2013 at 8:02 am
William,
Name calling does not change the fact the planet resists (negative feedback) rather amplifies (positive feedback) forcing changes by an increase or decrease of planetary clouds in the tropics.
Dr. Chisty’s graph presented at the congressional investigation, under oath (i.e. he did not make it up), supports that assertion, as does Lindzen and Choi’s analysis of top of the atmosphere radiation Vs short term surface ocean temperature changes, supports the assertion that the planet resists rather than amplifies forcing changes.
http://bobtisdale.files.wordpress.com/2013/12/11-christy-model-data.png
http://www-eaps.mit.edu/faculty/lindzen/236-Lindzen-Choi-2011.pdf
On the Observational Determination of Climate Sensitivity and Its Implications
Richard S. Lindzen1 and Yong-Sang Choi2
If the planet resists rather than amplifies forcing changes, there is no extreme AGW crisis to solve. You guys have however created a crisis that will destroy the economic foundation of the US and the EU, if you are not stopped. ‘Green’ energy is a very, very, expensive scam that makes our countries less and less able to compete. The path we are on will lead to Spanish syndrome, massive unemployment and the gutting of entitlements.
Read the following books ‘Power Hunger: The Myths of “Green” Energy and the Real Fuels of the Future’, by Robert Bryce (CH4 as a bridge to nuclear) and ‘Super Fuel, Thorium, The Green Energy Source for the Future’, by Richard Martin. Ignoring facts does not change facts.
It should be noted that James Hansen and friends who have read and thought about this issue in addition to name call are advocating a massive move to nuclear power. We currently have a dysfunctional government, a group of fanatics who are absolutely incorrect about AGW, and a large group of special interesting leaches feeding of the mistakes of our government policies. You guys are a dangerous distraction from the real problems our countries face.

RicHard.

4 degrees is meaningless in agriculture. Each country has its own indiginous plants that are well able to withstand this increase. It is when you plant non indiginous plants that there could be a problem.
Africa has idiginous and nutritious plants well able to withstand a 4 degrees increase. Scarcity of water is always a problem but non idiginous plants cause havoc in this area in hot countries.
A lovely look at nutritious plants well able to withstand droughts.
[PDF]Africa’s Indigenous Crops – Worldwatch Institute
http://www.worldwatch.org/system/files/NtP-Africa‘s-Indigenous-Crops.pdf
Like many other crops indigenous to Africa, the eggplant is easy to grow and high yielding, … meet the rising demand for crops across the African continent.

RicHard.

I get so excited about African plants thought I would give you a little taster,
Beyond its uses as a staple food, parts of the baobab tree such as its bark are used as cooking fuel for stoves, kilns for firing pottery, and ovens. In dry areas, the extremely large, hollow stem holds a valuable water resource, as it can store as much as 10,000 liters of water for many months. Local populations often build shelters and keep livestock inside baobab trunks.

RicHard.

Not sure whst the anwser is for the US , back to prarie grass, well able to withstand droughts and grazing Bison. More burgers!!!