The Secret Life Of Trees: Researchers Probe Methane In Washington’s Coastal Forest

Courtney Flatt, Sightline March 10, 2021

Trees have a little secret you might not know about. Yes, they produce oxygen. Yes, they take in carbon dioxide, a heat-trapping greenhouse gas. But, they also emit methane.

Methane is a greenhouse gas that can be significantly more potent than carbon dioxide.

“Just about every tree we measured had elevated amounts of methane in it. And that was consistent across the Northwest with a variety of different species,” says Nick Ward, a scientist with Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.


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