16 June 2010

Whales can save us from catastrophic global warming

A round of applause for a brilliant funding coup by researchers at Flinders University in South Australia. In an irresistible twofer combining 'save the whales' with AGW, as reported in the Mail, they have found that sperm whales more than offset their 'carbon emissions', or breathing as it's more commonly known.
'They eat their diet, mainly squid, in the deep ocean, and defecate in the upper waters where phytoplankton can grow, having access to sunlight,' marine biologist Trish Lavery said. 'Sperm whale poo is rich in iron, which stimulates phytoplankton to grow and trap carbon. When the phytoplankton die, the trapped carbon sinks to the deep ocean.'
Lavery added that without whaling there may have been 120,000 sperm whales in the Southern Ocean and around two million tonnes of carbon would have been removed from the atmosphere each year through this process.

So now you know - eat calamari, crap in the ocean and you'll be doing your bit to atone for breathing.

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