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student Jen Reeve and chemist Amanda Spivak collect samples

Carbon Cycle in Action

Summer Student Fellow Jen Reeve (left) and WHOI marine chemist Amanda Spivak collect sediment samples from an experiment in Spivak’s flow-through seawater system (the white tanks behind them). With water piped in from Vineyard Sound, the system allows scientists to conduct controlled experiments in near-natural conditions of water, temperature, and light. In this study, Spivak, Reeve, and John Pohlman of the U.S. Geological Survey traced carbon as it was taken up from the atmosphere and "fixed" by a salt marsh grass, then transferred to bacteria near the roots of the grass and respired back to the atmosphere in the form of carbon dioxide and methane. (Photo by Tom Kleindinst, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)


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