Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Singing the seagrass carbon blues

Guitarist Gary Cox
In a previous blog I wrote about the importance of seagrasses in carbon storage (see: http://goo.gl/zcYDT ) Sea grass meadows cover between 30-60 million hectares (around 0.2% of the area of the oceans) and between 4.2 to 8.4 petagrams of organic carbon (one petagram is equal to a thousand million tonnes) are stored in the top metre of seagrass soils. A less conservative estimate suggests the figure could be as high as 19.8 petagrams. Soils on land, by comparison, cover 15 billion hectares and contain between 1500-2000 petagrams of organic carbon. A further 75.5 to 151 teragrams of carbon are stored in seagrass itself (one teragram is equal to one million tonnes). 

WTF is all that???? Well if you are baffled don't be! Gary Cox and Bill Dennison have made a great blues song about seagrasses and blue carbon. Check it out: http://goo.gl/xt9lM

The song is one of the outputs of the Australian Centre for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis workshop on “Australian seagrass habitats: Condition and threats”. Prof. Bill Dennison composed it and Kieryn Kilminster from Western Australia Department of Water was able to convince her husband, Gary Cox, to set it to music and then record. The scientific background to the song is the concept of ‘Blue Carbon‘.

About the song writer
Dr Bill Dennison is a Professor of Marine Science and Vice President for Science Applications at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES). 

About the musician
Originally from Newcastle England, Gary has played guitar for as long as he can remember. He has become a reknowned slide guitarist, often performing the Film score work of Ry Cooder !

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