Squirrels are 'climate culprit' 松鼠是"氣候變化的罪魁禍首"

媒體英語會帶大家一起學習 BBC 撰稿人在報道世界大事時常用到的單詞和短語。

Image caption Grey squirrels like this one are common in Europe and America


北極地松鼠在氣候變化過程中所起的作用比原先想像的要大。科學家們發現北極地松鼠正在加速永凍層內的溫室氣體的排放。位於極地的永凍層聚集了巨大容量的碳。以下是 BBC 記者 Rececca Morelle的報道:

Arctic ground squirrels might not look like climate villains - they're small, fluffy and rather cute. But this research suggests they're speeding up the release of greenhouse gases from the Arctic permafrost, a vast frozen area that contains twice as much carbon as the atmosphere.

Research in Siberia has found that the squirrels' underground burrows are warming frozen soil and they're also disturbing vegetation. The result is that they're unlocking more greenhouse gas from the ground than had previously been accounted for.

Researchers are already worried that warmer temperatures will cause the permafrost to thaw. But now it seems the impact of wildlife should also be considered.