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  • Transcriber: TED Translators Admin Reviewer: Rhonda Jacobs

  • Where does all the carbon we release go?

  • Carbon works in a natural cycle, present in all living things:

  • in the soil, in the oceans, in the atmosphere

  • and in rocks deep underground.

  • When plants and other living things die,

  • much of their stored carbon makes its way back to the atmosphere

  • until new plants grow and reabsorb the carbon.

  • But over millions of years,

  • some of the carbon stored in ancient trees and sea life becomes rock

  • and some becomes fossil fuels:

  • coal, oil and natural gas.

  • Natural events like volcanic eruptions

  • release some of the carbon trapped in rock.

  • And human activities, like burning fossil fuels,

  • also release some of that prehistoric carbon.

  • Today, humans release around 60 times more carbon

  • than all the volcanoes on the planet each year.

  • That overloads Earth's carbon cycle

  • and builds up in the atmosphere

  • and oceans.

  • Planting more trees will help, but trees alone can't get us to net zero.

  • There's only one sure way to stop global warming.

  • We must stop releasing this excess carbon into our air.

  • [Countdown

  • Take action on climate change at]

Transcriber: TED Translators Admin Reviewer: Rhonda Jacobs

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