The researchers found that biocrusts currently prevent about 700
Dynamics of dust emissions into the atmosphere
The climate model showed that the globalwarming is shrinking the biocrust to such an extent that global dust emissions will increase by 15% by 2070. It is currently unknown what impact increased dust emissions could have on the planet as a whole, or which places will experience the greatest impact. Previous research has shown that dust in the atmosphere scatters solar radiation and also plays an important role in the formation of ice and clouds. Dust particles have also been found to carry nutrients long distances, and in some cases even bacteria and viruses.
Biological soil crusts (biocorks)are dry, but not sandy areas of land. Instead, the topsoil contains a community of non-vascular plants, microbes, and lichens. Together they strengthen and prevent the release of soil into the atmosphere. The researchers suggest that they are comparable to living skin, covering up to 12% of all land surfaces worldwide.
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