The Worldwide Vulnerability of Forests
One of the great scientific tasks of the day is to understand how and why trees die. It may seem like a question that would have been answered many decades ago, but it was not — at least not at a detailed physiological level. Now, amid growing signs worldwide that forests are at risk as the climate changes, scientists are trying to catch up to events.
Lately, more and more evidence is pointing toward a mechanism known as hydraulic failure as the culprit in many large-scale forest die-backs.