If the greenhouse gas gobbling Jatoba tree, which grows in rainforests, could be planted in cold climates, it would help compensate for the CO2 given off by auto and power plant emissions. Swedish scientists now think they may be able to alter trees so they can adapt to new environments by manipulating the genes that tell them to change color and start dropping their leaves in the fall. This is one of the main reasons they’re able to survive through the winter. Scientists aren’t sure what triggers this change, although it may be shortened hours of daylight.

Stefan Jansson says, “The aim of this research is to understand how it all works, and to do this we are now studying when all of these genes are turned on and off during the autumn?In the future, it should be possible to apply genetic technology to the creation of trees that have another inner calendar than the ‘natural’ one. But whether we can modify the genes of peach trees so they can survive in [Sweden] is another matter entirely.”

If global warming causes the ocean current that now warms the U.K. and Europe to drop down, this research could be vitally important to their economies.

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