July 7, 2012--New CU study shows that nitrogen compounds from cars, power plants and agriculture threaten alpine ecosystems (Summit Voice)

Nitrogen compounds from power plants, auto emissions and agriculture is starting to change the alpine vegetation in Rocky Mountain National Park in “subtle but important” ways, according to a University of Colorado Boulder study conducted at the school’s Mountain Research Station. In other regions of the world, higher amounts of nitrogen pollutants correlate with decreased biodiversity, acidified soils and dead stream organisms like trout, said research station director Professor William Bowman. “There is evidence that indicates once these changes occur, they can be difficult if not impossible to reverse. It is best to recognize these early stages before the more harmful later stages happen.”

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