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Trees, bushes, and other land-based plants are sucking up more carbon dioxide without a commensurate increase in water consumption, according to new research out of Australia that scientists claimed had major implications for modeling and preparing for climate change. Jungles near the equator, piney northern forests, and other flora are absorbing 17 percent more carbon dioxide than 30 years ago, resulting in land plants acting as “sinks” for around 30 percent of the carbon in the atmosphere, said the study published July 24 in the journal Nature Communications. The oceans absorb another 25 percent. It’s no surprise that plants would gobble up excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Under natural conditions, humans and other oxygen-inhaling creatures breathe it out while plants breathe it in and exhale oxygen. But the buildup of greenhouse gases in recent decades have given plants even more to gobble up.