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Landform partitioning and estimates of deep storage of soil organic matter in Zackenberg, Greenland
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography.
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Number of Authors: 52018 (English)In: The Cryosphere, ISSN 1994-0416, E-ISSN 1994-0424, Vol. 12, no 5, p. 1735-1744Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Soils in the northern high latitudes are a key component in the global carbon cycle, with potential feedback on climate. This study aims to improve the previous soil organic carbon (SOC) and total nitrogen (TN) storage estimates for the Zackenberg area (NE Greenland) that were based on a land cover classification (LCC) approach, by using geomorphological upscaling. In addition, novel organic carbon (OC) estimates for deeper alluvial and deltaic deposits (down to 300 cm depth) are presented. We hypothesise that land-forms will better represent the long-term slope and depositional processes that result in deep SOC burial in this type of mountain permafrost environments. The updated mean SOC storage for the 0-100 cm soil depth is 4.8 kg Cm-2, which is 42% lower than the previous estimate of 8.3 kg Cm-2 based on land cover upscaling. Similarly, the mean soil TN storage in the 0-100 cm depth decreased with 44% from 0.50 kg (+/- 0.1 CI) to 0.28 (+/- 0.1 CI) kg TN m(-2). We ascribe the differences to a previous areal overestimate of SOC- and TN-rich vegetated land cover classes. The landform-based approach more correctly constrains the depositional areas in alluvial fans and deltas with high SOC and TN storage. These are also areas of deep carbon storage with an additional 2.4 kg Cm-2 in the 100-300 cm depth interval. This research emphasises the need to consider geomorphology when assessing SOC pools in mountain permafrost landscapes.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 12, no 5, p. 1735-1744
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Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
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URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-157729DOI: 10.5194/tc-12-1735-2018ISI: 000433005400001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-157729DiVA, id: diva2:1236479
Available from: 2018-08-02 Created: 2018-08-02 Last updated: 2018-08-02Bibliographically approved

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Palmtag, JuriCable, StefanieHugelius, GustafKuhry, Peter
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