Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Elemental and isotopic carbon and nitrogen records of organic matter accumulation in a Holocene permafrost peat sequence in the East European Russian Arctic
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Geological Sciences.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology.
Show others and affiliations
2012 (English)In: Journal of Quaternary Science, ISSN 0267-8179, E-ISSN 1099-1417, Vol. 27, no 6, 545-552 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A peat deposit from the East European Russian Arctic, spanning nearly 10 000 years, was investigated to study soil organic matter degradation using analyses of bulk elemental and stable isotopic compositions and plant macrofossil remains. The peat accumulated initially in a wet fen that was transformed into a peat plateau bog following aggradation of permafrost in the late Holocene (similar to 2500 cal a BP). Total organic carbon and total nitrogen (N) concentrations are higher in the fen peat than in the moss-dominated bog peat layers. Layers in the sequence that have lower concentrations of total hydrogen (H) are associated with degraded vascular plant residues. C/N and H/C atomic ratios indicate better preservation of organic matter in peat material dominated by bryophytes as opposed to vascular plants. The presence of permafrost in the peat plateau stage and water-saturated conditions at the bottom of the fen stage appear to lead to better preservation of organic plant material. delta 15N values suggest N isotopic fractionation was driven primarily by microbial decomposition whereas differences in delta 13C values appear to reflect mainly changes in plant assemblages. Positive shifts in both delta 15N and delta 13C values coincide with a local change to drier conditions as a result of the onset of permafrost and frost heave of the peat surface. This pattern suggests that permafrost aggradation not only resulted in changes in vegetation but also aerated the underlying fen peat, which enhanced microbial denitrification, causing the observed 15N-enrichment.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. Vol. 27, no 6, 545-552 p.
Keyword [en]
Arctic peatlands, permafrost, stable isotopes, elemental analyses, macrofossil analyses
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-81730DOI: 10.1002/jqs.2541ISI: 000307549400001OAI: diva2:563681


Available from: 2012-10-31 Created: 2012-10-30 Last updated: 2012-10-31Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Other links

Publisher's full text

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Kuhry, Peter
By organisation
Department of Geological SciencesDepartment of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology
In the same journal
Journal of Quaternary Science
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Altmetric score

Total: 58 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link