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Comparing carbon storage of Siberian tundra and taiga permafrost ecosystems at very high spatial resolution
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography. Université de Montréal, Quebec, Canada.
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: 6
2015 (English)In: Journal of Geophysical Research - Biogeosciences, ISSN 2169-8953, E-ISSN 2169-8961, Vol. 120, no 10, 1973-1994 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Permafrost-affected ecosystems are important components in the global carbon (C) cycle that, despite being vulnerable to disturbances under climate change, remain poorly understood. This study investigates ecosystem carbon storage in two contrasting continuous permafrost areas of NE and East Siberia. Detailed partitioning of soil organic carbon (SOC) and phytomass carbon (PC) is analyzed for one tundra (Kytalyk) and one taiga (Spasskaya Pad/Neleger) study area. In total, 57 individual field sites (24 and 33 in the respective areas) have been sampled for PC and SOC, including the upper permafrost. Landscape partitioning of ecosystem C storage was derived from thematic upscaling of field observations using a land cover classification from very high resolution (2x2m) satellite imagery. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling was used to explore patterns in C distribution. In both environments the ecosystem C is mostly stored in the soil (86%). At the landscape scale C stocks are primarily controlled by the presence of thermokarst depressions (alases). In the tundra landscape, site-scale variability of C is controlled by periglacial geomorphological features, while in the taiga, local differences in catenary position, soil texture, and forest successions are more important. Very high resolution remote sensing is highly beneficial to the quantification of C storage. Detailed knowledge of ecosystem C storage and ground ice distribution is needed to predict permafrost landscape vulnerability to projected climatic changes. We argue that vegetation dynamics are unlikely to offset mineralization of thawed permafrost C and that landscape-scale reworking of SOC represents the largest potential changes to C cycling.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 120, no 10, 1973-1994 p.
Keyword [en]
permafrost, soil organic carbon, phytomass carbon, remote sensing, tundra, taiga
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-126860DOI: 10.1002/2015JG002999ISI: 000368730300007OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-126860DiVA: diva2:906313
Available from: 2016-02-24 Created: 2016-02-16 Last updated: 2016-02-24Bibliographically approved

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Siewert, Matthias B.Weiss, NielsKuhry, PeterHugelius, Gustaf
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