Dickens Angela F.

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Angela F.

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  • Preprint
    Chemical composition of the graphitic black carbon fraction in riverine and marine sediments at sub-micron scales using carbon X-ray spectromicroscopy
    ( 2005-12-01) Haberstroh, Paul R. ; Brandes, Jay A. ; Gelinas, Yves ; Dickens, Angela F. ; Wirick, Sue ; Cody, George D.
    The chemical composition of the graphitic black carbon (GBC) fraction of marine organic matter was explored in several marine and freshwater sedimentary environments along the west coast of North America and the Pacific Ocean. Analysis by carbon x-ray absorption near edge structure (C-XANES) spectroscopy and scanning transmission x-ray microscopy (STXM) show the GBC-fraction of Stillaguamish River surface sediments to be dominated by more highly-ordered and impure forms of graphite, together forming about 80% of the GBC, with a smaller percent of an aliphatic carbon component. Eel River Margin surface sediments had very little highly-ordered graphite, and were instead dominated by amorphous carbon and to a lesser extent, impure graphite. However, the GBC of surface sediments from the Washington State Slope and the Mexico Margin were composed almost solely of amorphous carbon. Pre-anthropogenic, highly-oxidized deep-sea sediments from the open Equatorial Pacific Ocean contained over half their GBC in different forms of graphite as well as highly-aliphatic carbon, low aromatic/highly-acidic aliphatic carbon, low aromatic/highly aliphatic carbon, and amorphous forms of carbon. Our results clearly show the impact of graphite and amorphous C phases in the BC fraction in modern riverine sediments and nearby marine shelf deposits. The pre-anthropogenic Equatorial Pacific GBC fraction is remarkable in the existence of highly-ordered graphite.
  • Article
    Climate control on terrestrial biospheric carbon turnover
    (National Academy of Sciences, 2021-02-23) Eglinton, Timothy I. ; Galy, Valier ; Hemingway, Jordon D. ; Feng, Xiaojuan ; Bao, Hongyan ; Blattmann, Thomas M. ; Dickens, Angela F. ; Gies, Hannah ; Giosan, Liviu ; Haghipour, Negar ; Hou, Pengfei ; Lupker, Maarten ; McIntyre, Cameron P. ; Montlucon, Daniel B. ; Peucker-Ehrenbrink, Bernhard ; Ponton, Camilo ; Schefuß, Enno ; Schwab, Melissa S. ; Voss, Britta M. ; Wacker, Lukas ; Wu, Ying ; Zhao, Meixun
    Terrestrial vegetation and soils hold three times more carbon than the atmosphere. Much debate concerns how anthropogenic activity will perturb these surface reservoirs, potentially exacerbating ongoing changes to the climate system. Uncertainties specifically persist in extrapolating point-source observations to ecosystem-scale budgets and fluxes, which require consideration of vertical and lateral processes on multiple temporal and spatial scales. To explore controls on organic carbon (OC) turnover at the river basin scale, we present radiocarbon (14C) ages on two groups of molecular tracers of plant-derived carbon—leaf-wax lipids and lignin phenols—from a globally distributed suite of rivers. We find significant negative relationships between the 14C age of these biomarkers and mean annual temperature and precipitation. Moreover, riverine biospheric-carbon ages scale proportionally with basin-wide soil carbon turnover times and soil 14C ages, implicating OC cycling within soils as a primary control on exported biomarker ages and revealing a broad distribution of soil OC reactivities. The ubiquitous occurrence of a long-lived soil OC pool suggests soil OC is globally vulnerable to perturbations by future temperature and precipitation increase. Scaling of riverine biospheric-carbon ages with soil OC turnover shows the former can constrain the sensitivity of carbon dynamics to environmental controls on broad spatial scales. Extracting this information from fluvially dominated sedimentary sequences may inform past variations in soil OC turnover in response to anthropogenic and/or climate perturbations. In turn, monitoring riverine OC composition may help detect future climate-change–induced perturbations of soil OC turnover and stocks.
  • Article
    Arctic deltaic lake sediments as recorders of fluvial organic matter deposition
    (Frontiers Media, 2016-08-17) Vonk, Jorien E. ; Dickens, Angela F. ; Giosan, Liviu ; Hussain, Zainab A. ; Kim, Bokyung ; Zipper, Samuel C. ; Holmes, Robert M. ; Montlucon, Daniel B. ; Galy, Valier ; Eglinton, Timothy I.
    Arctic deltas are dynamic and vulnerable regions that play a key role in land-ocean interactions and the global carbon cycle. Delta lakes may provide valuable historical records of the quality and quantity of fluvial fluxes, parameters that are challenging to investigate in these remote regions. Here we study lakes from across the Mackenzie Delta, Arctic Canada, that receive fluvial sediments from the Mackenzie River when spring flood water levels rise above natural levees. We compare downcore lake sediments with suspended sediments collected during the spring flood, using bulk (% organic carbon, % total nitrogen, δ13C, Δ14C) and molecular organic geochemistry (lignin, leaf waxes). High-resolution age models (137Cs, 210Pb) of downcore lake sediment records (n = 11) along with lamina counting on high-resolution radiographs show sediment deposition frequencies ranging between annually to every 15 years. Down-core geochemical variability in a representative delta lake sediment core is consistent with historical variability in spring flood hydrology (variability in peak discharge, ice jamming, peak water levels). Comparison with earlier published Mackenzie River depth profiles shows that (i) lake sediments reflect the riverine surface suspended load, and (ii) hydrodynamic sorting patterns related to spring flood characteristics are reflected in the lake sediments. Bulk and molecular geochemistry of suspended particulate matter from the spring flood peak and lake sediments are relatively similar showing a mixture of modern higher-plant derived material, older terrestrial permafrost material, and old rock-derived material. This suggests that deltaic lake sedimentary records hold great promise as recorders of past (century-scale) riverine fluxes and may prove instrumental in shedding light on past behavior of arctic rivers, as well as how they respond to a changing climate.