Long-term release of carbon dioxide from Arctic tundra ecosystems in Alaska

dc.contributor.author Euskirchen, Eugenie
dc.contributor.author Bret-Harte, M. Syndonia
dc.contributor.author Shaver, Gaius R.
dc.contributor.author Edgar, Colin W.
dc.contributor.author Romanovsky, Vladimir
dc.date.accessioned 2017-09-19T19:53:29Z
dc.date.available 2017-11-21T09:24:47Z
dc.date.issued 2016-11
dc.description Author Posting. © The Author(s), 2016. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of Springer for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Ecosystems 20 (2017): 960–974, doi:10.1007/s10021-016-0085-9. en_US
dc.description.abstract Releases of the greenhouse gases carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) from thawing permafrost are expected to be among the largest feedbacks to climate from arctic ecosystems. However, the current net carbon (C) balance of terrestrial arctic ecosystems is unknown. Recent studies suggest that these ecosystems are sources, sinks, or approximately in balance at present. This uncertainty arises because there are few long-term continuous measurements of arctic tundra CO2 fluxes over the full annual cycle. Here, we describe a pattern of CO2 loss based on the longest continuous record of direct measurements of CO2 fluxes in the Alaskan Arctic, from two representative tundra ecosystems, wet sedge and heath tundra. We also report on a shorter time series of continuous measurements from a third ecosystem, tussock tundra. The amount of CO2 loss from both heath and wet sedge ecosystems was related to the timing of freeze-up of the soil active layer in the fall. Wet sedge tundra lost the most CO2 during the anomalously warm autumn periods of September – December 2013 - 2015, with CH4 emissions contributing little to the overall C budget. Losses of C translated to approximately 4.1% and 1.4% of the total soil C stocks in active layer of the wet sedge and heath tundra, respectively, from 2008 – 2015. Increases in air temperature and soil temperatures at all depths may trigger a new trajectory of CO2 release, which will be a significant feedback to further warming if it is representative of larger areas of the Arctic. en_US
dc.description.embargo 2017-11-21 en_US
dc.description.sponsorship This work was funded by the National Science Foundation Division of Polar Programs Arctic Observatory Network grant numbers 856864, 1304271, 0632264, and 1107892. This study was also partially funded by the NSF Alaska Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research award number OIA-1208927. en_US
dc.identifier.uri https://hdl.handle.net/1912/9233
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.relation.uri https://doi.org/10.1007/s10021-016-0085-9
dc.subject Arctic tundra en_US
dc.subject Net ecosystem exchange en_US
dc.subject Permafrost en_US
dc.subject Soil temperature en_US
dc.subject Carbon dioxide en_US
dc.subject Methane en_US
dc.title Long-term release of carbon dioxide from Arctic tundra ecosystems in Alaska en_US
dc.type Preprint en_US
dspace.entity.type Publication
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