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Biotic controls on CO2 and CH4 exchange in wetlands - a closed environment study

  • Torben Christensen
  • N Panikov
  • Mikhail Mastepanov
  • A Joabsson
  • A Stewart
  • M Oquist
  • M Sommerkorn
  • S Reynaud
  • B Svensson
Publishing year: 2003
Language: English
Pages: 337-354
Publication/Series: Biogeochemistry
Volume: 64
Issue: 3
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Springer

Abstract english

Wetlands are significant sources of the important greenhouse gas CH4. Here we explore the use of an experimental system developed for the determination of continuous fluxes of CO2 and CH4 in closed ecosystem monoliths including the capture of (CO2)-C-14 and (CH4)-C-14 following pulse labelling with (CO2)-C-14. We show that, in the ecosystem studied, ebullition (bubble emission) may account for 18 to 50% of the total CH4 emission, representing fluxes that have been difficult to estimate accurately in the past. Furthermore, using plant removal and C-14 labelling techniques, we use the system to detail the direct influence of vascular plants on CH4 emission. This influence is observed to be dependent on the amount of vascular plants present. The results that may be produced using the presented experimental set-up have implications for an improved understanding of wetland ecosystem/atmosphere interactions, including possible feedback effects on climate change. In recent years much attention has been devoted to ascertaining and subsequently using the relationship between net ecosystem productivity and CH4 emission as a basis for extrapolation of fluxes across large areas. The experimental system presented may be used to study the complex relationship between vascular plants and CH4 emission and here we show examples of how this may vary considerably in nature between and even within ecosystems.


  • Physical Geography
  • controlled environment studies
  • C-14 labelling
  • CO2 exchange
  • emissions
  • peatlands
  • methane


  • ISSN: 1573-515X
E-mail: mikhail [dot] mastepanov [at] nateko [dot] lu [dot] se


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