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Volume 4, issue 6 | Copyright

Special issue: Peatlands and the carbon cycle – from local processes to...

Biogeosciences, 4, 985-1003, 2007
© Author(s) 2007. This work is licensed under
the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 License.

  14 Nov 2007

14 Nov 2007

The growing season greenhouse gas balance of a continental tundra site in the Indigirka lowlands, NE Siberia

M. K. van der Molen1, J. van Huissteden1, F. J. W. Parmentier1, A. M. R. Petrescu1, A. J. Dolman1, T. C. Maximov2, A. V. Kononov2, S. V. Karsanaev2, and D. A. Suzdalov2 M. K. van der Molen et al.
  • 1Department of Hydrology and Geo-Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Earth and Life Sciences, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, De Boelelaan 1085, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • 2Institute of Biological Problems of the Cryolithozone, Russian Academy of Sciences, Siberian Division, 41, Lenin Prospekt, Yakutsk, The Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), 677980, Russian Federation

Abstract. Carbon dioxide and methane fluxes were measured at a tundra site near Chokurdakh, in the lowlands of the Indigirka river in north-east Siberia. This site is one of the few stations on Russian tundra and it is different from most other tundra flux stations in its continentality. A suite of methods was applied to determine the fluxes of NEE, GPP, Reco and methane, including eddy covariance, chambers and leaf cuvettes. Net carbon dioxide fluxes were high compared with other tundra sites, with NEE=−92 g C m−2 yr−1, which is composed of an Reco=+141 g C m−2 yr−1 and GPP=−232 g C m−2 yr−1. This large carbon dioxide sink may be explained by the continental climate, that is reflected in low winter soil temperatures (−14°C), reducing the respiration rates, and short, relatively warm summers, stimulating high photosynthesis rates. Interannual variability in GPP was dominated by the frequency of light limitation (Rg<200 W m−2), whereas Reco depends most directly on soil temperature and time in the growing season, which serves as a proxy of the combined effects of active layer depth, leaf area index, soil moisture and substrate availability. The methane flux, in units of global warming potential, was +28 g C-CO2e m−2 yr−1, so that the greenhouse gas balance was −64 g C-CO2e m−2 yr−1. Methane fluxes depended only slightly on soil temperature and were highly sensitive to hydrological conditions and vegetation composition.

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