Consequences of changed climate regime on carbon release in peatlands
BMBF CA 02/17From 11/2002 to 10/2005
Principal Investigator: Christian Blodau
Peatlands are important sources and sinks of carbon in the global biogeochemical cycle. Carbon mineralisation in peatlands is strongly affected by the water regime, which is controlled by the climate. The objective of this project is to predict the response of the carbon mineralisation rates and pathways to different disturbance regimes (temperature, water) as they are expected to result from climate change. To these ends the pathways of C release will be investigated in laboratory studies with microcosms with variations of the water and temperature regime. This work will be carried out with peat from a Canadian and a German peatland, which are currently under investigation. Attention will also be given to the role of organic electron acceptors, which might suppress methane production and increase carbon dioxide production in peatlands. The results will be tested and upscaled to the ecosystem scale using data from the Canadian field site, which is part of the AMERIFLUX network and FLUXNET Canada. We expect this study to demonstrate how carbon mineralisation rates and pathways in peatland soils change after disturbances, as may be expected due to climate change.