Temperature sensitivity of soil organic matter decomposition after forest fire in Canadian permafrost region

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Aaltonen , H , Palviainen , M , Zhou , X , Köster , E , Berninger , F , Pumpanen , J & Köster , K 2019 , ' Temperature sensitivity of soil organic matter decomposition after forest fire in Canadian permafrost region ' , Journal of Environmental Management , vol. 241 , pp. 637-644 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2019.02.130

Title: Temperature sensitivity of soil organic matter decomposition after forest fire in Canadian permafrost region
Author: Aaltonen, Heidi; Palviainen, Marjo; Zhou, Xuan; Köster, Egle; Berninger, Frank; Pumpanen, Jukka; Köster, Kajar
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Forest Soil Science and Biogeochemistry
University of Helsinki, Department of Forest Sciences
University of Helsinki, Department of Forest Sciences
University of Helsinki, Department of Forest Sciences
University of Helsinki, Forest Ecology and Management
University of Helsinki, Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry
University of Helsinki, Department of Forest Sciences
Date: 2019-07-01
Language: eng
Number of pages: 8
Belongs to series: Journal of Environmental Management
ISSN: 0301-4797
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/303409
Abstract: Climate warming in arctic/subarctic ecosystems will result in increased frequency of forest fires, elevated soil temperatures and thawing of permafrost, which have implications for soil organic matter (SOM) decomposition rates, the CO2 emissions and globally significant soil C stocks in this region. It is still unclear how decomposability and temperature sensitivity of SOM varies in different depths and different stages of succession following forest fire in permafrost regions and studies on long term effects of forest fires in these areas are lacking. To study this question, we took soil samples from 5, 10 and 30 cm depths from forest stands in Northwest Canada, underlain by permafrost, that were burnt by wildfire 3, 25 and over 100 years ago. We measured heterotrophic soil respiration at 1, 7, 13 and 19 °C. Fire had a significant effect on the active layer depth, and it increased the temperature sensitivity (Q10) of respiration in the surface (5 cm) and in the deepest soil layer (30 cm) in the 3-year-old area compared to the 25- and more than 100-year-old areas. Also the metabolic quotient (qCO2) of soil microbes was increased after fire. Though fires may facilitate the SOM decomposition by increasing active layer depth, they also decreased SOM quality, which may limit the rate of decomposition. After fire all of these changes reverted back to original levels with forest succession.
Subject: 1172 Environmental sciences
4112 Forestry
Permafrost carbon
Incubation
Forest fire
Soil respiration
METABOLIC QUOTIENT
CLIMATE-CHANGE
CARBON-USE EFFICIENCY
FEEDBACKS
MICROBIAL BIOMASS
FUNGAL
RESPIRATION
MINERALIZATION
DYNAMICS
ECOSYSTEMS
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