Climate change effect on release of CO2 from peat far greater than assumed

Nov 20, 2011

Climate change effect on release of CO2 from peat far greater than assumed Drought causes peat to release far more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than has previously been realised.

Much of the world's peatlands lie in regions predicted to experience increased frequency and severity of drought as a result of climate change- leading to the peat drying out and releasing vast stores of () into the atmosphere. It's the very wetness of the peat that has kept the air out, locking in centuries of carbon dioxide that would normally be released from the decomposing plant materials in the peat. Now scientists at Bangor University have discovered that the effect of periods of severe drought lasts far beyond the initial drought itself.

Writing in Nature , Dr Nathalie Fenner and Professor Chris Freeman of Bangor University explain how the drought causes an increase in the rate of release of CO2 for possibly as long as a decade. It was originally assumed that most of the CO2 was released from the dry peat. Now scientists realise that the release of CO2 continues, and may even increase, when the peat is re-wetted with the arrival of rain. The carbon is lost to the atmosphere as CO2 and and to the waters that drain peatlands as dissolved organic carbon (DOC).

"As our and change, our peatlands may not have sufficient opportunity to recover between these drought-induced episodes of CO2 loss," explains the paper's lead author, Dr Nathalie Fenner. "What we previously perceived as a 'spike' in the rate of during drying out, now appears far more prolonged- with a potential peak after the initial drought period is over."

As well as contributing further to climate change, as CO2 is one of the 'greenhouse gasses', the loss of carbon from the peat has other consequences. Dissolved organic carbon in the water as a result of this process, could adversely affect the quality of . Much of our drinking water comes from these upland sources. The increase of dissolved in the water is likely to bring extra problems and expense to the water supply industry because it interferes with the treatment process.

Loss of carbon could ultimately lead to severe degradation of the peatland itself. Occurring on upland regions of the northern hemisphere, the loss of peatland could contribute to an increased frequency of lowland flooding occurrences as the peat acts as a natural 'sponge' for heavy rainfall. There would also be a consequent loss of habitat and species loss as well as a change in the look and feel of our uplands.

"The previous focus of research in this area has been on the drought period, and our own work identified how the release of CO2 occurs," explains Prof Chris Freeman, who leads the Wolfson Peatland Carbon Capture Laboratory at Bangor University. "We were initially surprised at finding that the effects are so prolonged- we think what's happening is microbial and that this activity has been triggered by the introduction of oxygen into previously waterlogged conditions. Once the water returns, conditions have changed and the microbes are further able to thrive until conditions eventually return to normal."

The paper's authors suggest that geo-engineering solutions may have to be considered to preserve the water table and reduce the effects of drought on upland peat.

Explore further: US delays decision on Keystone pipeline project

More information: Drought-induced carbon loss in peatlands Nathalie Fenner Chris Freeman in Nature Geoscience, doi:10.1038 NGEO1323

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omatumr
1.4 / 5 (19) Nov 20, 2011
CO2 is one of the 'greenhouse gasses' . . .


That may or may not influence global temperatures. The Sun exerts primary control over Earth's climate [1,2].

World leaders do not understand and cannot control the energy source that powers the Sun [3,4].

1. "Super-fluidity in the solar interior: Implications for solar eruptions and climate", J Fusion Energy 21, 193-198 (2002
http://arxiv.org/.../0501441

2. "Earth's Heat Source - The Sun", Energy & Environment 20, 131-144 (2009)
http://arxiv.org/pdf/0905.0704

3. "Neutron Repulsion", The APEIRON Journal, in press (2011)
http://arxiv.org/...2.1499v1

4. "Climate change and national security"
http://judithcurr...t-140805

With kind regards,
Oliver K. Manuel
Former NASA Principal
Investigator for Apollo
http://myprofile....anuelo09
mgb
2.2 / 5 (17) Nov 20, 2011
Is it just me???
I agree that we should move to sustainable energy sources and we should do it quickly, BUT...
The never-ending, in-your-face, scary global-warming media just REEKS of propaganda. No???
StarGazer2011
2 / 5 (21) Nov 20, 2011
totally agree mgb, also look at whats actually being stated ...
If and only if CO2 caues warming and IF and only if this causes more droughts THEN peat will release more CO2, but these highly contentious claims are assumed as a basis for the work!
This theory was only ever based on an argument from corellation, in ignorance of the 800 year lag between CO2 and temperature discovered in 2003 and in ignorance of the Svensmark mechanism for cosmic ray cloud seeding proposed by in 2006! The correlation has failed, Co2 keeps rising and temperature has stalled, sea leven has dropped recently and we now have much more information and better theories than were availible in 1988 when Hansen gave his alarmist and speculative evidence to congress. Give the money back.
gregor1
2.7 / 5 (19) Nov 21, 2011
It's interesting too how these guys use the word "Skeptic" as a means of vilification. Skepticism IS science. Science is a method not a body of knowledge. You make an hypothesis and then try and DISPROVE it. In religion you do the opposite. That is only accept information that supports your position. It's quite alarming when supposed scientists abandon the method.
omatumr
1.3 / 5 (14) Nov 21, 2011
The last slide in a recent talk by solar physicist, Dr. Pal Brekke, promotes his new book - "Our Explosive Sun"

http://curry.eas....taFe.pdf

The word explosive describes the object that produced our elements, gave birth to the Solar System five billion years (5 Gyr) ago), sustains life, and exerts primary control over Earth's climate.

Reluctance to admit the Sun's explosive nature and repulsive forces between neutrons in the solar core have compromised astronomy, astrophysics, climatology, cosmology, nuclear, particle, solar and space sciences for the past four decades.

With kind regards,
Oliver K. Manuel
Former NASA Principal
Investigator for Apollo
http://myprofile....anuelo09
Voleure
4.4 / 5 (13) Nov 21, 2011
Is it just me???
I agree that we should move to sustainable energy sources and we should do it quickly, BUT...
The never-ending, in-your-face, scary global-warming media just REEKS of propaganda. No???


It may appear as propaganda from your point of view but consider that scientists have accepted the data on global warming for years and the next logical step is to gather data on the risks of potential feedback and greater detail on the worst affected zones. Helping planners consider ways to mitigate the worst effects where possible as mentioned in the above article.

Be prepared for many more similar stories as this round of research progresses. From the outside as they publish it may seem as you say but if you accept the situation, as they already have, then these papers are simply the next logical areas to study. Also they are published and thus show up here often several years after the studies began given the effort required.
Ethelred
4.4 / 5 (13) Nov 21, 2011
If and only if CO2 caues warming
Even Oliver is having a hard to claiming otherwise these days. And he was pushing the one paper that claimed CO2 is not a greenhouse gas a while ago. That paper was complete rubbish.

The key for me with CO2 is that is holds in heat where H2O vapor just isn't. Such as deserts and Antarctica.

Oliver we do know the Sun produces heat and it is variable. The people involved in this are aware of this despite your bogus claims that they do not know it. The Sun is now on the upward part of it's temperature cycle after a prolonged down cycle that usually only lasts 11 years but this one went on for 13 years.

Ethelred
Birger
5 / 5 (9) Nov 21, 2011
Regarding feasibility and accusations of propaganda:

In Sweden alone, the amount of carbon trapped in peat bogs is of the same order of magnitude as the North Sea oil fields.
When peat bogs dry out, oxygen eventually reaches down to the preserved organic matter and decomposition turns the matter into water, carbon dioxide and some solid waste.
--- --- --- --- --- ---
All this is independent on the existing release of methane from the arctic tundra.

Like the eruptive cycle of Mount St Helens, all of this is well documented. Unlike the people living near Mount St. Helens, we have plenty of warning since the carbon dioxide release is a slow, continuous process. Alarmism? Propaganda?
--- --- --- --- --- ---
Addendum: In the Scandinavian countries, even the conservative parties accept climate change as a proven fact. Up here, the symptoms are more obvious than in warmer regions. But don't worry, you will get local syptoms eventually.
Vendicar_Decarian
0.9 / 5 (44) Nov 21, 2011
"The Sun exerts primary control over Earth's climate" - OmaTard

It does. It keeps the earth's surface at an average temperature of about 270'K

The Atmosphere increases that average by another 7 percent.

Poor Clueless OmaTard. You need more psychotherapy.

Vendicar_Decarian
0.7 / 5 (43) Nov 21, 2011
"In the Scandinavian countries, even the conservative parties accept climate change as a proven fact." - Birger

Yes, but you Scandinavian's are vastly smarter than the average American who spends most of their time grubbing for nickels and dimes.
Vendicar_Decarian
1.1 / 5 (46) Nov 21, 2011
"Skepticism IS science." - Gregor1

Not by a long shot. The scientific method involves observing the world, formulating a hypothesis about it and verifying that hypothesis in the best way possible.

Skepticism is an open and honest suspicion that an observation is in error or an open and honest suspicion based on a viable alternate theory, that the theory doesn't explain the observations.

In the case of Global Warming Denialism, there is no viable alternate theory, and certainly no honesty in the denialist camp.

Denialism is the refusal to accept reality as reality.
It is the antithesis of science.
Vendicar_Decarian
1 / 5 (47) Nov 21, 2011
"If and only if CO2 caues warming" - StarTard

There is no valid "if" in the above sentence.

CO2 is observed to absorb IR. Hence it causes surface warming. This is a fact of basic physics, and it's denial is equivalent to the denial of the last 300 years of science which is based in part on the theoretical and experimentally verified relationship.

Your inclusion of the word "IF" just screams out that you are a low grade moron.

Vendicar_Decarian
0.8 / 5 (47) Nov 21, 2011
"The never-ending, in-your-face, scary global-warming media..." - mgb

The ongoing warming of the globe will be a dominant theme that influences the rest of your life.

If you can't handle the truth then put a bullet in your own brain now, as you will have proven yourself to be less than worthless.

Do it now. Make the world a better place.

Ethelred
5 / 5 (8) Nov 21, 2011
He and you could both try LEARNING. Him about science and you about how to NOT be an asshole.

Ethelred
3432682
1.9 / 5 (18) Nov 21, 2011
IF CO2 causes warming, IF droughts are caused by warming (which contradicts more water vapor), IF re-wetting releases CO2, IF more CO2 triggers more water vapor, IF that water vapor causes more warming

However - temperatures are flat, sea level rise is slowing, Antarctic ice is growing, and CO2 levels keep rising. We are cooler now than 80-90% of the time since the last ice age.

GW theory is a failure. Try again, warmunists.
deepsand
4.2 / 5 (15) Nov 21, 2011
The only thing flat here would seem to be your brain waves.
mgb
2.7 / 5 (3) Nov 22, 2011
"The never-ending, in-your-face, scary global-warming media..." - mgb

The ongoing warming of the globe will be a dominant theme that influences the rest of your life.

If you can't handle the truth then put a bullet in your own brain now, as you will have proven yourself to be less than worthless.

Do it now. Make the world a better place.



My point EXACTLY. LOL... too funny... Either believe or kill myself. lmao
MarkyMark
3.8 / 5 (4) Nov 22, 2011
"The never-ending, in-your-face, scary global-warming media..." - mgb

The ongoing warming of the globe will be a dominant theme that influences the rest of your life.

If you can't handle the truth then put a bullet in your own brain now, as you will have proven yourself to be less than worthless.

Do it now. Make the world a better place.



My point EXACTLY. LOL... too funny... Either believe or kill myself. lmao

Typical tea party cultist! To chicken to back up his words. Perhaps its best you go back to the Sarah Palin McCain fantasy sites and other such porn sites. ;P
antialias_physorg
4.3 / 5 (3) Nov 22, 2011
The never-ending, in-your-face, scary global-warming media just REEKS of propaganda. No

No.
If and only if CO2 caues warming and IF and only if this causes more droughts THEN peat will release more CO2, but these highly contentious claims

Nothing contentious about that - at least among climate scientists. And those are the ones that count.

Not by a long shot. The scientific method involves observing the world, formulating a hypothesis about it and verifying that hypothesis in the best way possible.

You make a hypothesis and then set out to test that hypothesis. You devise a test whose outcome is unknown to you and which will give you information about the hypothesis either way.
If you try to prove or disprove the hypothesis then you're already introducing a bias.
Vendicar_Decarian
0.8 / 5 (42) Nov 22, 2011
"However - temperatures are flat" - 3432xxx

The Denialist Koch Brothers just funded a study called "BEST" that has concluded that the average rate of warming over the last decade has been .14'C per decade.

Are you lying? Or are the Koch brothers lying?
Vendicar_Decarian
0.5 / 5 (41) Nov 22, 2011
"Either believe or kill myself" - MGB

Do it before someone else does it for you.

It is only a matter of time before bloody retribution catches up with you for your ongoing crime against humanity and nature.

State your real name for the record.
Vendicar_Decarian
0.7 / 5 (41) Nov 22, 2011
Liar

"We are cooler now than 80-90% of the time since the last ice age. " - 3234Tard

Current Global temps are .74'C above the recent norm.

http://www.moon-a...uty2.gif

freethinking
1.5 / 5 (8) Nov 25, 2011
Oops they did it again

http://www.forbes...-debate/

The more you know about climate changers the less you respect them.
deepsand
4.6 / 5 (10) Nov 25, 2011
If by "they" you refer to the cherry-picking denialists, yep, they did it again.
Pirouette
4 / 5 (1) Nov 25, 2011
mgb says:
Is it just me???
I agree that we should move to sustainable energy sources and we should do it quickly, BUT...
The never-ending, in-your-face, scary global-warming media just REEKS of propaganda. No???

You are correct that steps should be taken as quickly as possible toward new energy sources. But even though it seems like propaganda overkill from several fronts, it is a necessary evil due to the fact that a good majority of the world's population is not taking it seriously enough to adjust their consumption of energy to help alleviate the CO2 emissions problem. The offending parties are either unaware of the situation or they are uncaring and prefer to "let the other guy" worry about it and lessen their own emissions. Individuals vary in their concern over GW and make it necessary to repeat the warnings over and over. My only objection is the U.N. requiring airlines to contribute money for carbon footprint payments to other countries to land there.
Skepticus_Rex
1.7 / 5 (6) Nov 25, 2011
If the current trend continues, this is what BEST is going to continue to show for 2002-2011:

http://www.woodfo...02/trend

Could just be noise. Could be our new reality over the following decade. We'll have to see what comes this way over the next couple decades to know with some degree of certainty.

And, please, no 'climate only is more than a decade' canard that is quite popular here with posters. It's not. Climate certainly can be measured in terms of years rather than decades. If you want to determine means, averages and normals, on the other hand, that is another matter. Then, you need at least 30 years worth of data and often more.

But, that is not the subject of the above link, is it? :)
Skepticus_Rex
1 / 5 (4) Nov 25, 2011
Speaking of Climategate 2.0 and the models used by IPCC (email addresses omitted):

date: Wed, 14 Oct 2009 15:57:10 -0600
from: Tom Wigley
subject: Re: BBC U-turn on climate
to: Michael Mann

Mike,

The Figure you sent is very deceptive. As an example, historical runs with PCM look as though they match observations -- but the match is a fluke. PCM has no indirect aerosol forcing and a low climate sensitivity -- compensating errors. In my (perhaps too harsh) view, there have been a number of dishonest presentations of model results by individual authors and by IPCC. This is why I still use results from MAGICC to compare with observed temperatures. At least here I can assess how sensitive matches are to sensitivity and forcing assumptions/uncertainties.

Tom.


~/FOIA/mail/2884.txt

This was sent in reply to Michael Mann, who had sent a revised figure that was based on a figure by Gavin Schmidt used over at the RealClimate website.

Interesting stuff... :)
Vendicar_Decarian
0.8 / 5 (43) Nov 26, 2011
Sorry Tard Boy. But climate isn't defined over a period as short as a decade.

"And, please, no 'climate only is more than a decade' canard that is quite popular here with posters. It's not." - SkepticusTard

And BEST shows a 0.14'C warming trend over the last decade.

Do you see the anomolous downward spike in the last two data points of your Tard Boy plot?

Those are unreliable data points that come from 14 reporting stations (preliminary) rather than the 1400 that are typically used. They can't be used to honestly compute a trend because they are statistically insignificant and dominated by noise.

You poor, ignorant Tard you.
Vendicar_Decarian
0.8 / 5 (43) Nov 26, 2011
"This was sent in reply to Michael Mann" - SkepTard Rex

Ya... So...

I once saw some raindrops illuminated by a flash of lightning which made them look like they were falling upward.

It was a very deceptive display.

But not nearly as deceptive as you are trying to be.
Vendicar_Decarian
0.8 / 5 (43) Nov 26, 2011
You mean the more you know about lying conservative propagandists from the pro tobacco Heartland Institute (the author of your little ditty), the more you more you loathe them.

"The more you know about climate changers the less you respect them." - FreeTard
Caliban
4 / 5 (4) Nov 26, 2011
IF CO2 causes warming, IF droughts are caused by warming (which contradicts more water vapor), IF re-wetting releases CO2, IF more CO2 triggers more water vapor, IF that water vapor causes more warming

[.....]

However - temperatures are flat, sea level rise is slowing, Antarctic ice is growing, and CO2 levels keep rising. We are cooler now than 80-90% of the time since the last ice age.

GW theory is a failure. Try again, warmunists.


So sorry, 31812, I accidentally ranked your screed a 5, when I intended to 5 deepsand's comment following. My apologies to you as well, deepsand.

Skepticus_Rex
1 / 5 (4) Nov 26, 2011
VendiTard,

Everything from 2011 is preliminary. That is why I said "if the current trend continues" and so forth. Cannot you read with any degree of comprehension? They say that when an opponent slings slurs and unsavory epithets it is because said opponent realizes subconsciously that the argument has been lost. Hmmmmm... :)

And, there is no deception on my part. I cited the email verbatim. It is Tom Wigley who used the words deceptive and dishonest in relation to private writers, RealClimate, and IPCC. You might want to ask Michael Mann and Gavin Schmidt about that subject, though. :)
deepsand
5 / 5 (6) Nov 26, 2011
So sorry, 31812, I accidentally ranked your screed a 5, when I intended to 5 deepsand's comment following. My apologies to you as well, deepsand.

No problem; stuff happens.

Besides, I very, very rarely look at who's repping me & how; and, then, only if I'm not certain from the content of their post(s) as to which side of a debate someone is on.

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