Euro-limpacs Deliverables

ABSTRACT - DELIVERABLE 46

Report on effects of altered soil temperature on the bioavailability of C and N in the riparian zone

Dissolved organic matter (DOM) is a defining feature of streams, rivers and lakes in the boreal region. Most of the DOM export occurs during the spring flood, which in northern Sweden ends a period of close to six months of snow cover. Climate change scenarios for Sweden predict that the largest temperature effect will occur in the northern part of the country and will affect the winter period more than other seasons. How this change in climate will affect the quality and quantity of DOM exported to surface water is presently not well understood. The objective of this project is to investigate how snow cover and soil frost regime affect DOM of surface waters with respect to natural conditions and conditions affected by global climate change. The specific goal is to elucidate how winter conditions affect the quality and quantity of DOM in the riparian soil that is available for export to adjacent streams during the transition from winter to spring. The timing, extent and duration of snow cover and soil frost in riparian soils are key components that impact the:
i) Concentration and quality of DOM in surface waters during spring flood in the Boreal forest
ii) Bioavailability of the DOM exported from the soil during the spring
This report presents preliminary results from the field scale manipulation experiment of soil frost with continuous monitoring of soil temperature, soil frost depth, unfrozen soil water content and soil water chemistry has revealed interesting and unanticipated results.

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