Department of Ecogenetics and Systems Biology - Division of Archaea Biology and Ecogenomics

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CryoCARB: Long Term Carbon Storage in Cryoturbated Arctic Soils

IP5: “High resolution microbial community structure”

The overarching goal of CryoCARB is to advance organic carbon estimates for cryoturbated soils, focusing on the Eurasian Arctic and to understand the vulnerability of these carbon stocks in a future climate. Our vision is that one can build on this knowledge to improve existing models to better predict the responses of cryoturbated soils to future climate conditions. The constraints to our understanding of carbon dynamics in cryogenic soils are currently manifold. First. due to cryoturbation, organic matter is unevenly distributed within the soil, making SOC estimation very difficult. There is evidence that the North American arctic carbon stock is bigger than previously thought, also because of underestimation of carbon stored in distorted, broken and warped horizons. Second, most studies dealing with SOC in arctic soils fail to account for carbon stored in the upper permafrost, although the latter is directly under threat in a rapidly warming Arctic. Thawing of the upper permafrost will also mobilize old, geogenic C, which is rarely addressed. Third, the mechanisms of carbon stabilization are largely unknown thus hampering the prediction of climate-C02 feedbacks. Knowledge of the chemical composition of organic matter and the processes on how carbon is stabilized is necessary to predict the magnitude and the time-scale at which SOC will get remobilized from thawing permafrost under climate change.

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Additional information

Duration: 01.08.2010 - 31.12.2013

Funding: European Science Fundation

Participants: Tim Urich, Ricardo Alves, Antje Gittel, Christa Schleper

Schnecker J, Wild B, Hofhansl F, Alves R, Bárta J, Čapek P, Fuchslueger L, Gentsch N, Gittel A, Guggenberger G, Hofer A, Kienzl S, Knoltsch A, Lashchinskiy N, Mikutta R, Šantrůčková H, Shibistova O, Takriti M,
Urich T, Weltin G, Richter A (2014) Effects of Soil Organic Matter Properties and Microbial Community Composition on Enzyme Activities in Cryoturbated Arctic Soils. PLoS One 9(4): e94076. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0094076.

Wild B, Schnecker J, Alves R, Barsukov P, Bárta J, Čapek P, Gentsch N, Gittel A, Guggenberger G, Lashchinskiy N, Mikutta R, Rusalimova O, Šantrůčková H, Shibistova O, Urich T, Watzka M, Zrazhevskaya G, Richter A (2014) Input of easily available organic C and N stimulates microbial decomposition of soil organic matter in arctic permafrost soil. Soil Biology & Biochemistry 75: 143-151. doi: 10.1016/j.soilbio.2014.04.014.

Gittel A, Bárta J, Kohoutová I, Mikutta R, Owens S, Gilbert J, Schnecker J, Wild B, Hannisdal B, März J, Lashchinskiy N, Čapek P, Šantrůčková H, Gentsch N, Shibistova O, Guggenberger G, Richter A, Torsvik V,
Schleper C, Urich T (2014) Distinct microbial communities associated with buried soils in the Siberian tundra. ISME Journal 8: 841-853. DOI: 10.1038/ismej.2013.219.

Wild B, Schnecker J, Bárta J, Capek P, Guggenberger G, Hofhansl F, Hugelius G, Kaiser C, Kuhry P, Lashchinsky N, Mikutta C, Mooshammer M, Palmtag J, Šantrucková H, Shibistova O,
Urich T, Zimov SA, Richter A (2013) From proteins to nitrate: Nitrogen dynamics in organic, cryoturbated and mineral horizons of tundra soil. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 67(100): 85-93. DOI: 10.1016/j.soilbio.2013.08.004.

Tveit A, Schwacke R, Svenning MM,
Urich T (2013) Organic carbon transformations in high-Arctic peat soils: Key functions and microorganisms. The ISME Journal 7(2): 299-311.

Alves RJ
, Wanek W, Zappe A, Richter A, Svenning MM, Schleper C, Urich T (2013) Nitrification rates in Arctic soils are associated with functionally distinct populations of ammonia-oxidizing archaea. ISME Journal 7(8): 1620-1631. doi: 10.1038/ismej.2013.35. DOI: 10.1038/ismej.2013.35.

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