WorldWideScience

Sample records for warm permafrost regions

  1. Effects of warming on N2O fluxes in a boreal peatland of Permafrost region, Northeast China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, Qian; Song, Changchun; Wang, Xianwei; Shi, Fuxi; Yu, Xueyang; Tan, Wenwen

    2018-03-01

    Climate warming is expected to increasingly influence boreal peatlands and alter their greenhouse gases emissions. However, the effects of warming on N 2 O fluxes and the N 2 O budgets were ignored in boreal peatlands. Therefore, in a boreal peatland of permafrost zone in Northeast China, a simulated warming experiment was conducted to investigate the effects of warming on N 2 O fluxes in Betula. Fruticosa community (B. Fruticosa) and Ledum. palustre community (L. palustre) during the growing seasons from 2013 to 2015. Results showed that warming treatment increased air temperature at 1.5m aboveground and soil temperature at 5cm depth by 0.6°C and 2°C, respectively. The average seasonal N 2 O fluxes ranged from 6.62 to 9.34μgm -2 h -1 in the warming plot and ranged from 0.41 to 4.55μgm -2 h -1 in the control plots. Warming treatment increased N 2 O fluxes by 147% and transformed the boreal peatlands from a N 2 O sink to a source. The primary driving factors for N 2 O fluxes were soil temperature and active layer depth, whereas soil moisture showed a weak correlation with N 2 O fluxes. The results indicated that warming promoted N 2 O fluxes by increasing soil temperature and active layer depth in a boreal peatland of permafrost zone in Northeast China. Moreover, elevated N 2 O fluxes persisted in this region will potentially drive a noncarbon feedback to ongoing climate change. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. A New Wave of Permafrost Warming in the Alaskan Interior?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romanovsky, V. E.; Nicolsky, D.; Cable, W.; Kholodov, A. L.; Panda, S. K.

    2017-12-01

    The impact of climate warming on permafrost and the potential of climate feedbacks resulting from permafrost thawing have recently received a great deal of attention. Ground temperatures are a primary indicator of permafrost stability. Many of the research sites in our permafrost network are located along the North American Arctic Permafrost-Ecological Transect that spans all permafrost zones in Alaska. Most of the sites in Alaska show substantial warming of permafrost since the 1980s. The magnitude of warming has varied with location, but was typically from 0.5 to 3°C. However, this warming was not linear in time and not spatially uniform. In some regions this warming even may be reversed and a slight recent cooling of permafrost has been observed recently at some locations. The Interior of Alaska is one of such regions where a slight permafrost cooling was observed starting in the late 1990s that has continued through the 2000s and in the beginning of the 2010s. The cooling has followed the substantial increase in permafrost temperatures documented for the Interior during the 1980s and 1990s. Permafrost temperatures at 15 m depth increased here by 0.3 to 0.6°C between 1983 and 1996. In most locations they reached their maximum in the second half of the 1990s. Since then, the permafrost temperatures started to decrease slowly and by 2013 this decrease at some locations was as much as 0.3°C at 15 m depth. There are some indications that the warming trend in the Alaskan Interior permafrost resumed during the last four years. By 2016, new record highs for the entire period of measurements of permafrost temperatures at 15 m depth were recorded at several locations. The latest observed permafrost warming in the Interior was combined with higher than normal summer precipitations. This combination has triggered near-surface permafrost degradation in many locations with adverse consequences for the ground surface stability affecting ecosystems and infrastructure. In

  3. Dynamic response of wind turbine towers in warm permafrost

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Benjamin Still; ZhaoHui Joey Yang; Simon Evans; FuJun Niu

    2014-01-01

    Wind is a great source of renewable energy in western Alaska. Consistent winds blow across the barren tundra underlain by warm permafrost in the winter season, when the energy demand is the highest. Foundation engineering in warm permafrost has always been a challenge in wind energy development. Degrading warm permafrost poses engineering issues to design, construction, and operation of wind turbines. This paper describes the foundation design of a wind turbine built in western Alaska. It presents a sys-tem for response monitoring and load assessment, and data collected from September 2013 to March 2014. The dynamic proper-ties are assessed based on the monitoring data, and seasonal changes in the dynamic properties of the turbine tower-foundation system and likely resonance between the spinning blades and the tower structure are discussed. These analyses of a wind turbine in warm permafrost are valuable for designing or retrofitting of foundations in warm permafrost.

  4. Potential remobilization of belowground permafrost carbon under future global warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    P. Kuhry; E. Dorrepaal; G. Hugelius; E.A.G. Schuur; C. Tarnocai

    2010-01-01

    Research on permafrost carbon has dramatically increased in the past few years. A new estimate of 1672 Pg C of belowground organic carbon in the northern circumpolar permafrost region more than doubles the previous value and highlights the potential role of permafrost carbon in the Earth System. Uncertainties in this new estimate remain due to relatively few available...

  5. Amount and timing of permafrost carbon release in response to climate warming

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schaefer, Kevin; Zhang, Tingjun; Barrett, Andrew P. (National Snow and Ice Data Center, Cooperative Inst. for Research in Environmental Sciences, Univ. of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder (United States)), e-mail: kevin.schaefer@nsidc.org; Bruhwiler, Lori (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Earth System Research Laboratory, Boulder (United States))

    2011-04-15

    The thaw and release of carbon currently frozen in permafrost will increase atmospheric CO{sub 2} concentrations and amplify surface warming to initiate a positive permafrost carbon feedback (PCF) on climate.We use surface weather from three global climate models based on the moderate warming, A1B Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change emissions scenario and the SiBCASA land surface model to estimate the strength and timing of the PCF and associated uncertainty. By 2200, we predict a 29-59% decrease in permafrost area and a 53-97 cm increase in active layer thickness. By 2200, the PCF strength in terms of cumulative permafrost carbon flux to the atmosphere is 190 +- 64 Gt C. This estimate may be low because it does not account for amplified surface warming due to the PCF itself and excludes some discontinuous permafrost regions where SiBCASA did not simulate permafrost. We predict that the PCF will change the arctic from a carbon sink to a source after the mid-2020s and is strong enough to cancel 42-88% of the total global land sink. The thaw and decay of permafrost carbon is irreversible and accounting for the PCF will require larger reductions in fossil fuel emissions to reach a target atmospheric CO{sub 2} concentration

  6. Relict Mountain Permafrost Area (Loess Plateau, China) Exhibits High Ecosystem Respiration Rates and Accelerating Rates in Response to Warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mu, Cuicui; Wu, Xiaodong; Zhao, Qian; Smoak, Joseph M.; Yang, Yulong; Hu, Lian; Zhong, Wen; Liu, Guimin; Xu, Haiyan; Zhang, Tingjun

    2017-10-01

    Relict permafrost regions are characterized by thin permafrost and relatively high temperatures. Understanding the ecosystem respiration rate (ERR) and its relationship with soil hydrothermal conditions in these areas can provide knowledge regarding the permafrost carbon cycle in a warming world. In this study, we examined a permafrost area, a boundary area, and a seasonally frozen ground area within a relict permafrost region on the east edge of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, China. Measurements from July 2015 to September 2016 showed that the mean annual ecosystem CO2 emissions for the boundary area were greater than the permafrost area. The Q10 value of the ERRs in the seasonally frozen ground area was greater than the permafrost area, indicating that the carbon emissions in the nonpermafrost areas were more sensitive to warming. The 1 year open-top chamber (OTC) warming increased soil temperatures in both the permafrost and seasonally frozen ground areas throughout the year, and the warming increased the ERRs by 1.18 (0.99-1.38, with interquartile range) and 1.13 (0.75-1.54, with interquartile range) μmol CO2 m-2 s-1 in permafrost and seasonally frozen ground areas, respectively. The OTC warming increased annual ERRs by approximately 50% for both permafrost and seasonally frozen ground areas with half the increase occurring during the nongrowing seasons. These results suggest that the ERRs in relict permafrost are high in comparison with arctic regions, and the carbon balance in relict permafrost areas could be greatly changed by climate warming.

  7. Subsidence from an artificial permafrost warming experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gelvin, A.; Wagner, A. M.; Lindsey, N.; Dou, S.; Martin, E. R.; Ekblaw, I.; Ulrich, C.; James, S. R.; Freifeld, B. M.; Daley, T. M.; Saari, S.; Ajo Franklin, J. B.

    2017-12-01

    Using fiber optic sensing technologies (seismic, strain, and temperature) we installed a geophysical detection system to predict thaw subsidence in Fairbanks, Alaska, United States. Approximately 5 km of fiber optic was buried in shallow trenches (20 cm depth), in an area with discontinuous permafrost, where the top of the permafrost is approximately 4 - 4.5m below the surface. The thaw subsidence was enforced by 122 60-Watt vertical heaters installed over a 140 m2 area where seismic, strain, and temperature were continuously monitored throughout the length of the fiber. Several vertical thermistor strings were also recording ground temperatures to a depth of 10 m in parallel to the fiber optic to verify the measurements collected from the fiber optic cable. GPS, Electronic Distance Measurement (EDM) Traditional and LiDAR (Light and Detection and Ranging) scanning were used to investigate the surface subsidence. The heaters were operating for approximately a three month period starting in August, 2016. During the heating process the soil temperatures at the heater element increased from 3.5 to 45 °C at a depth of 3 - 4 m. It took approximately 7 months for the temperature at the heater elements to recover to their initial temperature. The depth to the permafrost table was deepened by about 1 m during the heating process. By the end of the active heating, the surface had subsided approximately 8 cm in the heating section where permafrost was closest to the surface. This was conclusively confirmed with GPS, EDM, and LiDAR. An additional LiDAR survey was performed about seven months after the heaters were turned off (in May 2017). A total subsidence of approximately 20 cm was measured by the end of the passive heating process. This project successfully demonstrates that this is a viable approach for simulating both deep permafrost thaw and the resulting surface subsidence.

  8. Permafrost degradation and associated ground settlement estimation under 2 °C global warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Donglin; Wang, Huijun

    2017-10-01

    Global warming of 2 °C above preindustrial levels has been considered to be the threshold that should not be exceeded by the global mean temperature to avoid dangerous interference with the climate system. However, this global mean target has different implications for different regions owing to the globally nonuniform climate change characteristics. Permafrost is sensitive to climate change; moreover, it is widely distributed in high-latitude and high-altitude regions where the greatest warming is predicted. Permafrost is expected to be severely affected by even the 2 °C global warming, which, in turn, affects other systems such as water resources, ecosystems, and infrastructures. Using air and soil temperature data from ten coupled model intercomparison project phase five models combined with observations of frozen ground, we investigated the permafrost thaw and associated ground settlement under 2 °C global warming. Results show that the climate models produced an ensemble mean permafrost area of 14.01 × 106 km2, which compares reasonably with the area of 13.89 × 106 km2 (north of 45°N) in the observations. The models predict that the soil temperature at 6 m depth will increase by 2.34-2.67 °C on area average relative to 1990-2000, and the increase intensifies with increasing latitude. The active layer thickness will also increase by 0.42-0.45 m, but dissimilar to soil temperature, the increase weakens with increasing latitude due to the distinctly cooler permafrost at higher latitudes. The permafrost extent will obviously retreat north and decrease by 24-26% and the ground settlement owing to permafrost thaw is estimated at 3.8-15 cm on area average. Possible uncertainties in this study may be mostly attributed to the less accurate ground ice content data and coarse horizontal resolution of the models.

  9. Climate warming over the past half century has led to thermal degradation of permafrost on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ran, Youhua; Li, Xin; Cheng, Guodong

    2018-02-01

    Air temperature increases thermally degrade permafrost, which has widespread impacts on engineering design, resource development, and environmental protection in cold regions. This study evaluates the potential thermal degradation of permafrost over the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP) from the 1960s to the 2000s using estimated decadal mean annual air temperatures (MAATs) by integrating remote-sensing-based estimates of mean annual land surface temperatures (MASTs), leaf area index (LAI) and fractional snow cover values, and decadal mean MAAT date from 152 weather stations with a geographically weighted regression (GWR). The results reflect a continuous rise of approximately 0.04 °C a-1 in the decadal mean MAAT values over the past half century. A thermal-condition classification matrix is used to convert modelled MAATs to permafrost thermal type. Results show that the climate warming has led to a thermal degradation of permafrost in the past half century. The total area of thermally degraded permafrost is approximately 153.76 × 104 km2, which corresponds to 88 % of the permafrost area in the 1960s. The thermal condition of 75.2 % of the very cold permafrost, 89.6 % of the cold permafrost, 90.3 % of the cool permafrost, 92.3 % of the warm permafrost, and 32.8 % of the very warm permafrost has been degraded to lower levels of thermal condition. Approximately 49.4 % of the very warm permafrost and 96 % of the likely thawing permafrost has degraded to seasonally frozen ground. The mean elevations of the very cold, cold, cool, warm, very warm, and likely thawing permafrost areas increased by 88, 97, 155, 185, 161, and 250 m, respectively. The degradation mainly occurred from the 1960s to the 1970s and from the 1990s to the 2000s. This degradation may lead to increased risks to infrastructure, reductions in ecosystem resilience, increased flood risks, and positive climate feedback effects. It therefore affects the well-being of millions of people

  10. Investigate the plant biomass response to climate warming in permafrost ecosystem using matrix-based data assimilation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, X.; Du, Z.; Schuur, E.; Luo, Y.

    2017-12-01

    Permafrost is one of the most vulnerable regions on the earth with over 40% world soil C represented in this region. Future climate warming potentially has a great impact on this region. On one hand, rising temperature accelerates permafrost soil thaw and release more C from land. On the other hand, warming may also increase the plant growing season length and therefore negatively feedback to climate change by increasing annual land C uptake. However, whether permafrost vegetation biomass change in response to warming can sequester more C has not been well understood. Manipulated air warming experiments reported that air warming has very limited impacts on grass land productivity and biomass growth in permafrost region [Mauritz et al., 2017]. It is hard to reveal the mechanisms behind the limited air warming response directly from experiment data. We employ a vegetation C cycle matrix model based on Community land model 4.5 (CLM4.5) and data assimilation technique to investigate how much do phenology and physiology processes contribute to the response respectively. Our results indicate phenology contributes the most in response to warming. The shift of vegetation parameter distributions after 2012 indicate vegetation acclimation may explain the modest response in plant biomass to air warming. The results suggest future model development need to take vegetation acclimation more seriously. The novel matrix-based model allows data assimilation to be conducted more efficiently. It provides more functional understanding of the models as well as the mechanism behind experiment data.

  11. Responses of alpine grassland on Qinghai–Tibetan plateau to climate warming and permafrost degradation: a modeling perspective

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yi, Shuhua; Wang, Xiaoyun; Qin, Yu; Ding, Yongjian; Xiang, Bo

    2014-01-01

    Permafrost plays a critical role in soil hydrology. Thus, the degradation of permafrost under warming climate conditions may affect the alpine grassland ecosystem on the Qinghai–Tibetan Plateau. Previous space-for-time studies using plot and basin scales have reached contradictory conclusions. In this study, we applied a process-based ecosystem model (DOS-TEM) with a state-of-the-art permafrost hydrology scheme to examine this issue. Our results showed that 1) the DOS-TEM model could properly simulate the responses of soil thermal and hydrological dynamics and of ecosystem dynamics to climate warming and spatial differences in precipitation; 2) the simulated results were consistent with plot-scale studies showing that warming caused an increase in maximum unfrozen thickness, a reduction in vegetation and soil carbon pools as a whole, and decreases in soil water content, net primary production, and heterotrophic respiration; and 3) the simulated results were also consistent with basin-scale studies showing that the ecosystem responses to warming were different in regions with different combinations of water and energy constraints. Permafrost prevents water from draining into water reservoirs. However, the degradation of permafrost in response to warming is a long-term process that also enhances evapotranspiration. Thus, the degradation of the alpine grassland ecosystem on the Qinghai–Tibetan Plateau (releasing carbon) cannot be mainly attributed to the disappearing waterproofing function of permafrost. (letter)

  12. Response of organic matter quality in permafrost soils to warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plaza, C.; Pegoraro, E.; Schuur, E.

    2016-12-01

    Global warming is predicted to thaw large quantities of the perennially frozen organic matter stored in northern permafrost soils. Upon thaw, this organic matter will be exposed to lateral export to water bodies and to microbial decomposition, which may exacerbate climate change by releasing significant amounts of greenhouse gases. To gain an insight into these processes, we investigated how the quality of permafrost soil organic matter responded to five years of warming. In particular, we sampled control and experimentally warmed soils in 2009 and 2013 from an experiment established in 2008 in a moist acidic tundra ecosystem in Healy, Alaska. We examined surface organic (0 to 15 cm), deep organic (15 to 35 cm), and mineral soil layers (35 to 55 cm) separately by means of stable isotope analysis (δ13C and δ15N) and solid-state 13C nuclear magnetic resonance. Compared to the control, the experimental warming did not affect the isotopic and molecular composition of soil organic matter across the depth profile. However, we did find significant changes with time. In particular, in the surface organic layer, δ13C decreased and alkyl/O-alkyl ratio increased from 2009 to 2013, which indicated variations in soil organic sources (e.g., changes in vegetation) and accelerated decomposition. In the deep organic layer, we found a slight increase in δ15N with time. In the mineral layer, δ13C values decreased slightly, whereas alkyl C/O-alkyl ratio increased, suggesting a preferential loss of relatively more degraded organic matter fractions probably by lateral transport by water flowing through the soil. Acknowledgements: This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 654132. Web site: http://vulcan.comule.com

  13. Design and Build of the Qinghai-Tibet Railway considering the Impacts of Warming Climate and Permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, W.; Jin, H.; Cheng, G.; Wu, Q.; Lai, Y.

    2005-12-01

    During the period from 1960 to 2000, an 1°C increase of air temperature has been observed along the Qinghai-Tibet Railway (QTR) traversing 632 km of warm and ice-rich permafrost through the interior of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. Correspondingly, mean annual ground temperatures (MAGTs) of warm (>-1 °C) permafrost on average increased about 0.3 to 0.5°C during 1970s-1990, while that of colder permafrost had increased by 0.1 to 0.3°C. During 1996-2004, ground temperatures at the permafrost table were increasing at the rates of 0.01-0.08°C a-1, and the permafrost table was lowering at the rates of 2.6 to 6.6 cm a-1; and the ground temperatures at depths of 6 to 8 m were warming at the rates of 0.02 to 0.05°C a-1. Consequently, the strengths of permafrost as the foundation of the QTR would be weakened if proper engineering measures were not taken. Based on the experiences and lessons learned from the road construction in permafrost regions from Alaska, Canada and Russia, and northeastern China, and taking into consideration of possible climatic warming along the QTR during the next 100 years, the design and construction of the QTR adopted the principle of``cooling the roadbed'' because most of the permafrost along the route is too deep to be thawed, too thermally sensitive to climatic warming and too critical to have appreciable thaw settlements. About 550 km of QTR is in continuous permafrost zone, 82 km is in discontinuous permafrost zone; 275 km is in warm permafrost areas, and 110 km of permafrost is ice-rich. The QTR is designed for safe operations during the next 100 years during which a warming of 2.2 to 2.6°C by 2050 is projected. Without engineering measures to keep ground frozen or maintain the settlement within the acceptable limits, thaw settlement in the foundation soils, and induced environmental instability would threaten the integrity and safety of QTR operation. However, only increasing therma resistance, such as increasing fill thickness or

  14. The long-term fate of permafrost peatlands under rapid climate warming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Swindles, Graeme T.; Morris, Paul J.; Mullan, Donal

    2015-01-01

    Permafrost peatlands contain globally important amounts of soil organic carbon, owing to cold conditions which suppress anaerobic decomposition. However, climate warming and permafrost thaw threaten the stability of this carbon store. The ultimate fate of permafrost peatlands and their carbon...... stores is unclear because of complex feedbacks between peat accumulation, hydrology and vegetation. Field monitoring campaigns only span the last few decades and therefore provide an incomplete picture of permafrost peatland response to recent rapid warming. Here we use a high-resolution palaeoecological...... approach to understand the longer-term response of peatlands in contrasting states of permafrost degradation to recent rapid warming. At all sites we identify a drying trend until the late-twentieth century; however, two sites subsequently experienced a rapid shift to wetter conditions as permafrost thawed...

  15. Influences of Moisture Regimes and Functional Plant Types on Nutrient Cycling in Permafrost Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCaully, R. E.; Arendt, C. A.; Newman, B. D.; Heikoop, J. M.; Wilson, C. J.; Sevanto, S.; Wales, N. A.; Wullschleger, S.

    2017-12-01

    to understand the impacts of a warming climate on biogeochemical cycling in permafrost regions.

  16. Permafrost and infrastructure in the Usa Basin (Northeast European Russia) : Possible impacts of global warming

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mazhitova, G.; Karstkarel, N.; Oberman, N.; Romanovsky, V.; Kuhry, P.

    The relationship between permafrost conditions and the distribution of infrastructure in the Usa Basin, Northeast European Russia, is analyzed. About 75% of the Basin is underlain by permafrost terrain with various degrees of continuity (isolated patches to continuous permafrost). The region has a

  17. Susceptibility of Permafrost Soil Organic Carbon under Warming Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Z.; Wullschleger, S. D.; Liang, L.; Graham, D. E.; Gu, B.

    2015-12-01

    Degradation of soil organic carbon (SOC) that has been stored in permafrost is a key concern under warming climate because it could provide a positive feedback. Studies and conceptual models suggest that SOC degradation is largely controlled by the decomposability of SOC, but it is unclear exactly what portions of SOC are susceptible to rapid breakdown and what mechanisms may be involved in SOC degradation. Using a suite of analytical techniques, we examined the dynamic consumption and production of labile SOC compounds, including sugars, alcohols, and small molecular weight organic acids in incubation experiments (up to 240 days at either -2 or 8 °C) with a tundra soil under anoxic conditions, where SOC respiration and iron(III) reduction were monitored. We observe that sugars and alcohols are main components in SOC accounting for initial rapid release of CO2 and CH4 through anaerobic fermentation, whereas the fermentation products such as acetate and formate are subsequently utilized as primary substrates for methanogenesis. Iron(III) reduction is correlated to acetate production and methanogenesis, suggesting its important roles as an electron acceptor in tundra SOC respiration. These observations corroborate strongly with the glucose addition during incubation, in which rapid CO2 and CH4 production is observed concurrently with rapid production and consumption of organics such as acetate. Thus, the biogeochemical processes we document here are pertinent to understanding the accelerated SOC decomposition with temperature and could provide basis for model predicting feedbacks to climate warming in the Arctic.

  18. Variability in the sensitivity among model simulations of permafrost and carbon dynamics in the permafrost region between 1960 and 2009

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGuire, A. David; Koven, Charles; Lawrence, David M.; Clein, Joy S.; Xia, Jiangyang; Beer, Christian; Burke, Eleanor J.; Chen, Guangsheng; Chen, Xiaodong; Delire, Christine; Jafarov, Elchin; MacDougall, Andrew H.; Marchenko, Sergey S.; Nicolsky, Dmitry J.; Peng, Shushi; Rinke, Annette; Saito, Kazuyuki; Zhang, Wenxin; Alkama, Ramdane; Bohn, Theodore J.; Ciais, Philippe; Decharme, Bertrand; Ekici, Altug; Gouttevin, Isabelle; Hajima, Tomohiro; Hayes, Daniel J.; Ji, Duoying; Krinner, Gerhard; Lettenmaier, Dennis P.; Luo, Yiqi; Miller, Paul A.; Moore, John C.; Romanovsky, Vladimir; Schädel, Christina; Schaefer, Kevin; Schuur, Edward A.G.; Smith, Benjamin; Sueyoshi, Tetsuo; Zhuang, Qianlai

    2016-01-01

    A significant portion of the large amount of carbon (C) currently stored in soils of the permafrost region in the Northern Hemisphere has the potential to be emitted as the greenhouse gases CO2and CH4 under a warmer climate. In this study we evaluated the variability in the sensitivity of permafrost and C in recent decades among land surface model simulations over the permafrost region between 1960 and 2009. The 15 model simulations all predict a loss of near-surface permafrost (within 3 m) area over the region, but there are large differences in the magnitude of the simulated rates of loss among the models (0.2 to 58.8 × 103 km2 yr−1). Sensitivity simulations indicated that changes in air temperature largely explained changes in permafrost area, although interactions among changes in other environmental variables also played a role. All of the models indicate that both vegetation and soil C storage together have increased by 156 to 954 Tg C yr−1between 1960 and 2009 over the permafrost region even though model analyses indicate that warming alone would decrease soil C storage. Increases in gross primary production (GPP) largely explain the simulated increases in vegetation and soil C. The sensitivity of GPP to increases in atmospheric CO2 was the dominant cause of increases in GPP across the models, but comparison of simulated GPP trends across the 1982–2009 period with that of a global GPP data set indicates that all of the models overestimate the trend in GPP. Disturbance also appears to be an important factor affecting C storage, as models that consider disturbance had lower increases in C storage than models that did not consider disturbance. To improve the modeling of C in the permafrost region, there is the need for the modeling community to standardize structural representation of permafrost and carbon dynamics among models that are used to evaluate the permafrost C feedback and for the modeling and observational communities to

  19. The long-term fate of permafrost peatlands under rapid climate warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swindles, Graeme T.; Morris, Paul J.; Mullan, Donal; Watson, Elizabeth J.; Turner, T. Edward; Roland, Thomas P.; Amesbury, Matthew J.; Kokfelt, Ulla; Schoning, Kristian; Pratte, Steve; Gallego-Sala, Angela; Charman, Dan J.; Sanderson, Nicole; Garneau, Michelle; Carrivick, Jonathan L.; Woulds, Clare; Holden, Joseph; Parry, Lauren; Galloway, Jennifer M.

    2015-01-01

    Permafrost peatlands contain globally important amounts of soil organic carbon, owing to cold conditions which suppress anaerobic decomposition. However, climate warming and permafrost thaw threaten the stability of this carbon store. The ultimate fate of permafrost peatlands and their carbon stores is unclear because of complex feedbacks between peat accumulation, hydrology and vegetation. Field monitoring campaigns only span the last few decades and therefore provide an incomplete picture of permafrost peatland response to recent rapid warming. Here we use a high-resolution palaeoecological approach to understand the longer-term response of peatlands in contrasting states of permafrost degradation to recent rapid warming. At all sites we identify a drying trend until the late-twentieth century; however, two sites subsequently experienced a rapid shift to wetter conditions as permafrost thawed in response to climatic warming, culminating in collapse of the peat domes. Commonalities between study sites lead us to propose a five-phase model for permafrost peatland response to climatic warming. This model suggests a shared ecohydrological trajectory towards a common end point: inundated Arctic fen. Although carbon accumulation is rapid in such sites, saturated soil conditions are likely to cause elevated methane emissions that have implications for climate-feedback mechanisms. PMID:26647837

  20. Review and synthesis: Changing permafrost in a warming world and feedbacks to the Earth System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grosse, Guido; Goetz, Scott; McGuire, A. David; Romanovsky, Vladimir E.; Schuur, Edward A.G.

    2016-01-01

    The permafrost component of the cryosphere is changing dramatically, but the permafrost region is not well monitored and the consequences of change are not well understood. Changing permafrost interacts with ecosystems and climate on various spatial and temporal scales. The feedbacks resulting from these interactions range from local impacts on topography, hydrology, and biology to complex influences on global scale biogeochemical cycling. This review contributes to this focus issue by synthesizing its 28 multidisciplinary studies which provide field evidence, remote sensing observations, and modeling results on various scales. We synthesize study results from a diverse range of permafrost landscapes and ecosystems by reporting key observations and modeling outcomes for permafrost thaw dynamics, identifying feedbacks between permafrost and ecosystem processes, and highlighting biogeochemical feedbacks from permafrost thaw. We complete our synthesis by discussing the progress made, stressing remaining challenges and knowledge gaps, and providing an outlook on future needs and research opportunities in the study of permafrost–ecosystem–climate interactions.

  1. Effects of experimental warming of air, soil and permafrost on carbon balance in Alaskan tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    S.M. Natali; E.A.G. Schuur; C. Trucco; C.E. Hicks Pries; K.G. Crummer; A.F. Baron Lopez

    2011-01-01

    The carbon (C) storage capacity of northern latitude ecosystems may diminish as warming air temperatures increase permafrost thaw and stimulate decomposition of previously frozen soil organic C. However, warming may also enhance plant growth so that photosynthetic carbon dioxide (C02) uptake may, in part, offset respiratory losses. To determine...

  2. Vulnerability of permafrost carbon to global warming. Part II: sensitivity of permafrost carbon stock to global warming

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Khvorostyanov, D.V.; Ciais, G. (Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et l' Environnement, Saclay (France)); Krinner, G. (Laboratoire de Glaciologie et Geophysique de l' Environnement, St Martin d' Heres (France)). e-mail: Dimitry.Khvorostiyanov@lsce.ipsl.fr; Zimov, S.A. (Northeast Science Station, Cherskii (RU)); Corradi, C. (UNITUS, Univ. of Tuscia, Veterbo (Italy)); Guggenberger, G. (Inst. of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, Martin-Luther-Univ., Halle-Wittenberg (DE))

    2008-07-01

    In the companion paper (Part I), we presented a model of permafrost carbon cycle to study the sensitivity of frozen carbon stocks to future climate warming. The mobilization of deep carbon stock of the frozen Pleistocene soil in the case of rapid stepwise increase of atmospheric temperature was considered. In this work, we adapted the model to be used also for floodplain tundra sites and to account for the processes in the soil active layer. The new processes taken into account are litter input and decomposition, plant-mediated transport of methane, and leaching of exudates from plant roots. The SRES-A2 transient climate warming scenario of the IPSL CM4 climate model is used to study the carbon fluxes from the carbon-rich Pleistocene soil with seasonal active-layer carbon cycling on top of it. For a point to the southwest from the western branch of Yedoma Ice Complex, where the climate warming is strong enough to trigger self-sustainable decomposition processes, about 256 kg C/m2, or 70% of the initial soil carbon stock under present-day climate conditions, are emitted to the atmosphere in about 120 yr, including 20 kg C/m2 released as methane. The total average flux of CO{sub 2} and methane emissions to the atmosphere during this time is of 2.1 kg C/m2/yr. Within the Yedoma, whose most part of the territory remains relatively cold, the emissions are much smaller: 0.2 kg C/m2/yr between 2050 and 2100 for Yakutsk area. In a test case with saturated upper-soil meter, when the runoff is insufficient to evacuate the meltwater, 0.05 kg CH{sub 4}/m2/yr on average are emitted as methane during 250 yr starting from 2050. The latter can translate to the upper bound of 1 GtC/yr in CO{sub 2} equivalent from the 1 million km2 area of the Yedoma

  3. Permafrost and organic layer interactions over a climate gradient in a discontinuous permafrost zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kristofer D. Johnson; Jennifer W. Harden; A. David McGuire; Mark Clark; Fengming Yuan; Andrew O. Finley

    2013-01-01

    Permafrost is tightly coupled to the organic soil layer, an interaction that mediates permafrost degradation in response to regional warming. We analyzed changes in permafrost occurrence and organic layer thickness (OLT) using more than 3000 soil pedons across a mean annual temperature (MAT) gradient. Cause and effect relationships between permafrost probability (PF),...

  4. Impact of global warming on permafrost conditions in a coupled GCM

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stendel, M.; Christensen, J. H.

    2002-01-01

    emissions (SRES A2 issued by IPCC), we estimate the amounts that the permafrost zones moves poleward and how the thickness of the active layer deepens in response to the global warming by the end of the 21st century. The simulation indicates a 30-40% increase in active-layer thickness for most...

  5. Utilization of Screw Piles in High Seismicity Areas of Cold and Warm Permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    This work was performed in support of the AUTC project Utilization of Screw Piles in : High Seismicity Areas of Cold and Warm Permafrost under the direction of PI Dr. Kenan : Hazirbaba. Surface wave testing was performed at 30 sites in the City...

  6. Increased plant productivity in Alaskan tundra as a result of experimental warming of soil and permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    S.M. Natali; E.A.G. Schuur; R.L. Rubin

    2012-01-01

    The response of northern tundra plant communities to warming temperatures is of critical concern because permafrost ecosystems play a key role in global carbon (C) storage, and climate-induced ecological shifts in the plant community will affect the transfer of carbon-dioxide between biological and atmospheric pools. This study, which focuses on the response of tundra...

  7. Examining Environmental Gradients with satellite data in permafrost regions - the current state of the ESA GlobPermafrost initative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grosse, G.; Bartsch, A.; Kääb, A.; Westermann, S.; Strozzi, T.; Wiesmann, A.; Duguay, C. R.; Seifert, F. M.; Obu, J.; Nitze, I.; Heim, B.; Haas, A.; Widhalm, B.

    2017-12-01

    Permafrost cannot be directly detected from space, but many surface features of permafrost terrains and typical periglacial landforms are observable with a variety of EO sensors ranging from very high to medium resolution at various wavelengths. In addition, landscape dynamics associated with permafrost changes and geophysical variables relevant for characterizing the state of permafrost, such as land surface temperature or freeze-thaw state can be observed with spaceborne Earth Observation. Suitable regions to examine environmental gradients across the Arctic have been defined in a community white paper (Bartsch et al. 2014, hdl:10013/epic.45648.d001). These transects have been revised and adjusted within the DUE GlobPermafrost initiative of the European Space Agency. The ESA DUE GlobPermafrost project develops, validates and implements Earth Observation (EO) products to support research communities and international organisations in their work on better understanding permafrost characteristics and dynamics. Prototype product cases will cover different aspects of permafrost by integrating in situ measurements of subsurface and surface properties, Earth Observation, and modelling to provide a better understanding of permafrost today. The project will extend local process and permafrost monitoring to broader spatial domains, support permafrost distribution modelling, and help to implement permafrost landscape and feature mapping in a GIS framework. It will also complement active layer and thermal observing networks. Both lowland (latitudinal) and mountain (altitudinal) permafrost issues are addressed. The status of the Permafrost Information System and first results will be presented. Prototypes of GlobPermafrost datasets include: Modelled mean annual ground temperature by use of land surface temperature and snow water equivalent from satellites Land surface characterization including shrub height, land cover and parameters related to surface roughness Trends from

  8. Evaluation of the Committed Carbon Emissions and Global Warming due to the Permafrost Carbon Feedback

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elshorbany, Y. F.; Schaefer, K. M.; Jafarov, E. E.; Yumashev, D.; Hope, C.

    2017-12-01

    We quantify the increase in carbon emissions and temperature due to Permafrost Carbon feedback (PCF), defined as the amplification of anthropogenic warming due to carbon emissions from thawing permafrost (i.e., of near-surface layers to 3 m depth). We simulate the Committed PCF emissions, the cumulative total emissions from thawing permafrost by 2300 for a given global temperature increase by 2100, and investigate the resulting global warming using the Simple Biosphere/Carnegie-Ames-Stanford Approach SiBCASA model. We estimate the committed PCF emissions and warming for the Fifth Assessment Report, Representative Concentration Pathway scenarios 4.5 and 8.5 using two ensembles of five projections. For the 2 °C warming target of the global climate change treaty, committed PCF emissions increase to 24 Gt C by 2100 and 76 Gt C by 2300 and the committed PCF warming is 0.23 °C by 2300. Our calculations show that as the global temperature increase by 2100 approaches 5.8 °C, the entire stock of frozen carbon thaws out, resulting in maximum committed PCF emissions of 560 Gt C by 2300.

  9. Changes in Hydrologic Conditions and Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Circumpolar Regions due to Climate Change Induced Permafrost Retreat

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Whiticar, M. J. [School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, University of Victoria, Victoria (Canada); Bhatti, J.; Startsev, N. [Northern Forestry Centre, St Edmonton, AB (Canada)

    2013-07-15

    Thawing permafrost peatlands substantially influence Canadian northern ecosystems by changing the regional hydrology and mobilizing the vast carbon (C) reserves that results in increased greenhouse gas (GHGs) emissions to the atmosphere. With permafrost distribution controlled largely by topography and climate, our International polar y ear (IPY) study intensively monitored the local C cycling processes and GHG fluxes associated with different hydrologic and permafrost environments at 4 sites along a climatic gradient extending from the Isolated patches permafrost Zone (northern alberta), to the continuous permafrost Zone (Inuvik, NWT). Each site encompasses a local gradient from upland forest and peat plateau to collapse scar. Our multi-year measurements of peatland profiles and flux chambers for CH{sub 4} and CO{sub 2} concentrations and stable isotope ratios indicate processes, including methanogenesis, methanotrophy, transport and emission that control the distribution of these GHGs. These relationships are modulated by fluctuating local soil water and corresponding ecosystem conditions. The gas geochemistry shows that significant surface CH{sub 4} production occurs by both hydrogenotrophic and acetoclastic methanogenesis in submerged, anaerobic peats, e.g., collapse scars, whereas methane oxidation is restricted to aerobic, drier environments, e.g., upland sites and peat-atmosphere interface. The most active methanogenesis and emissions are in areas of actively thawing permafrost contrasting with sites under continuous permafrost. This degree of methanogenesis is being amplified by the increased rate of Arctic warming and the rapid retreat of permafrost in canada's arctic (approximately. 2.5 km/a). (author)

  10. Decadal warming causes a consistent and persistent shift from heterotrophic to autotrophic respiration in contrasting permafrost ecosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hicks Pries, C.E.; van Logtestijn, R.S.P; Schuur, E.A.G.; Natali, S.M.; Cornelissen, J.H.C.; Aerts, R.; Dorrepaal, E.

    2015-01-01

    Soil carbon in permafrost ecosystems has the potential to become a major positive feedback to climate change if permafrost thaw increases heterotrophic decomposition. However, warming can also stimulate autotrophic production leading to increased ecosystem carbon storage-a negative climate change

  11. Permafrost distribution in peatlands of west-central Canada during the Holocene warm period 6000 years BP

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zoltai, S.C. [Canadian Forest Service, Edmonton, AB (Canada)

    1995-12-31

    The extent and timing of permafrost development in peatlands of west-central Canada are examined. The floristic composition of the permafrost peatlands was determined from macrofossil samples of cores drilled at 161 locations. Radiocarbon dating of substantial changes in the peat sequences and of basal peat deposition was used to provide chronological control. The reconstructed paleoenvironments show the presence or absence of permafrost at the time of peat formation. Permafrost distribution in peatlands is estimated during the warm period 6000 years BP. It is estimated that the mean annual temperature was approximately 5{degree}C warmer than at present. 42 refs., 3 figs., 4 tabs.

  12. Permafrost warming and vegetation changes in continental Antarctica

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Guglielmin, Mauro; Dalle Fratte, Michele; Cannone, Nicoletta

    2014-01-01

    Continental Antarctica represents the last pristine environment on Earth and is one of the most suitable contexts to analyze the relations between climate, active layer and vegetation. In 2000 we started long-term monitoring of the climate, permafrost, active layer and vegetation in Victoria Land, continental Antarctica. Our data confirm the stability of mean annual and summer air temperature, of snow cover, and an increasing trend of summer incoming short wave radiation. The active layer thickness is increasing at a rate of 0.3 cm y −1 . The active layer is characterized by large annual and spatial differences. The latter are due to scarce vegetation, a patchy and very thin organic layer and large spatial differences in snow accumulation. The active layer thickening, probably due to the increase of incoming short wave radiation, produced a general decrease of the ground water content due to the better drainage of the ground. The resultant drying may be responsible for the decline of mosses in xeric sites, while it provided better conditions for mosses in hydric sites, following the species-specific water requirements. An increase of lichen vegetation was observed where the climate drying occurred. This evidence emphasizes that the Antarctic continent is experiencing changes that are in total contrast to the changes reported from maritime Antarctica. (paper)

  13. Comparing the sensitivity of permafrost and marine gas hydrate to climate warming

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Taylor, A.E.; Dallimore, S.R.; Hyndman, R.D.; Wright, F.

    2005-01-01

    The sensitivity of Arctic subpermafrost gas hydrate at the Mallik borehole was compared to temperate marine gas hydrate located offshore southwestern Canada. In particular, a finite element geothermal model was used to determine the sensitivity to the end of the ice age, and contemporary climate warming of a 30 m thick methane hydrate layer lying at the base of a gas hydrate stability zone prior to 13.5 kiloannum (ka) before present (BP). It was suggested that the 30 m gas-hydrate-bearing layer would have disappeared by now, according to the thermal signal alone. However, the same gas-hydrate-bearing layer underlying permafrost would persist until at least 4 ka after present, even with contemporary climate warming. The longer time for subpermafrost gas hydrate comes from the thawing pore ice at the base of permafrost, at the expense of dissociation of the deeper gas hydrate. The dissociation of underlying gas hydrate from climate surface warming is buffered by the overlying permafrost

  14. Empirical estimates to reduce modeling uncertainties of soil organic carbon in permafrost regions: a review of recent progress and remaining challenges

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mishra, U; Jastrow, J D; Matamala, R; Fan, Z; Miller, R M; Hugelius, G; Kuhry, P; Koven, C D; Riley, W J; Harden, J W; Ping, C L; Michaelson, G J; McGuire, A D; Tarnocai, C; Schaefer, K; Schuur, E A G; Jorgenson, M T; Hinzman, L D

    2013-01-01

    The vast amount of organic carbon (OC) stored in soils of the northern circumpolar permafrost region is a potentially vulnerable component of the global carbon cycle. However, estimates of the quantity, decomposability, and combustibility of OC contained in permafrost-region soils remain highly uncertain, thereby limiting our ability to predict the release of greenhouse gases due to permafrost thawing. Substantial differences exist between empirical and modeling estimates of the quantity and distribution of permafrost-region soil OC, which contribute to large uncertainties in predictions of carbon–climate feedbacks under future warming. Here, we identify research challenges that constrain current assessments of the distribution and potential decomposability of soil OC stocks in the northern permafrost region and suggest priorities for future empirical and modeling studies to address these challenges. (letter)

  15. Constraining estimates of methane emissions from Arctic permafrost regions with CARVE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, R. Y.; Karion, A.; Sweeney, C.; Henderson, J.; Mountain, M.; Eluszkiewicz, J.; Luus, K. A.; Lin, J. C.; Dinardo, S.; Miller, C. E.; Wofsy, S. C.

    2013-12-01

    Permafrost in the Arctic contains large carbon pools that are currently non-labile, but can be released to the atmosphere as polar regions warm. In order to predict future climate scenarios, we need to understand the emissions of these greenhouse gases under varying environmental conditions. This study presents in-situ measurements of methane made on board an aircraft during the Carbon in Arctic Reservoirs Vulnerability Experiment (CARVE), which sampled over the permafrost regions of Alaska. Using measurements from May to September 2012, seasonal emission rate estimates of methane from tundra are constrained using the Stochastic Time-Inverted Lagrangian Transport model, a Lagrangian particle dispersion model driven by custom polar-WRF fields. Preliminary results suggest that methane emission rates have not greatly increased since the Arctic Boundary Layer Experiment conducted in southwest Alaska in 1988.

  16. Permafrost degradation and methane: low risk of biogeochemical climate-warming feedback

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gao Xiang; Adam Schlosser, C; Sokolov, Andrei; Anthony, Katey Walter; Zhuang Qianlai; Kicklighter, David

    2013-01-01

    Climate change and permafrost thaw have been suggested to increase high latitude methane emissions that could potentially represent a strong feedback to the climate system. Using an integrated earth-system model framework, we examine the degradation of near-surface permafrost, temporal dynamics of inundation (lakes and wetlands) induced by hydro-climatic change, subsequent methane emission, and potential climate feedback. We find that increases in atmospheric CH 4 and its radiative forcing, which result from the thawed, inundated emission sources, are small, particularly when weighed against human emissions. The additional warming, across the range of climate policy and uncertainties in the climate-system response, would be no greater than 0.1 ° C by 2100. Further, for this temperature feedback to be doubled (to approximately 0.2 ° C) by 2100, at least a 25-fold increase in the methane emission that results from the estimated permafrost degradation would be required. Overall, this biogeochemical global climate-warming feedback is relatively small whether or not humans choose to constrain global emissions. (letter)

  17. Large methane emission upon spring thaw from natural wetlands in the northern permafrost region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Song Changchun; Sun Xiaoxin; Sun Li; Miao Yuqing; Wang Xianwei; Guo Yuedong; Xu Xiaofeng; Tian Hanqin

    2012-01-01

    The permafrost carbon–climate feedback is one of the major mechanisms in controlling the climate–ecosystem interactions in northern high latitudes. Of this feedback, methane (CH 4 ) emission from natural wetlands is critically important due to its high warming potential. The freeze–thaw transition has been confirmed to play an important role in annual CH 4 budget, yet the magnitude of this effect is uncertain. An intensive field campaign was carried out in the Sanjiang Plain, Northeast China to estimate the CH 4 emission in the spring freeze–thaw transition period. The observation concluded that a large CH 4 source was caused by spring thaw; the maximum hourly emission rate was 48.6 g C m −2 h −1 , more than three orders of the regularly observed CH 4 emission rate in the growing season. In some sporadically observed ‘hot spots’, the spring thawing effect contributed to a large CH 4 source of 31.3± 10.1 g C m −2 , which is approximately 80% of the previously calculated annual CH 4 emission in the same study area. If our results are typical for natural wetlands in the Northern Hemisphere permafrost region, we estimate a global CH 4 source strength of 0.5–1.0 Tg C (1 Tg =10 12 g) caused by spring thaw in the Northern Hemisphere permafrost region in the year 2011. Combining with available satellite and flask data, a regional extrapolation reaches a temporal pattern of CH 4 emission during 2003–2009 which is consistent with recently observed changes in atmospheric CH 4 concentration in the high latitudes. This suggests that the CH 4 emission upon spring thaw in the high latitudes might be enhanced by the projected climate warming. These findings indicate that the spring thawing effect is an important mechanism in the permafrost carbon–climate feedback and needs to be incorporated in Earth system models. (letter)

  18. Development of capability for microtopography-resolving simulations of hydrologic processes in permafrost affected regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Painter, S.; Moulton, J. D.; Berndt, M.; Coon, E.; Garimella, R.; Lewis, K. C.; Manzini, G.; Mishra, P.; Travis, B. J.; Wilson, C. J.

    2012-12-01

    The frozen soils of the Arctic and subarctic regions contain vast amounts of stored organic carbon. This carbon is vulnerable to release to the atmosphere as temperatures warm and permafrost degrades. Understanding the response of the subsurface and surface hydrologic system to degrading permafrost is key to understanding the rate, timing, and chemical form of potential carbon releases to the atmosphere. Simulating the hydrologic system in degrading permafrost regions is challenging because of the potential for topographic evolution and associated drainage network reorganization as permafrost thaws and massive ground ice melts. The critical process models required for simulating hydrology include subsurface thermal hydrology of freezing/thawing soils, thermal processes within ice wedges, mechanical deformation processes, overland flow, and surface energy balances including snow dynamics. A new simulation tool, the Arctic Terrestrial Simulator (ATS), is being developed to simulate these coupled processes. The computational infrastructure must accommodate fully unstructured grids that track evolving topography, allow accurate solutions on distorted grids, provide robust and efficient solutions on highly parallel computer architectures, and enable flexibility in the strategies for coupling among the various processes. The ATS is based on Amanzi (Moulton et al. 2012), an object-oriented multi-process simulator written in C++ that provides much of the necessary computational infrastructure. Status and plans for the ATS including major hydrologic process models and validation strategies will be presented. Highly parallel simulations of overland flow using high-resolution digital elevation maps of polygonal patterned ground landscapes demonstrate the feasibility of the approach. Simulations coupling three-phase subsurface thermal hydrology with a simple thaw-induced subsidence model illustrate the strong feedbacks among the processes. D. Moulton, M. Berndt, M. Day, J

  19. Computing a ground appropriateness index for route selection in permafrost regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chi Zhang

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The reasonable calculation of ground appropriateness index in permafrost region is the precondition of highway route design in permafrost region. The theory of knowledge base and fuzzy mathematics are applied, and the damage effect of permafrost is considered in the paper. Based on the idea of protecting permafrost the calculation method of ground appropriateness index is put forward. Firstly, based on the actual environment conditions, the paper determines the factors affecting the road layout in permafrost areas by qualitative and quantitative analysis, including the annual slope, the average annual ground temperature of permafrost, the amount of ice in frozen soil, and the interference engineering. Secondly, based on the knowledge base theory and the use of Delphi method, the paper establishes the knowledge base, the rule base of the permafrost region and inference mechanism. The method of selecting the road in permafrost region is completed and realized by using the software platform. Thirdly, taking the Tuotuo River to Kaixin Mountain section of permafrost region as an example, the application of the method is studied by using an ArcGIS platform. Results show that the route plan determined by the method of selecting the road in permafrost region can avoid the high temperature and high ice content area, conform the terrain changes and evade the heat disturbance among the existing projects. A reasonable route plan can be achieved, and it can provide the basis for the next engineering construction.

  20. Decadal warming causes a consistent and persistent shift from heterotrophic to autotrophic respiration in contrasting permafrost ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hicks Pries, Caitlin E; van Logtestijn, Richard S P; Schuur, Edward A G; Natali, Susan M; Cornelissen, Johannes H C; Aerts, Rien; Dorrepaal, Ellen

    2015-12-01

    Soil carbon in permafrost ecosystems has the potential to become a major positive feedback to climate change if permafrost thaw increases heterotrophic decomposition. However, warming can also stimulate autotrophic production leading to increased ecosystem carbon storage-a negative climate change feedback. Few studies partitioning ecosystem respiration examine decadal warming effects or compare responses among ecosystems. Here, we first examined how 11 years of warming during different seasons affected autotrophic and heterotrophic respiration in a bryophyte-dominated peatland in Abisko, Sweden. We used natural abundance radiocarbon to partition ecosystem respiration into autotrophic respiration, associated with production, and heterotrophic decomposition. Summertime warming decreased the age of carbon respired by the ecosystem due to increased proportional contributions from autotrophic and young soil respiration and decreased proportional contributions from old soil. Summertime warming's large effect was due to not only warmer air temperatures during the growing season, but also to warmer deep soils year-round. Second, we compared ecosystem respiration responses between two contrasting ecosystems, the Abisko peatland and a tussock-dominated tundra in Healy, Alaska. Each ecosystem had two different timescales of warming (permafrost ecosystems. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. THE RELIABILITY ANALYSIS OF EXISTING REINFORCED CONCRETE PILES IN PERMAFROST REGIONS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vladimir S. Utkin

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The article describes the general problem of safe operation of buildings and structures with the dynamics of permafrost in Russia and other countries. The global warming on Earth will lead to global disasters such as failures of buildings and structures. The main reason of these failures will be a reduction of bearing capacity and the reliability of foundations. It is necessary to organize the observations (monitoring for the process of reducing the bearing capacity of foundations to prevent such accidents and reduce negative consequences, to development of preventive measures and operational methods for the piles reliability analysis. The main load-bearing elements of the foundation are reinforced concrete piles and frozen ground. Reinforced concrete piles have a tendency to decrease the bearing capacity and reliability of the upper (aerial part and the part in the soil. The article discusses the problem of reliability analysis of existing reinforced concrete piles in upper part in permafrost regions by the reason of pile degradation in the contact zone of seasonal thawing and freezing soil. The evaluation of the probability of failure is important in itself, but also it important for the reliability of foundation: consisting of piles and frozen soil. Authors offers the methods for reliability analysis of upper part of reinforced concrete piles in the contact zone with seasonally thawed soil under different number of random variables (fuzzy variables in the design mathematical model of a limit state by the strength criterion.

  2. Impacts of mean annual air temperature change on a regional permafrost probability model for the southern Yukon and northern British Columbia, Canada

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. P. Bonnaventure

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Air temperature changes were applied to a regional model of permafrost probability under equilibrium conditions for an area of nearly 0.5 × 106 km2 in the southern Yukon and northwestern British Columbia, Canada. Associated environmental changes, including snow cover and vegetation, were not considered in the modelling. Permafrost extent increases from 58% of the area (present day: 1971–2000 to 76% under a −1 K cooling scenario, whereas warming scenarios decrease the percentage of permafrost area exponentially to 38% (+ 1 K, 24% (+ 2 K, 17% (+ 3 K, 12% (+ 4 K and 9% (+ 5 K of the area. The morphology of permafrost gain/loss under these scenarios is controlled by the surface lapse rate (SLR, i.e. air temperature elevation gradient, which varies across the region below treeline. Areas that are maritime exhibit SLRs characteristically similar above and below treeline resulting in low probabilities of permafrost in valley bottoms. When warming scenarios are applied, a loss front moves to upper elevations (simple unidirectional spatial loss. Areas where SLRs are gently negative below treeline and normal above treeline exhibit a loss front moving up-mountain at different rates according to two separate SLRs (complex unidirectional spatial loss. Areas that display high continentally exhibit bidirectional spatial loss in which the loss front moves up-mountain above treeline and down-mountain below treeline. The parts of the region most affected by changes in MAAT (mean annual air temperature have SLRs close to 0 K km−1 and extensive discontinuous permafrost, whereas the least sensitive in terms of areal loss are sites above the treeline where permafrost presence is strongly elevation dependent.

  3. Vulnerability of Permafrost Soil Carbon to Climate Warming: Evaluating Controls on Microbial Community Composition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abstract: Despite the fact that permafrost soils contain up to half of the carbon (C) in terrestrial pools, we have a poor understanding of the controls on decomposition in thawed permafrost. Global climate models assume that decomposition increases linearly with temperature, yet decomposition in th...

  4. Assessment of permafrost distribution maps in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region using rock glaciers mapped in Google Earth

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schmid, M.O.; Baral, P.; Gruber, S.; Shahi, S.; Shrestha, T.; Stumm, D.; Wester, P.

    2015-01-01

    The extent and distribution of permafrost in the mountainous parts of the Hindu Kush Himalayan (HKH) region are largely unknown. A long tradition of permafrost research, predominantly on rather gentle relief, exists only on the Tibetan Plateau. Two permafrost maps are available digitally that

  5. Year-round methane emissions from permafrost in a North-east Siberian region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro-Morales, Karel; Kaiser, Sonja; Kleinen, Thomas; Kwon, Min Jung; Kittler, Fanny; Zaehle, Sönke; Beer, Christian; Göckede, Mathias

    2017-04-01

    In recent decades, permafrost regions in northern latitudes are thawing as a response of climate warming. Soils in permafrost areas contain vast amounts of organic material that is released into the environment after thaw, providing new labile material for bacterial decomposition. As a result, higher production of methane in the anoxic soil layers and within anaerobic wetlands is anticipated, and this will be further released to the atmosphere. In order to assess the current large-scale methane emissions from a wetland permafrost-thaw affected area, we present results of year-round simulated methane emissions at regional scale for a section at the Russian far Northeast in Siberia, located in the low Arctic tundra and characterized by continuous permafrost. For this we use a newly developed process-based methane model built in the framework of the land surface model JSBACH. The model contains explicit permafrost processes and an improved representation of the horizontal extent of wetlands with a hydrological model (TOPMODEL). Model simulated distribution and horizontal extent of wetlands is evaluated against high-resolution remote sensing data. Total and individual regional methane emissions by ebullition, molecular diffusion, plant-mediated and emissions through snow are presented for 2014 and 2015. The model shows a reasonable seasonal transition between the individual methane emission paths. Most of the methane emissions to the atmosphere occur in summer (July, August, September), with the peak of the emissions during August. In this month, plant-mediated transport is the dominant emission path with about 15 mg CH4 m-2 d-1 in 2014, followed by ebullition (7 mg CH4 m-2 d-1) accounting for about half of the emissions thorough plants. Molecular diffusion is a minor contributor with only 0.006 mg CH4 m-2 d-1 at the peak of the summer emissions. Methane emissions through snow occur only during spring, fall and winter months, with higher emissions in spring and autumn

  6. PeRL: a circum-Arctic Permafrost Region Pond and Lake database

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muster, Sina; Roth, Kurt; Langer, Moritz; Lange, Stephan; Cresto Aleina, Fabio; Bartsch, Annett; Morgenstern, Anne; Grosse, Guido; Jones, Benjamin; Sannel, A. Britta K.; Sjöberg, Ylva; Günther, Frank; Andresen, Christian; Veremeeva, Alexandra; Lindgren, Prajna R.; Bouchard, Frédéric; Lara, Mark J.; Fortier, Daniel; Charbonneau, Simon; Virtanen, Tarmo A.; Hugelius, Gustaf; Palmtag, Juri; Siewert, Matthias B.; Riley, William J.; Koven, Charles D.; Boike, Julia

    2017-06-01

    Ponds and lakes are abundant in Arctic permafrost lowlands. They play an important role in Arctic wetland ecosystems by regulating carbon, water, and energy fluxes and providing freshwater habitats. However, ponds, i.e., waterbodies with surface areas smaller than 1. 0 × 104 m2, have not been inventoried on global and regional scales. The Permafrost Region Pond and Lake (PeRL) database presents the results of a circum-Arctic effort to map ponds and lakes from modern (2002-2013) high-resolution aerial and satellite imagery with a resolution of 5 m or better. The database also includes historical imagery from 1948 to 1965 with a resolution of 6 m or better. PeRL includes 69 maps covering a wide range of environmental conditions from tundra to boreal regions and from continuous to discontinuous permafrost zones. Waterbody maps are linked to regional permafrost landscape maps which provide information on permafrost extent, ground ice volume, geology, and lithology. This paper describes waterbody classification and accuracy, and presents statistics of waterbody distribution for each site. Maps of permafrost landscapes in Alaska, Canada, and Russia are used to extrapolate waterbody statistics from the site level to regional landscape units. PeRL presents pond and lake estimates for a total area of 1. 4 × 106 km2 across the Arctic, about 17 % of the Arctic lowland ( pangaea.de/10.1594/PANGAEA.868349" target="_blank">https://doi.pangaea.de/10.1594/PANGAEA.868349.

  7. Permafrost Degradation Risk Zone Assessment using Simulation Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Daanen, R.P.; Ingeman-Nielsen, Thomas; Marchenko, S.

    2011-01-01

    In this proof-of-concept study we focus on linking large scale climate and permafrost simulations to small scale engineering projects by bridging the gap between climate and permafrost sciences on the one hand and on the other technical recommendation for adaptation of planned infrastructures...... to climate change in a region generally underlain by permafrost. We present the current and future state of permafrost in Greenland as modelled numerically with the GIPL model driven by HIRHAM climate projections up to 2080. We develop a concept called Permafrost Thaw Potential (PTP), defined...... as the potential active layer increase due to climate warming and surface alterations. PTP is then used in a simple risk assessment procedure useful for engineering applications. The modelling shows that climate warming will result in continuing wide-spread permafrost warming and degradation in Greenland...

  8. Effects of short-term variability of meteorological variables on soil temperature in permafrost regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beer, Christian; Porada, Philipp; Ekici, Altug; Brakebusch, Matthias

    2018-03-01

    Effects of the short-term temporal variability of meteorological variables on soil temperature in northern high-latitude regions have been investigated. For this, a process-oriented land surface model has been driven using an artificially manipulated climate dataset. Short-term climate variability mainly impacts snow depth, and the thermal diffusivity of lichens and bryophytes. These impacts of climate variability on insulating surface layers together substantially alter the heat exchange between atmosphere and soil. As a result, soil temperature is 0.1 to 0.8 °C higher when climate variability is reduced. Earth system models project warming of the Arctic region but also increasing variability of meteorological variables and more often extreme meteorological events. Therefore, our results show that projected future increases in permafrost temperature and active-layer thickness in response to climate change will be lower (i) when taking into account future changes in short-term variability of meteorological variables and (ii) when representing dynamic snow and lichen and bryophyte functions in land surface models.

  9. Thermal stability analysis under embankment with asphalt pavement and cement pavement in permafrost regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Junwei, Zhang; Jinping, Li; Xiaojuan, Quan

    2013-01-01

    The permafrost degradation is the fundamental cause generating embankment diseases and pavement diseases in permafrost region while the permafrost degradation is related with temperature. Based on the field monitoring results of ground temperature along G214 Highway in high temperature permafrost regions, both the ground temperatures in superficial layer and the annual average temperatures under the embankment were discussed, respectively, for concrete pavements and asphalt pavements. The maximum depth of temperature field under the embankment for concrete pavements and asphalt pavements was also studied by using the finite element method. The results of numerical analysis indicate that there were remarkable seasonal differences of the ground temperatures in superficial layer between asphalt pavement and concrete pavement. The maximum influencing depth of temperature field under the permafrost embankment for every pavement was under the depth of 8 m. The thawed cores under both embankments have close relation with the maximum thawed depth, the embankment height, and the service time. The effective measurements will be proposed to keep the thermal stabilities of highway embankment by the results.

  10. PeRL: A circum-Arctic Permafrost Region Pond and Lake database

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muster, Sina; Roth, Kurt; Langer, Moritz; Lange, Stephan; Cresto Aleina, Fabio; Bartsch, Annett; Morgenstern, Anne; Grosse, Guido; Jones, Benjamin; Sannel, A.B.K.; Sjoberg, Ylva; Gunther, Frank; Andresen, Christian; Veremeeva, Alexandra; Lindgren, Prajna R.; Bouchard, Frédéric; Lara, Mark J.; Fortier, Daniel; Charbonneau, Simon; Virtanen, Tarmo A.; Hugelius, Gustaf; Palmtag, J.; Siewert, Matthias B.; Riley, William J.; Koven, Charles; Boike, Julia

    2017-01-01

    Ponds and lakes are abundant in Arctic permafrost lowlands. They play an important role in Arctic wetland ecosystems by regulating carbon, water, and energy fluxes and providing freshwater habitats. However, ponds, i.e., waterbodies with surface areas smaller than 1. 0 × 104 m2, have not been inventoried on global and regional scales. The Permafrost Region Pond and Lake (PeRL) database presents the results of a circum-Arctic effort to map ponds and lakes from modern (2002–2013) high-resolution aerial and satellite imagery with a resolution of 5 m or better. The database also includes historical imagery from 1948 to 1965 with a resolution of 6 m or better. PeRL includes 69 maps covering a wide range of environmental conditions from tundra to boreal regions and from continuous to discontinuous permafrost zones. Waterbody maps are linked to regional permafrost landscape maps which provide information on permafrost extent, ground ice volume, geology, and lithology. This paper describes waterbody classification and accuracy, and presents statistics of waterbody distribution for each site. Maps of permafrost landscapes in Alaska, Canada, and Russia are used to extrapolate waterbody statistics from the site level to regional landscape units. PeRL presents pond and lake estimates for a total area of 1. 4 × 106 km2 across the Arctic, about 17 % of the Arctic lowland ( s.l.) land surface area. PeRL waterbodies with sizes of 1. 0 × 106 m2 down to 1. 0 × 102 m2 contributed up to 21 % to the total water fraction. Waterbody density ranged from 1. 0 × 10 to 9. 4 × 101 km−2. Ponds are the dominant waterbody type by number in all landscapes representing 45–99 % of the total waterbody number. The implementation of PeRL size distributions in land surface models will greatly improve the investigation and projection of surface inundation and carbon fluxes in permafrost lowlands. Waterbody maps, study area

  11. Permafrost thaw and climate warming may decrease the CO2, carbon, and metal concentration in peat soil waters of the Western Siberia Lowland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raudina, T V; Loiko, S V; Lim, A; Manasypov, R M; Shirokova, L S; Istigechev, G I; Kuzmina, D M; Kulizhsky, S P; Vorobyev, S N; Pokrovsky, O S

    2018-09-01

    Soil pore waters are a vital component of the ecosystem as they are efficient tracers of mineral weathering, plant litter leaching, and nutrient uptake by vegetation. In the permafrost environment, maximal hydraulic connectivity and element transport from soils to rivers and lakes occurs via supra-permafrost flow (i.e. water, gases, suspended matter, and solutes migration over the permafrost table). To assess possible consequences of permafrost thaw and climate warming on carbon and Green House gases (GHG) dynamics we used a "substituting space for time" approach in the largest frozen peatland of the world. We sampled stagnant supra-permafrost (active layer) waters in peat columns of western Siberia Lowland (WSL) across substantial gradients of climate (-4.0 to -9.1°C mean annual temperature, 360 to 600mm annual precipitation), active layer thickness (ALT) (>300 to 40cm), and permafrost coverage (sporadic, discontinuous and continuous). We analyzed CO 2 , CH 4 , dissolved carbon, and major and trace elements (TE) in 93 soil pit samples corresponding to several typical micro landscapes constituting the WSL territory (peat mounds, hollows, and permafrost subsidences and depressions). We expected a decrease in intensity of DOC and TE mobilization from soil and vegetation litter to the supra-permafrost water with increasing permafrost coverage, decreasing annual temperature and ALT along a latitudinal transect from 62.3°N to 67.4°N. However, a number of solutes (DOC, CO 2 , alkaline earth metals, Si, trivalent and tetravalent hydrolysates, and micronutrients (Mn, Co, Ni, Cu, V, Mo) exhibited a northward increasing trend with highest concentrations within the continuous permafrost zone. Within the "substituting space for time" climate change scenario and northward shift of the permafrost boundary, our results suggest that CO 2 , DOC, and many major and trace elements will decrease their concentration in soil supra-permafrost waters at the boundary between thaw and

  12. Permafrost slowly exhales methane

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herndon, Elizabeth M.

    2018-04-01

    Permafrost soils store vast quantities of organic matter that are vulnerable to decomposition under a warming climate. Recent research finds that methane release from thawing permafrost may outpace carbon dioxide as a major contributor to global warming over the next century.

  13. Landsat-based trend analysis of lake dynamics across northern permafrost regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nitze, Ingmar; Grosse, Guido; Jones, Benjamin M.; Arp, Christopher D.; Ulrich, Mathias; Federov, Alexander; Veremeeva, Alexandra

    2017-01-01

    Lakes are a ubiquitous landscape feature in northern permafrost regions. They have a strong impact on carbon, energy and water fluxes and can be quite responsive to climate change. The monitoring of lake change in northern high latitudes, at a sufficiently accurate spatial and temporal resolution, is crucial for understanding the underlying processes driving lake change. To date, lake change studies in permafrost regions were based on a variety of different sources, image acquisition periods and single snapshots, and localized analysis, which hinders the comparison of different regions. Here we present, a methodology based on machine-learning based classification of robust trends of multi-spectral indices of Landsat data (TM,ETM+, OLI) and object-based lake detection, to analyze and compare the individual, local and regional lake dynamics of four different study sites (Alaska North Slope, Western Alaska, Central Yakutia, Kolyma Lowland) in the northern permafrost zone from 1999 to 2014. Regional patterns of lake area change on the Alaska North Slope (-0.69%), Western Alaska (-2.82%), and Kolyma Lowland (-0.51%) largely include increases due to thermokarst lake expansion, but more dominant lake area losses due to catastrophic lake drainage events. In contrast, Central Yakutia showed a remarkable increase in lake area of 48.48%, likely resulting from warmer and wetter climate conditions over the latter half of the study period. Within all study regions, variability in lake dynamics was associated with differences in permafrost characteristics, landscape position (i.e. upland vs. lowland), and surface geology. With the global availability of Landsat data and a consistent methodology for processing the input data derived from robust trends of multi-spectral indices, we demonstrate a transferability, scalability and consistency of lake change analysis within the northern permafrost region.

  14. Climate change and the permafrost carbon feedback.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuur, E A G; McGuire, A D; Schädel, C; Grosse, G; Harden, J W; Hayes, D J; Hugelius, G; Koven, C D; Kuhry, P; Lawrence, D M; Natali, S M; Olefeldt, D; Romanovsky, V E; Schaefer, K; Turetsky, M R; Treat, C C; Vonk, J E

    2015-04-09

    Large quantities of organic carbon are stored in frozen soils (permafrost) within Arctic and sub-Arctic regions. A warming climate can induce environmental changes that accelerate the microbial breakdown of organic carbon and the release of the greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and methane. This feedback can accelerate climate change, but the magnitude and timing of greenhouse gas emission from these regions and their impact on climate change remain uncertain. Here we find that current evidence suggests a gradual and prolonged release of greenhouse gas emissions in a warming climate and present a research strategy with which to target poorly understood aspects of permafrost carbon dynamics.

  15. Monitoring and Quantifying Subsurface Ice and Water Content in Permafrost Regions Based on Geophysical Data Sets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hauck, C.; Bach, M.; Hilbich, C.

    2007-12-01

    Based on recent observational evidence of climate change in permafrost regions, it is now recognised that a detailed knowledge of the material composition of the subsurface in permafrost regions is required for modelling of the future evolution of the ground thermal regime and an assessment of the hazard potential due to degrading permafrost. However, due to the remote location of permafrost areas and the corresponding difficulties in obtaining high-quality data sets of the subsurface, knowledge about the material composition in permafrost areas is scarce. In frozen ground subsurface material may consist of four different phases: rock/soil matrix, unfrozen pore water, ice and air-filled pore space. Applications of geophysical techniques for determining the subsurface composition are comparatively cheap and logistically feasible alternatives to the single point information from boreholes. Due to the complexity of the subsurface a combination of complementary geophysical methods (e.g. electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) and refraction seismic tomography) is often favoured to avoid ambiguities in the interpretation of the results. The indirect nature of geophysical soundings requires a relation between the measured variable (electrical resistivity, seismic velocity) and the rock-, water-, ice- and air content. In this contribution we will present a model which determines the volumetric fractions of these four phases from tomographic electrical and seismic data sets. The so-called 4-phase model is based on two well-known geophysical mixing rules using observed resistivity and velocity data as input data on a 2-dimensional grid. Material properties such as resistivity and P- wave velocity of the host rock material and the pore water have to be known beforehand. The remaining free model parameters can be determined by a Monte-Carlo approach, the results of which are used additionally as indicator for the reliability of the model results. First results confirm the

  16. Semiautomatic mapping of permafrost in the Yukon Flats, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gulbrandsen, Mats Lundh; Minsley, Burke J.; Ball, Lyndsay B.; Hansen, Thomas Mejer

    2016-01-01

    Thawing of permafrost due to global warming can have major impacts on hydrogeological processes, climate feedback, arctic ecology, and local environments. To understand these effects and processes, it is crucial to know the distribution of permafrost. In this study we exploit the fact that airborne electromagnetic (AEM) data are sensitive to the distribution of permafrost and demonstrate how the distribution of permafrost in the Yukon Flats, Alaska, is mapped in an efficient (semiautomatic) way, using a combination of supervised and unsupervised (machine) learning algorithms, i.e., Smart Interpretation and K-means clustering. Clustering is used to sort unfrozen and frozen regions, and Smart Interpretation is used to predict the depth of permafrost based on expert interpretations. This workflow allows, for the first time, a quantitative and objective approach to efficiently map permafrost based on large amounts of AEM data.

  17. Vulnerability of permafrost carbon to global warming. Part I: model description and role of heat generated by organic matter decomposition

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Khvorostyanov, D.V.; Ciais, G. (Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et l' Environnement, Saclay (France)); Krinner, G. (Laboratoire de Glaciologie et Geophysique de l' Environnement, St Martin d' Heres (France)). e-mail: Dimitry.Khvorostiyanov@lsce.ipsl.fr; Heimann, M. (Max-Planck Inst. of Biogeochemistry, Jena (DE)); Zimov, S.A. (Northeast Science Station, Cherskii (RU))

    2008-07-01

    We constructed a new model to study the sensitivity of permafrost carbon stocks to future climate warming. The one-dimensional model solves an equation for diffusion of heat penetrating from the overlying atmosphere and takes into account additional in situ heat production by active soil microorganisms. Decomposition of frozen soil organic matter and produced CO{sub 2} and methane fluxes result from an interplay of soil heat conduction and phase transitions, respiration, methanogenesis and methanotrophy processes. Respiration and methanotrophy consume soil oxygen and thus can only develop in an aerated top-soil column. In contrast, methanogenesis is not limited by oxygen and can be sustained within the deep soil, releasing sufficient heat to further thaw in depth the frozen carbon-rich soil organic matter. Heat production that accompanies decomposition and methanotrophy can be an essential process providing positive feedback to atmospheric warming through self-sustaining transformation of initially frozen soil carbon into CO{sub 2} and CH{sub 4}. This supplementary heat becomes crucial, however, only under certain climate conditions. Oxygen limitation to soil respiration slows down the process, so that the mean flux of carbon released during the phase of intense decomposition is more than two times less than without oxygen limitation. Taking into account methanogenesis increases the mean carbon flux by 20%. Part II of this study deals with mobilization of frozen carbon stock in transient climate change scenarios with more elaborated methane module, which makes it possible to consider more general cases with various site configurations. Part I (this manuscript) studies mobilization of 400 GtC carbon stock of the Yedoma in response to a stepwise rapid warming focusing on the role of supplementary heat that is released to the soil during decomposition of organic matter

  18. Analysing the environmental harms caused by coal mining and its protection measures in permafrost regions of Qinghai–Tibet Plateau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Cao

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The coal mining has brought a series of ecological problems and environmental problems in permafrost regions. Taking Muli coal-mining area as an example, this article attempts to analyse the environmental harms caused by coal mining and its protection measures in permafrost regions of Qinghai–Tibet Plateau. This article analyses the influence of open mining on the surrounding permafrost around the open pit by using the numerical simulation. The results show that (1 based on the interrelation between coal mining and permafrost environment, these main environmental harm include the permafrost change and the natural environment change in cold regions; (2 once the surface temperature rises due to open mining, the permafrost will disappear with the increase of exploitation life. If considering the solar radiation, the climate conditions and the geological condition around the pit edge, the maximum thaw depth will be more than 2 m; (3 the protection measures are proposed to avoid the disadvantage impact on the permafrost environment caused by coal mining. It will provide a scientific basis for the resource development and environment protection in cold regions.

  19. Microbial diversity in European alpine permafrost and active layers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frey, Beat; Rime, Thomas; Phillips, Marcia; Stierli, Beat; Hajdas, Irka; Widmer, Franco; Hartmann, Martin

    2016-03-01

    Permafrost represents a largely understudied genetic resource. Thawing of permafrost with global warming will not only promote microbial carbon turnover with direct feedback on greenhouse gases, but also unlock an unknown microbial diversity. Pioneering metagenomic efforts have shed light on the permafrost microbiome in polar regions, but temperate mountain permafrost is largely understudied. We applied a unique experimental design coupled to high-throughput sequencing of ribosomal markers to characterize the microbiota at the long-term alpine permafrost study site 'Muot-da-Barba-Peider' in eastern Switzerland with an approximate radiocarbon age of 12 000 years. Compared to the active layers, the permafrost community was more diverse and enriched with members of the superphylum Patescibacteria (OD1, TM7, GN02 and OP11). These understudied phyla with no cultured representatives proposedly feature small streamlined genomes with reduced metabolic capabilities, adaptations to anaerobic fermentative metabolisms and potential ectosymbiotic lifestyles. The permafrost microbiota was also enriched with yeasts and lichenized fungi known to harbour various structural and functional adaptation mechanisms to survive under extreme sub-zero conditions. These data yield an unprecedented view on microbial life in temperate mountain permafrost, which is increasingly important for understanding the biological dynamics of permafrost in order to anticipate potential ecological trajectories in a warming world. © FEMS 2016. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Permafrost response to increasing Arctic shrub abundance depends on the relative influence of shrubs on local soil cooling versus large-scale climate warming

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lawrence, David M; Swenson, Sean C

    2011-01-01

    Deciduous shrub abundance is increasing across the Arctic in response to climatic warming. In a recent field manipulation experiment in which shrubs were removed from a plot and compared to a control plot with shrubs, Blok et al (2010 Glob. Change Biol. 16 1296–305) found that shrubs protect the ground through shading, resulting in a ∼ 9% shallower active layer thickness (ALT) under shrubs compared to grassy-tundra, which led them to argue that continued Arctic shrub expansion could mitigate future permafrost thaw. We utilize the Community Land Model (CLM4) coupled to the Community Atmosphere Model (CAM4) to evaluate this hypothesis. CLM4 simulates shallower ALT (∼− 11 cm) under shrubs, consistent with the field manipulation study. However, in an idealized pan-Arctic + 20% shrub area experiment, atmospheric heating, driven mainly by surface albedo changes related to protrusion of shrub stems above the spring snowpack, leads to soil warming and deeper ALT (∼+ 10 cm). Therefore, if climate feedbacks are considered, shrub expansion may actually increase rather than decrease permafrost vulnerability. When we account for blowing-snow redistribution from grassy-tundra to shrubs, shifts in snowpack distribution in low versus high shrub area simulations counter the climate warming impact, resulting in a grid cell mean ALT that is unchanged. These results reinforce the need to consider vegetation dynamics and blowing-snow processes in the permafrost thaw model projections.

  1. CO2 loss by permafrost thawing implies additional emissions reductions to limit warming to 1.5 or 2 °C

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burke, Eleanor J.; Chadburn, Sarah E.; Huntingford, Chris; Jones, Chris D.

    2018-02-01

    Large amounts of carbon are stored in the permafrost of the northern high latitude land. As permafrost degrades under a warming climate, some of this carbon will decompose and be released to the atmosphere. This positive climate-carbon feedback will reduce the natural carbon sinks and thus lower anthropogenic CO2 emissions compatible with the goals of the Paris Agreement. Simulations using an ensemble of the JULES-IMOGEN intermediate complexity climate model (including climate response and process uncertainty) and a stabilization target of 2 °C, show that including the permafrost carbon pool in the model increases the land carbon emissions at stabilization by between 0.09 and 0.19 Gt C year-1 (10th to 90th percentile). These emissions are only slightly reduced to between 0.08 and 0.16 Gt C year-1 (10th to 90th percentile) when considering 1.5 °C stabilization targets. This suggests that uncertainties caused by the differences in stabilization target are small compared with those associated with model parameterisation uncertainty. Inertia means that permafrost carbon loss may continue for many years after anthropogenic emissions have stabilized. Simulations suggest that between 225 and 345 Gt C (10th to 90th percentile) are in thawed permafrost and may eventually be released to the atmosphere for stabilization target of 2 °C. This value is 60-100 Gt C less for a 1.5 °C target. The inclusion of permafrost carbon will add to the demands on negative emission technologies which are already present in most low emissions scenarios.

  2. Enhanced greenhouse warming: Regional response and believability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Etkin, D.

    1991-01-01

    Climate models predict significant changes in the world's climate over the next 50-100 y due to increasing atmospheric greenhouse gases. To what extent these predictions can be believed has been the subject of considerable scientific debate. The ability of climate models to reproduce the current climate depends on how well the available data sets specify the earth's climate and how well the models reproduce that specification. A study of historical and paleo climates provides information on how the climate system operates and on past fluctuations in climate, and may also provide useful analogues of future climates. The best tools for understanding and predicting future climate changes are likely numerical models. Sophisticated climate models suffer from uncertainties about the feedback loops present in the real climate system. The ability of global circulation models to replicate current climate globally is fairly good, but significant disagreements have been found among different models at regional scales. For a region such as the Mackenzie Valley, understanding of historical and current climate is essential in terms of developing reasonable scenarios of future climate change. Uncertainty will probably remain an issue with respect to greenhouse warming for the foreseeable future, and as a result the detailed climate prediction on a regional scale needed for some kinds of impact studies may not be attainable. 73 refs., 9 figs., 1 tab

  3. Response characteristics of vegetation and soil environment to permafrost degradation in the upstream regions of the Shule River Basin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen Shengyun; Liu Wenjie; Qin Xiang; Liu Yushuo; Ren Jiawen; Qin Dahe; Zhang Tongzuo; Hu Fengzu; Chen Kelong

    2012-01-01

    Permafrost degradation exhibits striking and profound influences on the alpine ecosystem, and response characteristics of vegetation and soil environment to such degradation inevitably differ during the entire degraded periods. However, up to now, the related research is lacking in the Qinghai–Tibetan Plateau (QTP). For this reason, twenty ecological plots in the different types of permafrost zones were selected in the upstream regions of the Shule River Basin on the northeastern margin of the QTP. Vegetation characteristics (species diversity, community coverage and biomass etc) and topsoil environment (temperature (ST), water content (SW), mechanical composition (SMC), culturable microorganism (SCM), organic carbon (SOC) and total nitrogen (TN) contents and so on), as well as active layer thickness (ALT) were investigated in late July 2009 and 2010. A spatial–temporal shifts method (the spatial pattern that is represented by different types of permafrost shifting to the temporal series that stands for different stages of permafrost degradation) has been used to discuss response characteristics of vegetation and topsoil environment throughout the entire permafrost degradation. The results showed that (1) ST of 0–40 cm depth and ALT gradually increased from highly stable and stable permafrost (H-SP) to unstable permafrost (UP). SW increased initially and then decreased, and SOC content and the quantities of SCM at a depth of 0–20 cm first decreased and then increased, whereas TN content and SMC showed obscure trends throughout the stages of permafrost degradation with a stability decline from H-SP to extremely unstable permafrost (EUP); (2) further, species diversity, community coverage and biomass first increased and then decreased in the stages from H-SP to EUP; (3) in the alpine meadow ecosystem, SOC and TN contents increased initially and then decreased, soil sandy fractions gradually increased with stages of permafrost degradation from substable (SSP

  4. Forest decline caused by high soil water conditions in a permafrost region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Iwasaki

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available In the permafrost region near Yakutsk, eastern Siberia, Russia, annual precipitation (June–May in 2005–2006 and 2006–2007 exceeded the 26-year (1982–2008 mean of 222±68 mm by 185 mm and 128 mm, respectively, whereas in 2007–2008 the excedent was only 48 mm, well within the range of variability. Yellowing and browning of larch (Larix cajanderi Mayr. trees occurred in an undisturbed forest near Yakutsk in the 2007 summer growing season. Soil water content at a depth of 0.20 m was measured along a roughly 400 m long line transect running through areas of yellowing and browning larch trees (YBL and of normal larch trees (NL. In the two years of supranormal precipitation, soil water content was very high compared to values recorded for the same area in previous studies. For both wet years, the mean degree of saturation (s was significantly greater in YBL than NL areas, whereas the converse was the case for the gas diffusivity in soil. This implies that rather than mitigating water stress suffered during normal precipitation years, elevated soil water conditions adversely affected the growth of larch trees. Eastern Siberia's taiga forest extends widely into the permafrost region. Was such supranormal annual precipitation to extend for more than two years, as might be expected under impending global climate changes, forest recovery may not be expected and emission of greenhouse gas might continue in future.

  5. Stochastic analysis of uncertain thermal characteristic of foundation soils surrounding the crude oil pipeline in permafrost regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, Tao; Zhou, Guoqing; Wang, Jianzhou; Zhao, Xiaodong

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • The influence of stochastic properties and conditions on permafrost foundation was investigated. • A stochastic analysis for the uncertain thermal characteristic of crude oil pipe is presented. • The mean temperature and standard deviation of foundation soils are obtained and analyzed. • Average standard deviation and maximum standard deviation of foundation soils increase with time. - Abstract: For foundation soils surrounding the crude oil pipeline in permafrost regions, the soil properties and the upper boundary conditions are stochastic because of complex geological processes and changeable atmospheric environment. The conventional finite element analysis of thermal characteristics for crude oil pipeline is always deterministic, rather than taking stochastic parameters and conditions into account. This study investigated the stochastic influence of an underground crude oil pipeline on the thermal stability of the permafrost foundation on the basis of a stochastic analysis model and the stochastic finite element method. A stochastic finite element program is compiled by Matrix Laboratory (MATLAB) software, and the random temperature fields of foundation soils surrounding a crude oil pipeline in a permafrost region are obtained and analyzed by Neumann stochastic finite element method (NSFEM). The results provide a new way to predict the thermal effects of the crude oil pipeline in permafrost regions, and it shows that the standard deviations in temperature increase with time when considering the stochastic effect of soil properties and boundary conditions, which imply that the results of conventional deterministic analysis may be far from the true value, even if in different seasons. It can improve our understanding of the random temperature field of foundation soils surrounding the crude oil pipeline and provide a theoretical basis for actual engineering design in permafrost regions.

  6. PeRL: a circum-Arctic Permafrost Region Pond and Lake database

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Muster

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Ponds and lakes are abundant in Arctic permafrost lowlands. They play an important role in Arctic wetland ecosystems by regulating carbon, water, and energy fluxes and providing freshwater habitats. However, ponds, i.e., waterbodies with surface areas smaller than 1. 0 × 104 m2, have not been inventoried on global and regional scales. The Permafrost Region Pond and Lake (PeRL database presents the results of a circum-Arctic effort to map ponds and lakes from modern (2002–2013 high-resolution aerial and satellite imagery with a resolution of 5 m or better. The database also includes historical imagery from 1948 to 1965 with a resolution of 6 m or better. PeRL includes 69 maps covering a wide range of environmental conditions from tundra to boreal regions and from continuous to discontinuous permafrost zones. Waterbody maps are linked to regional permafrost landscape maps which provide information on permafrost extent, ground ice volume, geology, and lithology. This paper describes waterbody classification and accuracy, and presents statistics of waterbody distribution for each site. Maps of permafrost landscapes in Alaska, Canada, and Russia are used to extrapolate waterbody statistics from the site level to regional landscape units. PeRL presents pond and lake estimates for a total area of 1. 4 × 106 km2 across the Arctic, about 17 % of the Arctic lowland ( <  300 m a.s.l. land surface area. PeRL waterbodies with sizes of 1. 0 × 106 m2 down to 1. 0 × 102 m2 contributed up to 21 % to the total water fraction. Waterbody density ranged from 1. 0 × 10 to 9. 4 × 101 km−2. Ponds are the dominant waterbody type by number in all landscapes representing 45–99 % of the total waterbody number. The implementation of PeRL size distributions in land surface models will greatly improve the investigation and projection of surface inundation and carbon fluxes in permafrost lowlands

  7. Soil temperature response to 21st century global warming: the role of and some implications for peat carbon in thawing permafrost soils in North America

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Wisser

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Northern peatlands contain a large terrestrial carbon pool that plays an important role in the Earth's carbon cycle. A considerable fraction of this carbon pool is currently in permafrost and is biogeochemically relatively inert; this will change with increasing soil temperatures as a result of climate warming in the 21st century. We use a geospatially explicit representation of peat areas and peat depth from a recently-compiled database and a geothermal model to estimate northern North America soil temperature responses to predicted changes in air temperature. We find that, despite a widespread decline in the areas classified as permafrost, soil temperatures in peatlands respond more slowly to increases in air temperature owing to the insulating properties of peat. We estimate that an additional 670 km3 of peat soils in North America, containing ~33 Pg C, could be seasonally thawed by the end of the century, representing ~20 % of the total peat volume in Alaska and Canada. Warming conditions result in a lengthening of the soil thaw period by ~40 days, averaged over the model domain. These changes have potentially important implications for the carbon balance of peat soils.

  8. Water chemistry in the rives of the permafrost regions on the eastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, X.; Ma, X.; Ye, L.; Liu, G.

    2017-12-01

    Qinghai-Tibetan is the largest middle-low latitude permafrost areas on the world. There are several large rivers in the plateau, and the changes of the water resources of these rivers are associated with the water resource security of more than 1.35 billion people. Due to the high gradients, these rivers have a tremendous amount of potential energy for electricity output. To promote economic and social development and provide clean energy, hydropower development has taken place on several rivers which originate on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. Since dam construction affect the flow velocity, water temperature, sediments delivery as well as organic matter and nitrogen, it is important to investigate the river chemistry in the head rivers of the reservoirs. We examined the water physio-chemical characteristics in the rivers under the typical vegetation types in the eastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, and further analyzed their relationship to vegetation. The results showed that the total suspended sediment in the rivers were higher within the catchment of alpine steppe, with the lowest dissolved organic carbon content. In contrast, the rivers within the meadow had the highest dissolved organic carbon and lowest total suspension sediment. The dissolved organic carbon significantly positively correlated with the proportions of the meadow and wet meadow in the catchment. The pH, turbidity, and SUVA254 and dissolved organic carbon also correlated with each other. The results suggest that the vegetation type strongly affect the water chemistry in the permafrost regions on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau.

  9. The effect of fire and permafrost interactions on soil carbon accumulation in an upland black spruce ecosystem of interior Alaska: implications for post-thaw carbon loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonathan A. O' Donnell; Jennifer W. Harden; A. David McGuire; Mikhail Z. Kanevskiy; M. Torre Jorgenson; Xiaomei Xu

    2010-01-01

    High-latitude regions store large amounts of organic carbon (OC) in active-layer soils and permafrost, accounting for nearly half of the global belowground OC pool. In the boreal region, recent warming has promoted changes in the fire regime, which may exacerbate rates of permafrost thaw and alter soil OC dynamics in both organic and mineral soil. We examined how...

  10. Presence of rapidly degrading permafrost plateaus in south-central Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Benjamin M.; Baughman, Carson; Romanovsky, Vladimir E.; Parsekian, Andrew D.; Babcock, Esther; Stephani, Eva; Jones, Miriam C.; Grosse, Guido; Berg, Edward E

    2016-01-01

    Permafrost presence is determined by a complex interaction of climatic, topographic, and ecological conditions operating over long time scales. In particular, vegetation and organic layer characteristics may act to protect permafrost in regions with a mean annual air temperature (MAAT) above 0 °C. In this study, we document the presence of residual permafrost plateaus in the western Kenai Peninsula lowlands of south-central Alaska, a region with a MAAT of 1.5 ± 1 °C (1981–2010). Continuous ground temperature measurements between 16 September 2012 and 15 September 2015, using calibrated thermistor strings, documented the presence of warm permafrost (−0.04 to −0.08 °C). Field measurements (probing) on several plateau features during the fall of 2015 showed that the depth to the permafrost table averaged 1.48 m but at some locations was as shallow as 0.53 m. Late winter surveys (augering, coring, and GPR) in 2016 showed that the average seasonally frozen ground thickness was 0.45 m, overlying a talik above the permafrost table. Measured permafrost thickness ranged from 0.33 to  >  6.90 m. Manual interpretation of historic aerial photography acquired in 1950 indicates that residual permafrost plateaus covered 920 ha as mapped across portions of four wetland complexes encompassing 4810 ha. However, between 1950 and ca. 2010, permafrost plateau extent decreased by 60.0 %, with lateral feature degradation accounting for 85.0 % of the reduction in area. Permafrost loss on the Kenai Peninsula is likely associated with a warming climate, wildfires that remove the protective forest and organic layer cover, groundwater flow at depth, and lateral heat transfer from wetland surface waters in the summer. Better understanding the resilience and vulnerability of ecosystem-protected permafrost is critical for mapping and predicting future permafrost extent and degradation across all permafrost regions that are currently warming

  11. Interactions between Shrubs and Permafrost in the Torngat Mountains, Northern Labrador, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewkowicz, A.; Way, R. G.; Hermanutz, L.; Trant, A.; Siegwart Collier, L.; Whitaker, D.

    2017-12-01

    Discontinuous permafrost is acutely sensitive to climate warming and vegetation dynamics. Shrub height is positively correlated with accumulation of snow in the tundra resulting in warming of the ground in winter, and greater shading and lower surface temperatures in summer. Rapid greening due to climate warming has been observed throughout northeastern Canada and particularly in the coastal mountainous terrain of the Torngat Mountains National Park. Our research examines how this shrubification in the Torngat Mountains is modifying permafrost characteristics using observations which extend over a 100 km south-north transect from the sporadic zone (Saglek, Torr Bay) to where permafrost is widespread (Nakvak Brook, Kangalaksiorvik Lake) and potentially continuous (Komaktorvik River). We use air and ground temperature monitoring, vegetation surveys, dendrochronology, frost probing and electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) to describe the complex interactions between shrub growth, geomorphology, climate and permafrost in a region where climate warming is rapidly altering the landscape. Preliminary analysis of field data shows low resistivity anomalies in the ERT profiles at some sites with thin permafrost, interpreted as unfrozen zones correlated with areas of tall shrubs (Alnus spp., Salix spp. and Betula glandulosa; ranging from prostrate to 2 m). Elsewhere, high resistivities extend to the base of the ERT profiles, indicating thicker permafrost, and no obvious impact of medium to low-prostrate shrubs (Salix spp., Betula glandulosa, Rhododendron spp., and Vaccinium spp.; up to 50 cm). Permafrost is interpreted to be present at most sites with low or prostrate shrubs, except where hydrological conditions favour warmer ground temperatures. We infer that the net impact of increasing shrub heights on the active layer and permafrost depends on antecedent ground temperatures and surficial geology. Increasing shrub heights may cause permafrost degradation at sites where

  12. Thermokarst dynamics and soil organic matter characteristics controlling initial carbon release from permafrost soils in the Siberian Yedoma region

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Weiss, Niels; Blok, Daan; Elberling, Bo

    2016-01-01

    This study relates soil organic matter (SOM) characteristics to initial soil incubation carbon release from upper permafrost samples in Yedoma region soils of northeastern Siberia, Russia. Carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) content, carbon to nitrogen ratios (C:N), δ13C and δ15N values show clear trends...

  13. Permafrost and organic layer interactions over a climate gradient in a discontinuous permafrost zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Kristofer D.; Harden, Jennifer W.; McGuire, A. David; Clark, Mark; Yuan, Fengming; Finley, Andrew O.

    2013-09-01

    Permafrost is tightly coupled to the organic soil layer, an interaction that mediates permafrost degradation in response to regional warming. We analyzed changes in permafrost occurrence and organic layer thickness (OLT) using more than 3000 soil pedons across a mean annual temperature (MAT) gradient. Cause and effect relationships between permafrost probability (PF), OLT, and other topographic factors were investigated using structural equation modeling in a multi-group analysis. Groups were defined by slope, soil texture type, and shallow (OLT increase in shallow OLT soils (OLTs) due to an insulation effect, but PF decreased in deep OLT soils (OLTd) by 0.06 for every 10-cm increase. Across the MAT gradient, PF in sandy soils varied little, but PF in loamy and silty soils decreased substantially from cooler to warmer temperatures. The change in OLT was more heterogeneous across soil texture types—in some there was no change while in others OLTs soils thinned and/or OLTd soils thickened at warmer locations. Furthermore, when soil organic carbon was estimated using a relationship with thickness, the average increase in carbon in OLTd soils was almost four times greater compared to the average decrease in carbon in OLTs soils across all soil types. If soils follow a trajectory of warming that mimics the spatial gradients found today, then heterogeneities of permafrost degradation and organic layer thinning and thickening should be considered in the regional carbon balance.

  14. ADAPT: building conceptual models of the physical and biological processes across permafrost landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allard, M.; Vincent, W. F.; Lemay, M.

    2012-12-01

    Fundamental and applied permafrost research is called upon in Canada in support of environmental protection, economic development and for contributing to the international efforts in understanding climatic and ecological feedbacks of permafrost thawing under a warming climate. The five year "Arctic Development and Adaptation to Permafrost in Transition" program (ADAPT) funded by NSERC brings together 14 scientists from 10 Canadian universities and involves numerous collaborators from academia, territorial and provincial governments, Inuit communities and industry. The geographical coverage of the program encompasses all of the permafrost regions of Canada. Field research at a series of sites across the country is being coordinated. A common protocol for measuring ground thermal and moisture regime, characterizing terrain conditions (vegetation, topography, surface water regime and soil organic matter contents) is being applied in order to provide inputs for designing a general model to provide an understanding of transfers of energy and matter in permafrost terrain, and the implications for biological and human systems. The ADAPT mission is to produce an 'Integrated Permafrost Systems Science' framework that will be used to help generate sustainable development and adaptation strategies for the North in the context of rapid socio-economic and climate change. ADAPT has three major objectives: to examine how changing precipitation and warming temperatures affect permafrost geosystems and ecosystems, specifically by testing hypotheses concerning the influence of the snowpack, the effects of water as a conveyor of heat, sediments, and carbon in warming permafrost terrain and the processes of permafrost decay; to interact directly with Inuit communities, the public sector and the private sector for development and adaptation to changes in permafrost environments; and to train the new generation of experts and scientists in this critical domain of research in Canada

  15. Sensitivity analysis of longitudinal cracking on asphalt pavement using MEPDG in permafrost region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chen Zhang

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Longitudinal cracking is one of the most important distresses of asphalt pavement in permafrost regions. The sensitivity analysis of design parameters for asphalt pavement can be used to study the influence of every parameter on longitudinal cracking, which can help optimizing the design of the pavement structure. In this study, 20 test sections of Qinghai–Tibet Highway were selected to conduct the sensitivity analysis of longitudinal cracking on material parameter based on Mechanistic-Empirical Pavement Design Guide (MEPDG and single factorial sensitivity analysis method. Some computer aided engineering (CAE simulation techniques, such as the Latin hypercube sampling (LHS technique and the multiple regression analysis are used as auxiliary means. Finally, the sensitivity spectrum of material parameter on longitudinal cracking was established. The result shows the multiple regression analysis can be used to determine the remarkable influence factor more efficiently and to process the qualitative analysis when applying the MEPDG software in sensitivity analysis of longitudinal cracking in permafrost regions. The effect weights of the three parameters on longitudinal cracking in descending order are air void, effective binder content and PG grade. The influence of air void on top layer is bigger than that on middle layer and bottom layer. The influence of effective asphalt content on top layer is bigger than that on middle layer and bottom layer, and the influence of bottom layer is slightly bigger than middle layer. The accumulated value of longitudinal cracking on middle layer and bottom layer in the design life would begin to increase when the design temperature of PG grade increased.

  16. Assessment of three mitigation techniques for permafrost protection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Anders Stuhr

    The presence of permafrost is an important aspect in civil engineering in arctic regions. The construction of engineering structures, such as road and airfield embankments, will change the thermal regime of the ground, and may lead to permafrost degradation under or adjacent to such structures....... This problem, has in the last decades, been amplified by the climate warming, which has been most evident in the arctic regions. The construction of a road embankment usually results in an increased mean annual surface temperature, which will increase the thawing of permafrost and expose the road embankment...... objective has been to study the three above-mentioned techniques and evaluate their potential for minimizing the problems with thaw settlements in permafrost areas. The air convection embankment and heat drain techniques have been tested for the implementation in the shoulders of road and airfield...

  17. Thermal state of permafrost in North America: A contribution to the international polar year

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, S.L.; Romanovsky, V.E.; Lewkowicz, A.G.; Burn, C.R.; Allard, M.; Clow, G.D.; Yoshikawa, K.; Throop, J.

    2010-01-01

    A snapshot of the thermal state of permafrost in northern North America during the International Polar Year (IPY) was developed using ground temperature data collected from 350 boreholes. More than half these were established during IPY to enhance the network in sparsely monitored regions. The measurement sites span a diverse range of ecoclimatic and geological conditions across the continent and are at various elevations within the Cordillera. The ground temperatures within the discontinuous permafrost zone are generally above -3°C, and range down to -15°C in the continuous zone. Ground temperature envelopes vary according to substrate, with shallow depths of zero annual amplitude for peat and mineral soils, and much greater depths for bedrock. New monitoring sites in the mountains of southern and central Yukon suggest that permafrost may be limited in extent. In concert with regional air temperatures, permafrost has generally been warming across North America for the past several decades, as indicated by measurements from the western Arctic since the 1970s and from parts of eastern Canada since the early 1990s. The rates of ground warming have been variable, but are generally greater north of the treeline. Latent heat effects in the southern discontinuous zone dominate the permafrost thermal regime close to 0°C and allow permafrost to persist under a warming climate. Consequently, the spatial diversity of permafrost thermal conditions is decreasing over time.

  18. Recent warming trend in the coastal region of Qatar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Way Lee; Saleem, Ayman; Sadr, Reza

    2017-04-01

    The objective of this study was to analyze long-term temperature-related phenomena in the eastern portion of the Middle East, focusing on the coastal region of Qatar. Extreme temperature indices were examined, which were defined by the Expert Team on Climate Change Detection and Indices, for Doha, Qatar; these indices were then compared with those from neighboring countries. The trends were calculated for a 30-year period (1983-2012), using hourly data obtained from the National Climatic Data Center. The results showed spatially consistent warming trends throughout the region. For Doha, 11 of the 12 indices studied showed significant warming trends. In particular, the warming trends were represented by an increase in the number of warm days and nights and a decrease in the number of cool nights and days. The high-temperature extremes during the night have risen at more than twice the rate of their corresponding daytime extremes. The intensity and frequency of hot days have increased, and the minimum temperature indices exhibited a higher rate of warming. The climatic changes in Doha are consistent with the region-wide heat-up in recent decades across the Middle East. However, the rapid economic expansion, increase of population since the 1990s, and urban effects in the region are thought to have intensified the rapidly warming climate pattern observed in Doha since the turn of the century.

  19. Measuring the Impact of Wildfire on Active Layer Thickness in a Discontinuous Permafrost region using Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaelides, R. J.; Schaefer, K. M.; Zebker, H. A.; Liu, L.; Chen, J.; Parsekian, A.

    2017-12-01

    In permafrost regions, the active layer is defined as the uppermost portion of the permafrost table that is subject to annual freeze/thaw cycles. The active layer plays a crucial role in surface processes, surface hydrology, and vegetation succession; furthermore, trapped methane, carbon dioxide, and other greenhouse gases in permafrost are released into the atmosphere as permafrost thaws. A detailed understanding of active layer dynamics is therefore critical towards understanding the interactions between permafrost surface processes, freeze/thaw cycles, and climate-especially in regions across the Arctic subject to long-term permafrost degradation. The Yukon-Kuskokwim (YK) delta in southwestern Alaska is a region of discontinuous permafrost characterized by surface lakes, wetlands, and thermokarst depressions. Furthermore, extensive wildfires have burned across the YK delta in 2006, 2007, and 2015, impacting vegetation cover, surface soil moisture, and the active layer. Using data from the ALOS PALSAR, ALOS-2 PALSAR-2, and Sentinel-1A/B space borne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) systems, we generate a series of interferograms over a study site in the YK delta spanning 2007-2011, and 2014-present. Using the ReSALT (Remotely-Sensed Active Layer Thickness) technique, we demonstrate that active layer can be characterized over most of the site from the relative interferometric phase difference due to ground subsidence and rebound associated with the seasonal active layer freeze/thaw cycle. Additionally, we show that this technique successfully discriminates between burned and unburned regions, and can resolve increases in active layer thickness in burned regions on the order of 10's of cms. We use the time series of interferograms to discuss permafrost recovery following wildfire burn, and compare our InSAR observations with GPR and active layer probing data from a 2016 summer field campaign to the study site. Finally, we compare the advantages and disadvantages of

  20. Dependence of the evolution of carbon dynamics in the northern permafrost region on the trajectory of climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGuire, A David; Lawrence, David M; Koven, Charles; Clein, Joy S; Burke, Eleanor; Chen, Guangsheng; Jafarov, Elchin; MacDougall, Andrew H; Marchenko, Sergey; Nicolsky, Dmitry; Peng, Shushi; Rinke, Annette; Ciais, Philippe; Gouttevin, Isabelle; Hayes, Daniel J; Ji, Duoying; Krinner, Gerhard; Moore, John C; Romanovsky, Vladimir; Schädel, Christina; Schaefer, Kevin; Schuur, Edward A G; Zhuang, Qianlai

    2018-04-10

    We conducted a model-based assessment of changes in permafrost area and carbon storage for simulations driven by RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 projections between 2010 and 2299 for the northern permafrost region. All models simulating carbon represented soil with depth, a critical structural feature needed to represent the permafrost carbon-climate feedback, but that is not a universal feature of all climate models. Between 2010 and 2299, simulations indicated losses of permafrost between 3 and 5 million km 2 for the RCP4.5 climate and between 6 and 16 million km 2 for the RCP8.5 climate. For the RCP4.5 projection, cumulative change in soil carbon varied between 66-Pg C (10 15 -g carbon) loss to 70-Pg C gain. For the RCP8.5 projection, losses in soil carbon varied between 74 and 652 Pg C (mean loss, 341 Pg C). For the RCP4.5 projection, gains in vegetation carbon were largely responsible for the overall projected net gains in ecosystem carbon by 2299 (8- to 244-Pg C gains). In contrast, for the RCP8.5 projection, gains in vegetation carbon were not great enough to compensate for the losses of carbon projected by four of the five models; changes in ecosystem carbon ranged from a 641-Pg C loss to a 167-Pg C gain (mean, 208-Pg C loss). The models indicate that substantial net losses of ecosystem carbon would not occur until after 2100. This assessment suggests that effective mitigation efforts during the remainder of this century could attenuate the negative consequences of the permafrost carbon-climate feedback. Copyright © 2018 the Author(s). Published by PNAS.

  1. Evaluation of air-soil temperature relationships simulated by land surface models during winter across the permafrost region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Wenli; Rinke, Annette; Moore, John C.; Ji, Duoying; Cui, Xuefeng; Peng, Shushi; Lawrence, David M.; McGuire, A. David; Burke, Eleanor J.; Chen, Xiaodong; Delire, Christine; Koven, Charles; MacDougall, Andrew; Saito, Kazuyuki; Zhang, Wenxin; Alkama, Ramdane; Bohn, Theodore J.; Ciais, Philippe; Decharme, Bertrand; Gouttevin, Isabelle; Hajima, Tomohiro; Krinner, Gerhard; Lettenmaier, Dennis P.; Miller, Paul A.; Smith, Benjamin; Sueyoshi, Tetsuo

    2016-01-01

     A realistic simulation of snow cover and its thermal properties are important for accurate modelling of permafrost. We analyze simulated relationships between air and near-surface (20 cm) soil temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere permafrost region during winter, with a particular focus on snow insulation effects in nine land surface models and compare them with observations from 268 Russian stations. There are large across-model differences as expressed by simulated differences between near-surface soil and air temperatures, (ΔT), of 3 to 14 K, in the gradients between soil and air temperatures (0.13 to 0.96°C/°C), and in the relationship between ΔT and snow depth. The observed relationship between ΔT and snow depth can be used as a metric to evaluate the effects of each model's representation of snow insulation, and hence guide improvements to the model’s conceptual structure and process parameterizations. Models with better performance apply multi-layer snow schemes and consider complex snow processes. Some models show poor performance in representing snow insulation due to underestimation of snow depth and/or overestimation of snow conductivity. Generally, models identified as most acceptable with respect to snow insulation simulate reasonable areas of near-surface permafrost (12–16 million km2). However, there is not a simple relationship between the quality of the snow insulation in the acceptable models and the simulated area of Northern Hemisphere near-surface permafrost, likely because several other factors such as differences in the treatment of soil organic matter, soil hydrology, surface energy calculations, and vegetation also provide important controls on simulated permafrost distribution.

  2. Dependence of the evolution of carbon dynamics in the northern permafrost region on the trajectory of climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGuire, A. David; Lawrence, David M.; Koven, Charles; Clein, Joy S.; Burke, Eleanor J.; Chen, Guangsheng; Jafarov, Elchin; MacDougall, Andrew H.; Marchenko, Sergey S.; Nicolsky, Dmitry J.; Peng, Shushi; Rinke, Annette; Ciais, Philippe; Gouttevin, Isabelle; Hayes, Daniel J.; Ji, Duoying; Krinner, Gerhard; Moore, John C.; Romanovsky, Vladimir; Schadel, Christina; Schaefer, Kevin; Schuur, Edward A.G.; Zhuang, Qianlai

    2018-01-01

    We conducted a model-based assessment of changes in permafrost area and carbon storage for simulations driven by RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 projections between 2010 and 2299 for the northern permafrost region. All models simulating carbon represented soil with depth, a critical structural feature needed to represent the permafrost carbon–climate feedback, but that is not a universal feature of all climate models. Between 2010 and 2299, simulations indicated losses of permafrost between 3 and 5 million km2 for the RCP4.5 climate and between 6 and 16 million km2 for the RCP8.5 climate. For the RCP4.5 projection, cumulative change in soil carbon varied between 66-Pg C (1015-g carbon) loss to 70-Pg C gain. For the RCP8.5 projection, losses in soil carbon varied between 74 and 652 Pg C (mean loss, 341 Pg C). For the RCP4.5 projection, gains in vegetation carbon were largely responsible for the overall projected net gains in ecosystem carbon by 2299 (8- to 244-Pg C gains). In contrast, for the RCP8.5 projection, gains in vegetation carbon were not great enough to compensate for the losses of carbon projected by four of the five models; changes in ecosystem carbon ranged from a 641-Pg C loss to a 167-Pg C gain (mean, 208-Pg C loss). The models indicate that substantial net losses of ecosystem carbon would not occur until after 2100. This assessment suggests that effective mitigation efforts during the remainder of this century could attenuate the negative consequences of the permafrost carbon–climate feedback.

  3. Regional seasonal warming anomalies and land-surface feedbacks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coffel, E.; Horton, R. M.

    2017-12-01

    Significant seasonal variations in warming are projected in some regions, especially central Europe, the southeastern U.S., and central South America. Europe in particular may experience up to 2°C more warming during June, July, and August than in the annual mean, enhancing the risk of extreme summertime heat. Previous research has shown that heat waves in Europe and other regions are tied to seasonal soil moisture variations, and that in general land-surface feedbacks have a strong effect on seasonal temperature anomalies. In this study, we show that the seasonal anomalies in warming are also due in part to land-surface feedbacks. We find that in regions with amplified warming during the hot season, surface soil moisture levels generally decline and Bowen ratios increase as a result of a preferential partitioning of incoming energy into sensible vs. latent. The CMIP5 model suite shows significant variability in the strength of land-atmosphere coupling and in projections of future precipitation and soil moisture. Due to the dependence of seasonal warming on land-surface processes, these inter-model variations influence the projected summertime warming amplification and contribute to the uncertainty in projections of future extreme heat.

  4. Evaluating climate variables, indexes and thresholds governing Arctic urban sustainability: case study of Russian permafrost regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anisimov, O. A.; Kokorev, V.

    2013-12-01

    Addressing Arctic urban sustainability today forces planners to deal with the complex interplay of multiple factors, including governance and economic development, demography and migration, environmental changes and land use, changes in the ecosystems and their services, and climate change. While the latter can be seen as a factor that exacerbates the existing vulnerabilities to other stressors, changes in temperature, precipitation, snow, river and lake ice, and the hydrological regime also have direct implications for the cities in the North. Climate change leads to reduced demand for heating energy, on one hand, and heightened concerns about the fate of the infrastructure built upon thawing permafrost, on the other. Changes in snowfall are particularly important and have direct implications for the urban economy, as together with heating costs, expenses for snow removal from streets, airport runways, roofs and ventilation corridors underneath buildings erected on pile foundations on permafrost constitute the bulk of the city's maintenance budget. Many cities are located in river valleys and are prone to flooding that leads to enormous economic losses and casualties, including human deaths. The severity of the northern climate has direct implications for demographic changes governed by regional migration and labor flows. Climate could thus be viewed as an inexhaustible public resource that creates opportunities for sustainable urban development. Long-term trends show that climate as a resource is becoming more readily available in the Russian North, notwithstanding the general perception that globally climate change is one of the challenges facing humanity in the 21st century. In this study we explore the sustainability of the Arctic urban environment under changing climatic conditions. We identify key governing variables and indexes and study the thresholds beyond which changes in the governing climatic parameters have significant impact on the economy

  5. Terrestrial ecosystem model performance in simulating productivity and its vulnerability to climate change in the northern permafrost region

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xia, Jianyang; McGuire, A. David; Lawrence, David

    2017-01-01

    productivity (NPP) and responses to historical climate change in permafrost regions in the Northern Hemisphere. In comparison with the satellite estimate from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS; 246 ± 6 g C m−2 yr−1), most models produced higher NPP (309 ± 12 g C m−2 yr−1) over...... and the maximum rate of carboxylation by the enzyme Rubisco at 25°C (Vcmax_25), respectively. The models also varied in their sensitivities of NPP, GPP, and CUE to historical changes in climate and atmospheric CO2 concentration. These results indicate that model predictive ability of the C cycle in permafrost...... regions can be improved by better representation of the processes controlling CUE and GPPmax as well as their sensitivity to climate change....

  6. Focus: Assessing the regional impacts of global warming

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Woo, Mingko

    1992-01-01

    Five studies are presented which assess the impacts of global warming on physical, economic, and social systems in Canada. A study on the use of climatic change scenarios to estimate ecoclimatic impacts was carried out. These scenarios may include synthetic scenarios produced from historical data, global climate model (GCM) simulations, and hybrid scenarios. The advantages and drawbacks of various scenarios are discussed along with the criteria for selecting impact assessment models. An examination of water resources in the Great Lakes and the Saskatchewan River subbasin uses case studies of two areas that have experienced wide hydrological variations due to climatic variability in order to determine the impacts of global warming scenarios on net basin supply. Problems of developing regional models are discussed and results of projected changes in net basin supply are presented for GCM-based simulations and hypothetical warming scenarios. A study of the impacts of climate warming on transportation and the regional economy in northern Canada uses stochastic models to provide examples of how Mackenzie River barge traffic will be affected. The economic impacts of the resultant lengthened shipping season are outlined under three scenarios. The implications of climatic change on Ontario agriculture are assessed according to GCM scenarios. Results are presented for crop yields and production as well as land resource suitability. Finally, sociocultural implications of global warming on the Arctic and the Inuit are summarized, with reference to a past warming episode occurring around the year 1000. 45 refs., 4 figs., 3 tabs

  7. Permafrost and organic layer interactions over a climate gradient in a discontinuous permafrost zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnson, Kristofer D; Harden, Jennifer W; David McGuire, A; Clark, Mark; Yuan, Fengming; Finley, Andrew O

    2013-01-01

    Permafrost is tightly coupled to the organic soil layer, an interaction that mediates permafrost degradation in response to regional warming. We analyzed changes in permafrost occurrence and organic layer thickness (OLT) using more than 3000 soil pedons across a mean annual temperature (MAT) gradient. Cause and effect relationships between permafrost probability (PF), OLT, and other topographic factors were investigated using structural equation modeling in a multi-group analysis. Groups were defined by slope, soil texture type, and shallow (<28 cm) versus deep organic (≥28 cm) layers. The probability of observing permafrost sharply increased by 0.32 for every 10-cm OLT increase in shallow OLT soils (OLTs) due to an insulation effect, but PF decreased in deep OLT soils (OLTd) by 0.06 for every 10-cm increase. Across the MAT gradient, PF in sandy soils varied little, but PF in loamy and silty soils decreased substantially from cooler to warmer temperatures. The change in OLT was more heterogeneous across soil texture types—in some there was no change while in others OLTs soils thinned and/or OLTd soils thickened at warmer locations. Furthermore, when soil organic carbon was estimated using a relationship with thickness, the average increase in carbon in OLTd soils was almost four times greater compared to the average decrease in carbon in OLTs soils across all soil types. If soils follow a trajectory of warming that mimics the spatial gradients found today, then heterogeneities of permafrost degradation and organic layer thinning and thickening should be considered in the regional carbon balance. (letter)

  8. Quantifying uncertainties of permafrost carbon–climate feedbacks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. J. Burke

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The land surface models JULES (Joint UK Land Environment Simulator, two versions and ORCHIDEE-MICT (Organizing Carbon and Hydrology in Dynamic Ecosystems, each with a revised representation of permafrost carbon, were coupled to the Integrated Model Of Global Effects of climatic aNomalies (IMOGEN intermediate-complexity climate and ocean carbon uptake model. IMOGEN calculates atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2 and local monthly surface climate for a given emission scenario with the land–atmosphere CO2 flux exchange from either JULES or ORCHIDEE-MICT. These simulations include feedbacks associated with permafrost carbon changes in a warming world. Both IMOGEN–JULES and IMOGEN–ORCHIDEE-MICT were forced by historical and three alternative future-CO2-emission scenarios. Those simulations were performed for different climate sensitivities and regional climate change patterns based on 22 different Earth system models (ESMs used for CMIP3 (phase 3 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project, allowing us to explore climate uncertainties in the context of permafrost carbon–climate feedbacks. Three future emission scenarios consistent with three representative concentration pathways were used: RCP2.6, RCP4.5 and RCP8.5. Paired simulations with and without frozen carbon processes were required to quantify the impact of the permafrost carbon feedback on climate change. The additional warming from the permafrost carbon feedback is between 0.2 and 12 % of the change in the global mean temperature (ΔT by the year 2100 and 0.5 and 17 % of ΔT by 2300, with these ranges reflecting differences in land surface models, climate models and emissions pathway. As a percentage of ΔT, the permafrost carbon feedback has a greater impact on the low-emissions scenario (RCP2.6 than on the higher-emissions scenarios, suggesting that permafrost carbon should be taken into account when evaluating scenarios of heavy mitigation and stabilization

  9. Permafrost: An International Approach to 21th Century Challenges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, J.

    2003-12-01

    Whereas glaciers are easily discernible to the human eye and satellites, permafrost terrains and their physical components are not easily detected from the surface without supplemental knowledge and measurements. In the Northern Hemisphere, approximately 17 million km2 of exposed land contains some extent of permafrost or ground that remains frozen for more than two years. The vast majority, or 11 million km2, of permafrost terrain has temperatures of 5° C or below, with perennially frozen ground underlying essentially all ground surfaces to considerable depths. Permafrost in the remaining regions, including mid-latitude mountains, is both warmer and is spatially variable (discontinuous). As climate warms the uppermost permafrost is subjected to increase thaw with resulting ground subsidence, accelerated erosion, and related biogeochemical modifications. The challenging questions to geocryologists, modelers and the public relate to the rate of change and the spatial variability of the projected thaw, particularly in the warmer zones where actual areal and subareal distribution of permafrost is poorly known. An international network of active layer measurements and borehole sites now exists under the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS), but requires additional sites for representative coverage. This Global Terrestrial Network for Permafrost (GTN-P) is coordinated by the 24-member, International Permafrost Association. At the Eighth International Conference on Permafrost (ICOP) in Zurich in July 2003, the IPA Council agreed on the scope of new activities for the next five years, many of which will be undertaken in cooperation with other international organizations (e.g. WCRP/CliC; ICSI, IASC, SCAR, IGU, IUGS). Examples of the activities of the IPA Working Groups are: 1. Antarctic Permafrost and Periglacial Environments (active layer processes, maps, database). 2. Coastal and Offshore Permafrost (sediment and organic transfers, subsea permafrost dynamics). 3

  10. Variations in Growing-Season NDVI and Its Response to Permafrost Degradation in Northeast China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinting Guo

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Permafrost is extremely sensitive to climate change. The degradation of permafrost has strong and profound effects on vegetation. The permafrost zone of northeastern China is the second largest region of permafrost in China and lies on the south edge of the Eurasian cryolithozone. This study analyzed the spatiotemporal variations of the growing-season Normalization Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI in the permafrost zone of northeastern China and analyzed the correlation between NDVI and ground surface temperatures (GST during the years 1981–2014. Mean growing-season NDVI (MGS-NDVI experienced a marked increase of 0.003 year−1 across the entire permafrost zone. The spatial dynamics of vegetation cover had a high degree of heterogeneity on a per pixel scale. The MGS-NDVI value increased significantly (5% significance level in 80.57%, and this increase was mostly distributed in permafrost zone except for the western steppe region. Only 7.72% experienced a significant decrease in NDVI, mainly in the cultivated and steppe portions. In addition, MGS-NDVI increased significantly with increasing growing-season mean ground surface temperature (GS-MGST. Our results suggest that a warming of GS-MGST (permafrost degradation in the permafrost region of northeastern China played a positive role in increasing plant growth and activities. Although increasing ground surface temperature resulted in increased vegetation cover and growth in the short time of permafrost degradation, from the long term point of view, permafrost degradation or disappearance may weaken or even hinder vegetation activities.

  11. Sphingomonas qilianensis sp. nov., Isolated from Surface Soil in the Permafrost Region of Qilian Mountains, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piao, Ai-Lian; Feng, Xiao-Min; Nogi, Yuichi; Han, Lu; Li, Yonghong; Lv, Jie

    2016-04-01

    A Gram-stain-negative, strictly aerobic, non-motile and rod-shaped bacterial strain, designated X1(T), was isolated from the permafrost region of Qilian Mountains in northwest of China. Phylogenetic analyses of 16S rRNA gene sequence revealed that strain X1(T) was a member of the genus Sphingomonas and shared the highest 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity with Sphingomonas oligophenolica JCM 12082(T) (96.9%), followed by Sphingomonas glacialis CGMCC 1.8957(T) (96.7%) and Sphingomonas alpina DSM 22537(T) (96.4%). Strain X1(T) was able to grow at 15-30 °C, pH 6.0-10.0 and with 0-0.3% NaCl (w/v). The DNA G+C content of the isolate was 64.8 mol%. Strain X1(T)-contained Q-10 as the dominant ubiquinone and C(18:1)ω7c, C(16:1)ω7c, C(16:0) and C(14:0) 2-OH as the dominant fatty acids. The polar lipid profile of strain XI(T)-contained sphingoglycolipid, phosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylethanolamine, one unidentified glycolipid and two unidentified phospholipid. Due to the phenotypic and genetic distinctiveness and other characteristic studied in this article, we consider X1(T) as a novel species of the genus Sphingomonas and propose to name it Sphingomonas qilianensis sp. nov. The type strain is X1(T) (=CGMCC 1.15349(T) = KCTC 42862(T)).

  12. Quantifying shallow and deep permafrost changes using radar remote sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teshebaeva, K.; van Huissteden, K. J.

    2017-12-01

    Widespread thawing of permafrost in the northern Eurasian continent cause severe problems for infrastructure and global climate. Permafrost thaw by climate warming creates land surface instability, resulting in severe problems for infrastructure, and release of organic matter to the atmosphere as CO2 and CH4. Recent discoveries of CH4 seeps in lakes, in the Arctic Ocean, and CH4 emitting craters in the permafrost. These features indicate that permafrost destabilization might no longer be a surface feature only, but that also deeper layers of the permafrost, up to tens of meters, may be affected by warming. We study two potential areas in Siberian arctic; one of the test site is the Kytalyk research station near Chokurdagh town affected with a recent inundation of the Indigirka river in July 2017, which resulted in standing surface water for the period over a month. The wet soil and standing water may cause changes in active layer thickness and influence the thermal regime of the permafrost for the next decades in the region. The second test site is Yamal peninsula with recently CH4 emitting craters, which may start to contribute to emission hotspots. We hypothesize that these deeper subsurface processes also can be detected by mapping surface elevation changes using advanced SAR techniques. We test the potential of SAR imagery to enhance detection of these features, including surface movement related to permafrost active layer changes using InSAR time-series analysis. We also apply radar backscatter signal to detect seasonal changes related to the freeze-thaw cycles. The PRISM elevation data are used to estimate elevation changes in the region along with ground-based geophysical and geodetical fieldwork.

  13. Land Cover Mapping in Northern High Latitude Permafrost Regions with Satellite Data: Achievements and Remaining Challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annett Bartsch

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Most applications of land cover maps that have been derived from satellite data over the Arctic require higher thematic detail than available in current global maps. A range of application studies has been reviewed, including up-scaling of carbon fluxes and pools, permafrost feature mapping and transition monitoring. Early land cover mapping studies were driven by the demand to characterize wildlife habitats. Later, in the 1990s, up-scaling of in situ measurements became central to the discipline of land cover mapping on local to regional scales at several sites across the Arctic. This includes the Kuparuk basin in Alaska, the Usa basin and the Lena Delta in Russia. All of these multi-purpose land cover maps have been derived from Landsat data. High resolution maps (from optical satellite data serve frequently as input for the characterization of periglacial features and also flux tower footprints in recent studies. The most used map to address circumpolar issues is the CAVM (Circum Arctic Vegetation Map based on AVHRR (1 km and has been manually derived. It provides the required thematic detail for many applications, but is confined to areas north of the treeline, and it is limited in spatial detail. A higher spatial resolution circumpolar land cover map with sufficient thematic content would be beneficial for a range of applications. Such a land cover classification should be compatible with existing global maps and applicable for multiple purposes. The thematic content of existing global maps has been assessed by comparison to the CAVM and regional maps. None of the maps provides the required thematic detail. Spatial resolution has been compared to used classes for local to regional applications. The required thematic detail increases with spatial resolution since coarser datasets are usually applied over larger areas covering more relevant landscape units. This is especially of concern when the entire Arctic is addressed. A spatial

  14. Simulation of long-term influence from technical systems on permafrost with various short-scale and hourly operation modes in Arctic region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaganova, N. A.

    2017-12-01

    Technogenic and climatic influences have a significant impact on the degradation of permafrost. Long-term forecasts of such changes during long-time periods have to be taken into account in the oil and gas and construction industries in view to development the Arctic and Subarctic regions. There are considered constantly operating technical systems (for example, oil and gas wells) that affect changes in permafrost, as well as the technical systems that have a short-term impact on permafrost (for example, flare systems for emergency flaring of associated gas). The second type of technical systems is rather complex for simulation, since it is required to reserve both short and long-scales in computations with variable time steps describing the complex technological processes. The main attention is paid to the simulation of long-term influence on the permafrost from the second type of the technical systems.

  15. The permafrost carbon inventory on the Tibetan Plateau: a new evaluation using deep sediment cores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Jinzhi; Li, Fei; Yang, Guibiao; Chen, Leiyi; Zhang, Beibei; Liu, Li; Fang, Kai; Qin, Shuqi; Chen, Yongliang; Peng, Yunfeng; Ji, Chengjun; He, Honglin; Smith, Pete; Yang, Yuanhe

    2016-08-01

    The permafrost organic carbon (OC) stock is of global significance because of its large pool size and the potential positive feedback to climate warming. However, due to the lack of systematic field observations and appropriate upscaling methodologies, substantial uncertainties exist in the permafrost OC budget, which limits our understanding of the fate of frozen carbon in a warming world. In particular, the lack of comprehensive estimates of OC stocks across alpine permafrost means that current knowledge on this issue remains incomplete. Here, we evaluated the pool size and spatial variations of permafrost OC stock to 3 m depth on the Tibetan Plateau by combining systematic measurements from a substantial number of pedons (i.e. 342 three-metre-deep cores and 177 50-cm-deep pits) with a machine learning technique (i.e. support vector machine, SVM). We also quantified uncertainties in permafrost carbon budget by conducting Monte Carlo simulations. Our results revealed that the combination of systematic measurements with the SVM model allowed spatially explicit estimates to be made. The OC density (OC amount per unit area, OCD) exhibited a decreasing trend from the south-eastern to the north-western plateau, with the exception that OCD in the swamp meadow was substantially higher than that in surrounding regions. Our results also demonstrated that Tibetan permafrost stored a large amount of OC in the top 3 m, with the median OC pool size being 15.31 Pg C (interquartile range: 13.03-17.77 Pg C). 44% of OC occurred in deep layers (i.e. 100-300 cm), close to the proportion observed across the northern circumpolar permafrost region. The large carbon pool size together with significant permafrost thawing suggests a risk of carbon emissions and positive climate feedback across the Tibetan alpine permafrost region. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Exploring the ground ice recharge near permafrost table on the central Qinghai-Tibet Plateau using chemical and isotopic data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Weihua; Wu, Tonghua; Zhao, Lin; Li, Ren; Zhu, Xiaofan; Wang, Wanrui; Yang, Shuhua; Qin, Yanhui; Hao, Junmin

    2018-05-01

    Thawing permafrost on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP) has great impacts on the local hydrological process by way of causing ground ice to thaw. Until now there is little knowledge on ground ice hydrology near permafrost table under a warming climate. This study applied stable tracers (isotopes and chloride) and hydrograph separation model to quantify the sources of ground ice near permafrost table in continuous permafrost regions of the central QTP. The results indicated that the ground ice near permafrost table was mainly supplied by active layer water and permafrost water, accounting for 58.9 to 87.0% and 13.0 to 41.1%, respectively, which implying that the active layer was the dominant source. The contribution rates from the active layer to the ground ice in alpine meadow (59 to 69%) was less than that in alpine steppe (70 to 87%). It showed well-developed hydrogeochemical depth gradients, presenting depleted isotopes and positive chemical gradients with depth within the soil layer. The effects of evaporation and freeze-out fractionation on the soil water and ground ice were evident. The results provide additional insights into ground ice sources and cycling near permafrost table in permafrost terrain, and would be helpful for improving process-based detailed hydrologic models under the occurring global warming.

  17. The regions and global warming: Impacts and response strategies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1991-01-01

    To date, much of the attention given to global warming in scientific research as well as in policy development has focused on the global picture. International negotiations and agreements to stabilize, and eventually reduce, greenhouse gas emissions are very important. By themselves, however, they are not sufficient to address global warming. Regional strategies are also needed. They can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and they will be the most effective way to mitigate the consequences of global warming. Adaptive strategies must respond to local and regional conditions. In many countries, subnational jurisdictions such as states and provinces or community organizations can already take effective actions without direction from their national government or waiting for international agreements. An important factor in defining regional approaches is the disparate consequences of climate change for developed and developing areas. Different strategies will also be needed for industrial and agricultural regions. Wealthy industrial regions may be better able to develop capital-intensive, adaptive infrastructure than regions with fewer discretionary resources where people are more vulnerable to the vagaries of weather patterns. On the other hand, regions that rely on indigenous knowledge and local resources may be better equipped to make incremental adaptations and more willing to modify life-styles. Ultimately, all climate change effects are experienced in specific places and effective response depends upon local action. We recognize that individual localities cannot solve a problem of global proportions by acting alone. However, a regional strategy can supplement international and national action and be the focal point for addressing risks in the unique social and economic context of a particular area. These meetings discussions dealt with the impacts and implications of climate change on such things as agriculture, forestry, and policy

  18. Circumpolar assessment of rhizosphere priming shows limited increase in carbon loss estimates for permafrost soils but large regional variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wild, B.; Keuper, F.; Kummu, M.; Beer, C.; Blume-Werry, G.; Fontaine, S.; Gavazov, K.; Gentsch, N.; Guggenberger, G.; Hugelius, G.; Jalava, M.; Koven, C.; Krab, E. J.; Kuhry, P.; Monteux, S.; Richter, A.; Shazhad, T.; Dorrepaal, E.

    2017-12-01

    Predictions of soil organic carbon (SOC) losses in the northern circumpolar permafrost area converge around 15% (± 3% standard error) of the initial C pool by 2100 under the RCP 8.5 warming scenario. Yet, none of these estimates consider plant-soil interactions such as the rhizosphere priming effect (RPE). While laboratory experiments have shown that the input of plant-derived compounds can stimulate SOC losses by up to 1200%, the magnitude of RPE in natural ecosystems is unknown and no methods for upscaling exist so far. We here present the first spatial and depth explicit RPE model that allows estimates of RPE on a large scale (PrimeSCale). We combine available spatial data (SOC, C/N, GPP, ALT and ecosystem type) and new ecological insights to assess the importance of the RPE at the circumpolar scale. We use a positive saturating relationship between the RPE and belowground C allocation and two ALT-dependent rooting-depth distribution functions (for tundra and boreal forest) to proportionally assign belowground C allocation and RPE to individual soil depth increments. The model permits to take into account reasonable limiting factors on additional SOC losses by RPE including interactions between spatial and/or depth variation in GPP, plant root density, SOC stocks and ALT. We estimate potential RPE-induced SOC losses at 9.7 Pg C (5 - 95% CI: 1.5 - 23.2 Pg C) by 2100 (RCP 8.5). This corresponds to an increase of the current permafrost SOC-loss estimate from 15% of the initial C pool to about 16%. If we apply an additional molar C/N threshold of 20 to account for microbial C limitation as a requirement for the RPE, SOC losses by RPE are further reduced to 6.5 Pg C (5 - 95% CI: 1.0 - 16.8 Pg C) by 2100 (RCP 8.5). Although our results show that current estimates of permafrost soil C losses are robust without taking into account the RPE, our model also highlights high-RPE risk in Siberian lowland areas and Alaska north of the Brooks Range. The small overall impact of

  19. High biolability of ancient permafrost carbon upon thaw

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vonk, J.E.; Mann, P.J.; Davydov, S.; Davydova, A.; Spencer, R.G.M.; Schade, J.; Sobczak, W.V.; Zimov, S.; Bulygina, E.; Eglinton, T.I.; Holmes, R.M.

    2013-01-01

    Ongoing climate warming in the Arctic will thaw permafrost and remobilize substantial terrestrial organic carbon (OC) pools. Around a quarter of northern permafrost OC resides in Siberian Yedoma deposits, the oldest form of permafrost carbon. However, our understanding of the degradation and

  20. High biolability of ancient permafrost carbon upon thaw

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vonk, Jorien E.; Mann, Paul J.; Davydov, Sergey; Davydova, Anna; Spencer, Robert G. M.; Schade, John; Sobczak, William V.; Zimov, Nikita; Zimov, Sergei; Bulygina, Ekaterina; Eglinton, Timothy I.; Holmes, Robert M.

    2013-01-01

    Ongoing climate warming in the Arctic will thaw permafrost and remobilize substantial terrestrial organic carbon (OC) pools. Around a quarter of northern permafrost OC resides in Siberian Yedoma deposits, the oldest form of permafrost carbon. However, our understanding of the degradation and fate of

  1. Dynamics of the larch taiga-permafrost coupled system in Siberia under climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang Ningning; Yasunari, Tetsuzo; Ohta, Takeshi

    2011-01-01

    Larch taiga, also known as Siberian boreal forest, plays an important role in global and regional water-energy-carbon (WEC) cycles and in the climate system. Recent in situ observations have suggested that larch-dominated taiga and permafrost behave as a coupled eco-climate system across a broad boreal zone of Siberia. However, neither field-based observations nor modeling experiments have clarified the synthesized dynamics of this system. Here, using a new dynamic vegetation model coupled with a permafrost model, we reveal the processes of interaction between the taiga and permafrost. The model demonstrates that under the present climate conditions in eastern Siberia, larch trees maintain permafrost by controlling the seasonal thawing of permafrost, which in turn maintains the taiga by providing sufficient water to the larch trees. The experiment without permafrost processes showed that larch would decrease in biomass and be replaced by a dominance of pine and other species that suffer drier hydroclimatic conditions. In the coupled system, fire not only plays a destructive role in the forest, but also, in some cases, preserves larch domination in forests. Climate warming sensitivity experiments show that this coupled system cannot be maintained under warming of about 2 deg. C or more. Under such conditions, a forest with typical boreal tree species (dark conifer and deciduous species) would become dominant, decoupled from the permafrost processes. This study thus suggests that future global warming could drastically alter the larch-dominated taiga-permafrost coupled system in Siberia, with associated changes of WEC processes and feedback to climate.

  2. Dynamics of the larch taiga-permafrost coupled system in Siberia under climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang Ningning [Graduate School of Environmental Studies, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Aichi 464-8601 (Japan); Yasunari, Tetsuzo [Hydrospheric Atmospheric Research Center, Nagoya University, Nagoya 464-8601 (Japan); Ohta, Takeshi, E-mail: zhangningning@lasg.iap.ac.cn [Study Consortium for Earth-Life Interactive Systems (SELIS) of Nagoya University, Nagoya (Japan)

    2011-04-15

    Larch taiga, also known as Siberian boreal forest, plays an important role in global and regional water-energy-carbon (WEC) cycles and in the climate system. Recent in situ observations have suggested that larch-dominated taiga and permafrost behave as a coupled eco-climate system across a broad boreal zone of Siberia. However, neither field-based observations nor modeling experiments have clarified the synthesized dynamics of this system. Here, using a new dynamic vegetation model coupled with a permafrost model, we reveal the processes of interaction between the taiga and permafrost. The model demonstrates that under the present climate conditions in eastern Siberia, larch trees maintain permafrost by controlling the seasonal thawing of permafrost, which in turn maintains the taiga by providing sufficient water to the larch trees. The experiment without permafrost processes showed that larch would decrease in biomass and be replaced by a dominance of pine and other species that suffer drier hydroclimatic conditions. In the coupled system, fire not only plays a destructive role in the forest, but also, in some cases, preserves larch domination in forests. Climate warming sensitivity experiments show that this coupled system cannot be maintained under warming of about 2 deg. C or more. Under such conditions, a forest with typical boreal tree species (dark conifer and deciduous species) would become dominant, decoupled from the permafrost processes. This study thus suggests that future global warming could drastically alter the larch-dominated taiga-permafrost coupled system in Siberia, with associated changes of WEC processes and feedback to climate.

  3. Permafrost knowledge to serve as foundation for Inuit community planning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibéryen, T.; Allard, M.

    2011-12-01

    With the recent announcement of Québec's provincial government's Plan Nord, Nunavik will see a 500 new houses sweep onto it's territory over the next 5 years. The local Inuit communities are confronted with the pressuring need to find suitable land to safely accommodate the new infrastructures in the long term. Additional to human and environmental constraints are those related to warming permafrost. Intensive studies on four Nunavik communities (Inukjuak, Puvirnituq, Akulivik, Kangirsuk) have allowed us to extensively consult local and regional authorities on their planning and management considerations. Recent and archived drilling data have been used to corroborate air photo interpretation, surficial geology and permafrost mapping. All collected information are integrated into aggregated maps that will eventually serve as community master plans. General recommendations on how to best manage and plan for community expansions on warming permafrost are made. Appropriate engineering techniques assuring long-term stable foundations are outlined and additionally mapped, taking into consideration the variable terrain conditions and simulated changes in permafrost temperature and active layer thickness according to climate change scenarios. The final purpose of our results is for them to support local and regional governments in their community planning process towards the best possible climate change adaptation strategies.

  4. Review: Impacts of permafrost degradation on inorganic chemistry of surface fresh water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colombo, Nicola; Salerno, Franco; Gruber, Stephan; Freppaz, Michele; Williams, Mark; Fratianni, Simona; Giardino, Marco

    2018-03-01

    Recent studies have shown that climate change is impacting the inorganic chemical characteristics of surface fresh water in permafrost areas and affecting aquatic ecosystems. Concentrations of major ions (e.g., Ca2 +, Mg2 +, SO42 -, NO3-) can increase following permafrost degradation with associated deepening of flow pathways and increased contributions of deep groundwater. In addition, thickening of the active layer and melting of near-surface ground ice can influence inorganic chemical fluxes from permafrost into surface water. Permafrost degradation has also the capability to modify trace element (e.g., Ni, Mn, Al, Hg, Pb) contents in surface water. Although several local and regional modifications of inorganic chemistry of surface fresh water have been attributed to permafrost degradation, a comprehensive review of the observed changes is lacking. The goal of this paper is to distil insight gained across differing permafrost settings through the identification of common patterns in previous studies, at global scale. In this review we focus on three typical permafrost configurations (pervasive permafrost degradation, thermokarst, and thawing rock glaciers) as examples and distinguish impacts on (i) major ions and (ii) trace elements. Consequences of warming climate have caused spatially-distributed progressive increases of major ion and trace element delivery to surface fresh water in both polar and mountain areas following pervasive permafrost degradation. Moreover, localised releases of major ions and trace elements to surface water due to the liberation of soluble materials sequestered in permafrost and ground ice have been found in ice-rich terrains both at high latitude (thermokarst features) and high elevation (rock glaciers). Further release of solutes and related transport to surface fresh water can be expected under warming climatic conditions. However, complex interactions among several factors able to influence the timing and magnitude of the impacts

  5. Biodegradability of dissolved organic carbon in permafrost soils and aquatic systems : A meta-analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vonk, J. E.; Tank, S. E.; Mann, P. J.; Spencer, R. G M; Treat, C. C.; Striegl, R. G.; Abbott, B. W.; Wickland, K. P.

    2015-01-01

    As Arctic regions warm and frozen soils thaw, the large organic carbon pool stored in permafrost becomes increasingly vulnerable to decomposition or transport. The transfer of newly mobilized carbon to the atmosphere and its potential influence upon climate change will largely depend on the

  6. Permafrost carbon−climate feedback is sensitive to deep soil carbon decomposability but not deep soil nitrogen dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koven, Charles D.; Lawrence, David M.; Riley, William J.

    2015-01-01

    Permafrost soils contain enormous amounts of organic carbon whose stability is contingent on remaining frozen. With future warming, these soils may release carbon to the atmosphere and act as a positive feedback to climate change. Significant uncertainty remains on the postthaw carbon dynamics of permafrost-affected ecosystems, in particular since most of the carbon resides at depth where decomposition dynamics may differ from surface soils, and since nitrogen mineralized by decomposition may enhance plant growth. Here we show, using a carbon−nitrogen model that includes permafrost processes forced in an unmitigated warming scenario, that the future carbon balance of the permafrost region is highly sensitive to the decomposability of deeper carbon, with the net balance ranging from 21 Pg C to 164 Pg C losses by 2300. Increased soil nitrogen mineralization reduces nutrient limitations, but the impact of deep nitrogen on the carbon budget is small due to enhanced nitrogen availability from warming surface soils and seasonal asynchrony between deeper nitrogen availability and plant nitrogen demands. Although nitrogen dynamics are highly uncertain, the future carbon balance of this region is projected to hinge more on the rate and extent of permafrost thaw and soil decomposition than on enhanced nitrogen availability for vegetation growth resulting from permafrost thaw. PMID:25775603

  7. Soil data from fire and permafrost-thaw chronosequences in upland Picea mariana stands near Hess Creek and Tok, interior Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donnell, Jonathan A.; Harden, Jennifer W.; Manies, Kristen L.; Jorgenson, M. Torre; Kanevskiy, Mikhail; Xu, Xiaomei

    2013-01-01

    Soils of the Northern Circumpolar Permafrost region harbor 1,672 petagrams (Pg) (1 Pg = 1,000,000,000 kilograms) of organic carbon (OC), nearly 50 percent of the global belowground OC pool (Tarnocai and others, 2009). Of that soil OC, nearly 88 percent is presently stored in perennially frozen ground. Recent climate warming at northern latitudes has resulted in warming and thawing of permafrost in many regions (Osterkamp, 2007), which might mobilize OC stocks from associated soil reservoirs via decomposition, leaching, or erosion. Warming also has increased the magnitude and severity of wildfires in the boreal region (Turetsky and others, 2011), which might exacerbate rates of permafrost degradation relative to warming alone. Given the size and vulnerability of the soil OC pool in permafrost soils, permafrost thaw will likely function as a strong positive feedback to the climate system (Koven and others, 2011; Schaefer and others, 2011). In this report, we report soil OC inventories from two upland fire chronosequences located near Hess Creek and Tok in Interior Alaska. We sampled organic and mineral soils in the top 2 meters (m) across a range of stand ages to evaluate the effects of wildfire and permafrost thaw on soil C dynamics. These data were used to parameterize a simple process-based fire-permafrost-carbon model, which is described in detail by O’Donnell and others (2011a, b). Model simulations examine long-term changes in soil OC storage in response to fire, permafrost thaw, and climate change. These data also have been used in other papers, including Harden and others (2012), which examines C recovery post-fire, and Johnson and others (2011), which synthesizes data within the Alaska Soil Carbon Database. Findings from these studies highlight the importance of climate and disturbance (wildfire, permafrost thaw) on soil C storage, and loss of soil C from high-latitude ecosystems.

  8. Observations and Impacts of Permafrost Thaw in the Lower Yukon River Basin and Yukon Delta Region: the Importance of Local Knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman-Mercer, N. M.; Elder, K.; Toohey, R.; Mutter, E. A.

    2015-12-01

    In regions of the arctic and subarctic baseline measurements of permafrost dynamics are lacking and scientific research can be especially expensive when remote sensing techniques are utilized. This research demonstrated the importance of local observations, a powerful tool for understanding landscape change, such as permafrost dynamics. Fifty-five interviews were recently conducted with community members in four villages of the lower Yukon River Basin and Yukon Delta to understand local environmental and landscape changes and the impacts these changes may be having on the lives and livelihoods of these communities. The interviews were semi-structured and focused on many climate and landscape change factors including knowledge of permafrost in their community or the surrounding landscape. All positive respondents stated that they believe the permafrost is thawing. The research revealed that residents of the arctic and subarctic interact with permafrost in a variety of ways. Some people utilize permafrost to store food resources and have found that they have to dig deeper presently than in their youth in order to find ground cold enough. Others are involved in digging graves and report encountering easier excavation in recent years. Subsistence hunters and gatherers travel long distances by snowmobile and boat, and have noticed slumping ground, eroding river banks and coast lines, as well as land that seems to be rising. Finally, all residents of the arctic and subarctic interact with permafrost in terms of the stability of their homes and other infrastructure. Many interview participants complained of their houses leaning and needing more frequent adjustment than in the past. Indigenous residents of the arctic and subarctic have intimate relationships with their landscape owing to their subsistence lifestyle and are also connected to the landscape of the past through the teachings of their elders. Further, arctic and subarctic communities will sustain the majority

  9. Collaboration in Education: International Field Class on Permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Streletskiy, D. A.; Shiklomanov, N. I.; Grebenets, V. I.

    2011-12-01

    from the position of technogenic impact which required knowledge of historical, political and socio-economic aspects of development. Students learned how to conduct meteorological observations; describe vegetation, soil and permafrost conditions, and cryogenic processes, such as ice-wedges, solifluction, pingoes, thermokarst etc; and use temperature logging and core drilling devices. In urbanized areas, students learned how to apply different construction methods and foundation designs in permafrost regions; use techniques of permafrost temperature monitoring under building and structures; and apply mitigation strategies to prevent permafrost from warming under different types of technogenic pressure. The experience gained by students in the field cannot be adequately replaced by any classroom demonstrations, which is why it is critically important to conduct such classes in the future. We thank administration of Igarka, Igarka Geocryological Station, Norilsk Nickel, Norilsk Geologiya, and Funamentproekt Norilsk for help in the organization of this class.

  10. Biomass offsets little or none of permafrost carbon release from soils, streams, and wildfire: an expert assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benjamin W. Abbott,; Jeremy B. Jones,; Edward A.G. Schuur,; F.S. Chapin, III; Bowden, William B.; M. Syndonia Bret-Harte,; Howard E. Epstein,; Michael D. Flannigan,; Tamara K. Harms,; Teresa N. Hollingsworth,; Mack, Michelle C.; McGuire, A. David; Susan M. Natali,; Adrian V. Rocha,; Tank, Suzanne E.; Merrit R. Turetsky,; Jorien E. Vonk,; Wickland, Kimberly P.; Aiken, George R.

    2016-01-01

    As the permafrost region warms, its large organic carbon pool will be increasingly vulnerable to decomposition, combustion, and hydrologic export. Models predict that some portion of this release will be offset by increased production of Arctic and boreal biomass; however, the lack of robust estimates of net carbon balance increases the risk of further overshooting international emissions targets. Precise empirical or model-based assessments of the critical factors driving carbon balance are unlikely in the near future, so to address this gap, we present estimates from 98 permafrost-region experts of the response of biomass, wildfire, and hydrologic carbon flux to climate change. Results suggest that contrary to model projections, total permafrost-region biomass could decrease due to water stress and disturbance, factors that are not adequately incorporated in current models. Assessments indicate that end-of-the-century organic carbon release from Arctic rivers and collapsing coastlines could increase by 75% while carbon loss via burning could increase four-fold. Experts identified water balance, shifts in vegetation community, and permafrost degradation as the key sources of uncertainty in predicting future system response. In combination with previous findings, results suggest the permafrost region will become a carbon source to the atmosphere by 2100 regardless of warming scenario but that 65%–85% of permafrost carbon release can still be avoided if human emissions are actively reduced.

  11. Variation and control of soil organic carbon and other nutrients in permafrost regions on central Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, Wenjie; Chen, Shengyun; Zhao, Qian; Ren, Jiawen; Qin, Dahe; Sun, Zhizhong

    2014-01-01

    The variation and control of soil organic carbon (SOC) and other nutrients in permafrost regions are critical for studying the carbon cycle and its potential feedbacks to climate change; however, they are poorly understood. Soil nutrients samples at depths of 0–10, 10–20, 20–30, and 30–40 cm, were sampled eight times in 2009 in alpine swamp meadow, alpine meadow and alpine steppe in permafrost regions of the central Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. SOC and total nitrogen (TN) in the alpine swamp meadow and meadow decreased with soil depth, whereas the highest SOC content in the alpine steppe was found at depths of 20–30 cm. The vertical profiles of total and available phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) were relatively uniform for all the three grassland types. Correlation and linear regression analyses showed that soil moisture (SM) was the most important parameter for the vertical variation of SOC and other soil nutrients, and that belowground biomass (BGB) was the main source of SOC and TN. The spatial variations (including seasonal variation) of SOC and TN at plot scale were large. The relative deviation of SOC ranged from 7.18 to 41.50 in the alpine swamp meadow, from 2.88 to 35.91 in the alpine meadow, and from 9.33 to 68.38 in the alpine steppe. The spatial variations in the other soil nutrients varied among different grassland types. The most important factors for spatial variations (including seasonal variation) of SOC, TN, total P, available P, and both total and available K were: SM, SM and temperature, SM, air temperature, and SM and BGB, respectively. The large variation in the three grassland types implies that spatial variation at plot scale should be considered when estimating SOC storage and its dynamics. (letter)

  12. Contrasting above- and belowground organic matter decomposition and carbon and nitrogen dynamics in response to warming in High Arctic tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blok, Daan; Faucherre, Samuel; Banyasz, Imre; Rinnan, Riikka; Michelsen, Anders; Elberling, Bo

    2017-12-13

    Tundra regions are projected to warm rapidly during the coming decades. The tundra biome holds the largest terrestrial carbon pool, largely contained in frozen permafrost soils. With warming, these permafrost soils may thaw and become available for microbial decomposition, potentially providing a positive feedback to global warming. Warming may directly stimulate microbial metabolism but may also indirectly stimulate organic matter turnover through increased plant productivity by soil priming from root exudates and accelerated litter turnover rates. Here, we assess the impacts of experimental warming on turnover rates of leaf litter, active layer soil and thawed permafrost sediment in two high-arctic tundra heath sites in NE-Greenland, either dominated by evergreen or deciduous shrubs. We incubated shrub leaf litter on the surface of control and warmed plots for 1 and 2 years. Active layer soil was collected from the plots to assess the effects of 8 years of field warming on soil carbon stocks. Finally, we incubated open cores filled with newly thawed permafrost soil for 2 years in the active layer of the same plots. After field incubation, we measured basal respiration rates of recovered thawed permafrost cores in the lab. Warming significantly reduced litter mass loss by 26% after 1 year incubation, but differences in litter mass loss among treatments disappeared after 2 years incubation. Warming also reduced litter nitrogen mineralization and decreased the litter carbon to nitrogen ratio. Active layer soil carbon stocks were reduced 15% by warming, while soil dissolved nitrogen was reduced by half in warmed plots. Warming had a positive legacy effect on carbon turnover rates in thawed permafrost cores, with 10% higher respiration rates measured in cores from warmed plots. These results demonstrate that warming may have contrasting effects on above- and belowground tundra carbon turnover, possibly governed by microbial resource availability. © 2017 John

  13. Warming effects on the urban hydrology in cold climate regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Järvi, L; Grimmond, C S B; McFadden, J P; Christen, A; Strachan, I B; Taka, M; Warsta, L; Heimann, M

    2017-07-19

    While approximately 338 million people in the Northern hemisphere live in regions that are regularly snow covered in winter, there is little hydro-climatologic knowledge in the cities impacted by snow. Using observations and modelling we have evaluated the energy and water exchanges of four cities that are exposed to wintertime snow. We show that the presence of snow critically changes the impact that city design has on the local-scale hydrology and climate. After snow melt, the cities return to being strongly controlled by the proportion of built and vegetated surfaces. However in winter, the presence of snow masks the influence of the built and vegetated fractions. We show how inter-year variability of wintertime temperature can modify this effect of snow. With increasing temperatures, these cities could be pushed towards very different partitioning between runoff and evapotranspiration. We derive the dependency of wintertime runoff on this warming effect in combination with the effect of urban densification.

  14. P-wave and surface wave survey for permafrost analysis in alpine regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godio, A.; Socco, L. V.; Garofalo, F.; Arato, A.; Théodule, A.

    2012-04-01

    In various high mountain environments the estimate of mechanical properties of slope and sediments are relevant for the link of the geo-mechanical properties with the climate change effects. Two different locations were selected to perform seismic and georadar surveying, the Tsanteleina glacier (Gran Paradiso) and the Blue Lake in Val d'Ayas in the massif of Monterosa. The analysis of the seismic and GPR lines allowed to characterize the silty soil (top layer) and underlying bedrock. We applied seismic survey in time lapse mode to check the presence of "active" layer and estimate the mechanical properties of the moraines material and their sensitivity to the permafrost changes. Mechanical properties of sediments and moraines in glacial areas are related to the grain-size, the compaction of the material subjected to the past glacial activity, the presence of frozen materials and the reactivity of the permafrost to the climate changes. The test site of Tsanteleina has been equipped with sensors to monitor the temperature of soil and air and with time domain reflectometry to estimate the soil moisture and the frozen and thawing cycle of the uppermost material. Seismic reflections from the top of the permafrost layer are difficult to identify as they are embedded in the source-generated noise. Therefore we estimate seismic velocities from the analysis of traveltime refraction tomography and the analysis of surface wave. This approach provides information on compressional and shear waves using a single acquisition layout and a hammer acts as source. This reduces the acquisition time in complex logistical condition especially in winter period. The seismic survey was performed using 48 vertical geophones with 2 m spacing. The survey has been repeated in two different periods: summer 2011 and winter 2011. Common offset reflection lines with a 200 MHz GPR system (in summer) permitted to investigate the sediments and obtain information on the subsoil layering. The processing

  15. Degradation and Local Survival of Permafrost Through the Last Interglaciation in Interior Alaska and Yukon Territory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes, A. V.; Froese, D. G.; Jensen, B. J.

    2006-12-01

    Permafrost in northern North America is warming, and recent modeling efforts have predicted the widespread disappearance of permafrost through much of the northern hemisphere over the next century. However, little is known of the impacts of past sustained warm intervals on permafrost dynamics, antiquity, and distribution due to difficulties in establishing reliable chronologies. Permafrost thus remains the last element of the Arctic cryosphere for which there is poor understanding of its adaptability to past warmer-than-present climate. Here we present observations from three sites in the region of interior Alaska and Yukon Territory that remained ice-free during Plio-Pleistocene glaciations, which collectively demonstrate the variable nature of the response of permafrost to warming during the last interglaciation. Chronology for all sites is based on identification of Old Crow tephra (OCt; 140±10 ka) by glass major element composition. Throughout the study region, OCt is consistently associated with organic-rich sediments that represent the last interglaciation on the basis of pollen, insect, and macrofossil assemblages. At the Palisades site on the Yukon River, 250 km west of Fairbanks, OCt is 1.5-3.5 m below thick (>1m) organic-rich silts and peats that are locally rich in beaver-chewed wood and large wood stumps, some of which are in growth position. In contrast, placer mining at Thistle Creek in central Yukon Territory exposes a dramatic thaw unconformity that is presumably related to local, but incomplete, permafrost degradation during the last interglaciation. In upslope positions at Thistle Creek, OCt is incorporated into a steeply dipping, 30 cm thick, organic-rich silt horizon that truncates at least one intact, relict ice wedge. The steeply dipping organic- rich horizon grades downslope into organic-rich silt with dense accumulations of wood fragments, including tree stems up to 2 m long. Evidence for similar permafrost degradation during the last

  16. Assessing and Projecting Greenhouse Gas Release due to Abrupt Permafrost Degradation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saito, K.; Ohno, H.; Yokohata, T.; Iwahana, G.; Machiya, H.

    2017-12-01

    Permafrost is a large reservoir of frozen soil organic carbon (SOC; about half of all the terrestrial storage). Therefore, its degradation (i.e., thawing) under global warming may lead to a substantial amount of additional greenhouse gas (GHG) release. However, understanding of the processes, geographical distribution of such hazards, and implementation of the relevant processes in the advanced climate models are insufficient yet so that variations in permafrost remains one of the large source of uncertainty in climatic and biogeochemical assessment and projections. Thermokarst, induced by melting of ground ice in ice-rich permafrost, leads to dynamic surface subsidence up to 60 m, which further affects local and regional societies and eco-systems in the Arctic. It can also accelerate a large-scale warming process through a positive feedback between released GHGs (especially methane), atmospheric warming and permafrost degradation. This three-year research project (2-1605, Environment Research and Technology Development Fund of the Ministry of the Environment, Japan) aims to assess and project the impacts of GHG release through dynamic permafrost degradation through in-situ and remote (e.g., satellite and airborn) observations, lab analysis of sampled ice and soil cores, and numerical modeling, by demonstrating the vulnerability distribution and relative impacts between large-scale degradation and such dynamic degradation. Our preliminary laboratory analysis of ice and soil cores sampled in 2016 at the Alaskan and Siberian sites largely underlain by ice-rich permafrost, shows that, although gas volumes trapped in unit mass are more or less homogenous among sites both for ice and soil cores, large variations are found in the methane concentration in the trapped gases, ranging from a few ppm (similar to that of the atmosphere) to hundreds of thousands ppm We will also present our numerical approach to evaluate relative impacts of GHGs released through dynamic

  17. Permafrost and climate in Europe: Monitoring and modelling thermal, geomorphological and geotechnical responses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Charles; Arenson, Lukas U.; Christiansen, Hanne H.; Etzelmüller, Bernd; Frauenfelder, Regula; Gruber, Stephan; Haeberli, Wilfried; Hauck, Christian; Hölzle, Martin; Humlum, Ole; Isaksen, Ketil; Kääb, Andreas; Kern-Lütschg, Martina A.; Lehning, Michael; Matsuoka, Norikazu; Murton, Julian B.; Nötzli, Jeanette; Phillips, Marcia; Ross, Neil; Seppälä, Matti; Springman, Sarah M.; Vonder Mühll, Daniel

    2009-02-01

    We present a review of the changing state of European permafrost within a spatial zone that includes the continuous high latitude arctic permafrost of Svalbard and the discontinuous high altitude mountain permafrost of Iceland, Fennoscandia and the Alps. The paper focuses on methodological developments and data collection over the last decade or so, including research associated with the continent-scale network of instrumented permafrost boreholes established between 1998 and 2001 under the European Union PACE project. Data indicate recent warming trends, with greatest warming at higher latitudes. Equally important are the impacts of shorter-term extreme climatic events, most immediately reflected in changes in active layer thickness. A large number of complex variables, including altitude, topography, insolation and snow distribution, determine permafrost temperatures. The development of regionally calibrated empirical-statistical models, and physically based process-oriented models, is described, and it is shown that, though more complex and data dependent, process-oriented approaches are better suited to estimating transient effects of climate change in complex mountain topography. Mapping and characterisation of permafrost depth and distribution requires integrated multiple geophysical approaches and recent advances are discussed. We report on recent research into ground ice formation, including ice segregation within bedrock and vein ice formation within ice wedge systems. The potential impacts of climate change on rock weathering, permafrost creep, landslides, rock falls, debris flows and slow mass movements are also discussed. Recent engineering responses to the potentially damaging effects of climate warming are outlined, and risk assessment strategies to minimise geological hazards are described. We conclude that forecasting changes in hazard occurrence, magnitude and frequency is likely to depend on process-based modelling, demanding improved

  18. Temporal Behavior of Lake Size-Distribution in a Thawing Permafrost Landscape in Northwestern Siberia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johanna Mård Karlsson

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Arctic warming alters regional hydrological systems, as permafrost thaw increases active layer thickness and in turn alters the pathways of water flow through the landscape. Further, permafrost thaw may change the connectivity between deeper and shallower groundwater and surface water altering the terrestrial water balance and distribution. Thermokarst lakes and wetlands in the Arctic offer a window into such changes as these landscape elements depend on permafrost and are some of the most dynamic and widespread features in Arctic lowland regions. In this study we used Landsat remotely sensed imagery to investigate potential shifts in thermokarst lake size-distributions, which may be brought about by permafrost thaw, over three distinct time periods (1973, 1987–1988, and 2007–2009 in three hydrological basins in northwestern Siberia. Results revealed fluctuations in total area and number of lakes over time, with both appearing and disappearing lakes alongside stable lakes. On the whole basin scales, there is no indication of any sustained long-term change in thermokarst lake area or lake size abundance over time. This statistical temporal consistency indicates that spatially variable change effects on local permafrost conditions have driven the individual lake changes that have indeed occurred over time. The results highlight the importance of using multi-temporal remote sensing data that can reveal complex spatiotemporal variations distinguishing fluctuations from sustained change trends, for accurate interpretation of thermokarst lake changes and their possible drivers in periods of climate and permafrost change.

  19. Soil temperature response to 21st century global warming: the role of and some implications for peat carbon in thawing permafrost soils in North America

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wisser, D.; Marchenko, S.; Talbot, J.; Treat, C.; Frolking, S.

    2011-01-01

    Northern peatlands contain a large terrestrial carbon pool that plays an important role in the Earth’s carbon cycle. A considerable fraction of this carbon pool is currently in permafrost and is biogeochemically relatively inert; this will change with increasing soil temperatures as a result

  20. Simulation of hydrodynamic effects of salt rejection due to permafrost. Hydrogeological numerical model of density-driven mixing, at a regional scale, due to a high salinity pulse

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vidstrand, Patrik; Svensson, Urban; Follin, Sven

    2006-10-01

    The main objective of this study is to support the safety assessment of the investigated candidate sites concerning hydrogeological and hydrogeochemical issues related to permafrost. However, a more specific objective of the study is to improve the assessment of processes in relation to permafrost scenarios. The model is based on a mathematical model that includes Darcy velocities, mass conservation, matrix diffusion, and salinity distribution. Gravitational effects are thus fully accounted for. A regional groundwater flow model (POM v1.1, Simpevarp) was used as basis for the simulations. The main results of the model include salinity distributions in time. The general conclusion is that density-driven mixing processes are contained within more permeable deformation zones and that these processes are fast as compared with preliminary permafrost growth rates. The results of the simulation suggest that a repository volume in the rock mass in-between the deterministic deformation zones, approximately 150 m below the permafrost will not experience a high salinity situation due to the salt rejection process

  1. Permafrost Hazards and Linear Infrastructure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanilovskaya, Julia; Sergeev, Dmitry

    2014-05-01

    The international experience of linear infrastructure planning, construction and exploitation in permafrost zone is being directly tied to the permafrost hazard assessment. That procedure should also consider the factors of climate impact and infrastructure protection. The current global climate change hotspots are currently polar and mountain areas. Temperature rise, precipitation and land ice conditions change, early springs occur more often. The big linear infrastructure objects cross the territories with different permafrost conditions which are sensitive to the changes in air temperature, hydrology, and snow accumulation which are connected to climatic dynamics. One of the most extensive linear structures built on permafrost worldwide are Trans Alaskan Pipeline (USA), Alaska Highway (Canada), Qinghai-Xizang Railway (China) and Eastern Siberia - Pacific Ocean Oil Pipeline (Russia). Those are currently being influenced by the regional climate change and permafrost impact which may act differently from place to place. Thermokarst is deemed to be the most dangerous process for linear engineering structures. Its formation and development depend on the linear structure type: road or pipeline, elevated or buried one. Zonal climate and geocryological conditions are also of the determining importance here. All the projects are of the different age and some of them were implemented under different climatic conditions. The effects of permafrost thawing have been recorded every year since then. The exploration and transportation companies from different countries maintain the linear infrastructure from permafrost degradation in different ways. The highways in Alaska are in a good condition due to governmental expenses on annual reconstructions. The Chara-China Railroad in Russia is under non-standard condition due to intensive permafrost response. Standards for engineering and construction should be reviewed and updated to account for permafrost hazards caused by the

  2. Pliocene Warm Period Upwelling in the Southern Benguela Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrick, B. F.; McClymont, E.; Felder, S.; Leng, M. J.; Rosell Mele, A.; Rueda, G.

    2014-12-01

    The mid-Pliocene has been proposed as a possible analogue for understanding future climate change and testing climate models. Previous work has shown that during the Pliocene the major upwelling systems were relatively warm, and thus either inactive, contracted, or upwelling warmer waters than present. Here we examine evidence from a core site located on the margins of the modern Benguela upwelling system, to test whether the upwelling cells had migrated or contracted relative to present during the Pliocene. We applied several organic geochemistry proxies and foraminiferal analyses to reconstruct the Pliocene history of ODP site 1087 (31º28'S, 15º19'E, 1374m water depth), including the UK37' index and TEX86 index (for reconstructing sea surface temperatures), chlorins (for estimating primary productivity) and planktonic foraminifera assemblages (for inferring water mass changes). These proxies show that between 3.5 and 3.0 Ma the southern Benguela region was significantly cooler than the northern Benguela region, the latter where the main upwelling cells are found today. Coupled with higher primary production, a shift in planktonic foraminifera assemblage, and an offset between the UK37' index and TEX86 index, we infer that more extensive upwelling was present in the southern Benguela region during the Pliocene. We infer that the main Benguela upwelling cells had shifted southward relative to today, as a result of changes in the local wind field. We find evidence for pronounced cooling and a shift in the planktonic foraminifera assemblage during the M2 and KM2 glacial stages, showing a sensitivity of Benguela upwelling to these short-lived climate events.

  3. Biomass offsets little or none of permafrost carbon release from soils, streams, and wildfire: an expert assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benjamin W Abbott; Jeremy B Jones; Edward A G Schuur; F Stuart Chapin III; William B Bowden; M Syndonia Bret-Harte; Howard E Epstein; Michael D Flannigan; Tamara K Harms; Teresa N Hollingsworth; Michelle C Mack; A David McGuire; Susan M Natali; Adrian V Rocha; Suzanne E Tank; Merritt R Turetsky; Jorien E Vonk; Kimberly P Wickland; George R Aiken; Heather D Alexander; Rainer M W Amon; Brian W Benscoter; Yves Bergeron; Kevin Bishop; Olivier Blarquez; Amy L Breen; Ishi Buffam; Yihua Cai; Christopher Carcaillet; Sean K Carey; Jing M Chen; Han Y H Chen; Torben R Christensen; Lee W Cooper; J Hans C Cornelissen; William J de Groot; Thomas H DeLuca; Ellen Dorrepaal; Ned Fetcher; Jacques C Finlay; Bruce C Forbes; Nancy H F French; Sylvie Gauthier; Martin P Girardin; Scott J Goetz; Johann G Goldammer; Laura Gough; Paul Grogan; Laodong Guo; Philip E Higuera; Larry Hinzman; Feng Sheng Hu; Gustaf Hugelius; Elchin E Jafarov; Randi Jandt; Jill F Johnstone; Eric S Kasischke; Gerhard Kattner; Ryan Kelly; Frida Keuper; George W Kling; Pirkko Kortelainen; Jari Kouki; Peter Kuhry; Hjalmar Laudon; Isabelle Laurion; Robie W Macdonald; Paul J Mann; Pertti J Martikainen; James W McClelland; Ulf Molau; Steven F Oberbauer; David Olefeldt; David Par??; Marc-Andr?? Parisien; Serge Payette; Changhui Peng; Oleg S Pokrovsky; Edward B Rastetter; Peter A Raymond; Martha K Raynolds; Guillermo Rein; James F Reynolds; Martin Robards; Brendan M Rogers; Christina Sch??del; Kevin Schaefer; Inger K Schmidt; Anatoly Shvidenko; Jasper Sky; Robert G M Spencer; Gregory Starr; Robert G Striegl; Roman Teisserenc; Lars J Tranvik; Tarmo Virtanen; Jeffrey M Welker; Sergei Zimov

    2016-01-01

    As the permafrost region warms, its large organic carbon pool will be increasingly vulnerable to decomposition, combustion, and hydrologic export. Models predict that some portion of this release will be offset by increased production of Arctic and boreal biomass; however, the lack of robust estimates of net carbon balance increases the risk of further overshooting...

  4. Methane Ebullition During Simulated Lake Expansion and Permafrost Degradation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazéas, O.; von Fischer, J. C.; Whelan, M.; Rhew, R.

    2007-12-01

    Methane, a potent greenhouse gas, is emitted by Arctic tundra and lakes. Ebullition, or bubbling, of methane from Arctic lakes has been shown to be a major transport mechanism from the sediment to the atmosphere, and ebullition rates are greatest near the edges of the lakes where active erosion is occurring. In regions of continuous permafrost, Arctic lakes have been expanding in recent decades, attributed to permafrost melting and development of thermokarst. Lake expansion occurs when the margins erode into water, supplying large amounts of organic rich material to the sediment-water interface. This allows carbon that was previously stored in the soil (active layer and permafrost) to become bioavailable and subject to decomposition. An increase in Arctic methane emissions as a result of permafrost thawing and lake expansion would constitute a positive feedback to Arctic warming. In order to better understand these processes, an experiment was initiated in July 2007 at the Barrow Environmental Observatory, Barrow, AK. Different layers of locally collected tundra soil were placed into incubation chambers at the bottom of a shallow (about 1 m deep) lake. Each experimental chamber consists of a bucket fixed underneath an inverted funnel, with a sampling port on top to capture and collect the emitted gases. Gas samples are analyzed for methane and carbon dioxide concentrations, as well as relevant isotopic compositions. Gas sampling has occurred at frequent intervals during the late summer and will continue through the early winter. Three replicates of each layer (active layer, seasonally frozen active layer and permafrost) were incubated, as well as an empty control chamber. An additional chamber containing thawed permafrost and cellulose-rich sawdust was placed for comparison, as cellulose is a major component of plant tissue and the fermentation of the cellulose should yield substrates for methanogenesis. Total production of methane versus organic carbon content of

  5. A ground temperature map of the North Atlantic permafrost region based on remote sensing and reanalysis data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Westermann, S.; Østby, T. I.; Gisnås, K.

    2015-01-01

    Permafrost is a key element of the terrestrial cryosphere which makes mapping and monitoring of its state variables an imperative task. We present a modeling scheme based on remotely sensed land surface temperatures and reanalysis products from which mean annual ground temperatures (MAGT) can be ...... with gradually decreasing permafrost probabilities. The study exemplifies the unexploited potential of remotely sensed data sets in permafrost mapping if they are employed in multi-sensor multi-source data fusion approaches.......Permafrost is a key element of the terrestrial cryosphere which makes mapping and monitoring of its state variables an imperative task. We present a modeling scheme based on remotely sensed land surface temperatures and reanalysis products from which mean annual ground temperatures (MAGT) can...

  6. Elevation-based upscaling of organic carbon stocks in High-Arctic permafrost terrain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Weiss, Niels; Faucherre, Samuel; Lampiris, Nikos

    2017-01-01

    Accurate quantity and distribution estimates of permafrost soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks are needed to project potential feedbacks to climate, following warming. Still, upscaling from local field observations to regional estimates to circumarctic assessments remains a challenge. Here we explore...... elevation-based upscaling techniques for High-Arctic permafrost SOC stocks. We combine two detailed, high-resolution SOC inventories on Spitsbergen (Svalbard) with regional validation data. We find a clear relationship between elevation and SOC content, and use this observed exponential correlation, as well...... as discrete elevation classes, as upscaling models for Spitsbergen. We estimate the total amount of permafrost SOC currently present in soils on Spitsbergen to be 105.36 Tg (0.11 Pg), with a mean SOC content of 2.84 ± 0.74 kg C m−2 (mean ± 95% confidence interval). Excluding glaciers and permanent snowfields...

  7. Hydrological patterns in warming permafrost: comparing results from a control and drained site on a floodplain tundra near Chersky, Northeast Siberia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boelck, Sandra; Goeckede, Mathias; Hildebrandt, Anke; Vonk, Jorien; Heimann, Martin

    2017-04-01

    Permafrost areas represent a major reservoir for organic carbon. At the same time, permafrost ecosystems are very susceptible to changing climate conditions. The stability of this reservoir, i.e. changes in lateral and vertical carbon fluxes in permafrost ecosystems, largely depends on groundwater level, temperature and vegetation community. Particularly during summer when the soil thaws and a so-called active layer develops, fluctuations in carbon flux rates are often dominantly driven by water availability. Such dry soil conditions are expected to become more frequent in the future due to deepening active layers as a consequence of climate change. This could result in degradation of polygonal tundra landscape properties with channelled water transport pathways. Therefore, water table depth and the associated groundwater fluxes are crucial to understand transport patterns and to quantify the lateral export of carbon through an aquatic system. Consequently, a fundamental understanding of hydrological patterns on ecosystem structure and function is required to close the carbon balance of permafrost ecosystems. This study focuses on small-scale hydrological patterns and its influencing factors, such as topography and precipitation events. Near Chersky, Northeast Siberia, we monitored (i) a control site of floodplain tundra, and (ii) a drained site, characterised by a drainage ring which was constructed in 2004, to study the effects of water availability on the carbon cycle. This experimental disturbance simulates drainage effects following the degradation of ice-rich permafrost ecosystems under future climate change. Continuous monitoring of water table depth in drained and control areas revealed small-scale water table variations. At several key locations, we collected water samples to determine the isotopic composition (δ18O, δD) of surface water, suprapermafrost groundwater and precipitation. Furthermore, a weir at the drainage ditch was constructed to directly

  8. Extending airborne electromagnetic surveys for regional active layer and permafrost mapping with remote sensing and ancillary data, Yukon Flats ecoregion, central Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pastick, Neal J.; Jorgenson, M. Torre; Wylie, Bruce K.; Minsley, Burke J.; Ji, Lei; Walvoord, Michelle Ann; Smith, Bruce D.; Abraham, Jared D.; Rose, Joshua R.

    2013-01-01

    Machine-learning regression tree models were used to extrapolate airborne electromagnetic resistivity data collected along flight lines in the Yukon Flats Ecoregion, central Alaska, for regional mapping of permafrost. This method of extrapolation (r = 0.86) used subsurface resistivity, Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) at-sensor reflectance, thermal, TM-derived spectral indices, digital elevation models and other relevant spatial data to estimate near-surface (0–2.6-m depth) resistivity at 30-m resolution. A piecewise regression model (r = 0.82) and a presence/absence decision tree classification (accuracy of 87%) were used to estimate active-layer thickness (ALT) (remote sensing and map data. At site scale, the predicted ALTs were similar to those previously observed for different vegetation types. At the landscape scale, the predicted ALTs tended to be thinner on higher-elevation loess deposits than on low-lying alluvial and sand sheet deposits of the Yukon Flats. The ALT and permafrost maps provide a baseline for future permafrost monitoring, serve as inputs for modelling hydrological and carbon cycles at local to regional scales, and offer insight into the ALT response to fire and thaw processes.

  9. The relationship of telluric currents to the corrosion of warm arctic pipelines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sackinger, W.M.

    1991-01-01

    Warm pipelines may be elevated above ice-rich permafrost, but buried in unfrozen ground or in ice-containing permafrost which is regarded as mechanically thaw-stable. In norther regions, the concentration of ionospheric electrical currents causes not only aurora borealis but also a time-variable magnetic field at the earth's surface, and the induction of electrical currents in the soil and in pipelines. This paper presents a model for electrical current flow in a typical warm pipeline segment, including both buried and elevated sections, soil resistances, corrosion protection sacrificial anodes, and regions of damaged pipeline coatings

  10. Global warming and mycoflora in the Baltic Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hanns Kreisel

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The author discusses possible effects of global warming on distribution and ecology of larger fungi, and presents examples of suggested indicator species which apparently are spreading from south to north. Only Basidiomycetes are corncerned, while actually no case of non-lichenized Ascomycetes is known. A continued monitoring of the mentioned species is recommended.

  11. Vegetation Changes in the Permafrost Regions of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau from 1982-2012: Different Responses Related to Geographical Locations and Vegetation Types in High-Altitude Areas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhiwei Wang

    Full Text Available The Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP contains the largest permafrost area in a high-altitude region in the world, and the unique hydrothermal environments of the active layers in this region have an important impact on vegetation growth. Geographical locations present different climatic conditions, and in combination with the permafrost environments, these conditions comprehensively affect the local vegetation activity. Therefore, the responses of vegetation to climate change in the permafrost region of the QTP may be varied differently by geographical location and vegetation condition. In this study, using the latest Global Inventory Modeling and Mapping Studies (GIMMS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI product based on turning points (TPs, which were calculated using a piecewise linear model, 9 areas within the permafrost region of the QTP were selected to investigate the effect of geographical location and vegetation type on vegetation growth from 1982 to 2012. The following 4 vegetation types were observed in the 9 selected study areas: alpine swamp meadow, alpine meadow, alpine steppe and alpine desert. The research results show that, in these study areas, TPs mainly appeared in 2000 and 2001, and almost 55.1% and 35.0% of the TPs were located in 2000 and 2001. The global standardized precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI and 7 meteorological variables were selected to analyze their correlations with NDVI. We found that the main correlative variables to vegetation productivity in study areas from 1982 to 2012 were precipitation, surface downward long-wave radiation and temperature. Furthermore, NDVI changes exhibited by different vegetation types within the same study area followed similar trends. The results show that regional effects rather than vegetation type had a larger impact on changes in vegetation growth in the permafrost regions of the QTP, indicating that climatic factors had a larger impact in the permafrost

  12. Fossil organic matter characteristics in permafrost deposits of the northeast Siberian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lutz Schirrmeister; Guido Grosse; Sebastian Wetterich; Pier Paul Overduin; Jens Straub; Edward A.G. Schuur; Hans-Wolfgang. Hubberton

    2011-01-01

    Permafrost deposits constitute a large organic carbon pool highly vulnerable to degradation and potential carbon release due to global warming. Permafrost sections along coastal and river bank exposures in NE Siberia were studied for organic matter (OM) characteristics and ice content. OM stored in Quaternary permafrost grew, accumulated, froze, partly decomposed, and...

  13. Nitrate and Moisture Content of Broad Permafrost Landscape Features in the Barrow Peninsula: Predicting Evolving NO3 Concentrations in a Changing Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arendt, C. A.; Heikoop, J. M.; Newman, B. D.; Wales, N. A.; McCaully, R. E.; Wilson, C. J.; Wullschleger, S.

    2017-12-01

    The geochemical evolution of Arctic regions as permafrost degrades, significantly impacts nutrient availability. The release of nitrogen compounds from permafrost degradation fertilizes both microbial decomposition and plant productivity. Arctic warming promotes permafrost degradation, causing geomorphic and hydrologic transitions that have the potential to convert saturated zones to unsaturated zones and subsequently alter the nitrate production capacity of permafrost regions. Changes in Nitrate (NO3-) content associated with shifting moisture regimes are a primary factor determining Arctic fertilization and subsequent primary productivity, and have direct feedbacks to carbon cycling. We have documented a broad survey of co-located soil moisture and nitrate concentration measurements in shallow active layer regions across a variety of topographic features in the expansive continuous permafrost region encompassing the Barrow Peninsula of Alaska. Topographic features of interest are slightly higher relative to surrounding landscapes with drier soils and elevated nitrate, including the rims of low centered polygons, the centers of flat and high centered polygons, the rims of young, old and ancient drain thaw lake basins and drainage slopes that exist across the landscape. With this information, we model the nitrate inventory of the Barrow Peninsula using multiple geospatial approaches to estimate total area cover by unsaturated features of interest and further predict how various drying scenarios increase the magnitude of nitrate produced in degrading permafrost regions across the Arctic. This work is supported by the US Department of Energy Next Generation Ecosystem Experiment, NGEE-Arctic.

  14. Evaluating permafrost thaw vulnerabilities and hydrologic impacts in boreal Alaska (USA) watersheds using field data and cryohydrogeologic modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walvoord, M. A.; Voss, C.; Ebel, B. A.; Minsley, B. J.

    2017-12-01

    Permafrost environments undergo changes in hydraulic, thermal, chemical, and mechanical subsurface properties upon thaw. These property changes must be considered in addition to alterations in hydrologic, thermal, and topographic boundary conditions when evaluating shifts in the movement and storage of water in arctic and sub-arctic boreal regions. Advances have been made in the last several years with respect to multiscale geophysical characterization of the subsurface and coupled fluid and energy transport modeling of permafrost systems. Ongoing efforts are presented that integrate field data with cryohydrogeologic modeling to better understand and anticipate changes in subsurface water resources, fluxes, and flowpaths caused by climate warming and permafrost thawing. Analyses are based on field data from several sites in interior Alaska (USA) that span a broad north-south transition from continuous to discontinuous permafrost. These data include soil hydraulic and thermal properties and shallow permafrost distribution. The data guide coupled fluid and energy flow simulations that incorporate porewater liquid/ice phase change and the accompanying modifications in hydraulic and thermal subsurface properties. Simulations are designed to assess conditions conducive to active layer thickening and talik development, both of which are expected to affect groundwater storage and flow. Model results provide a framework for identifying factors that control the rates of permafrost thaw and associated hydrologic responses, which in turn influence the fate and transport of carbon.

  15. The subcatchment- and catchment-scale hydrology of a boreal headwater peatland complex with sporadic permafrost.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonnentag, O.; Helbig, M.; Connon, R.; Hould Gosselin, G.; Ryu, Y.; Karoline, W.; Hanisch, J.; Moore, T. R.; Quinton, W. L.

    2017-12-01

    The permafrost region of the Northern Hemisphere has been experiencing twice the rate of climate warming compared to the rest of the Earth, resulting in the degradation of the cryosphere. A large portion of the high-latitude boreal forests of northwestern Canada grows on low-lying organic-rich lands with relative warm and thin isolated, sporadic and discontinuous permafrost. Along this southern limit of permafrost, increasingly warmer temperatures have caused widespread permafrost thaw leading to land cover changes at unprecedented rates. A prominent change includes wetland expansion at the expense of Picea mariana (black spruce)-dominated forest due to ground surface subsidence caused by the thawing of ice-rich permafrost leading to collapsing peat plateaus. Recent conceptual advances have provided important new insights into high-latitude boreal forest hydrology. However, refined quantitative understanding of the mechanisms behind water storage and movement at subcatchment and catchment scales is needed from a water resources management perspective. Here we combine multi-year daily runoff measurements with spatially explicit estimates of evapotranspiration, modelled with the Breathing Earth System Simulator, to characterize the monthly growing season catchment scale ( 150 km2) hydrological response of a boreal headwater peatland complex with sporadic permafrost in the southern Northwest Territories. The corresponding water budget components at subcatchment scale ( 0.1 km2) were obtained from concurrent cutthroat flume runoff and eddy covariance evapotranspiration measurements. The highly significant linear relationships for runoff (r2=0.64) and evapotranspiration (r2=0.75) between subcatchment and catchment scales suggest that the mineral upland-dominated downstream portion of the catchment acts hydrologically similar to the headwater portion dominated by boreal peatland complexes. Breakpoint analysis in combination with moving window statistics on multi

  16. Adaptation to permafrost in the Canadian north: Present and future

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Woo Mingko; Rouse, W.R.; Young, K.L.; Lewkowicz, A.G.

    1993-01-01

    Human-induced climate warming is believed to be imminent, although its exact magnitude is uncertain. Such a warming will have a dramatic effect on permafrost, which underlies about half of Canada's land mass. Adaptation of the land to climatic warming will include diminution of permafrost both in lateral and vertical extent, with concomitant responses in the landscape such as development of thermokarst, slides and slumping in hilly terrain, and altering of hydrologic regimes. Since northern development has relied on special techniques that preserve permafrost to ensure foundation stability, climatic warming will demand adjustment in engineering designs for new facilities and alteration of maintenance procedures for existing facilities. Recommendations are presented for future research, both on permafrost and its linkages to climatic and other environmental factors, and on risk analyses of engineering projects

  17. Permafrost Meta-Omics and Climate Change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mackelprang, Rachel; Saleska, Scott R.; Jacobsen, Carsten Suhr; Jansson, Janet K.; Taş, Neslihan

    2016-06-29

    Permafrost (i.e., soil that has been frozen for at least 2 consecutive years) represents a habitat for microbial life at subzero temperatures (Gilichinsky et al. 2008). Approximately one quarter of the Earth’s surface is underlain by permafrost, which contains 25-50% of the total global soil carbon pool (Schuur et al. 2008, Tarnocai et al. 2009). This carbon is largely protected from microbial decomposition by reduced microbial activity in frozen conditions, but climate change is threatening to induce large-scale permafrost thaw thus exposing it to degradation. The resulting emissions of greenhouse gasses (GHGs) can produce a positive feedback loop and significantly amplify the effects of global warming. Increasing temperatures at high latitudes, changes in precipitation patterns, and frequent fire events have already initiated a widespread degradation of permafrost (Schuur et al. 2015).

  18. The distribution of warm gas in the G327.3-0.6 star forming region

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leurini, S.; Wyrowski, F.; van der Tak, F.; Herpin, F.; Herschel WISH Team, [Unknown

    Water is a key molecule for determining the physical chemical structure of star forming regions because of its large abundance variations between warm and cold regions. As a part of the HIFI-led Key Program WISH (P.I. E. van Dishoeck), we are mapping six massive star forming region in different H2O

  19. In situ nuclear magnetic response of permafrost and active layer soil in boreal and tundra ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kass, Mason Andrew; Irons, Trevor; Minsley, Burke J.

    2017-01-01

    Characterization of permafrost, particularly warm and near-surface permafrost which can contain significant liquid water, is critical to understanding complex interrelationships with climate change, ecosystems, and disturbances such as wildfires. Understanding the vulnerability and resilience...... of the nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) response of the active layer and permafrost in a variety of soil conditions, types, and saturations. In this paper, we summarize the NMR data and present quantitative relationships between active layer and permafrost liquid water content and pore sizes and show...

  20. The impacts of recent permafrost thaw on land–atmosphere greenhouse gas exchange

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hayes, Daniel J; Yuan, Fengming; Wullschleger, Stan D; Kicklighter, David W; Melillo, Jerry M; McGuire, A David; Chen, Min; Zhuang, Qianlai

    2014-01-01

    Permafrost thaw and the subsequent mobilization of carbon (C) stored in previously frozen soil organic matter (SOM) have the potential to be a strong positive feedback to climate. As the northern permafrost region experiences as much as a doubling of the rate of warming as the rest of the Earth, the vast amount of C in permafrost soils is vulnerable to thaw, decomposition and release as atmospheric greenhouse gases. Diagnostic and predictive estimates of high-latitude terrestrial C fluxes vary widely among different models depending on how dynamics in permafrost, and the seasonally thawed ‘active layer’ above it, are represented. Here, we employ a process-based model simulation experiment to assess the net effect of active layer dynamics on this ‘permafrost carbon feedback’ in recent decades, from 1970 to 2006, over the circumpolar domain of continuous and discontinuous permafrost. Over this time period, the model estimates a mean increase of 6.8 cm in active layer thickness across the domain, which exposes a total of 11.6 Pg C of thawed SOM to decomposition. According to our simulation experiment, mobilization of this previously frozen C results in an estimated cumulative net source of 3.7 Pg C to the atmosphere since 1970 directly tied to active layer dynamics. Enhanced decomposition from the newly exposed SOM accounts for the release of both CO 2 (4.0 Pg C) and CH 4 (0.03 Pg C), but is partially compensated by CO 2 uptake (0.3 Pg C) associated with enhanced net primary production of vegetation. This estimated net C transfer to the atmosphere from permafrost thaw represents a significant factor in the overall ecosystem carbon budget of the Pan-Arctic, and a non-trivial additional contribution on top of the combined fossil fuel emissions from the eight Arctic nations over this time period. (paper)

  1. Ice-Rich Yedoma Permafrost: A Synthesis of Circum-Arctic Distribution and Thickness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strauss, J.; Fedorov, A. N.; Fortier, D.; Froese, D. G.; Fuchs, M.; Grosse, G.; Günther, F.; Harden, J. W.; Hugelius, G.; Kanevskiy, M. Z.; Kholodov, A. L.; Kunitsky, V.; Laboor, S.; Lapointe Elmrabti, L.; Rivkina, E.; Robinson, J. E.; Schirrmeister, L.; Shmelev, D.; Shur, Y.; Spektor, V.; Ulrich, M.; Veremeeva, A.; Walter Anthony, K. M.; Zimov, S. A.

    2015-12-01

    Vast portions of Arctic and sub-Arctic Siberia, Alaska and the Yukon Territory are covered by ice-rich silts that are penetrated by large ice wedges, resulting from syngenetic sedimentation and freezing. Accompanied by wedge-ice growth, the sedimentation process was driven by cold continental climatic and environmental conditions in unglaciated regions during the late Pleistocene, inducing the accumulation of the unique Yedoma permafrost deposits up to 50 meter thick. Because of fast incorporation of organic material into permafrost during formation, Yedoma deposits include low-decomposed organic matter. Moreover, ice-rich permafrost deposits like Yedoma are especially prone to degradation triggered by climate changes or human activity. When Yedoma deposits degrade, large amounts of sequestered organic carbon as well as other nutrients are released and become part of active biogeochemical cycling. This could be of global significance for the climate warming, as increased permafrost thaw is likely to cause a positive feedback loop. Therefore, a detailed assessment of the Yedoma deposit volume is of importance to estimate its potential future climate response. Moreover, as a step beyond the objectives of this synthesis study, our coverage (see figure for the Yedoma domain) and thickness estimation will provide critical data to refine the Yedoma permafrost organic carbon inventory, which is assumed to have freeze-locked between 83±12 and 129±30 gigatonnes (Gt) of organic carbon. Hence, we here synthesize data on the circum-Arctic and sub-Arctic distribution and thickness of Yedoma permafrost (see figure for the Yedoma domain) in the framework of an Action Group funded by the International Permafrost Association (IPA). The quantification of the Yedoma coverage is conducted by the digitization of geomorphological and Quaternary geological maps. Further data on Yedoma thickness is contributed from boreholes and exposures reported in the scientific literature.

  2. The impacts of recent permafrost thaw on land-atmosphere greenhouse gas exchange

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, Daniel J.; Kicklighter, David W.; McGuire, A. David; Chen, Min; Zhuang, Qianlai; Yuan, Fengming; Melillo, Jerry M.; Wullschleger, Stan D.

    2014-01-01

    Permafrost thaw and the subsequent mobilization of carbon (C) stored in previously frozen soil organic matter (SOM) have the potential to be a strong positive feedback to climate. As the northern permafrost region experiences as much as a doubling of the rate of warming as the rest of the Earth, the vast amount of C in permafrost soils is vulnerable to thaw, decomposition and release as atmospheric greenhouse gases. Diagnostic and predictive estimates of high-latitude terrestrial C fluxes vary widely among different models depending on how dynamics in permafrost, and the seasonally thawed 'active layer' above it, are represented. Here, we employ a process-based model simulation experiment to assess the net effect of active layer dynamics on this 'permafrost carbon feedback' in recent decades, from 1970 to 2006, over the circumpolar domain of continuous and discontinuous permafrost. Over this time period, the model estimates a mean increase of 6.8 cm in active layer thickness across the domain, which exposes a total of 11.6 Pg C of thawed SOM to decomposition. According to our simulation experiment, mobilization of this previously frozen C results in an estimated cumulative net source of 3.7 Pg C to the atmosphere since 1970 directly tied to active layer dynamics. Enhanced decomposition from the newly exposed SOM accounts for the release of both CO2 (4.0 Pg C) and CH4 (0.03 Pg C), but is partially compensated by CO2 uptake (0.3 Pg C) associated with enhanced net primary production of vegetation. This estimated net C transfer to the atmosphere from permafrost thaw represents a significant factor in the overall ecosystem carbon budget of the Pan-Arctic, and a non-trivial additional contribution on top of the combined fossil fuel emissions from the eight Arctic nations over this time period.

  3. InSAR observation of seasonal ground surface deformation in permafrost area near Batagay, Siberia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yanagiya, K.; Furuya, M.

    2017-12-01

    Thawing of permafrost can lead to ground deformation. Ground deformation has been studied as a serious problem in the Arctic Ocean coastal area such as Russia for a long time, because the deformation causes damage to architectures at these areas. However, there have been no quantitative observation data, and the spatial and temporal distributions have hardly been investigated. On the other hand, by the recently global warming influence, the importance of organic carbon stored in permafrost is pointed out. Although the release of methane gas is confirmed in some thermokarst lakes, it is very difficult to observe the permafrost in a wide area by field study. Instead, it is technically possible to monitor the subsidence and uplift of the ground over the permafrost area, which could potentially make a significant contribution to the monitoring thawing process of permafrost. In this study, we attempted to detect ground deformation signal in permafrost area by remote sensing using interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR). Using the data of two SAR satellites ALOS and ALOS2 launched by JAXA, we observed recent ground deformation from 2007 to 2016. Particularly recent observations of ALOS2 from 2014 to 2016 discovered distant displacements towards the LOS direction in the northeast region from the town of Batagay,Siberia. The diameter of the displacements area covers about 7.7 km. In this study, we considered that this signal is likely to be due to permafrost thawing, we also investigated the seasonal characteristics and looked back ALOS data of this area. In addition, since the high latitude area, observation results include noise due to the ionosphere, so we tried to remove the noise.

  4. Tropical Warm Semi-Arid Regions Expanding Over Temperate Latitudes In The Projected 21st Century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajaud, A.; de Noblet, N. I.

    2015-12-01

    Two billion people today live in drylands, where extreme climatic conditions prevail, and natural resources are limited. Drylands are expected to expand under several scenarios of climatic change. However, relevant adaptation strategies need to account for the aridity level: it conditions the equilibrium tree-cover density, ranging from deserts (hyper-arid) to dense savannas (sub-humid). Here we focus on the evolution of climatically defined warm semi-arid areas, where low-tree density covers can be maintained. We study the global repartition of these regions in the future and the bioclimatic shifts involved. We adopted a bioclimatological approach based on the Köppen climate classification. The warm semi-arid class is characterized by mean annual temperatures over 18°C and a rainfall-limitation criterion. A multi-model ensemble of CMIP5 projections for three representative concentration pathways was selected to analyze future conditions. The classification was first applied to the start, middle and end of the 20th and 21st centuries, in order to localize past and future warm semi-arid regions. Then, time-series for the classification were built to characterize trends and variability in the evolution of those regions. According to the CRU datasets, global expansion of the warm semi-arid area has already started (~+13%), following the global warming trend since the 1900s. This will continue according to all projections, most significantly so outside the tropical belt. Under the "business as usual" scenario, the global warm semi-arid area will increase by 30% and expand 12° poleward in the Northern Hemisphere, according to the multi-model mean. Drying drives the conversion from equatorial sub-humid conditions. Beyond 30° of latitude, cold semi-arid conditions become warm semi-arid through warming, and temperate conditions through combined warming and drying processes. Those various transitions may have drastic but also very distinct ecological and sociological

  5. Global peatland initiation driven by regionally asynchronous warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Paul J; Swindles, Graeme T; Valdes, Paul J; Ivanovic, Ruza F; Gregoire, Lauren J; Smith, Mark W; Tarasov, Lev; Haywood, Alan M; Bacon, Karen L

    2018-05-08

    Widespread establishment of peatlands since the Last Glacial Maximum represents the activation of a globally important carbon sink, but the drivers of peat initiation are unclear. The role of climate in peat initiation is particularly poorly understood. We used a general circulation model to simulate local changes in climate during the initiation of 1,097 peatlands around the world. We find that peat initiation in deglaciated landscapes in both hemispheres was driven primarily by warming growing seasons, likely through enhanced plant productivity, rather than by any increase in effective precipitation. In Western Siberia, which remained ice-free throughout the last glacial period, the initiation of the world's largest peatland complex was globally unique in that it was triggered by an increase in effective precipitation that inhibited soil respiration and allowed wetland plant communities to establish. Peat initiation in the tropics was only weakly related to climate change, and appears to have been driven primarily by nonclimatic mechanisms such as waterlogging due to tectonic subsidence. Our findings shed light on the genesis and Holocene climate space of one of the world's most carbon-dense ecosystem types, with implications for understanding trajectories of ecological change under changing future climates.

  6. Permafrost investigations at the Lake Hövsgöl, northern Mongolia, using DC resistivity tomography and DEM-analyses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Etzelmuller, B.; Heggem, E. S. F.; Frauenfelder, R.; Romanovsky, V.; Sharkhuu, N.; Jambaljav, Y.; Tumensetseg, S.; Kääb, A.; Goulden, C.

    2003-04-01

    The region of Lake Hövsgöl, northern Mongolia, lies at the southern edge of Siberia and forms the southern-most fringe of the Siberian continuous permafrost zone. Analysis of long-term temperature data from the area indicates that annual temperatures have warmed by about 1.5^oC over the last 40 years. Being at the southern fringe of permafrost existence, temperature changes are supposed to have a major impact on permafrost degradation and thus on the environment, in interaction with human activities like nomadic pasture use. The objective of this study is to define the distribution of permafrost and the depth of the active zones in detail, and to begin a monitoring program of soil and permafrost temperatures in the study area. During these studies (a) field measurements of ground temperature, (b) analyses of geophysical parameters (mainly ground resistivities), and (c) the generation and analyses of digital elevation models and satellite imagery were carried out. The field measurements provided the basis for the later development of statistical/empirical and physical models of the permafrost distribution in the Hövsgöl area. This presentation will focus on the DC-resistivity tomography mapping of permafrost and digital elevation model analyses. The study showed that DC resistivity tomography was useful to distinguish the active layer and permafrost thickness under different types of surface cover. The project is funded by a five-year grant from the Global Environment Facility to the Mongolian Academy of Sciences (MAS), implemented by the World Bank and a foundation of the Mongolian Long Term Ecological Research Program at Lake Hövsgöl.

  7. Changes in extreme regional sea level under global warming

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brunnabend, S. E.; Dijkstra, H. A.; Kliphuis, Michael; Bal, Henri E.; Seinstra, Frank J.; van Werkhoven, Ben; Maassen, J.; van Meersbergen, Maarten

    2017-01-01

    An important contribution to future changes in regional sea level extremes is due to the changes in intrinsic ocean variability, in particular ocean eddies. Here, we study a scenario of future dynamic sea level (DSL) extremes using a high-resolution version of the Parallel Ocean Program and

  8. Shrub expansion in SW Greenland under modest regional warming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Rasmus Halfdan; Meilby, Henrik; Kollmann, Johannes

    2013-01-01

    Shrub expansion has been observed widely in tundra areas across the Arctic. This phenomenon has been partially attributed to increasing temperatures over the past century. However, relationships among shrub expansion, grazing, and human disturbance have been studied little. SW Greenland...... is a subarctic to low-arctic region with a long and complex land-use history and only modest temperature increases over the past 50 years (0.2 °C decade-1), but changes in shrub cover have not previously been studied in this region. We compiled historical photographs of vegetation in SW Greenland (1898......–1974) and repeated the photos in 2010 and 2011. Sixty-four photo pairs were cropped into 133 smaller units and classified by aspect, substrate stability, muskoxen grazing, and human disturbance. The photo material was evaluated by 22 experts with respect to changes in shrub cover, revealing a general increase across...

  9. Numerical modeling of permafrost dynamics in Alaska using a high spatial resolution dataset

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. E. Jafarov

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Climate projections for the 21st century indicate that there could be a pronounced warming and permafrost degradation in the Arctic and sub-Arctic regions. Climate warming is likely to cause permafrost thawing with subsequent effects on surface albedo, hydrology, soil organic matter storage and greenhouse gas emissions.

    To assess possible changes in the permafrost thermal state and active layer thickness, we implemented the GIPL2-MPI transient numerical model for the entire Alaska permafrost domain. The model input parameters are spatial datasets of mean monthly air temperature and precipitation, prescribed thermal properties of the multilayered soil column, and water content that are specific for each soil class and geographical location. As a climate forcing, we used the composite of five IPCC Global Circulation Models that has been downscaled to 2 by 2 km spatial resolution by Scenarios Network for Alaska Planning (SNAP group.

    In this paper, we present the modeling results based on input of a five-model composite with A1B carbon emission scenario. The model has been calibrated according to the annual borehole temperature measurements for the State of Alaska. We also performed more detailed calibration for fifteen shallow borehole stations where high quality data are available on daily basis. To validate the model performance, we compared simulated active layer thicknesses with observed data from Circumpolar Active Layer Monitoring (CALM stations. The calibrated model was used to address possible ground temperature changes for the 21st century. The model simulation results show widespread permafrost degradation in Alaska could begin between 2040–2099 within the vast area southward from the Brooks Range, except for the high altitude regions of the Alaska Range and Wrangell Mountains.

  10. Activation of old carbon by erosion of coastal and subsea permafrost in Arctic Siberia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vonk, J E; Sánchez-García, L; van Dongen, B E; Alling, V; Kosmach, D; Charkin, A; Semiletov, I P; Dudarev, O V; Shakhova, N; Roos, P; Eglinton, T I; Andersson, A; Gustafsson, O

    2012-09-06

    The future trajectory of greenhouse gas concentrations depends on interactions between climate and the biogeosphere. Thawing of Arctic permafrost could release significant amounts of carbon into the atmosphere in this century. Ancient Ice Complex deposits outcropping along the ~7,000-kilometre-long coastline of the East Siberian Arctic Shelf (ESAS), and associated shallow subsea permafrost, are two large pools of permafrost carbon, yet their vulnerabilities towards thawing and decomposition are largely unknown. Recent Arctic warming is stronger than has been predicted by several degrees, and is particularly pronounced over the coastal ESAS region. There is thus a pressing need to improve our understanding of the links between permafrost carbon and climate in this relatively inaccessible region. Here we show that extensive release of carbon from these Ice Complex deposits dominates (57 ± 2 per cent) the sedimentary carbon budget of the ESAS, the world’s largest continental shelf, overwhelming the marine and topsoil terrestrial components. Inverse modelling of the dual-carbon isotope composition of organic carbon accumulating in ESAS surface sediments, using Monte Carlo simulations to account for uncertainties, suggests that 44 ± 10 teragrams of old carbon is activated annually from Ice Complex permafrost, an order of magnitude more than has been suggested by previous studies. We estimate that about two-thirds (66 ± 16 per cent) of this old carbon escapes to the atmosphere as carbon dioxide, with the remainder being re-buried in shelf sediments. Thermal collapse and erosion of these carbon-rich Pleistocene coastline and seafloor deposits may accelerate with Arctic amplification of climate warming.

  11. Biodegradability of dissolved organic carbon in permafrost soils and waterways: a meta-analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vonk, J. E.; Tank, S. E.; Mann, P. J.; Spencer, R. G. M.; Treat, C. C.; Striegl, R. G.; Abbott, B. W.; Wickland, K. P.

    2015-06-01

    As Arctic regions warm, the large organic carbon pool stored in permafrost becomes increasingly vulnerable to thaw and decomposition. The transfer of newly mobilized carbon to the atmosphere and its potential influence upon climate change will largely depend on the reactivity and subsequent fate of carbon delivered to aquatic ecosystems. Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) is a key regulator of aquatic metabolism and its biodegradability will determine the extent and rate of carbon release from aquatic ecosystems to the atmosphere. Knowledge of the mechanistic controls on DOC biodegradability is however currently poor due to a scarcity of long-term data sets, limited spatial coverage of available data, and methodological diversity. Here, we performed parallel biodegradable DOC (BDOC) experiments at six Arctic sites (16 experiments) using a standardized incubation protocol to examine the effect of methodological differences used as common practice in the literature. We further synthesized results from 14 aquatic and soil leachate BDOC studies from across the circum-arctic permafrost region to examine pan-Arctic trends in BDOC. An increasing extent of permafrost across the landscape resulted in higher BDOC losses in both soil and aquatic systems. We hypothesize that the unique composition of permafrost-derived DOC combined with limited prior microbial processing due to low soil temperature and relatively shorter flow path lengths and transport times, resulted in higher overall terrestrial and freshwater BDOC loss. Additionally, we found that the fraction of BDOC decreased moving down the fluvial network in continuous permafrost regions, i.e. from streams to large rivers, suggesting that highly biodegradable DOC is lost in headwater streams. We also observed a seasonal (January-December) decrease in BDOC losses in large streams and rivers, but no apparent change in smaller streams and soil leachates. We attribute this seasonal change to a combination of factors including

  12. Biodegradability of dissolved organic carbon in permafrost soils and aquatic systems: a meta-analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vonk, J. E.; Tank, S. E.; Mann, P. J.; Spencer, R. G. M.; Treat, C. C.; Striegl, R. G.; Abbott, B. W.; Wickland, K. P.

    2015-12-01

    As Arctic regions warm and frozen soils thaw, the large organic carbon pool stored in permafrost becomes increasingly vulnerable to decomposition or transport. The transfer of newly mobilized carbon to the atmosphere and its potential influence upon climate change will largely depend on the degradability of carbon delivered to aquatic ecosystems. Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) is a key regulator of aquatic metabolism, yet knowledge of the mechanistic controls on DOC biodegradability is currently poor due to a scarcity of long-term data sets, limited spatial coverage of available data, and methodological diversity. Here, we performed parallel biodegradable DOC (BDOC) experiments at six Arctic sites (16 experiments) using a standardized incubation protocol to examine the effect of methodological differences commonly used in the literature. We also synthesized results from 14 aquatic and soil leachate BDOC studies from across the circum-arctic permafrost region to examine pan-arctic trends in BDOC. An increasing extent of permafrost across the landscape resulted in higher DOC losses in both soil and aquatic systems. We hypothesize that the unique composition of (yedoma) permafrost-derived DOC combined with limited prior microbial processing due to low soil temperature and relatively short flow path lengths and transport times, contributed to a higher overall terrestrial and freshwater DOC loss. Additionally, we found that the fraction of BDOC decreased moving down the fluvial network in continuous permafrost regions, i.e. from streams to large rivers, suggesting that highly biodegradable DOC is lost in headwater streams. We also observed a seasonal (January-December) decrease in BDOC in large streams and rivers, but saw no apparent change in smaller streams or soil leachates. We attribute this seasonal change to a combination of factors including shifts in carbon source, changing DOC residence time related to increasing thaw-depth, increasing water temperatures later

  13. The thin brown line: The crucial role of peat in protecting permafrost in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaglioti, B.; Mann, D. H.; Farquharson, L. M.; Baughman, C. A.; Jones, B. M.; Romanovsky, V. E.; Williams, A. P.; Andreu-Hayles, L.

    2017-12-01

    Ongoing warming threatens to thaw Arctic permafrost and release its stored carbon, which could trigger a permafrost-carbon feedback capable of augmenting global warming. The effects of warming air temperatures on permafrost are complicated by the fact that across much of the Arctic and Subarctic a mat of living plants and decaying litter cover the ground and buffer underlying permafrost from air temperatures. For simplicity here, we refer to this organic mat as "peat". Because this peat modifies heat flow between ground and air, the rate and magnitude of permafrost responses to changing climate - and hence the permafrost-carbon feedback - are partly slaved to the peat layer's slower dynamics. To explore this relationship, we used 14C-age offsets within lake sediments in Alaskan watersheds underlain by yedoma deposits to track the changing responses of permafrost thaw to fluctuating climate as peat accumulated over the last 14,000 years. As the peat layer built up, warming events became less effective at thawing permafrost and releasing ancient carbon. Consistent with this age-offset record, the geological record shows that early in post-glacial times when the peat cover was still thin and limited in extent, warm intervals triggered extensive thermokarst that resulted in rapid aggradation of floodplains. Today in contrast, hillslopes and floodplains remain stable despite rapid warming, probably because of the buffering effects of the extensive peat cover. Another natural experiment is provided by tundra fires like the 2007 Anaktuvuk River fire that removed the peat cover from tundra underlain by continuous permafrost and resulted in widespread thermkarsting. Further support for peat's critical role in protecting permafrost comes from the results of modeling how permafrost temperatures under different peat thicknesses respond to warming air temperature. Although post-industrial warming has not yet surpassed the buffering capacity of 14,000 years of peat buildup in

  14. Differentiated responses of apple tree floral phenology to global warming in contrasting climatic regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Michel eLegave

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The responses of flowering phenology to temperature increases in temperate fruit trees have rarely been investigated in contrasting climatic regions. This is an appropriate framework for highlighting varying responses to diverse warming contexts, which would potentially combine chill accumulation declines and heat accumulation increases. To examine this issue, a data set was constituted in apple tree from flowering dates collected for two phenological stages of three cultivars in seven climate-contrasting temperate regions of Western Europe and in three mild regions, one in Northern Morocco and two in Southern Brazil. Multiple change-point models were applied to flowering date series, as well as to corresponding series of mean temperature during two successive periods, respectively determining for the fulfillment of chill and heat requirements. A new overview in space and time of flowering date changes was provided in apple tree highlighting not only flowering date advances as in previous studies but also stationary flowering date series. At global scale, differentiated flowering time patterns result from varying interactions between contrasting thermal determinisms of flowering dates and contrasting warming contexts. This may explain flowering date advances in most of European regions and in Morocco vs. stationary flowering date series in the Brazilian regions. A notable exception in Europe was found in the French Mediterranean region where the flowering date series was stationary. While the flowering duration series were stationary whatever the region, the flowering durations were far longer in mild regions compared to temperate regions. Our findings suggest a new warming vulnerability in temperate Mediterranean regions, which could shift towards responding more to chill decline and consequently experience late and extended flowering under future warming scenarios.

  15. Differentiated Responses of Apple Tree Floral Phenology to Global Warming in Contrasting Climatic Regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Legave, Jean-Michel; Guédon, Yann; Malagi, Gustavo; El Yaacoubi, Adnane; Bonhomme, Marc

    2015-01-01

    The responses of flowering phenology to temperature increases in temperate fruit trees have rarely been investigated in contrasting climatic regions. This is an appropriate framework for highlighting varying responses to diverse warming contexts, which would potentially combine chill accumulation (CA) declines and heat accumulation (HA) increases. To examine this issue, a data set was constituted in apple tree from flowering dates collected for two phenological stages of three cultivars in seven climate-contrasting temperate regions of Western Europe and in three mild regions, one in Northern Morocco and two in Southern Brazil. Multiple change-point models were applied to flowering date series, as well as to corresponding series of mean temperature during two successive periods, respectively determining for the fulfillment of chill and heat requirements. A new overview in space and time of flowering date changes was provided in apple tree highlighting not only flowering date advances as in previous studies but also stationary flowering date series. At global scale, differentiated flowering time patterns result from varying interactions between contrasting thermal determinisms of flowering dates and contrasting warming contexts. This may explain flowering date advances in most of European regions and in Morocco vs. stationary flowering date series in the Brazilian regions. A notable exception in Europe was found in the French Mediterranean region where the flowering date series was stationary. While the flowering duration series were stationary whatever the region, the flowering durations were far longer in mild regions compared to temperate regions. Our findings suggest a new warming vulnerability in temperate Mediterranean regions, which could shift toward responding more to chill decline and consequently experience late and extended flowering under future warming scenarios.

  16. The effect of fire and permafrost interactions on soil carbon accumulation in an upland black spruce ecosystem of interior Alaska: Implications for post-thaw carbon loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donnell, J. A.; Harden, J.W.; McGuire, A.D.; Kanevskiy, M.Z.; Jorgenson, M.T.; Xu, X.

    2011-01-01

    High-latitude regions store large amounts of organic carbon (OC) in active-layer soils and permafrost, accounting for nearly half of the global belowground OC pool. In the boreal region, recent warming has promoted changes in the fire regime, which may exacerbate rates of permafrost thaw and alter soil OC dynamics in both organic and mineral soil. We examined how interactions between fire and permafrost govern rates of soil OC accumulation in organic horizons, mineral soil of the active layer, and near-surface permafrost in a black spruce ecosystem of interior Alaska. To estimate OC accumulation rates, we used chronosequence, radiocarbon, and modeling approaches. We also developed a simple model to track long-term changes in soil OC stocks over past fire cycles and to evaluate the response of OC stocks to future changes in the fire regime. Our chronosequence and radiocarbon data indicate that OC turnover varies with soil depth, with fastest turnover occurring in shallow organic horizons (~60 years) and slowest turnover in near-surface permafrost (>3000 years). Modeling analysis indicates that OC accumulation in organic horizons was strongly governed by carbon losses via combustion and burial of charred remains in deep organic horizons. OC accumulation in mineral soil was influenced by active layer depth, which determined the proportion of mineral OC in a thawed or frozen state and thus, determined loss rates via decomposition. Our model results suggest that future changes in fire regime will result in substantial reductions in OC stocks, largely from the deep organic horizon. Additional OC losses will result from fire-induced thawing of near-surface permafrost. From these findings, we conclude that the vulnerability of deep OC stocks to future warming is closely linked to the sensitivity of permafrost to wildfire disturbance. ?? 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  17. A possible constraint on regional precipitation intensity changes under global warming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gutowski, William J.; Kozak, K. A.; Arritt, R. W.

    2007-01-01

    Changes in daily precipitation versus intensity under a global warming scenario in two regional climate simulations of the United States show a well-recognized feature of more intense precipitation. More important, by resolving the precipitation intensity spectrum, the changes show a relatively...

  18. Dominance of climate warming effects on recent drying trends over wet monsoon regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Chang-Eui; Jeong, Su-Jong; Ho, Chang-Hoi; Park, Hoonyoung; Piao, Shilong; Kim, Jinwon; Feng, Song

    2017-09-01

    Understanding changes in background dryness over land is key information for adapting to climate change because of its critical socioeconomic consequences. However, causes of continental dryness changes remain uncertain because various climate parameters control dryness. Here, we verify dominant climate variables determining dryness trends over continental eastern Asia, which is characterized by diverse hydroclimate regimes ranging from arid to humid, by quantifying the relative effects of changes in precipitation, solar radiation, wind speed, surface air temperature, and relative humidity on trends in the aridity index based on observed data from 189 weather stations for the period of 1961-2010. Before the early 1980s (1961-1983), change in precipitation is a primary condition for determining aridity trends. In the later period (1984-2010), the dominant climate parameter for aridity trends varies according to the hydroclimate regime. Drying trends in arid regions are mostly explained by reduced precipitation. In contrast, the increase in potential evapotranspiration due to increased atmospheric water-holding capacity, a secondary impact of warming, works to increase aridity over the humid monsoon region despite an enhanced water supply and relatively less warming. Our results show significant drying effects of warming over the humid monsoon region in recent decades; this also supports the drying trends over warm and water-sufficient regions in future climate.

  19. Dominance of climate warming effects on recent drying trends over wet monsoon regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C.-E. Park

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Understanding changes in background dryness over land is key information for adapting to climate change because of its critical socioeconomic consequences. However, causes of continental dryness changes remain uncertain because various climate parameters control dryness. Here, we verify dominant climate variables determining dryness trends over continental eastern Asia, which is characterized by diverse hydroclimate regimes ranging from arid to humid, by quantifying the relative effects of changes in precipitation, solar radiation, wind speed, surface air temperature, and relative humidity on trends in the aridity index based on observed data from 189 weather stations for the period of 1961–2010. Before the early 1980s (1961–1983, change in precipitation is a primary condition for determining aridity trends. In the later period (1984–2010, the dominant climate parameter for aridity trends varies according to the hydroclimate regime. Drying trends in arid regions are mostly explained by reduced precipitation. In contrast, the increase in potential evapotranspiration due to increased atmospheric water-holding capacity, a secondary impact of warming, works to increase aridity over the humid monsoon region despite an enhanced water supply and relatively less warming. Our results show significant drying effects of warming over the humid monsoon region in recent decades; this also supports the drying trends over warm and water-sufficient regions in future climate.

  20. Mars: Detaching of the Free Water Signature (FWS) Presence Regions on the Base of HEND/ODYSSEY Data and Their Correlation with Some Permafrost Features from MOC Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuzmin, R. O.; Mitrofanov, I. G.; Litvak, M. L.; Boynton, M. V.; Saunders, R. S.

    2003-01-01

    The first results from global mapping of the neutron albedo from Mars by HEND instrument have shown the noticeable deficit of both the epithermal (EN) and the fast (FN) neutrons counts rate in the high latitudes regions of both hemispheres of the planet. The deficit is indicative for high enriching of the surface regolith by hydrogen, which may correspond to amount of any water phases and forms. The objectives of our study are the spatial and temporal variations of the free water (ice) signature in the Martian surface layer on the base of HEND/ODYSSEY data and their correlation with spatial spreading of some permafrost features, mapped on the base of MOC images. For the study we used the results of the global mapping (pixel 5 x5 ) of EN and FN albedo, realized by HEND/ODYSSEY in the period from 17 February to 10 December 2002 year.

  1. Ventimolina stellata gen. et sp. nov. (Haptophyta, Papposphaeraceae) from warm water regions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Helge Abildhauge; Østergaard, Jette B.; Cros, Lluïsa

    2015-01-01

    It has been known for some time that the distinctive polar weakly calcified coccolithophores are also present in samples from lower latitudes. While polar species may actually have a geographic range that vastly extends beyond the polar realms, it is often the case that the warm water regions...... contribute species that can be allocated to genera previously described based on polar material. We are currently in the process of formally dealing with the warm water species diversity affiliated with the family Papposphaeraceae. In this paper we describe a new genus and species Ventimolina stellata based...

  2. Climate hazards caused by thawing permafrost? Background information of the Federal Environmental Agency; Klimagefahr durch tauenden Permafrost? UBA-Hintergrundpapier

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2006-08-15

    The thawing of permafrost regions is supposed to increase climatic change processes due to the released methane. During the last decades the temperature of permafrost soils has increased by several tenths of degree up to 2 deg C. It is supposed that 10 to 20% of the permafrost regions will thaw during the next 100 years. The southern boundary of the permafrost region will move several hundred kilometers toward the north. Besides the increased risk for the climate system there will also be disadvantageous consequences for the ecosystems. Negative economic consequences are already observed and will be enhanced in the futures with significant cost for the public.

  3. Hydrological processes and permafrost regulate magnitude, source and chemical characteristics of dissolved organic carbon export in a peatland catchment of northeastern China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Yuedong; Song, Changchun; Tan, Wenwen; Wang, Xianwei; Lu, Yongzheng

    2018-02-01

    Permafrost thawing in peatlands has the potential to alter the catchment export of dissolved organic carbon (DOC), thus influencing the carbon balance and cycling in linked aquatic and ocean ecosystems. Peatlands along the southern margins of the Eurasian permafrost are relatively underexplored despite the considerable risks associated with permafrost degradation due to climate warming. This study examined dynamics of DOC export from a permafrost peatland catchment located in northeastern China during the 2012 to 2014 growing seasons. The estimated annual DOC loads varied greatly between 3211 and 19 022 kg yr-1, with a mean DOC yield of 4.7 g m-2 yr-1. Although the estimated DOC yield was in the lower range compared with other permafrost regions, it was still significant for the net carbon balance in the studied catchment. There were strong linkages between daily discharge and DOC concentrations in both wet and dry years, suggesting a transport-limited process of DOC delivery from the catchment. Discharge explained the majority of both seasonal and interannual variations of DOC concentrations, which made annual discharge a good indicator of total DOC load from the catchment. As indicated by three fluorescence indices, DOC source and chemical characteristics tracked the shift of flow paths during runoff processes closely. Interactions between the flow path and DOC chemical characteristics were greatly influenced by the seasonal thawing of the soil active layer. The deepening of the active layer due to climate warming likely increases the proportion of microbial-originated DOC in baseflow discharge.

  4. Warming patterns in regional climate change projections over the Iberian Peninsula

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gomez-Navarro, J.J.; Montavez, J.P.; Jimenez-Guerrero, P.; Jerez, S. [Murcia Univ. (Spain). Dept. de Fisica; Garcia-Valero, J.A. [Murcia Univ. (Spain). Dept. de Fisica; Delegacion Territorial en Murcia (ES). Agencia Estatal de Meteorologia (AEMET); Gonzalez-Rouco, J.F. [Univ. Complutense, Madrid (Spain). Dept. de Astrofisica y CC. de la Atmosfera

    2010-06-15

    A set of four regional climate change projections over the Iberian Peninsula has been performed. Simulations were driven by two General Circulation Models (consisting of two versions of the same atmospheric model coupled to two different ocean models) under two different SRES scenario. The XXI century has been simulated following a full-transient approach with a climate version of the mesoscale model MM5. An Empirical Orthogonal Function analysis (EOF) is applied to the monthly mean series of daily maximum and minimum 2-metre temperature to extract the warming signal. The first EOF is able to capture the spatial structure of the warming. The obtained warming patterns are fairly dependent on the month, but hardly change with the tested scenarios and GCM versions. Their shapes are related to geographical parameters, such as distance to the sea and orography. The main differences among simulations mostly concern the temporal evolution of the warming. The temperature trend is stronger for maximum temperatures and depends on the scenario and the driving GCM. This asymmetry, as well as the different warming rates in summer and winter, leads to a continentalization of the climate over the IP. (orig.)

  5. High-resolution Mapping of Permafrost and Soil Freeze/thaw Dynamics in the Tibetan Plateau Based on Multi-sensor Satellite Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, W.; Yi, Y.; Yang, K.; Kimball, J. S.

    2016-12-01

    The Tibetan Plateau (TP) is underlain by the world's largest extent of alpine permafrost ( 2.5×106 km2), dominated by sporadic and discontinuous permafrost with strong sensitivity to climate warming. Detailed permafrost distributions and patterns in most of the TP region are still unknown due to extremely sparse in-situ observations in this region characterized by heterogeneous land cover and large temporal dynamics in surface soil moisture conditions. Therefore, satellite-based temperature and moisture observations are essential for high-resolution mapping of permafrost distribution and soil active layer changes in the TP region. In this study, we quantify the TP regional permafrost distribution at 1-km resolution using a detailed satellite data-driven soil thermal process model (GIPL2). The soil thermal model is calibrated and validated using in-situ soil temperature/moisture observations from the CAMP/Tibet field campaign (9 sites: 0-300 cm soil depth sampling from 1997-2007), a multi-scale soil moisture and temperature monitoring network in the central TP (CTP-SMTMN, 57 sites: 5-40 cm, 2010-2014) and across the whole plateau (China Meteorology Administration, 98 sites: 0-320 cm, 2000-2015). Our preliminary results using the CAMP/Tibet and CTP-SMTMN network observations indicate strong controls of surface thermal and soil moisture conditions on soil freeze/thaw dynamics, which vary greatly with underlying topography, soil texture and vegetation cover. For regional mapping of soil freeze/thaw and permafrost dynamics, we use the most recent soil moisture retrievals from the NASA SMAP (Soil Moisture Active Passive) sensor to account for the effects of temporal soil moisture dynamics on soil thermal heat transfer, with surface thermal conditions defined by MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) land surface temperature records. Our study provides the first 1-km map of spatial patterns and recent changes of permafrost conditions in the TP.

  6. Simulation of pollutant transport in mobile water-flow channels in permafrost environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. I. Debolskaya

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available A common problem for the Arctic region is pollution by persistent organic compounds and other substances that have accumulated over the years in these areas. With temperature increasing, these substances can get out of the snow, ice, permafrost in the human environment. With climate warming and permafrost degradation the risk of toxic substances from the burial sites of chemical and radioactive waste increases. The work is devoted to research the pollution propagation in the rivers flowing in the permafrost taking into account the possible deformations of the channels caused by the melting of the permafrost with increasing temperature of the river flow water. We also consider the distribution of pollutants released during erosion of the coastal slopes, caused thermal erosion. Numerical experiments confirmed the quantitative assessment obtained from the field observations of the erosion rate increases with increasing temperature. Study the impact of thermal and mechanical erosion of the distribution of impurities led to the conclusion that as a result of the formation of taliks uniform flow conditions are violated, resulting in a non-stationary distribution of impurities. The increase in the volume of the test section of the river due to the appearance of cavities in the coastal slope leads to an increase in impurity concentration. Analysis of the results of modeling the spread of contamination during thawing sources in the frozen shores, demonstrated the relationship in the process of distribution of impurities from the position of the source and allowed to give a preliminary quantitative assessment.

  7. Short and long-term thermo-erosion of ice-rich permafrost coasts in the Laptev Sea region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Günther, F.; Overduin, P. P.; Sandakov, A. V.; Grosse, G.; Grigoriev, M. N.

    2013-02-01

    Permafrost coasts in the Arctic are susceptible to a variety of changing environmental factors all of which currently point to increasing coastal erosion rates and mass fluxes of sediment and carbon to the shallow arctic shelf seas. Rapid erosion along high yedoma coasts composed of Ice Complex permafrost deposits creates impressive coastal ice cliffs and inspired research for designing and implementing change detection studies for a long time, but continuous quantitative monitoring and a qualitative inventory of coastal thermo-erosion for large coastline segments is still lacking. Our goal is to use observations of thermo-erosion along the mainland coast of the Laptev Sea in eastern Siberia to understand how erosion rates depend on coastal geomorphology and the relative contributions of waterline and atmospheric drivers to coastal thermo-erosion over the past 4 decades and in the past few years. We compared multitemporal sets of orthorectified satellite imagery from 1965 to 2011 for three segments of coastline with a length of 73 to 95 km each and analyzed thermo-denudation (TD) along cliff top and thermo-abrasion (TA) along cliff bottom for two nested time periods: long-term rates (the past 39-43 yr) and short term rates (the past 1-3 yr). The Normalized Difference Thermo-erosion Index (NDTI) was used as a proxy that qualitatively describes the relative proportions of TD and TA. Mean annual erosion rates at all three sites were higher in recent years (-5.3 ± 1.31 m a-1) than over the long term mean (-2.2 ± 0.13 m a-1). The Mamontov Klyk coast exhibit primarily spatial variations of thermo-erosion, while intrasite-specific variations were strongest at the Buor Khaya coast, where slowest long-term rates around -0.5 ± 0.08 m a-1 were observed. The Oyogos Yar coast showed continuously rapid erosion up to -6.5 ± 0.19 m a-1. In general, variable characteristics of coastal thermo-erosion were observed not only between study sites and over time, but also within

  8. Short- and long-term thermo-erosion of ice-rich permafrost coasts in the Laptev Sea region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Günther, F.; Overduin, P. P.; Sandakov, A. V.; Grosse, G.; Grigoriev, M. N.

    2013-06-01

    Permafrost coasts in the Arctic are susceptible to a variety of changing environmental factors all of which currently point to increasing coastal erosion rates and mass fluxes of sediment and carbon to the shallow arctic shelf seas. Rapid erosion along high yedoma coasts composed of Ice Complex permafrost deposits creates impressive coastal ice cliffs and inspired research for designing and implementing change detection studies for a long time, but continuous quantitative monitoring and a qualitative inventory of coastal thermo-erosion for large coastline segments is still lacking. Our goal is to use observations of thermo-erosion along the mainland coast of the Laptev Sea, in eastern Siberia, to understand how it depends on coastal geomorphology and the relative contributions of water level and atmospheric drivers. We compared multi-temporal sets of orthorectified satellite imagery from 1965 to 2011 for three segments of coastline ranging in length from 73 to 95 km and analyzed thermo-denudation (TD) along the cliff top and thermo-abrasion (TA) along the cliff bottom for two nested time periods: long-term rates (the past 39-43 yr) and short-term rates (the past 1-4 yr). The Normalized Difference Thermo-erosion Index (NDTI) was used as a proxy to qualitatively describe the relative proportions of TD and TA. Mean annual erosion rates at all three sites were higher in recent years (-5.3 ± 1.3 m a-1) than over the long-term mean (-2.2 ± 0.1 m a-1). The Mamontov Klyk coast exhibits primarily spatial variations of thermo-erosion, while intrasite-specific variations caused by local relief were strongest at the Buor Khaya coast, where the slowest long-term rates of around -0.5 ± 0.1 m a-1 were observed. The Oyogos Yar coast showed continuously rapid erosion up to -6.5 ± 0.2 m a-1. In general, variable characteristics of coastal thermo-erosion were observed not only between study sites and over time, but also within single coastal transects along the cliff profile

  9. Surface and subsurface conditions in permafrost areas - a literature review

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vidstrand, Patrik

    2003-02-01

    This report contains a summary of some of the information within existing technical and scientific literature on permafrost. Permafrost is viewed as one of the future climate driven process domains that may exist in Scandinavia, and that may give rise to significantly different surface and subsurface conditions than the present. Except for changes in the biosphere, permafrost may impact hydraulic, mechanical, and chemical subsurface processes and conditions. Permafrost and its influences on the subsurface conditions are thus of interest for the performance and safety assessments of deep geological waste repositories. The definition of permafrost is 'ground that stays at or below 0 deg C for at least two consecutive years'. Permafrost will effect the geological subsurface to some depth. How deep the permafrost may grow is a function of the heat balance, thermal conditions at the surface and within the ground, and the geothermal heat flux from the Earth's inner parts. The main chapters of the report summaries the knowledge on permafrost evolution, occurrence and distribution, and extracts information concerning hydrology and mechanical and chemical impacts due to permafrost related conditions. The results of a literature review are always dependent on the available literature. Concerning permafrost there is some literature available from investigations in the field of long-term repositories and some from mining industries. However, reports of these investigations are few and the bulk of permafrost literature comes from the science departments concerned with surficial processes (e.g. geomorphology, hydrology, agriculture, etc) and from engineering concerns, such as foundation of constructions and pipeline design. This focus within the permafrost research inevitably yields a biased but also an abundant amount of information on localised surficial processes and a limited amount on regional and deep permafrost characteristics. Possible conclusions are that there is

  10. Surface and subsurface conditions in permafrost areas - a literature review

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vidstrand, Patrik [Bergab, Goeteborg (Sweden)

    2003-02-01

    This report contains a summary of some of the information within existing technical and scientific literature on permafrost. Permafrost is viewed as one of the future climate driven process domains that may exist in Scandinavia, and that may give rise to significantly different surface and subsurface conditions than the present. Except for changes in the biosphere, permafrost may impact hydraulic, mechanical, and chemical subsurface processes and conditions. Permafrost and its influences on the subsurface conditions are thus of interest for the performance and safety assessments of deep geological waste repositories. The definition of permafrost is 'ground that stays at or below 0 deg C for at least two consecutive years'. Permafrost will effect the geological subsurface to some depth. How deep the permafrost may grow is a function of the heat balance, thermal conditions at the surface and within the ground, and the geothermal heat flux from the Earth's inner parts. The main chapters of the report summaries the knowledge on permafrost evolution, occurrence and distribution, and extracts information concerning hydrology and mechanical and chemical impacts due to permafrost related conditions. The results of a literature review are always dependent on the available literature. Concerning permafrost there is some literature available from investigations in the field of long-term repositories and some from mining industries. However, reports of these investigations are few and the bulk of permafrost literature comes from the science departments concerned with surficial processes (e.g. geomorphology, hydrology, agriculture, etc) and from engineering concerns, such as foundation of constructions and pipeline design. This focus within the permafrost research inevitably yields a biased but also an abundant amount of information on localised surficial processes and a limited amount on regional and deep permafrost characteristics. Possible conclusions are that

  11. Evidence for nonuniform permafrost degradation after fire in boreal landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minsley, Burke J.; Pastick, Neal J.; Wylie, Bruce K.; Brown, Dana R.N.; Kass, M. Andy

    2016-01-01

    Fire can be a significant driver of permafrost change in boreal landscapes, altering the availability of soil carbon and nutrients that have important implications for future climate and ecological succession. However, not all landscapes are equally susceptible to fire-induced change. As fire frequency is expected to increase in the high latitudes, methods to understand the vulnerability and resilience of different landscapes to permafrost degradation are needed. We present a combination of multiscale remote sensing, geophysical, and field observations that reveal details of both near-surface (1 m) impacts of fire on permafrost. Along 11 transects that span burned-unburned boundaries in different landscape settings within interior Alaska, subsurface electrical resistivity and nuclear magnetic resonance data indicate locations where permafrost appears to be resilient to disturbance from fire, areas where warm permafrost conditions exist that may be most vulnerable to future change, and also areas where permafrost has thawed. High-resolution geophysical data corroborate remote sensing interpretations of near-surface permafrost and also add new high-fidelity details of spatial heterogeneity that extend from the shallow subsurface to depths of about 10 m. Results show that postfire impacts on permafrost can be variable and depend on multiple factors such as fire severity, soil texture, soil moisture, and time since fire.

  12. Large differences in regional precipitation change between a first and second 2 K of global warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Good, Peter; Booth, Ben B. B.; Chadwick, Robin; Hawkins, Ed; Jonko, Alexandra; Lowe, Jason A.

    2016-12-01

    For adaptation and mitigation planning, stakeholders need reliable information about regional precipitation changes under different emissions scenarios and for different time periods. A significant amount of current planning effort assumes that each K of global warming produces roughly the same regional climate change. Here using 25 climate models, we compare precipitation responses with three 2 K intervals of global ensemble mean warming: a fast and a slower route to a first 2 K above pre-industrial levels, and the end-of-century difference between high-emission and mitigation scenarios. We show that, although the two routes to a first 2 K give very similar precipitation changes, a second 2 K produces quite a different response. In particular, the balance of physical mechanisms responsible for climate model uncertainty is different for a first and a second 2 K of warming. The results are consistent with a significant influence from nonlinear physical mechanisms, but aerosol and land-use effects may be important regionally.

  13. Determining hydrological changes in a small Arctic treeline basin using cold regions hydrological modelling and a pseudo-global warming approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krogh, S. A.; Pomeroy, J. W.

    2017-12-01

    Increasing temperatures are producing higher rainfall ratios, shorter snow-covered periods, permafrost thaw, more shrub coverage, more northerly treelines and greater interaction between groundwater and surface flow in Arctic basins. How these changes will impact the hydrology of the Arctic treeline environment represents a great challenge. To diagnose the future hydrology along the current Arctic treeline, a physically based cold regions model was used to simulate the hydrology of a small basin near Inuvik, Northwest Territories, Canada. The hydrological model includes hydrological processes such as snow redistribution and sublimation by wind, canopy interception of snow/rain and sublimation/evaporation, snowmelt energy balance, active layer freeze/thaw, infiltration into frozen and unfrozen soils, evapotranspiration, horizontal flow through organic terrain and snowpack, subsurface flow and streamflow routing. The model was driven with weather simulated by a high-resolution (4 km) numerical weather prediction model under two scenarios: (1) control run, using ERA-Interim boundary conditions (2001-2013) and (2) future, using a Pseudo-Global Warming (PGW) approach based on the RCP8.5 projections perturbing the control run. Transient changes in vegetation based on recent observations and ecological expectations were then used to re-parameterise the model. Historical hydrological simulations were validated against daily streamflow, snow water equivalent and active layer thickness records, showing the model's suitability in this environment. Strong annual warming ( 6 °C) and more precipitation ( 20%) were simulated by the PGW scenario, with winter precipitation and fall temperature showing the largest seasonal increase. The joint impact of climate and transient vegetation changes on snow accumulation and redistribution, evapotranspiration, active layer development, runoff generation and hydrograph characteristics are analyzed and discussed.

  14. Detecting the permafrost carbon feedback: talik formation and increased cold-season respiration as precursors to sink-to-source transitions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parazoo, Nicholas C.; Koven, Charles D.; Lawrence, David M.; Romanovsky, Vladimir; Miller, Charles E.

    2018-01-01

    Thaw and release of permafrost carbon (C) due to climate change is likely to offset increased vegetation C uptake in northern high-latitude (NHL) terrestrial ecosystems. Models project that this permafrost C feedback may act as a slow leak, in which case detection and attribution of the feedback may be difficult. The formation of talik, a subsurface layer of perennially thawed soil, can accelerate permafrost degradation and soil respiration, ultimately shifting the C balance of permafrost-affected ecosystems from long-term C sinks to long-term C sources. It is imperative to understand and characterize mechanistic links between talik, permafrost thaw, and respiration of deep soil C to detect and quantify the permafrost C feedback. Here, we use the Community Land Model (CLM) version 4.5, a permafrost and biogeochemistry model, in comparison to long-term deep borehole data along North American and Siberian transects, to investigate thaw-driven C sources in NHL ( > 55° N) from 2000 to 2300. Widespread talik at depth is projected across most of the NHL permafrost region (14 million km2) by 2300, 6.2 million km2 of which is projected to become a long-term C source, emitting 10 Pg C by 2100, 50 Pg C by 2200, and 120 Pg C by 2300, with few signs of slowing. Roughly half of the projected C source region is in predominantly warm sub-Arctic permafrost following talik onset. This region emits only 20 Pg C by 2300, but the CLM4.5 estimate may be biased low by not accounting for deep C in yedoma. Accelerated decomposition of deep soil C following talik onset shifts the ecosystem C balance away from surface dominant processes (photosynthesis and litter respiration), but sink-to-source transition dates are delayed by 20-200 years by high ecosystem productivity, such that talik peaks early ( ˜ 2050s, although borehole data suggest sooner) and C source transition peaks late ( ˜ 2150-2200). The remaining C source region in cold northern Arctic permafrost, which shifts to a net

  15. Detecting the permafrost carbon feedback: talik formation and increased cold-season respiration as precursors to sink-to-source transitions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. C. Parazoo

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Thaw and release of permafrost carbon (C due to climate change is likely to offset increased vegetation C uptake in northern high-latitude (NHL terrestrial ecosystems. Models project that this permafrost C feedback may act as a slow leak, in which case detection and attribution of the feedback may be difficult. The formation of talik, a subsurface layer of perennially thawed soil, can accelerate permafrost degradation and soil respiration, ultimately shifting the C balance of permafrost-affected ecosystems from long-term C sinks to long-term C sources. It is imperative to understand and characterize mechanistic links between talik, permafrost thaw, and respiration of deep soil C to detect and quantify the permafrost C feedback. Here, we use the Community Land Model (CLM version 4.5, a permafrost and biogeochemistry model, in comparison to long-term deep borehole data along North American and Siberian transects, to investigate thaw-driven C sources in NHL ( >  55° N from 2000 to 2300. Widespread talik at depth is projected across most of the NHL permafrost region (14 million km2 by 2300, 6.2 million km2 of which is projected to become a long-term C source, emitting 10 Pg C by 2100, 50 Pg C by 2200, and 120 Pg C by 2300, with few signs of slowing. Roughly half of the projected C source region is in predominantly warm sub-Arctic permafrost following talik onset. This region emits only 20 Pg C by 2300, but the CLM4.5 estimate may be biased low by not accounting for deep C in yedoma. Accelerated decomposition of deep soil C following talik onset shifts the ecosystem C balance away from surface dominant processes (photosynthesis and litter respiration, but sink-to-source transition dates are delayed by 20–200 years by high ecosystem productivity, such that talik peaks early ( ∼  2050s, although borehole data suggest sooner and C source transition peaks late ( ∼  2150–2200. The

  16. Reviews and syntheses: Effects of permafrost thaw on Arctic aquatic ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vonk, J.E.; Tank, S.E.; Bowden, W.B.; Laurion, I.; Vincent, W.F.; Alekseychik, P.; Amyot, Y.; Billet, M.F.; Canario, J.; Cory, R.M.; Deshpande, B.N.; Helbig, M.; Jammet, M.; Karlsson, J.; Larouche, J.; MacMillan, G.; Rautio, Milla; Walter Anthony, K.M.; Wickland, Kimberly P.

    2015-01-01

    The Arctic is a water-rich region, with freshwater systems covering about 16 % of the northern permafrost landscape. Permafrost thaw creates new freshwater ecosystems, while at the same time modifying the existing lakes, streams, and rivers that are impacted by thaw. Here, we describe the current state of knowledge regarding how permafrost thaw affects lentic (still) and lotic (moving) systems, exploring the effects of both thermokarst (thawing and collapse of ice-rich permafrost) and deepening of the active layer (the surface soil layer that thaws and refreezes each year). Within thermokarst, we further differentiate between the effects of thermokarst in lowland areas vs. that on hillslopes. For almost all of the processes that we explore, the effects of thaw vary regionally, and between lake and stream systems. Much of this regional variation is caused by differences in ground ice content, topography, soil type, and permafrost coverage. Together, these modifying factors determine (i) the degree to which permafrost thaw manifests as thermokarst, (ii) whether thermokarst leads to slumping or the formation of thermokarst lakes, and (iii) the manner in which constituent delivery to freshwater systems is altered by thaw. Differences in thaw-enabled constituent delivery can be considerable, with these modifying factors determining, for example, the balance between delivery of particulate vs. dissolved constituents, and inorganic vs. organic materials. Changes in the composition of thaw-impacted waters, coupled with changes in lake morphology, can strongly affect the physical and optical properties of thermokarst lakes. The ecology of thaw-impacted lakes and streams is also likely to change; these systems have unique microbiological communities, and show differences in respiration, primary production, and food web structure that are largely driven by differences in sediment, dissolved organic matter, and nutrient delivery. The degree to which thaw enables the delivery

  17. Global warming impacts on the biogeochemical functioning of two arctic Cryo-sols in the Salluit region, Nunavik, Canada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fouche, Julien

    2014-01-01

    Increased organic matter decomposition rate in Arctic Cryo-sols due to warming and to permafrost thawing can lead to the release of greenhouse gases, thus potentially creating a positive feedback on climate change. We aim to assess the interactions between the thermal regime, the hydric behaviour and the biogeochemical functioning of two different permafrost-affected soils (i.e. Cryo-sols), one being developed in frozen peat (Histic Cryo-sol: H), the other being developed in post-glacial marine clays (Turbic Cryo-sol: T), both in natural conditions and under an experimental warming. Profiles were instrumented in Salluit (Nunavik, Canada; 62 deg. 14'N, 75 deg. 38'W) and monitored during summers 2010 and 2011. Both thermal monitoring and modeling results stressed differences between sites due to the insulating properties of dried peat in summer the active layer at the H site is thinner than at the T site. The induced warming increased CO 2 fluxes in both soils; this impact was however more striking at H even if ecosystem respiration (ER) was lower than at T. Temperature sensitivity of ER (Q 10 ), which decreased with warming, was higher at T than at H. We highlighted that diurnal ER cycles showed hysteretic loops as a function of soil surface temperatures. Linear models performed to explain ER variance were improved when we added daily minimum temperature and thaw front depth at H. In contrast at T, adding wind speed and solar radiation in models improved the ER variance explanation. We showed three specific CO 2 flux dynamics related to northern ecosystems: 1) the large difference of ER depending on soil properties and soil solution composition; 2) environmental variables strongly alter CO 2 fluxes and 3) the diurnal Q 10 variations and the inter annual variability of basal respiration. Our results support the assumption that organic matter decomposition might be the major source of CO 2 at H while plant-derived processes dominated ER at T. Finally, the

  18. ASM Lecture Series: Global Warming and Climate Change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rowland, F. S.

    2010-01-01

    The melting of ice and permafrost in the north polar region and the shrinking of the tropical glaciers are signals that global warming is no longer solely a warning about the future, but changes which have already arrived. The initial effects of this warming are noticeably present, and the concerns are now of substantial climate change in the near future. Modeling of the consequences on the future atmosphere from increased release of greenhouse gases and some of the possible consequences of climate change, such as rising sea levels and melting of the north polar ice, are discussed. (author)

  19. Regional Climate Impacts of Stabilizing Global Warming at 1.5 K Using Solar Geoengineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Anthony C.; Hawcroft, Matthew K.; Haywood, James M.; Jones, Andy; Guo, Xiaoran; Moore, John C.

    2018-02-01

    The 2015 Paris Agreement aims to limit global warming to well below 2 K above preindustrial levels, and to pursue efforts to limit global warming to 1.5 K, in order to avert dangerous climate change. However, current greenhouse gas emissions targets are more compatible with scenarios exhibiting end-of-century global warming of 2.6-3.1 K, in clear contradiction to the 1.5 K target. In this study, we use a global climate model to investigate the climatic impacts of using solar geoengineering by stratospheric aerosol injection to stabilize global-mean temperature at 1.5 K for the duration of the 21st century against three scenarios spanning the range of plausible greenhouse gas mitigation pathways (RCP2.6, RCP4.5, and RCP8.5). In addition to stabilizing global mean temperature and offsetting both Arctic sea-ice loss and thermosteric sea-level rise, we find that solar geoengineering could effectively counteract enhancements to the frequency of extreme storms in the North Atlantic and heatwaves in Europe, but would be less effective at counteracting hydrological changes in the Amazon basin and North Atlantic storm track displacement. In summary, solar geoengineering may reduce global mean impacts but is an imperfect solution at the regional level, where the effects of climate change are experienced. Our results should galvanize research into the regionality of climate responses to solar geoengineering.

  20. Regional growth management policies: Toward reducing global warming at state and local levels

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Purdie, J.

    1995-01-01

    State and local governments in the United States are accepting mandates to coordinate legislated land use and growth management planning with vigorous environmental protection and resource conservation. These mandates, implemented or planned in states with populations totaling over 100 million, will directly impact growth patterns and ultimately affect the level of atmospheric gases and particulates generated within their borders. This paper addresses the issues of growth management and land use planning at the local, state and regional levels and identifies areas impacting global warming. A review of existing systems will be presented, and recommendations will be made to improve monitoring of growth management mechanisms and organizational structures with the goal of global atmospheric improvement. The issues discussed include urban sprawl, transportation, and growth patterns as managed by policies also designed to protect environments and provide for sustainable growth. Areas for improved coordination between jurisdictions to ease global warming will also be examined

  1. Effect of permafrost on the formation of organic carbon pools and their physical-chemical properties in the Eastern Swiss Alps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pichler, B.; Alewell, C.; Kneisel, C.; Meusburger, K.; Egli, M.

    2012-04-01

    Alpine soils contain a relatively large amount of organic matter (OM) even at elevations above the present-days timberline. Current climatic conditions and the occurrence of discontinuous and sporadic permafrost in the mountains result in a low turnover rate and therefore accumulation of OM. Alpine ecosystems are highly sensitive to environmental changes and therefore may become a potential source of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) due to global warming. The expected changes in thermal and hydrological conditions in permafrost soils will not only influence OM degradation processes within the soil. Especially in alpine regions, soil erosion processes might be affected and potentially promote the mineralization of OM. However, the knowledge about the biogeochemistry and OM-stabilization processes and rates in permafrost soils in alpine regions is scarce, which makes it difficult to predict climate-carbon feedbacks. Our aim is to determine and compare the quantity, allocation and mean residence time of OM and the potential erosion processes in permafrost soils and adjacent unfrozen soils (distance between permafrost/non-permafrost soils max. 200m) at three locations in the Eastern Swiss Alps (Val Bever, Albula). Bulk soil, labile (oxidized by H2O2) and stable fractions (H2O2-resistant) were analyzed for their C-content and characterized using DRIFT (Diffuse Reflection Infrared Fourier Transform). Additionally, selected soil samples were 14C-dated. This approach has been applied for the first time in high alpine regions. To estimate the degree of disturbance, soil erosion has been qualitatively assessed by relating the OM-delta13C values of the soil profiles of interest to undisturbed reference profiles. We found rather well-developed soil profiles and a relatively high amount of OM at both types of sites (permafrost/non-permafrost), leading to the assumption that these soils developed over a certain period under a different (warmer) climate. This fact is supported by

  2. Stability Zone of Natural Gas Hydrates in a Permafrost-Bearing Region of the Beaufort-Mackenzie Basin: Study of a Feasible Energy Source (Geological Survey of Canada Contribution No.1999275)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Majorowicz, J. A.; Hannigan, P. K.

    2000-01-01

    Analysis of geological and geophysical data from 150 wells in the Beaufort-Mackenzie region(study area between 68 deg. 30'-70 deg. 00'N and 131 deg. -39 deg. W) led to reinterpretation of the depth of methane hydrate stability and construction of the first contour maps displaying thickness of hydrate stability zones as well as hydrate stability zone thicknesses below permafrost. Calculations were based on construction of temperature-depth profiles incorporating regional heat-flow values, temperature at the base of ice-bearing permafrost, and models relating thermal conductivity with depth. Data analysis indicates the presence and extent of the methane hydrate stability zone is related mainly to the history of permafrost development and less so by the relatively small regional variations of temperature gradients. Analysis of well logs and other indicators in conjunction with knowledge of the hydrate stability zone allows reevaluation of the location of possible gas hydrate occurrences. Log analysis indicates that in the onshore and shallow sea area of the Beaufort-Mackenzie Basin, methane hydrate occurs in 27 wells. Fifteen of these locations coincides with underlying conventional hydrocarbon occurrences. Previous analyses place some of the hydrate occurrences at greater depths than proposed for the methane hydrate stability zone described in this study. Interpretation of geological cross sections reveals that hydrates are related mainly to sandy deltaic and delta-plain deposits in Iperk, Kugmallit, and Reindeer sequences although additional hydrate picks have been inferred in other sequences, such as Richards. Overlying permafrost may act as seal for hydrate accumulations; however, the thickness of permafrost and its related hydrate stability zone fluctuated during geological time. It is interpreted that only in the last tens of thousand of years (i.e., Sangamonian to Holocene), conditions for hydrates changed from nonstable to stable. During Early and Late

  3. Radionuclides in ornithogenic sediments as evidence for recent warming in the Ross Sea region, Antarctica

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nie, Yaguang [Institute of Polar Environment, School of Earth and Space Sciences, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026 (China); Key Laboratory of Ion Beam Bioengineering, Hefei Institutes of Physical Science, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Key Laboratory of Environmental Toxicology and Pollution Control Technology of Anhui Province, Hefei, Anhui 230031 (China); Xu, Liqiang [School of Resources and Environmental Engineering, Hefei University of Technology, Hefei, Anhui 230009 (China); Liu, Xiaodong, E-mail: ycx@ustc.edu.cn [Institute of Polar Environment, School of Earth and Space Sciences, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026 (China); Emslie, Steven D. [Department of Biology and Marine Biology, University of North Carolina Wilmington, 601 S. College Road, Wilmington, NC 28403 (United States)

    2016-07-01

    Radionuclides including {sup 210}Pb, {sup 226}Ra and {sup 137}Cs were analyzed in eight ornithogenic sediment profiles from McMurdo Sound, Ross Sea region, East Antarctica. Equilibration between {sup 210}Pb and {sup 226}Ra were reached in all eight profiles, enabling the determination of chronology within the past two centuries through the Constant Rate of Supply (CRS) model. Calculated fluxes of both {sup 210}Pb and {sup 137}Cs varied drastically among four of the profiles (MB4, MB6, CC and CL2), probably due to differences in their sedimentary environments. In addition, we found the flux data exhibiting a clear decreasing gradient in accordance with their average deposition rate, which was in turn related to the specific location of the profiles. We believe this phenomenon may correspond to global warming of the last century, since warming-induced surface runoff would bring more inflow water and detritus to the coring sites, thus enhancing the difference among the profiles. To verify this hypothesis, the deposition rate against age of the sediments was calculated based on their determined chronology, which showed ascending trends in all four profiles. The significant increase in deposition rates over the last century is probably attributable to recent warming, implying a potential utilization of radionuclides as environmental indicators in this region. - Highlights: • {sup 210}Pb, {sup 226}Ra and {sup 137}Cs were measured in ornithogenic sediment profiles. • Chronology within 200 years was determined through Constant Rate of Supply model. • Calculated nuclide fluxes decreased with average deposition rate and locations. • Deposition rate over time indicated warming which caused the flux gradient.

  4. Remote sensing of glacier- and permafrost-related hazards in high mountains: an overview

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Kääb

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Process interactions and chain reactions, the present shift of cryospheric hazard zones due to atmospheric warming, and the potential far reach of glacier disasters make it necessary to apply modern remote sensing techniques for the assessment of glacier and permafrost hazards in high-mountains. Typically, related hazard source areas are situated in remote regions, often difficult to access for physical and/or political reasons. In this contribution we provide an overview of air- and spaceborne remote sensing methods suitable for glacier and permafrost hazard assessment and disaster management. A number of image classification and change detection techniques support high-mountain hazard studies. Digital terrain models (DTMs, derived from optical stereo data, synthetic aperture radar or laserscanning, represent one of the most important data sets for investigating high-mountain processes. Fusion of satellite stereo-derived DTMs with the DTM from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM is a promising way to combine the advantages of both technologies. Large changes in terrain volume such as from avalanche deposits can indeed be measured even by repeat satellite DTMs. Multitemporal data can be used to derive surface displacements on glaciers, permafrost and landslides. Combining DTMs, results from spectral image classification, and multitemporal data from change detection and displacement measurements significantly improves the detection of hazard potentials. Modelling of hazardous processes based on geographic information systems (GIS complements the remote sensing analyses towards an integrated assessment of glacier and permafrost hazards in mountains. Major present limitations in the application of remote sensing to glacier and permafrost hazards in mountains are, on the one hand, of technical nature (e.g. combination and fusion of different methods and data; improved understanding of microwave backscatter. On the other hand, better

  5. Molecular investigations into a globally important carbon pool: permafrost-protected carbon in Alaskan soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    M.P. Waldrop; K.P. Wickland; R. White; A.A. Berhe; J.W. Harden; V.E. Romanovsky

    2010-01-01

    The fate of carbon (C) contained within permafrost in boreal forest environments is an important consideration for the current and future carbon cycle as soils warm in northern latitudes. Currently, little is known about the microbiology or chemistry of permafrost soils that may affect its decomposition once soils thaw. We tested the hypothesis that low microbial...

  6. Brief Communication : Future avenues for permafrost science from the perspective of early career researchers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fritz, M.; Deshpande, B. N.; Bouchard, F.; Högström, E.; Malenfant-Lepage, J.; Morgenstern, A.; Nieuwendam, A.; Oliva, M.; Paquette, M.; Rudy, A. C A; Siewert, M. B.; Sjöberg, Y.; Weege, S.

    2015-01-01

    Accelerating climate change and increased economic and environmental interests in permafrost-affected regions have resulted in an acute need for more directed permafrost research. In June 2014, 88 early career researchers convened to identify future priorities for permafrost research. This

  7. Data-driven mapping of the potential mountain permafrost distribution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deluigi, Nicola; Lambiel, Christophe; Kanevski, Mikhail

    2017-07-15

    Existing mountain permafrost distribution models generally offer a good overview of the potential extent of this phenomenon at a regional scale. They are however not always able to reproduce the high spatial discontinuity of permafrost at the micro-scale (scale of a specific landform; ten to several hundreds of meters). To overcome this lack, we tested an alternative modelling approach using three classification algorithms belonging to statistics and machine learning: Logistic regression, Support Vector Machines and Random forests. These supervised learning techniques infer a classification function from labelled training data (pixels of permafrost absence and presence) with the aim of predicting the permafrost occurrence where it is unknown. The research was carried out in a 588km 2 area of the Western Swiss Alps. Permafrost evidences were mapped from ortho-image interpretation (rock glacier inventorying) and field data (mainly geoelectrical and thermal data). The relationship between selected permafrost evidences and permafrost controlling factors was computed with the mentioned techniques. Classification performances, assessed with AUROC, range between 0.81 for Logistic regression, 0.85 with Support Vector Machines and 0.88 with Random forests. The adopted machine learning algorithms have demonstrated to be efficient for permafrost distribution modelling thanks to consistent results compared to the field reality. The high resolution of the input dataset (10m) allows elaborating maps at the micro-scale with a modelled permafrost spatial distribution less optimistic than classic spatial models. Moreover, the probability output of adopted algorithms offers a more precise overview of the potential distribution of mountain permafrost than proposing simple indexes of the permafrost favorability. These encouraging results also open the way to new possibilities of permafrost data analysis and mapping. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Observation-based modelling of permafrost carbon fluxes with accounting for deep carbon deposits and thermokarst activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider von Deimling, T.; Grosse, G.; Strauss, J.; Schirrmeister, L.; Morgenstern, A.; Schaphoff, S.; Meinshausen, M.; Boike, J.

    2015-06-01

    High-latitude soils store vast amounts of perennially frozen and therefore inert organic matter. With rising global temperatures and consequent permafrost degradation, a part of this carbon stock will become available for microbial decay and eventual release to the atmosphere. We have developed a simplified, two-dimensional multi-pool model to estimate the strength and timing of future carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) fluxes from newly thawed permafrost carbon (i.e. carbon thawed when temperatures rise above pre-industrial levels). We have especially simulated carbon release from deep deposits in Yedoma regions by describing abrupt thaw under newly formed thermokarst lakes. The computational efficiency of our model allowed us to run large, multi-centennial ensembles under various scenarios of future warming to express uncertainty inherent to simulations of the permafrost carbon feedback. Under moderate warming of the representative concentration pathway (RCP) 2.6 scenario, cumulated CO2 fluxes from newly thawed permafrost carbon amount to 20 to 58 petagrams of carbon (Pg-C) (68% range) by the year 2100 and reach 40 to 98 Pg-C in 2300. The much larger permafrost degradation under strong warming (RCP8.5) results in cumulated CO2 release of 42 to 141 Pg-C and 157 to 313 Pg-C (68% ranges) in the years 2100 and 2300, respectively. Our estimates only consider fluxes from newly thawed permafrost, not from soils already part of the seasonally thawed active layer under pre-industrial climate. Our simulated CH4 fluxes contribute a few percent to total permafrost carbon release yet they can cause up to 40% of total permafrost-affected radiative forcing in the 21st century (upper 68% range). We infer largest CH4 emission rates of about 50 Tg-CH4 per year around the middle of the 21st century when simulated thermokarst lake extent is at its maximum and when abrupt thaw under thermokarst lakes is taken into account. CH4 release from newly thawed carbon in wetland

  9. Observation-based modelling of permafrost carbon fluxes with accounting for deep carbon deposits and thermokarst activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Schneider von Deimling

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available High-latitude soils store vast amounts of perennially frozen and therefore inert organic matter. With rising global temperatures and consequent permafrost degradation, a part of this carbon stock will become available for microbial decay and eventual release to the atmosphere. We have developed a simplified, two-dimensional multi-pool model to estimate the strength and timing of future carbon dioxide (CO2 and methane (CH4 fluxes from newly thawed permafrost carbon (i.e. carbon thawed when temperatures rise above pre-industrial levels. We have especially simulated carbon release from deep deposits in Yedoma regions by describing abrupt thaw under newly formed thermokarst lakes. The computational efficiency of our model allowed us to run large, multi-centennial ensembles under various scenarios of future warming to express uncertainty inherent to simulations of the permafrost carbon feedback. Under moderate warming of the representative concentration pathway (RCP 2.6 scenario, cumulated CO2 fluxes from newly thawed permafrost carbon amount to 20 to 58 petagrams of carbon (Pg-C (68% range by the year 2100 and reach 40 to 98 Pg-C in 2300. The much larger permafrost degradation under strong warming (RCP8.5 results in cumulated CO2 release of 42 to 141 Pg-C and 157 to 313 Pg-C (68% ranges in the years 2100 and 2300, respectively. Our estimates only consider fluxes from newly thawed permafrost, not from soils already part of the seasonally thawed active layer under pre-industrial climate. Our simulated CH4 fluxes contribute a few percent to total permafrost carbon release yet they can cause up to 40% of total permafrost-affected radiative forcing in the 21st century (upper 68% range. We infer largest CH4 emission rates of about 50 Tg-CH4 per year around the middle of the 21st century when simulated thermokarst lake extent is at its maximum and when abrupt thaw under thermokarst lakes is taken into account. CH4 release from newly thawed carbon in

  10. Tundra permafrost thaw causes significant shifts in energy partitioning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Stiegler

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Permafrost, a key component of the arctic and global climate system, is highly sensitive to climate change. Observed and ongoing permafrost degradation influences arctic hydrology, ecology and biogeochemistry, and models predict that rapid warming is expected to significantly reduce near-surface permafrost and seasonally frozen ground during the 21st century. These changes raise concern of how permafrost thaw affects the exchange of water and energy with the atmosphere. However, associated impacts of permafrost thaw on the surface energy balance and possible feedbacks on the climate system are largely unknown. In this study, we show that in northern subarctic Sweden, permafrost thaw and related degradation of peat plateaus significantly change the surface energy balance of three peatland complexes by enhancing latent heat flux and, to less degree, also ground heat flux at the cost of sensible heat flux. This effect is valid at all radiation levels but more pronounced at higher radiation levels. The observed differences in flux partitioning mainly result from the strong coupling between soil moisture availability, vegetation composition, albedo and surface structure. Our results suggest that ongoing and predicted permafrost degradation in northern subarctic Sweden ultimately result in changes in land–atmosphere coupling due to changes in the partitioning between latent and sensible heat fluxes. This in turn has crucial implications for how predictive climate models for the Arctic are further developed.

  11. Coupled Northern Hemisphere permafrost-ice-sheet evolution over the last glacial cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willeit, M.; Ganopolski, A.

    2015-09-01

    Permafrost influences a number of processes which are relevant for local and global climate. For example, it is well known that permafrost plays an important role in global carbon and methane cycles. Less is known about the interaction between permafrost and ice sheets. In this study a permafrost module is included in the Earth system model CLIMBER-2, and the coupled Northern Hemisphere (NH) permafrost-ice-sheet evolution over the last glacial cycle is explored. The model performs generally well at reproducing present-day permafrost extent and thickness. Modeled permafrost thickness is sensitive to the values of ground porosity, thermal conductivity and geothermal heat flux. Permafrost extent at the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) agrees well with reconstructions and previous modeling estimates. Present-day permafrost thickness is far from equilibrium over deep permafrost regions. Over central Siberia and the Arctic Archipelago permafrost is presently up to 200-500 m thicker than it would be at equilibrium. In these areas, present-day permafrost depth strongly depends on the past climate history and simulations indicate that deep permafrost has a memory of surface temperature variations going back to at least 800 ka. Over the last glacial cycle permafrost has a relatively modest impact on simulated NH ice sheet volume except at LGM, when including permafrost increases ice volume by about 15 m sea level equivalent in our model. This is explained by a delayed melting of the ice base from below by the geothermal heat flux when the ice sheet sits on a porous sediment layer and permafrost has to be melted first. Permafrost affects ice sheet dynamics only when ice extends over areas covered by thick sediments, which is the case at LGM.

  12. Thermal regime of warm-dry permafrost in relation to ground surface temperature in the Source Areas of the Yangtze and Yellow rivers on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, SW China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Luo, Dongliang; Jin, Huijun; Wu, Qingbai; Bense, Victor F.; He, Ruixia; Ma, Qiang; Gao, Shuhui; Jin, Xiaoying; Lu¨, Lanzhi

    2018-01-01

    Ecology, hydrology, and natural resources in the source areas of the Yangtze and Yellow rivers (SAYYR) are closely linked to interactions between climate and permafrost. However, a comprehensive study of the interactions is currently hampered by sparsely- and unevenly-distributed monitoring sites

  13. Discovery of a novel methanogen prevalent in thawing permafrost.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mondav, Rhiannon; Woodcroft, Ben J; Kim, Eun-Hae; McCalley, Carmody K; Hodgkins, Suzanne B; Crill, Patrick M; Chanton, Jeffrey; Hurst, Gregory B; VerBerkmoes, Nathan C; Saleska, Scott R; Hugenholtz, Philip; Rich, Virginia I; Tyson, Gene W

    2014-01-01

    Thawing permafrost promotes microbial degradation of cryo-sequestered and new carbon leading to the biogenic production of methane, creating a positive feedback to climate change. Here we determine microbial community composition along a permafrost thaw gradient in northern Sweden. Partially thawed sites were frequently dominated by a single archaeal phylotype, Candidatus 'Methanoflorens stordalenmirensis' gen. nov. sp. nov., belonging to the uncultivated lineage 'Rice Cluster II' (Candidatus 'Methanoflorentaceae' fam. nov.). Metagenomic sequencing led to the recovery of its near-complete genome, revealing the genes necessary for hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis. These genes are highly expressed and methane carbon isotope data are consistent with hydrogenotrophic production of methane in the partially thawed site. In addition to permafrost wetlands, 'Methanoflorentaceae' are widespread in high methane-flux habitats suggesting that this lineage is both prevalent and a major contributor to global methane production. In thawing permafrost, Candidatus 'M. stordalenmirensis' appears to be a key mediator of methane-based positive feedback to climate warming.

  14. Permafrost and urban Development in Norilsk Russia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shiklomanov, N. I.; Streletskiy, D. A.; Grebenets, V. I.

    2017-12-01

    The city of Norilsk was established in 1935 as a GULAG mining and metallurgy work camp to explore the rich deposits of non-ferrous metals. By the 1989, the population of Norilsk reached 179,757 people. Two additional cities were developed in proximity to Norilsk in the 1960s-1980s: Talnakh (1989 population 65,710); and Kaerkan (1989 population 29,824) making the Norilsk region a major Arctic metropolis. While such rapid growth is not unusual for developing industrial cities, the geographic location makes Norilsk rather unique among world urban centers. It was built in Central Siberia at 69°51' N latitude (above the Arctic Circle), in region characterized by harsh subarctic climate (mean annual temperature around -10 oC), over forest tundra/tundra transitional landscapes underlined by perennially frozen ground (permafrost). Throughout its existence, the Norilsk region was highly isolated: it is not connected to Russian road and railroad systems. The harsh environmental conditions provided significant and rather unique challenges to Norilsk development. Specifically, the presence of ice-rich permafrost imposed restrictions on application of standard urban planning and engineering practices. This presentation analyzes the history of permafrost construction in Norilsk. It shows how though initial trial and errors, a set of guiding principles and engineering methods of construction on permafrost were developed allowing a rapid urbanization of the area during the 1960-1980s. However, despite significant advances in permafrost engineering, the pronounced permafrost degradation has become evident in Norilsk by the mid 1980s and has accelerated rapidly since the mid 1990s resulting in widespread deformation of buildings. Climatic changes are frequently identified as a major cause of accelerated deterioration of infrastructure build on permafrost. However, we argue that other factors, including the complexity of interactions between deferent components of urban

  15. Quantifying Regional Vegetation Changes in China During Three Contrasting Warming Intervals since the Last Glacial Maximum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Q.; Wu, H.; Yu, Y.; Sun, A.; Luo, Y.

    2017-12-01

    Reconstructing patterns of past vegetation change on a large-scale facilitates a better understanding of the interactions and feedbacks between climate change and the terrestrial biosphere. In addition, reducing the uncertainty in predictions of vegetation change under global warming highlights the importance of reconstructing vegetation patterns during past warming intervals. Here, we present a quantitative regional vegetation reconstruction for China during three intervals: Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, 18±2 14C kyr B.P.), early Holocene (8.5±0.5 14C kyr B.P.), and mid-Holocene (6±0.5 14C kyr B.P.). The biomization method, based on 249 pollen records, was used for the reconstructions. The results demonstrate that during the LGM, steppe and desert expanded eastwards and southwards, reaching the present-day temperate deciduous forest (TEDE) zone, and dominated northern China. In contrast, the forest in Eastern China underwent a substantial southwards retreat and the percentage of forest-type sites was at a minimum. In addition, the warm mixed forest (WAMF) and TEDE shifted southwards of 10° N relative to the present-day, and tropical seasonal rain forest (TSFO) was almost absent. At the same time, the forest-steppe boundary shifted southwards to near the middle and lower reaches of Yangtze River. For the early Holocene and mid-Holocene, the TSFO, WAMF, and TEDE shifted northwards by 2-5° relative to today, and the percentage of forest sites increased and reached a maximum in the mid-Holocene. The slight expansion of forest from the early Holocene to the mid-Holocene caused the forest-steppe boundary to shift northwestwards to near the present-day 300 mm isohyet by the mid-Holocene. Our results also indicate that climatic warming since the LGM, which strengthened the East Asian summer monsoon, favored the development of forest in China. This is potentially an important finding for evaluating the possible response of forest in China to future global warming.

  16. Modelling the temperature evolution of permafrost and seasonal frost in southern Norway during the 20th and 21st century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hipp, T.; Etzelmüller, B.; Farbrot, H.; Schuler, T. V.

    2011-03-01

    A heat flow model was used to simulate both past and future ground temperatures of mountain permafrost in Southern Norway. A reconstructed air temperature series back to 1860 was used to evaluate the permafrost evolution since the end of the Little Ice Age in the region. The impact of a changing climate on discontinuous mountain permafrost until 2100 is predicted by using downscaled temperatures from an ensemble of downscaled climate models for the A1B scenario. From 13 borehole locations two consecutive years of ground temperature, air temperature and snow cover data are available for model calibration and validation. The boreholes are located at different elevations and in substrates having different thermal properties. With an increase of air temperature of ~+1.5 °C over 1860-2010 and an additional warming of +2.8 °C towards 2100 in air temperature, we simulate the evolution of ground temperatures for the borehole locations. According to model results, the active-layer thickness has increased since 1860 by about 0.5-5 m and >10 m for the sites Juvvass and Tron, respectively. The simulations also suggest that at an elevation of about 1900 m a.s.l. permafrost will degrade until the end of this century with a likelihood of 55-75% given the chosen A1B scenario.

  17. A 20-year record (1998-2017) of permafrost, active layer and meteorological conditions at a high Arctic permafrost research site (Bayelva, Spitsbergen)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boike, Julia; Juszak, Inge; Lange, Stephan; Chadburn, Sarah; Burke, Eleanor; Overduin, Pier Paul; Roth, Kurt; Ippisch, Olaf; Bornemann, Niko; Stern, Lielle; Gouttevin, Isabelle; Hauber, Ernst; Westermann, Sebastian

    2018-03-01

    Most permafrost is located in the Arctic, where frozen organic carbon makes it an important component of the global climate system. Despite the fact that the Arctic climate changes more rapidly than the rest of the globe, observational data density in the region is low. Permafrost thaw and carbon release to the atmosphere are a positive feedback mechanism that can exacerbate global warming. This positive feedback functions via changing land-atmosphere energy and mass exchanges. There is thus a great need to understand links between the energy balance, which can vary rapidly over hourly to annual timescales, and permafrost, which changes slowly over long time periods. This understanding thus mandates long-term observational data sets. Such a data set is available from the Bayelva site at Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard, where meteorology, energy balance components and subsurface observations have been made for the last 20 years. Additional data include a high-resolution digital elevation model (DEM) that can be used together with the snow physical information for snowpack modeling and a panchromatic image. This paper presents the data set produced so far, explains instrumentation, calibration, processing and data quality control, as well as the sources for various resulting data sets. The resulting data set is unique in the Arctic and serves as a baseline for future studies. The mean permafrost temperature is -2.8 °C, with a zero-amplitude depth at 5.5 m (2009-2017). Since the data provide observations of temporally variable parameters that mitigate energy fluxes between permafrost and atmosphere, such as snow depth and soil moisture content, they are suitable for use in integrating, calibrating and testing permafrost as a component in earth system models.The presented data are available in the Supplement for this paper (time series) and through the PANGAEA and Zenodo data portals: time series (https://doi.org/10.1594/PANGAEA.880120, https://zenodo.org/record/1139714) and

  18. A 20-year record (1998–2017 of permafrost, active layer and meteorological conditions at a high Arctic permafrost research site (Bayelva, Spitsbergen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Boike

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Most permafrost is located in the Arctic, where frozen organic carbon makes it an important component of the global climate system. Despite the fact that the Arctic climate changes more rapidly than the rest of the globe, observational data density in the region is low. Permafrost thaw and carbon release to the atmosphere are a positive feedback mechanism that can exacerbate global warming. This positive feedback functions via changing land–atmosphere energy and mass exchanges. There is thus a great need to understand links between the energy balance, which can vary rapidly over hourly to annual timescales, and permafrost, which changes slowly over long time periods. This understanding thus mandates long-term observational data sets. Such a data set is available from the Bayelva site at Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard, where meteorology, energy balance components and subsurface observations have been made for the last 20 years. Additional data include a high-resolution digital elevation model (DEM that can be used together with the snow physical information for snowpack modeling and a panchromatic image. This paper presents the data set produced so far, explains instrumentation, calibration, processing and data quality control, as well as the sources for various resulting data sets. The resulting data set is unique in the Arctic and serves as a baseline for future studies. The mean permafrost temperature is −2.8 °C, with a zero-amplitude depth at 5.5 m (2009–2017. Since the data provide observations of temporally variable parameters that mitigate energy fluxes between permafrost and atmosphere, such as snow depth and soil moisture content, they are suitable for use in integrating, calibrating and testing permafrost as a component in earth system models.The presented data are available in the Supplement for this paper (time series and through the PANGAEA and Zenodo data portals: time series (https://doi.org/10.1594/PANGAEA.880120, https

  19. Northern Peatland Shifts Under Changing Climate and Their Impact on Permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shur, Y.; Jorgenson, T.; Kanevskiy, M. Z.

    2014-12-01

    Formation of peatlands depends primarily on climate and its interactions with hydrology, soil thermal regimes, plant composition, and nutrients. A water balance with precipitation exceeding evaporation is necessary for their formation. The rate of peat accumulation also greatly depends on thermal resources. The prominent impact of the water balance and temperature on peatland formation is evident in the West Siberia Lowland. The rate of peat accumulation steadily increases from arctic tundra to moss tundra, to forest tundra, to northern taiga, and to southern taiga. This increase is a result in increase in air temperature and length of the growing season because all of these zones have water balance favorable for peat formation. Further to south, evaporation prevails over precipitation and peat formation occurs only in isolated areas. Climate change will redefine geographical distribution of climatic and vegetation zones. It is predicted that in arctic and subarctic regions the difference between precipitation and evaporation will increase and as a result these regions will remain favorable to peat accumulation. With increase of thermal resources, the rate of peat accumulation will also increase. The Alaska Arctic Coastal Plain is of a special interest because it has thousands of shallow lakes, which due to warming climate would shift from open waterbodies to peatlands through shoreline paludification and infilling. The accumulation of organic matter will likely turn open water into shore fens and bogs, and eventually to peat plateaus, as is occurring in many boreal landscapes. Expected impact on permafrost in arctic and subarctic regions will include rise of the permafrost table, thickening of the ice-rich intermediate layer with ataxitic (suspended) cryostructure, and replacement of frost boils with earth hummocks. In the contemporary continuous permafrost zone, permafrost formed as climate-driven will be transformed into climate-driven ecosystem protected

  20. Response of bean cultures' water use efficiency against climate warming in semiarid regions of China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guoju, Xiao; Fengju, Zhang; Juying, Huang; Chengke, Luo; Jing, Wang; Fei, Ma; Yubi, Yao; Runyuan, Wang; Zhengji, Qiu

    2016-07-31

    Farm crop growing and high efficiency water resource utilizing are directly influenced by global warming, and a new challenge will be given to food and water resource security. A simulation experiment by farm warming with infrared ray radiator was carried out, and the result showed photosynthesis of broad bean was significantly faster than transpiration during the seedling stage, ramifying stage, budding stage, blooming stage and podding stage when the temperate was increased by 0.5-1.5 °C. But broad bean transpiration was faster than photosynthesis during the budding stage, blooming stage and podding stage when the temperature was increased by 1.5 °C above. The number of grain per hill and hundred-grain weight were significantly increased when the temperature was increased by 0.5-1.0 °C. But they significantly dropped and finally the yield decreased when the temperature was increased by 1.0 °C above. The broad bean yield decreased by 39.2-88.4% when the temperature was increased by 1.5-2.0 °C. The broad bean water use efficiency increased and then decreased with temperature rising. The water use efficiency increased when the temperature was increased by 1.0 °C below, and it quickly decreased when the temperature was increased by 1.0 °C above. In all, global warming in the future will significantly influence the growth, yield and water use efficiency of bean cultures in China's semiarid regions.

  1. Permafrost Stores a Globally Significant Amount of Mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuster, Paul F.; Schaefer, Kevin M.; Aiken, George R.; Antweiler, Ronald C.; Dewild, John F.; Gryziec, Joshua D.; Gusmeroli, Alessio; Hugelius, Gustaf; Jafarov, Elchin; Krabbenhoft, David P.; Liu, Lin; Herman-Mercer, Nicole; Mu, Cuicui; Roth, David A.; Schaefer, Tim; Striegl, Robert G.; Wickland, Kimberly P.; Zhang, Tingjun

    2018-02-01

    Changing climate in northern regions is causing permafrost to thaw with major implications for the global mercury (Hg) cycle. We estimated Hg in permafrost regions based on in situ measurements of sediment total mercury (STHg), soil organic carbon (SOC), and the Hg to carbon ratio (RHgC) combined with maps of soil carbon. We measured a median STHg of 43 ± 30 ng Hg g soil-1 and a median RHgC of 1.6 ± 0.9 μg Hg g C-1, consistent with published results of STHg for tundra soils and 11,000 measurements from 4,926 temperate, nonpermafrost sites in North America and Eurasia. We estimate that the Northern Hemisphere permafrost regions contain 1,656 ± 962 Gg Hg, of which 793 ± 461 Gg Hg is frozen in permafrost. Permafrost soils store nearly twice as much Hg as all other soils, the ocean, and the atmosphere combined, and this Hg is vulnerable to release as permafrost thaws over the next century. Existing estimates greatly underestimate Hg in permafrost soils, indicating a need to reevaluate the role of the Arctic regions in the global Hg cycle.

  2. Permafrost stores a globally significant amount of mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuster, Paul F.; Schaefer, Kevin; Aiken, George R.; Antweiler, Ronald C.; DeWild, John F.; Gryziec, Joshua D.; Gusmeroli, Alessio; Hugelius, Gustaf; Jafarov, Elchin E.; Krabbenhoft, David P.; Liu, Lin; Herman-Mercer, Nicole M.; Mu, Cuicui; Roth, David A.; Schaefer, Tim; Striegl, Robert G.; Wickland, Kimberly P.; Zhang, Tingjun

    2018-01-01

    Changing climate in northern regions is causing permafrost to thaw with major implications for the global mercury (Hg) cycle. We estimated Hg in permafrost regions based on in situ measurements of sediment total mercury (STHg), soil organic carbon (SOC), and the Hg to carbon ratio (RHgC) combined with maps of soil carbon. We measured a median STHg of 43 ± 30 ng Hg g soil−1 and a median RHgC of 1.6 ± 0.9 μg Hg g C−1, consistent with published results of STHg for tundra soils and 11,000 measurements from 4,926 temperate, nonpermafrost sites in North America and Eurasia. We estimate that the Northern Hemisphere permafrost regions contain 1,656 ± 962 Gg Hg, of which 793 ± 461 Gg Hg is frozen in permafrost. Permafrost soils store nearly twice as much Hg as all other soils, the ocean, and the atmosphere combined, and this Hg is vulnerable to release as permafrost thaws over the next century. Existing estimates greatly underestimate Hg in permafrost soils, indicating a need to reevaluate the role of the Arctic regions in the global Hg cycle.

  3. Regional cooling caused recent New Zealand glacier advances in a period of global warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mackintosh, Andrew N; Anderson, Brian M; Lorrey, Andrew M; Renwick, James A; Frei, Prisco; Dean, Sam M

    2017-02-14

    Glaciers experienced worldwide retreat during the twentieth and early twenty first centuries, and the negative trend in global glacier mass balance since the early 1990s is predominantly a response to anthropogenic climate warming. The exceptional terminus advance of some glaciers during recent global warming is thought to relate to locally specific climate conditions, such as increased precipitation. In New Zealand, at least 58 glaciers advanced between 1983 and 2008, and Franz Josef and Fox glaciers advanced nearly continuously during this time. Here we show that the glacier advance phase resulted predominantly from discrete periods of reduced air temperature, rather than increased precipitation. The lower temperatures were associated with anomalous southerly winds and low sea surface temperature in the Tasman Sea region. These conditions result from variability in the structure of the extratropical atmospheric circulation over the South Pacific. While this sequence of climate variability and its effect on New Zealand glaciers is unusual on a global scale, it remains consistent with a climate system that is being modified by humans.

  4. Wetland succession in a permafrost collapse: interactions between fire and thermokarst

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. H. Myers-Smith

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available To determine the influence of fire and thermokarst in a boreal landscape, we investigated peat cores within and adjacent to a permafrost collapse feature on the Tanana River Floodplain of Interior Alaska. Radioisotope dating, diatom assemblages, plant macrofossils, charcoal fragments, and carbon and nitrogen content of the peat profile indicate ~600 years of vegetation succession with a transition from a terrestrial forest to a sedge-dominated wetland over 100 years ago, and to a Sphagnum-dominated peatland in approximately 1970. The shift from sedge to Sphagnum, and a decrease in the detrended tree-ring width index of black spruce trees adjacent to the collapse coincided with an increase in the growing season temperature record from Fairbanks. This concurrent wetland succession and reduced growth of black spruce trees indicates a step-wise ecosystem-level response to a change in regional climate. In 2001, fire was observed coincident with permafrost collapse and resulted in lateral expansion of the peatland. These observations and the peat profile suggest that future warming and/or increased fire disturbance could promote permafrost degradation, peatland expansion, and increase carbon storage across this landscape; however, the development of drought conditions could reduce the success of both black spruce and Sphagnum, and potentially decrease the long-term ecosystem carbon storage.

  5. In situ nuclear magnetic resonance response of permafrost and active layer soil in boreal and tundra ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. A. Kass

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Characterization of permafrost, particularly warm and near-surface permafrost which can contain significant liquid water, is critical to understanding complex interrelationships with climate change, ecosystems, and disturbances such as wildfires. Understanding the vulnerability and resilience of permafrost requires an interdisciplinary approach, relying on (for example geophysical investigations, ecological characterization, direct observations, remote sensing, and more. As part of a multiyear investigation into the impacts of wildfires on permafrost, we have collected in situ measurements of the nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR response of the active layer and permafrost in a variety of soil conditions, types, and saturations. In this paper, we summarize the NMR data and present quantitative relationships between active layer and permafrost liquid water content and pore sizes and show the efficacy of borehole NMR (bNMR to permafrost studies. Through statistical analyses and synthetic freezing simulations, we also demonstrate that borehole NMR is sensitive to the nucleation of ice within soil pore spaces.

  6. Permafrost thaw and wildfire: Equally important drivers of boreal tree cover changes in the Taiga Plains, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helbig, M.; Pappas, C.; Sonnentag, O.

    2016-02-01

    Boreal forests cover vast areas of the permafrost zones of North America, and changes in their composition and structure can lead to pronounced impacts on the regional and global climate. We partition the variation in regional boreal tree cover changes between 2000 and 2014 across the Taiga Plains, Canada, into its main causes: permafrost thaw, wildfire disturbance, and postfire regrowth. Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer Percent Tree Cover (PTC) data are used in combination with maps of historic fires, and permafrost and drainage characteristics. We find that permafrost thaw is equally important as fire history to explain PTC changes. At the southern margin of the permafrost zone, PTC loss due to permafrost thaw outweighs PTC gain from postfire regrowth. These findings emphasize the importance of permafrost thaw in controlling regional boreal forest changes over the last decade, which may become more pronounced with rising air temperatures and accelerated permafrost thaw.

  7. Influence of permafrost on lake terraces of Lake Heihai (NE Tibetan Plateau)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lockot, Gregori; Hartmann, Kai; Wünnemann, Bernd

    2013-04-01

    The Tibetan Plateau (TP) is one of the key regions for climatic global change. Besides the poles the TP is the third highest storage of frozen water in glaciers. Here global warming is three times higher than in the rest of the world. Additionally the TP provides water for billions of people and influences the moisture availability from the Indian and East Asian monsoon systems. During the Holocene extent and intensity of the monsoonal systems changed. Hence, in the last decades, a lot of work was done to reconstruct timing and frequency of monsoonal moisture, to understand the past and give a better forecast for the future. Comparative workings often show very heterogeneous patterns of timing and frequency of the Holocene precipitation and temperature maximum, emphasizing the local importance of catchment dynamics. In this study we present first results of lake Heihai (36°N, 93°15'E, 4500m a.s.l.), situated at the north-eastern border of the TP. The lake is surrounded by a broad band of near-shore lake sediments, attesting a larger lake extent in the past. These sediments were uplifted by permafrost, reaching nowadays heights ca. +8 meters above present lake level. Due to the uplift one of the main inflows was blocked and the whole hydrology of the catchment changed. To quantify the uplift of permafrost Hot Spot Analysis were accomplished at a DEM of the near-shore area. As a result regions of high permafrost uplift and those which mirror the original height of lake ground were revealed. The most obvious uplift took place in the northern and western part of the lake, where the four uplift centers are located. In contrast the southern and eastern areas show a rather degraded pattern (probably by fluvial erosion, thermokarst, etc.). The ancient lake bottom, without permafrost uplift was estimated to be 4-6 meters above the modern lake level. For a better understanding of permafrost interaction inside the terrace bodies a 5m sediment profile was sampled and

  8. Changing circulation structure and precipitation characteristics in Asian monsoon regions: greenhouse warming vs. aerosol effects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lau, William K. M.; Kim, Kyu-Myong; Ruby Leung, L.

    2017-12-01

    Using model outputs from CMIP5 historical integrations, we have investigated the relative roles of anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG) and aerosols in changing the characteristics of the large-scale circulation and rainfall in Asian summer monsoon (ASM) regions. Under GHG warming, a strong positive trend in low-level moist static energy (MSE) is found over ASM regions, associated with increasing large-scale land-sea thermal contrast from 1870s to present. During the same period, a mid-tropospheric convective barrier (MCB) due to widespread reduction in relative humidity in the mid- and lower troposphere is strengthening over the ASM regions, in conjunction with expanding areas of anomalous subsidence associated with the Deep Tropical Squeeze (Lau and Kim in Proc Natl Acad Sci 12:3630-3635, 2015). The opposing effects of MSE and MCB lead to enhanced total ASM rainfall, but only a partial strengthening of the southern portion of the monsoon meridional circulation, coupled to anomalous multi-cellular overturning motions over ASM land. Including anthropogenic aerosol emissions strongly masks MSE but enhances MCB via increased stability in the lower troposphere, resulting in an overall weakened ASM circulation with suppressed rainfall. Analyses of rainfall characteristics indicate that under GHG, overall precipitation efficiency over the ASM region is reduced, manifesting in less moderate but more extreme heavy rain events. Under combined effects of GHG and aerosols, precipitation efficiency is unchanged, with more moderate, but less extreme rainfall.

  9. Extreme Temperature Exceedances Change more Rapidly Under Future Warming in Regions of non-Gaussian Short Temperature Distribution Tails

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loikith, P. C.; Neelin, J. D.; Meyerson, J.

    2017-12-01

    Regions of shorter-than-Gaussian warm and cold side temperature distribution tails are shown to occur in spatially coherent patterns in the current climate. Under such conditions, warming may be manifested in more complex ways than if the underlying distribution were close to Gaussian. For example, under a uniform warm shift, the simplest prototype for future warming, a location with a short warm side tail would experience a greater increase in extreme warm exceedances compared to if the distribution were Gaussian. Similarly, for a location with a short cold side tail, a uniform warm shift would result in a rapid decrease in extreme cold exceedances. Both scenarios carry major societal and environmental implications including but not limited to negative impacts on human and ecosystem health, agriculture, and the economy. It is therefore important for climate models to be able to realistically reproduce short tails in simulations of historical climate in order to boost confidence in projections of future temperature extremes. Overall, climate models contributing to the fifth phase of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project capture many of the principal observed regions of short tails. This suggests the underlying dynamics and physics occur on scales resolved by the models, and helps build confidence in model projections of extremes. Furthermore, most GCMs show more rapid changes in exceedances of extreme temperature thresholds in regions of short tails. Results therefore suggest that the shape of the tails of the underlying temperature distribution is an indicator of how rapidly a location will experience changes to extreme temperature occurrence under future warming.

  10. Lateglacial and Holocene climate, disturbance and permafrost peatland dynamics on the Seward Peninsula, western Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, Stephanie D.; Yu, Zicheng; Jones, Miriam C.

    2013-01-01

    Northern peatlands have accumulated large carbon (C) stocks, acting as a long-term atmospheric C sink since the last deglaciation. How these C-rich ecosystems will respond to future climate change, however, is still poorly understood. Furthermore, many northern peatlands exist in regions underlain by permafrost, adding to the challenge of projecting C balance under changing climate and permafrost dynamics. In this study, we used a paleoecological approach to examine the effect of past climates and local disturbances on vegetation and C accumulation at a peatland complex on the southern Seward Peninsula, Alaska over the past ∼15 ka (1 ka = 1000 cal yr BP). We analyzed two cores about 30 m apart, NL10-1 (from a permafrost peat plateau) and NL10-2 (from an adjacent thermokarst collapse-scar bog), for peat organic matter (OM), C accumulation rates, macrofossil, pollen and grain size analysis.A wet rich fen occurred during the initial stages of peatland development at the thermokarst site (NL10-2). The presence of tree pollen from Picea spp. and Larix laricinia at 13.5–12.1 ka indicates a warm regional climate, corresponding with the well-documented Bølling–Allerød warm period. A cold and dry climate interval at 12.1–11.1 ka is indicated by the disappearance of tree pollen and increase in Poaceae pollen and an increase in woody material, likely representing a local expression of the Younger Dryas (YD) event. Following the YD, the warm Holocene Thermal Maximum (HTM) is characterized by the presence of Populus pollen, while the presence of Sphagnum spp. and increased C accumulation rates suggest high peatland productivity under a warm climate. Toward the end of the HTM and throughout the mid-Holocene a wet climate-induced several major flooding disturbance events at 10 ka, 8.1 ka, 6 ka, 5.4 ka and 4.7 ka, as evidenced by decreases in OM, and increases in coarse sand abundance and aquatic fossils (algae Chara and water fleas Daphnia). The initial

  11. Effects of Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age on the hydrology of Mediterranean region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markonis, Y.; Kossieris, P.; Lykou, A.; Koutsoyiannis, D.

    2012-04-01

    Medieval Warm Period (950 - 1250) and Little Ice Age (1450 - 1850) are the most recent periods that reflect the magnitude of natural climate variability. As their names suggest, the first one was characterized by higher temperatures and a generally moister climate, while the opposite happened during the second period. Although their existence is well documented for Northern Europe and North America, recent findings suggest strong evidence in lower latitudes as well. Here we analyze qualitatively the influence of these climatic fluctuations on the hydrological cycle all over the Mediterranean basin, highlighting the spatial characteristics of precipitation and runoff. We use both qualitative estimates from literature review in the field of paleoclimatology and statistical analysis of proxy data series. We investigate possible regional patterns and possible tele-connections with large scale atmospheric circulation phenomena such as North Atlantic Oscillation, Siberian High, African Sahel Rainfall and Indian Monsoon.

  12. Regional to global changes in drought and implications for future changes under global warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheffield, J.; Wood, E. F.; Kam, J.

    2012-12-01

    Drought can have large impacts on multiple sectors, including agriculture, water resources, ecosystems, transport, industry and tourism. In extreme cases, regional drought can lead to food insecurity and famine, and in intensive agricultural regions, extend to global economic impacts in a connected world. Recent droughts globally have been severe and costly but whether they are becoming more frequent and severe, and the attribution of this, is a key question. Observational evidence at large scales, such as satellite remote sensing are often subject to short-term records and inhomogeneities, and ground based data are sparse in many regions. Reliance on model output is also subject to error and simplifications in the model physics that can, for example, amplify the impact of global warming on drought. This presentation will show the observational and model evidence for changes in drought, with a focus on the interplay between precipitation and atmospheric evaporative demand and its impact on the terrestrial water cycle and drought. We discuss the fidelity of climate models to reproduce our best estimates of drought variability and its drivers historically, and the implications of this on uncertainties in future projections of drought from CMIP5 models, and how this has changed since CMIP3.

  13. The microbial ecology of permafrost

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jansson, Janet; Tas, Neslihan

    2014-01-01

    Permafrost constitutes a major portion of the terrestrial cryosphere of the Earth and is a unique ecological niche for cold-adapted microorganisms. There is a relatively high microbial diversity in permafrost, although there is some variation in community composition across different permafrost......-gas emissions. This Review describes new data on the microbial ecology of permafrost and provides a platform for understanding microbial life strategies in frozen soil as well as the impact of climate change on permafrost microorganisms and their functional roles....

  14. Four years of UAS Imagery Reveals Vegetation Change Due to Permafrost Thaw

    Science.gov (United States)

    DelGreco, J. L.; Herrick, C.; Varner, R. K.; McArthur, K. J.; McCalley, C. K.; Garnello, A.; Finnell, D.; Anderson, S. M.; Crill, P. M.; Palace, M. W.

    2017-12-01

    Warming trends in sub-arctic regions have resulted in thawing of permafrost which in turn induces change in vegetation across peatlands. Collapse of palsas (i.e. permafrost plateaus) has also been correlated to increases in methane (CH4) emissions to the atmosphere. Vegetation change provides new microenvironments that promote CH4 production and emission, specifically through plant interactions and structure. By quantifying the changes in vegetation at the landscape scale, we will be able to understand the impact of thaw on CH4 emissions in these complex and climate sensitive northern ecosystems. We combine field-based measurements of vegetation composition and high resolution Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) imagery to characterize vegetation change in a sub-arctic mire. At Stordalen Mire (1 km x 0.5 km), Abisko, Sweden, we flew a fixed-wing UAS in July of each year between 2014 and 2017. High precision GPS ground control points were used to georeference the imagery. Seventy-five randomized square-meter plots were measured for vegetation composition and individually classified into one of five cover types, each representing a different stage of permafrost degradation. With this training data, each year of imagery was classified by cover type. The developed cover type maps were also used to estimate CH4 emissions across the mire based on average flux CH4 rates from each cover type obtained from flux chamber measurements collected at the mire. This four year comparison of vegetation cover and methane emissions has indicated a rapid response to permafrost thaw and changes in emissions. Estimation of vegetation cover types is vital in our understanding of the evolution of northern peatlands and its future role in the global carbon cycle.

  15. Using dissolved organic matter age and composition to detect permafrost thaw in boreal watersheds of interior Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donnell, Jonathan A.; Aiken, George R.; Walvoord, Michelle A.; Raymond, Peter A.; Butler, Kenna D.; Dornblaser, Mark M.; Heckman, Katherine

    2014-11-01

    Recent warming at high latitudes has accelerated permafrost thaw, which can modify soil carbon dynamics and watershed hydrology. The flux and composition of dissolved organic matter (DOM) from soils to rivers are sensitive to permafrost configuration and its impact on subsurface hydrology and groundwater discharge. Here, we evaluate the utility of DOM composition and age as a tool for detecting permafrost thaw in three rivers (Beaver, Birch, and Hess Creeks) within the discontinuous permafrost zone of interior Alaska. We observed strong temporal controls on Δ14C content of hydrophobic acid isolates (Δ14C-HPOA) across all rivers, with the most enriched values occurring during spring snowmelt (75 ± 8‰) and most depleted during winter flow (-21 ± 8‰). Radiocarbon ages of winter flow samples ranged from 35 to 445 yr BP, closely tracking estimated median base flow travel times for this region (335 years). During spring snowmelt, young DOM was composed of highly aromatic, high molecular-weight compounds, whereas older DOM of winter flow had lower aromaticity and molecular weight. We observed a significant correlation between Δ14C-HPOA and UV absorbance coefficient at 254 nm (α254) across all study rivers. Using α254 as an optical indicator for Δ14C-HPOA, we also observed a long-term decline in α254 during maximum annual thaw depth over the last decade at the Hess Creek study site. These findings suggest a shift in watershed hydrology associated with increasing active layer thickness. Further development of DOM optical indicators may serve as a novel and inexpensive tool for detecting permafrost degradation in northern watersheds.

  16. Subsurface flow pathway dynamics in the active layer of coupled permafrost-hydrogeological systems under seasonal and annual temperature variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frampton, Andrew

    2017-04-01

    There is a need for improved understanding of the mechanisms controlling subsurface solute transport in the active layer in order to better understand permafrost-hydrological-carbon feedbacks, in particular with regards to how dissolved carbon is transported in coupled surface and subsurface terrestrial arctic water systems under climate change. Studying solute transport in arctic systems is also relevant in the context of anthropogenic pollution which may increase due to increased activity in cold region environments. In this contribution subsurface solute transport subject to ground surface warming causing permafrost thaw and active layer change is studied using a physically based model of coupled cryotic and hydrogeological flow processes combined with a particle tracking method. Changes in subsurface water flows and solute transport travel times are analysed for different modelled geological configurations during a 100-year warming period. Results show that for all simulated cases, the minimum and mean travel times increase non-linearly with warming irrespective of geological configuration and heterogeneity structure. The timing of the start of increase in travel time depends on heterogeneity structure, combined with the rate of permafrost degradation that also depends on material thermal and hydrogeological properties. These travel time changes are shown to depend on combined warming effects of increase in pathway length due to deepening of the active layer, reduced transport velocities due to a shift from horizontal saturated groundwater flow near the surface to vertical water percolation deeper into the subsurface, and pathway length increase and temporary immobilization caused by cryosuction-induced seasonal freeze cycles. The impact these change mechanisms have on solute and dissolved substance transport is further analysed by integrating pathway analysis with a Lagrangian approach, incorporating considerations for both dissolved organic and inorganic

  17. Web-GIS visualisation of permafrost-related Remote Sensing products for ESA GlobPermafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haas, A.; Heim, B.; Schaefer-Neth, C.; Laboor, S.; Nitze, I.; Grosse, G.; Bartsch, A.; Kaab, A.; Strozzi, T.; Wiesmann, A.; Seifert, F. M.

    2016-12-01

    The ESA GlobPermafrost (www.globpermafrost.info) provides a remote sensing service for permafrost research and applications. The service comprises of data product generation for various sites and regions as well as specific infrastructure allowing overview and access to datasets. Based on an online user survey conducted within the project, the user community extensively applies GIS software to handle remote sensing-derived datasets and requires preview functionalities before accessing them. In response, we develop the Permafrost Information System PerSys which is conceptualized as an open access geospatial data dissemination and visualization portal. PerSys will allow visualisation of GlobPermafrost raster and vector products such as land cover classifications, Landsat multispectral index trend datasets, lake and wetland extents, InSAR-based land surface deformation maps, rock glacier velocity fields, spatially distributed permafrost model outputs, and land surface temperature datasets. The datasets will be published as WebGIS services relying on OGC-standardized Web Mapping Service (WMS) and Web Feature Service (WFS) technologies for data display and visualization. The WebGIS environment will be hosted at the AWI computing centre where a geodata infrastructure has been implemented comprising of ArcGIS for Server 10.4, PostgreSQL 9.2 and a browser-driven data viewer based on Leaflet (http://leafletjs.com). Independently, we will provide an `Access - Restricted Data Dissemination Service', which will be available to registered users for testing frequently updated versions of project datasets. PerSys will become a core project of the Arctic Permafrost Geospatial Centre (APGC) within the ERC-funded PETA-CARB project (www.awi.de/petacarb). The APGC Data Catalogue will contain all final products of GlobPermafrost, allow in-depth dataset search via keywords, spatial and temporal coverage, data type, etc., and will provide DOI-based links to the datasets archived in the

  18. Authropogenic Warming in North Alaska?.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaels, Patrick J.; Sappington, David E.; Stooksbury, David E.

    1988-09-01

    Using permafrost boreholes, Lachenbruch and Marshall recently reported evidence for a 2°-4°C warming in North Alaska occurring at some undetermined time during the last century. Popular accounts suggest their findings are evidence for anthropogenic warming caused by trace gases. Analyses of North Alaskan 1000-500 mb thickness onwards back to 1948 indicate that the warming was prior to that date. Relatively sparse thermometric data for the early twentieth century from Jones et al. are too noisy to support any trend since the data record begins in 1910, or to apply to any subperiod of climatic significance. Any warming detected from the permafrost record therefore occurred before the major emissions of thermally active trace gases.

  19. Effect of permafrost properties on gas hydrate petroleum system in the Qilian Mountains, Qinghai, Northwest China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Pingkang; Zhang, Xuhui; Zhu, Youhai; Li, Bing; Huang, Xia; Pang, Shouji; Zhang, Shuai; Lu, Cheng; Xiao, Rui

    2014-12-01

    The gas hydrate petroleum system in the permafrost of the Qilian Mountains, which exists as an epigenetic hydrocarbon reservoir above a deep-seated hydrocarbon reservoir, has been dynamic since the end of the Late Pleistocene because of climate change. The permafrost limits the occurrence of gas hydrate reservoirs by changing the pressure-temperature (P-T) conditions, and it affects the migration of the underlying hydrocarbon gas because of its strong sealing ability. In this study, we reconstructed the permafrost structure of the Qilian Mountains using a combination of methods and measured methane permeability in ice-bearing sediment permafrost. A relationship between the ice saturation of permafrost and methane permeability was established, which permitted the quantitative evaluation of the sealing ability of permafrost with regard to methane migration. The test results showed that when ice saturation is >80%, methane gas can be completely sealed within the permafrost. Based on the permafrost properties and genesis of shallow gas, we suggest that a shallow "gas pool" occurred in the gas hydrate petroleum system in the Qilian Mountains. Its formation was related to a metastable gas hydrate reservoir controlled by the P-T conditions, sealing ability of the permafrost, fault system, and climatic warming. From an energy perspective, the increasing volume of the gas pool means that it will likely become a shallow gas resource available for exploitation; however, for the environment, the gas pool is an underground "time bomb" that is a potential source of greenhouse gas.

  20. Impact of evolving greenhouse gas forcing on the warming signal in regional climate model experiments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jerez, S; López-Romero, J M; Turco, M; Jiménez-Guerrero, P; Vautard, R; Montávez, J P

    2018-04-03

    Variations in the atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases (GHG) may not be included as external forcing when running regional climate models (RCMs); at least, this is a non-regulated, non-documented practice. Here we investigate the so far unexplored impact of considering the rising evolution of the CO 2 , CH 4 , and N 2 O atmospheric concentrations on near-surface air temperature (TAS) trends, for both the recent past and the near future, as simulated by a state-of-the-art RCM over Europe. The results show that the TAS trends are significantly affected by 1-2 K century -1 , which under 1.5 °C global warming translates into a non-negligible impact of up to 1 K in the regional projections of TAS, similarly affecting projections for maximum and minimum temperatures. In some cases, these differences involve a doubling signal, laying further claim to careful reconsideration of the RCM setups with regard to the inclusion of GHG concentrations as an evolving external forcing which, for the sake of research reproducibility and reliability, should be clearly documented in the literature.

  1. Permafrost Thaw increases Emissions of Nitrous Oxide from Subarctic Peatlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voigt, C.; Marushchak, M. E.; Lamprecht, R. E.; Jackowicz-Korczynski, M.; Lindgren, A.; Mastepanov, M.; Christensen, T. R.; Granlund, L.; Tahvanainen, T.; Martikainen, P. J.; Biasi, C.

    2017-12-01

    Permafrost soils in the Arctic are thawing, exposing not only carbon but also large nitrogen stocks. The decomposition of this vast pool of long-term immobile C and N stocks results in the release of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere. Among these, carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) are being studied extensively, and gaseous C release from thawing permafrost is known to be substantial. Most recent studies, however, show that Arctic soils may further be a relevant source of the strong greenhouse gas nitrous oxide (N2O). As N2O is almost 300 times more powerful in warming the climate than CO2 based on a 100-yr time horizon, the release of N2O from thawing permafrost could create a significant non-carbon permafrost-climate feedback. To study the effect of permafrost thaw on N2O fluxes, we collected peat mesocosms from a Subarctic permafrost peatland, and subjected these intact soil-plant systems to sequential thawing from the top of the active layer down to the upper permafrost layer. Measurements of N2O fluxes were coupled with detailed soil analyses and process studies. Since N2O fluxes are highly dependent on moisture conditions and vegetation cover, we applied two distinct moisture treatments (dry vs. wet) and simulated permafrost thaw in vegetated as well as in naturally bare mesocosms. Under dry conditions, permafrost thaw clearly increased N2O emissions. We observed the largest post-thaw emissions from bare peat surfaces, a typical landform in subarctic peatlands previously identified as hot spots for Arctic N2O emissions. There, permafrost thaw caused a five-fold increase in emissions (0.56 vs. 2.81 mg N2O m-2 d-1). While water-logged conditions suppressed N2O emissions, the presence of vegetation lowered, but did not prevent post-thaw N2O release. Based on these findings, we show that one fourth of the Arctic land area could be vulnerable for N2O emissions when permafrost thaws. Our results demonstrate that Arctic N2O emissions may be larger than

  2. Progress in studies on hydrological impacts of degrading permafrost in the Source Area of Yellow River on NE Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, SW China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, H.; Ma, Q.; Jin, X.

    2017-12-01

    Permafrost degradation substantially impacts hydrological processes in the Source Area of the Yellow River (SAYR). Deepening active layer has directly led to a reduction of surface runoffs, alters the generation and dynamics of slope runoffs and groundwater, leading to a deepening of groundwater flow paths. At present, however, there is only a limited understanding of the hydrological impact mechanisms of degrading permafrost. On the basis of analyzing and evaluating the current states, changing history and developing trends of climate, permafrost and hydrological processes, this program aims at further and better quantifying the nature of these mechanisms linking the degrading permafrost with changing hydrological processes. The key scientific themes for this research are the characterization of interactions between ground freezing-thawing and hydrogeology in the SAYR. For this study, a coupling is made between geothermal states and the occurrences of taliks in river systems, in order to understand how expanding taliks control groundwater and surface-water interactions and how these interactions might intensify or weaken when the climate warms and dries persistently. Numerical models include freeze-thaw dynamics coupled to groundwater and surface flow processes. For the proper parameterization of these models, field and laboratory studies are conducted with a focus on the SAYR. Geophysical investigations are employed for mapping permafrost distribution in relation to landscape elements. Boreholes and water wells and observation sites for the hydrothermal processes and water tables are used for establishing the current thermal state of frozen ground and talik and monitor their changes over time, and serve to ground-truth surface geophysical observations. Boreholes and wellbores, water wells and active layer sites have provided access to the permafrost and aquifer systems, allowing the dating of ground-water and -ice and soil strata for elucidating the regional

  3. Ground thermal and geomechanical conditions in a permafrost-affected high-latitude rock avalanche site (Polvartinden, northern Norway)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frauenfelder, Regula; Isaksen, Ketil; Lato, Matthew J.; Noetzli, Jeannette

    2018-04-01

    On 26 June 2008, a rock avalanche detached in the northeast facing slope of Polvartinden, a high-alpine mountain in Signaldalen, northern Norway. Here, we report on the observed and modelled past and present near-surface temperature regime close to the failure zone, as well as on a subsequent simulation of the subsurface temperature regime, and on initial geomechanical mapping based on laser scanning. The volume of the rock avalanche was estimated to be approximately 500 000 m3. The depth to the actual failure surface was found to range from 40 m at the back of the failure zone to 0 m at its toe. Visible in situ ice was observed in the failure zone just after the rock avalanche. Between September 2009 and August 2013, ground surface temperatures were measured with miniature temperature data loggers at 14 different localities, close to the original failure zone along the northern ridge of Polvartinden and on the valley floor. The results from these measurements and from a basic three-dimensional heat conduction model suggest that the lower altitudinal limit of permafrost at present is at 600-650 m a.s.l., which corresponds to the upper limit of the failure zone. A coupling of our in situ data with regional climate data since 1958 suggests a general gradual warming and that the period with highest mean near surface temperatures on record ended four months before the Signaldalen rock avalanche detached. A comparison with a transient permafrost model run at 10 m depth, representative for areas where snow accumulates, strengthen these findings, which are also in congruence with measurements in nearby permafrost boreholes. It is likely that permafrost in and near the failure zone is presently subject to degradation. This degradation, in combination with the extreme warm year antecedent to the rock failure, is seen to have played an important role in the detaching of the Signaldalen rock avalanche.

  4. Hydrological processes and permafrost regulate magnitude, source and chemical characteristics of dissolved organic carbon export in a peatland catchment of northeastern China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Guo

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Permafrost thawing in peatlands has the potential to alter the catchment export of dissolved organic carbon (DOC, thus influencing the carbon balance and cycling in linked aquatic and ocean ecosystems. Peatlands along the southern margins of the Eurasian permafrost are relatively underexplored despite the considerable risks associated with permafrost degradation due to climate warming. This study examined dynamics of DOC export from a permafrost peatland catchment located in northeastern China during the 2012 to 2014 growing seasons. The estimated annual DOC loads varied greatly between 3211 and 19 022 kg yr−1, with a mean DOC yield of 4.7 g m−2 yr−1. Although the estimated DOC yield was in the lower range compared with other permafrost regions, it was still significant for the net carbon balance in the studied catchment. There were strong linkages between daily discharge and DOC concentrations in both wet and dry years, suggesting a transport-limited process of DOC delivery from the catchment. Discharge explained the majority of both seasonal and interannual variations of DOC concentrations, which made annual discharge a good indicator of total DOC load from the catchment. As indicated by three fluorescence indices, DOC source and chemical characteristics tracked the shift of flow paths during runoff processes closely. Interactions between the flow path and DOC chemical characteristics were greatly influenced by the seasonal thawing of the soil active layer. The deepening of the active layer due to climate warming likely increases the proportion of microbial-originated DOC in baseflow discharge.

  5. Estimation of the Past and Future Infrastructure Damage Due the Permafrost Evolution Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sergeev, D. O.; Chesnokova, I. V.; Morozova, A. V.

    2015-12-01

    The geocryological processes such as thermokarst, frost heaving and fracturing, icing, thermal erosion are the source of immediate danger for the structures. The economic losses during the construction procedures in the permafrost area are linked also with the other geological processes that have the specific character in cold regions. These processes are swamping, desertification, deflation, flooding, mudflows and landslides. Linear transport structures are most vulnerable component of regional and national economy. Because the high length the transport structures have to cross the landscapes with different permafrost conditions that have the different reaction to climate change. The climate warming is favorable for thermokarst and the frost heaving is linked with climate cooling. In result the structure falls in the circumstances that are not predicted in the construction project. Local engineering problems of structure exploitation lead to global risks of sustainable development of regions. Authors developed the database of geocryological damage cases for the last twelve years at the Russian territory. Spatial data have the attributive table that was filled by the published information from various permafrost conference proceedings. The preliminary GIS-analysis of gathered data showed the widespread territorial distribution of the cases of negative consequences of geocryological processes activity. The information about maximum effect from geocryological processes was validated by detailed field investigation along the railways in Yamal and Transbaicalia Regions. Authors expect the expanding of database by similar data from other sectors of Arctic. It is important for analyzing the regional, time and industrial tendencies of geocryological risk evolution. Obtained information could be used in insurance procedures and in information systems of decisions support in different management levels. The investigation was completed with financial support by Russian

  6. The International Permafrost Association: current initiatives for cryospheric research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schollaen, Karina; Lewkowicz, Antoni G.; Christiansen, Hanne H.; Romanovsky, Vladimir E.; Lantuit, Hugues; Schrott, Lothar; Sergeev, Dimitry; Wei, Ma

    2015-04-01

    The International Permafrost Association (IPA), founded in 1983, has as its objectives to foster the dissemination of knowledge concerning permafrost and to promote cooperation among persons and national or international organizations engaged in scientific investigation and engineering work on permafrost. The IPA's primary responsibilities are convening International Permafrost Conferences, undertaking special projects such as preparing databases, maps, bibliographies, and glossaries, and coordinating international field programs and networks. Membership is through adhering national or multinational organizations or as individuals in countries where no Adhering Body exists. The IPA is governed by its Executive Committee and a Council consisting of representatives from 26 Adhering Bodies having interests in some aspect of theoretical, basic and applied frozen ground research, including permafrost, seasonal frost, artificial freezing and periglacial phenomena. This presentation details the IPA core products, achievements and activities as well as current projects in cryospheric research. One of the most important core products is the circumpolar permafrost map. The IPA also fosters and supports the activities of the Global Terrestrial Network on Permafrost (GTN-P) sponsored by the Global Terrestrial Observing System, GTOS, and the Global Climate Observing System, GCOS, whose long-term goal is to obtain a comprehensive view of the spatial structure, trends, and variability of changes in the active layer thickness and permafrost temperature. A further important initiative of the IPA are the biannually competitively-funded Action Groups which work towards the production of well-defined products over a period of two years. Current IPA Action Groups are working on highly topical and interdisciplinary issues, such as the development of a regional Palaeo-map of Permafrost in Eurasia, the integration of multidisciplinary knowledge about the use of thermokarst and permafrost

  7. On the recent warming in the subcloud layer entropy and vertically integrated moist static energy over South Asian Monsoon region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konduru, R.; Gupta, A.; Matsumoto, J.; Takahashi, H. G.

    2017-12-01

    In order to explain monsoon circulation, surface temperature gradients described as most traditional concept. However, it cannot explain certain important aspects of monsoon circulation. Later, convective quasi-equilibrium framework and vertically integrated atmospheric energy budget has become recognized theories to explain the monsoon circulation. In this article, same theories were analyzed and observed for the duration 1979-2010 over south Asian summer monsoon region. With the help of NCEP-R2, NOAA 20th Century, and Era-Interim reanalysis an important feature was noticed pertained to subcloud layer entropy and vertical moist static energy. In the last 32 years, subcloud layer entropy and vertically integrated moist static energy has shown significant seasonal warming all over the region with peak over the poleward flank of the cross-equatorial cell. The important reason related to the warming was found to be increase in surface enthalpy fluxes. Instead, other dynamical contributions pertained to the warming was also observed. Increase in positive anomalies of vertical advection of moist static energy over northern Bay of Bengal, Central India, Peninsular India, Eastern Arabian Sea, and Equatorial Indian Ocean was found to be an important dynamic factor contributing for warming of vertically integrated moist static energy. Along with it vertical moist stability has also supported the argument. Similar interpretations were perceived in the AMIP simulation of CCSM4 model. Further modeling experiments on this warming will be helpful to know the exact mechanism behind it.

  8. Amplified warming projections for high altitude regions of the northern hemisphere mid-latitudes from CMIP5 models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rangwala, Imtiaz; Sinsky, Eric; Miller, James R

    2013-01-01

    We use output from global climate models available from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) for three different greenhouse gas emission scenarios to investigate whether the projected warming in mountains by the end of the 21st century is significantly different from that in low elevation regions. To remove the effects of latitudinal variation in warming rates, we focus on seasonal changes in the mid-latitude band of the northern hemisphere between 27.5° N and 40° N, where the two major mountain systems are the Tibetan Plateau/Himalayas in Asia and the Rocky Mountains in the United States. Results from the multi-model ensemble indicate that warming rates in mountains will be enhanced relative to non-mountain regions at the same latitude, particularly during the cold season. The strongest correlations of enhanced warming with elevation are obtained for the daily minimum temperature during winter, with the largest increases found for the Tibetan Plateau/Himalayas. The model projections indicate that this occurs, in part, because of proportionally greater increases in downward longwave radiation at higher elevations in response to increases in water vapor. The mechanisms for enhanced increases in winter and spring maximum temperatures in the Rockies appear to be influenced more by increases in surface absorption of solar radiation owing to a reduced snow cover. Furthermore, the amplification of warming with elevation is greater for a higher greenhouse gas emission scenario. (letter)

  9. Nitrogen availability increases in a tundra ecosystem during five years of experimental permafrost thaw.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salmon, Verity G; Soucy, Patrick; Mauritz, Marguerite; Celis, Gerardo; Natali, Susan M; Mack, Michelle C; Schuur, Edward A G

    2016-05-01

    Perennially frozen soil in high latitude ecosystems (permafrost) currently stores 1330-1580 Pg of carbon (C). As these ecosystems warm, the thaw and decomposition of permafrost is expected to release large amounts of C to the atmosphere. Fortunately, losses from the permafrost C pool will be partially offset by increased plant productivity. The degree to which plants are able to sequester C, however, will be determined by changing nitrogen (N) availability in these thawing soil profiles. N availability currently limits plant productivity in tundra ecosystems but plant access to N is expected improve as decomposition increases in speed and extends to deeper soil horizons. To evaluate the relationship between permafrost thaw and N availability, we monitored N cycling during 5 years of experimentally induced permafrost thaw at the Carbon in Permafrost Experimental Heating Research (CiPEHR) project. Inorganic N availability increased significantly in response to deeper thaw and greater soil moisture induced by Soil warming. This treatment also prompted a 23% increase in aboveground biomass and a 49% increase in foliar N pools. The sedge Eriophorum vaginatum responded most strongly to warming: this species explained 91% of the change in aboveground biomass during the 5 year period. Air warming had little impact when applied alone, but when applied in combination with Soil warming, growing season soil inorganic N availability was significantly reduced. These results demonstrate that there is a strong positive relationship between the depth of permafrost thaw and N availability in tundra ecosystems but that this relationship can be diminished by interactions between increased thaw, warmer air temperatures, and higher levels of soil moisture. Within 5 years of permafrost thaw, plants actively incorporate newly available N into biomass but C storage in live vascular plant biomass is unlikely to be greater than losses from deep soil C pools. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Mean versus extreme climate in the Mediterranean region and its sensitivity to future global warming conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Paeth, H.; Hense, A. [Meteorological Inst., Univ. Bonn (Germany)

    2005-06-01

    The Mediterranean region (MTR) has been supposed to be very sensitive to changes in land surface and atmospheric greenhouse-gas (GHG) concentrations. Particularly, an intensification of climate extremes may be associated with severe socio-economic implications. Here, we present an analysis of climate mean and extreme conditions in this subtropical area based on regional climate model experiments, simulating the present-day and possible future climate. The analysis of extreme values (EVs) is based on the assumption that the extremes of daily precipitation and near-surface temperature are well fitted by the Generalized Pareto distribution (GPD). Return values of extreme daily events are determined using the method of L-moments. Particular emphasis is laid on the evaluation of the return values with respect to the uncertainty range of the estimate as derived from a Monte Carlo sampling approach. During the most recent 25 years the MTR has become dryer in spring but more humid especially in the western part in autumn and winter. At the same time, the whole region has been subject to a substantial warming. The strongest rainfall extremes are simulated in autumn over the Mediterranean Sea around Italy. Temperature extremes are most pronounced over the land masses, especially over northern Africa. Given the large uncertainty of the EV estimate, only 1-year return values are further analysed. During recent decades, statistically significant changes in extremes are only found for temperature. Future climate conditions may come along with a decrease in mean and extreme precipitation during the cold season, whereas an intensification of the hydrological cycle is predicted in summer and autumn. Temperature is predominantly affected over the Iberian Peninsula and the eastern part of the MTR. In many grid boxes, the signals are blurred out due to the large amount of uncertainty in the EV estimate. Thus, a careful analysis is required when making inferences about the future

  11. Permafrost stores a globally significant amount of mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaefer, K. M.; Schuster, P. F.; Antweiler, R.; Aiken, G.; DeWild, J.; Gryziec, J. D.; Gusmeroli, A.; Hugelius, G.; Jafarov, E.; Krabbenhoft, D. P.; Liu, L.; Herman-Mercer, N. M.; Mu, C.; Roth, D. A.; Schaefer, T.; Striegl, R. G.; Wickland, K.; Zhang, T.

    2017-12-01

    Changing climate in northern regions is causing permafrost to thaw with major implications for the cycling of mercury in arctic and subarctic ecosystems. Permafrost occurs in nearly one quarter of the Earth's Northern Hemisphere. We measured total soil mercury concentration in 588 samples from 13 soil permafrost cores from the interior and the North Slope of Alaska. The median concentration was 47.7±23.4 ng Hg g soil-1 and the median ratio of Hg to carbon was 1.56±0.86 µg Hg g C-1. We estimate Alaskan permafrost stores 56±32 kilotons of mercury and the entire northern hemisphere permafrost land mass stores 773±441 kilotons of mercury. This increases estimates of mercury stored in soils by 60%, making permafrost the second largest reservoir of mercury on the planet. Climate projections indicate extensive permafrost thawing, releasing mercury into the environment through a variety of mechanisms, for example, terrestrial transport via dissolved organic carbon (DOC), gaseous elemental mercury (GEM) evasion, forest fires, atmospheric mixing processes with ozone, and Springtime atmospheric Hg depletion after the polar sunrise. These findings have major implications for terrestrial and aquatic life, the world's fisheries, and ultimately human health.

  12. Warm and wet conditions in the Arctic region during Eocene Thermal Maximum 2

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sluijs, A.; Schouten, S.; Donders, T.H.; Schoon, P.L.; Röhl, U.; Reichart, G.-J.; Sangiorgi, F.; Kim, J.-H.; Sinninghe Damsté, J.S.; Brinkhuis, H.

    2009-01-01

    Several episodes of abrupt and transient warming, each lasting between 50,000 and 200,000 years, punctuated the long-term warming during the Late Palaeocene and Early Eocene (58 to 51 Myr ago) epochs1,2. These hyperthermal events, such as the Eocene Thermal Maximum 2 (EMT2) that took place about

  13. Modelling borehole temperatures in Southern Norway - insights into permafrost dynamics during the 20th and 21st century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hipp, T.; Etzelmüller, B.; Farbrot, H.; Schuler, T. V.; Westermann, S.

    2012-05-01

    This study aims at quantifying the thermal response of mountain permafrost in southern Norway to changes in climate since 1860 and until 2100. A transient one-dimensional heat flow model was used to simulate ground temperatures and associated active layer thicknesses for nine borehole locations, which are located at different elevations and in substrates with different thermal properties. The model was forced by reconstructed air temperatures starting from 1860, which approximately coincides with the end of the Little Ice Age in the region. The impact of climate warming on mountain permafrost to 2100 is assessed by using downscaled air temperatures from a multi-model ensemble for the A1B scenario. Borehole records over three consecutive years of ground temperatures, air temperatures and snow cover data served for model calibration and validation. With an increase of air temperature of ~1.5 °C over 1860-2010 and an additional warming of ~2.8 °C until 2100, we simulate the evolution of ground temperatures for each borehole location. In 1860 the lower limit of permafrost was estimated to be ca. 200 m lower than observed today. According to the model, since the approximate end of the Little Ice Age, the active-layer thickness has increased by 0.5-5 m and >10 m for the sites Juvvasshøe and Tron, respectively. The most pronounced increases in active layer thickness were modelled for the last two decades since 1990 with increase rates of +2 cm yr-1 to +87 cm yr-1 (20-430%). According to the A1B climate scenario, degradation of mountain permafrost is suggested to occur throughout the 21st century at most of the sites below ca. 1800 m a.s.l. At the highest locations at 1900 m a.s.l., permafrost degradation is likely to occur with a probability of 55-75% by 2100. This implies that mountain permafrost in southern Norway is likely to be confined to the highest peaks in the western part of the country.

  14. Modelling borehole temperatures in Southern Norway – insights into permafrost dynamics during the 20th and 21st century

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Hipp

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available This study aims at quantifying the thermal response of mountain permafrost in southern Norway to changes in climate since 1860 and until 2100. A transient one-dimensional heat flow model was used to simulate ground temperatures and associated active layer thicknesses for nine borehole locations, which are located at different elevations and in substrates with different thermal properties. The model was forced by reconstructed air temperatures starting from 1860, which approximately coincides with the end of the Little Ice Age in the region. The impact of climate warming on mountain permafrost to 2100 is assessed by using downscaled air temperatures from a multi-model ensemble for the A1B scenario. Borehole records over three consecutive years of ground temperatures, air temperatures and snow cover data served for model calibration and validation. With an increase of air temperature of ~1.5 °C over 1860–2010 and an additional warming of ~2.8 °C until 2100, we simulate the evolution of ground temperatures for each borehole location. In 1860 the lower limit of permafrost was estimated to be ca. 200 m lower than observed today. According to the model, since the approximate end of the Little Ice Age, the active-layer thickness has increased by 0.5–5 m and >10 m for the sites Juvvasshøe and Tron, respectively. The most pronounced increases in active layer thickness were modelled for the last two decades since 1990 with increase rates of +2 cm yr−1 to +87 cm yr−1 (20–430%. According to the A1B climate scenario, degradation of mountain permafrost is suggested to occur throughout the 21st century at most of the sites below ca. 1800 m a.s.l. At the highest locations at 1900 m a.s.l., permafrost degradation is likely to occur with a probability of 55–75% by 2100. This implies that mountain permafrost in southern Norway is likely to be confined to the highest peaks in the western part of the country.

  15. Thermokarst transformation of permafrost preserved glaciated landscapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kokelj, S.; Tunnicliffe, J. F.; Fraser, R.; Kokoszka, J.; Lacelle, D.; Lantz, T. C.; Lamoureux, S. F.; Rudy, A.; Shakil, S.; Tank, S. E.; van der Sluijs, J.; Wolfe, S.; Zolkos, S.

    2017-12-01

    Thermokarst is the fundamental mechanism of landscape change and a primary driver of downstream effects in a warming circumpolar world. Permafrost degradation is inherently non-linear because latent heat effects can inhibit thawing. However, once this thermal transition is crossed thermokarst can accelerate due to the interaction of thermal, physical and ecological feedbacks. In this paper we highlight recent climate and precipitation-driven intensification of thaw slumping that is transforming permafrost preserved glaciated landscapes in northwestern Canada. The continental distribution of slump affected terrain reflects glacial extents and recessional positions of the Laurentide Ice sheet. On this basis and in conjunction with intense thermokarst in cold polar environments, we highlight the critical roles of geological legacy and climate history in dictating the sensitivity of permafrost terrain. These glaciated landscapes, maintained in a quasi-stable state throughout much of the late Holocene are now being transformed into remarkably dynamic environments by climate-driven thermokarst. Individual disturbances displace millions of cubic metres of previously frozen material downslope, converting upland sedimentary stores into major source areas. Precipitation-driven evacuation of sediment by fluidized mass flows perpetuates non-linear enlargement of disturbances. The infilling of valleys with debris deposits tens of metres thick increases stream base-levels and promotes rapid valley-side erosion. These processes destabilize adjacent slopes and proliferate disturbance effects. Physically-based modeling of thaw slump development provides insight into the trajectories of landscape change, and the mapping of fluvial linkages portrays the cascade of effects across watershed scales. Post-glacial or "paraglacial" models of landscape evolution provide a useful framework for understanding the nature and magnitude of climate-driven changes in permafrost preserved glaciated

  16. What's down below? Current and potential future applications of geophysical techniques to identify subsurface permafrost conditions (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douglas, T. A.; Bjella, K.; Campbell, S. W.

    2013-12-01

    For infrastructure design, operations, and maintenance requirements in the North the ability to accurately and efficiently detect the presence (or absence) of ground ice in permafrost terrains is a serious challenge. Ground ice features including ice wedges, thermokarst cave-ice, and segregation ice are present in a variety of spatial scales and patterns. Currently, most engineering applications use borehole logging and sampling to extrapolate conditions at the point scale. However, there is high risk of over or under estimating the presence of frozen or unfrozen features when relying on borehole information alone. In addition, boreholes are costly, especially for planning linear structures like roads or runways. Predicted climate warming will provide further challenges for infrastructure development and transportation operations where permafrost degradation occurs. Accurately identifying the subsurface character in permafrost terrains will allow engineers and planners to cost effectively create novel infrastructure designs to withstand the changing environment. There is thus a great need for a low cost rapidly deployable, spatially extensive means of 'measuring' subsurface conditions. Geophysical measurements, both terrestrial and airborne, have strong potential to revolutionize our way of mapping subsurface conditions. Many studies in continuous and discontinuous permafrost have used geophysical measurements to identify discrete features and repeatable patterns in the subsurface. The most common measurements include galvanic and capacitive coupled resistivity, ground penetrating radar, and multi frequency electromagnetic induction techniques. Each of these measurements has strengths, weaknesses, and limitations. By combining horizontal geophysical measurements, downhole geophysics, multispectral remote sensing images, LiDAR measurements, and soil and vegetation mapping we can start to assemble a holistic view of how surface conditions and standoff measurements

  17. Permafrost Monitoring Sonnblick

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reisenhofer, Stefan; Riedl, Claudia

    2014-05-01

    Within the project 'Permafrost Monitoring Sonnblick' (PERSON) the spatial distribution of permafrost is investigated by the 'Zentralanstalt für Meteorologie und Geodynamik' (ZAMG) in the Sonnblick area, in the Hohe Tauern in Austria. The aim of PERSON is to identify parameters affecting permafrost (geological, geomorphological, orographical and climatic factors), to determine its spatio-temporal behaviour under present day climate conditions and to estimate its possible future extension under a climate change scenario. PERSON makes use of a permafrost monitoring network that was installed 2005 in the Sonnblick area and is made up by four study sites: On the one hand the spatial extension of permafrost was focused at the ice-dammed lake Pilatus and the rock glacier Zirmsee. On the other hand, at two sites, namely Goldbergspitze and Wintergasse measurements of 'Ground-Surface Temperature' (GST) and 'Bottom Temperatures of the Snow cover' (BTS) are measured. In order to record temperatures in the uppermost layer of the ground and avoid heating by direct solar radiation loggers were buried a few centimetres into the ground or installed in boreholes at depths between 2 and 140 cm. Each of the 'Near Surface Temperature' (NST) borehole mouths is closed up with insulating foam to protect the measurements from atmospheric influence. In addition to these measurements, continuous temperature records from three 20 m deep boreholes located at the southern slope of Hoher Sonnblick are available since 2007, which represent the longest series of its kind in Austria. Furthermore, data from seismic and geoelectric measurements, temperature sensors readings at the surface and extensive meteorological observations from the Sonnblick Observatory are available. Already collected and evaluated data indicate that the thickness of the debris layer around the boreholes reaches a depth of 2 m but no more. The active layer thickness measured in the borehole next to the glacier ranges between

  18. The Plasma Parameters and Geometry of Cool and Warm Active Region Loops

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xie, Haixia; Li, Bo; Huang, Zhenghua; Xia, Lidong; Fu, Hui; Mou, Chaozhou [Shandong Provincial Key Laboratory of Optical Astronomy and Solar-Terrestrial Environment, Institute of Space Sciences, Shandong University, Weihai, 264209 Shandong (China); Madjarska, Maria S.; Wiegelmann, Thomas [Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Justus-von-Liebig-Weg 3, D-37077, Göttingen (Germany)

    2017-06-10

    How the solar corona is heated to high temperatures remains an unsolved mystery in solar physics. In the present study we analyze observations of 50 whole active region loops taken with the Extreme-ultraviolet Imaging Spectrometer on board the Hinode satellite. Eleven loops were classified as cool loops (<1 MK) and 39 as warm loops (1–2 MK). We study their plasma parameters, such as densities, temperatures, filling factors, nonthermal velocities, and Doppler velocities. We combine spectroscopic analysis with linear force-free magnetic field extrapolation to derive the 3D structure and positioning of the loops, their lengths and heights, and the magnetic field strength along the loops. We use density-sensitive line pairs from Fe xii, Fe xiii, Si x, and Mg vii ions to obtain electron densities by taking special care of intensity background subtraction. The emission measure loci method is used to obtain the loop temperatures. We find that the loops are nearly isothermal along the line of sight. Their filling factors are between 8% and 89%. We also compare the observed parameters with the theoretical Rosner–Tucker–Vaiana (RTV) scaling law. We find that most of the loops are in an overpressure state relative to the RTV predictions. In a follow-up study, we will report a heating model of a parallel-cascade-based mechanism and will compare the model parameters with the loop plasma and structural parameters derived here.

  19. Sustained mass loss of the northeast Greenland ice sheet triggered by regional warming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Khan, Shfaqat Abbas; Kjaer, Kurt H.; Bevis, Michael

    2014-01-01

    The Greenland ice sheet has been one of the largest contributors to global sea-level rise over the past 20 years, accounting for 0.5 mm yr(-1) of a total of 3.2 mm yr(-1). A significant portion of this contribution is associated with the speed-up of an increased number of glaciers in southeast...... and northwest Greenland. Here, we show that the northeast Greenland ice stream, which extends more than 600 km into the interior of the ice sheet, is now undergoing sustained dynamic thinning, linked to regional warming, after more than a quarter of a century of stability. This sector of the Greenland ice sheet...... is of particular interest, because the drainage basin area covers 16% of the ice sheet (twice that of Jakobshavn Isbrae) and numerical model predictions suggest no significant mass loss for this sector, leading to an under-estimation of future global sea-level rise. The geometry of the bedrock and monotonic trend...

  20. Permafrost collapse after shrub removal shifts tundra ecosystem to a methane source

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nauta, A.L.; Heijmans, M.M.P.D.; Blok, D.; Limpens, J.; Elberling, B.; Gallagher, A.; Li, B.; Petrov, R.E.; Maximov, T.C.; Huissteden, van J.; Berendse, F.

    2015-01-01

    Arctic tundra ecosystems are warming almost twice as fast as the global average1. Permafrost thaw and the resulting release of greenhouse gases from decomposing soil organic carbon have the potential to accelerate climate warming2, 3. In recent decades, Arctic tundra ecosystems have changed

  1. Permafrost collapse after shrub removal shifts tundra ecosystem into methane source

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nauta, A.L.; Heijmans, M.M.P.D.; Blok, D.; Limpens, J.; Elberling, B.; Gallagher, A.; Li, B.; Petrov, R.E.; Maximov, T.C.; van Huissteden, J.; Berendse, F.

    2015-01-01

    Arctic tundra ecosystems are warming almost twice as fast as the global average. Permafrost thaw and the resulting release of greenhouse gases from decomposing soil organic carbon have the potential to accelerate climate warming. In recent decades, Arctic tundra ecosystems have changed rapidly,

  2. Monitoring Seasonal Changes in Permafrost Using Seismic Interferometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    James, S. R.; Knox, H. A.; Abbott, R. E.

    2015-12-01

    The effects of climate change in polar regions and their incorporation in global climate models has recently become an area of great interest. Permafrost holds entrapped greenhouse gases, e.g. CO2 and CH4, which are released to the atmosphere upon thawing, creating a positive feedback mechanism. Knowledge of seasonal changes in active layer thickness as well as long term degradation of permafrost is critical to the management of high latitude infrastructures, hazard mitigation, and increasing the accuracy of climate predictions. Methods for effectively imaging the spatial extent, depth, thickness, and discontinuous nature of permafrost over large areas are needed. Furthermore, continuous monitoring of permafrost over annual time scales would provide valuable insight into permafrost degradation. Seismic interferometry using ambient seismic noise has proven effective for recording velocity changes within the subsurface for a variety of applications, but has yet to be applied to permafrost studies. To this end, we deployed 7 Nanometrics Trillium posthole broadband seismometers within Poker Flat Research Range, located 30 miles north of Fairbanks, Alaska in a zone of discontinuous permafrost. Approximately 2 years worth of nearly continuous ambient noise data was collected. Using the python package MSNoise, relative changes in velocity were calculated. Results show high amounts of variability throughout the study period. General trends of negative relative velocity shifts can be seen between August and October followed by a positive relative velocity shift between November and February. Differences in relative velocity changes with both frequency and spatial location are also observed, suggesting this technique is sensitive to permafrost variation with depth and extent. Overall, short and long term changes in shallow subsurface velocity can be recovered using this method proposing seismic interferometry is a promising new technique for permafrost monitoring. Sandia

  3. Minor contribution of small thaw ponds to the pools of carbon and methane in the inland waters of the permafrost-affected part of the Western Siberian Lowland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polishchuk, Y. M.; Bogdanov, A. N.; Muratov, I. N.; Polishchuk, V. Y.; Lim, A.; Manasypov, R. M.; Shirokova, L. S.; Pokrovsky, O. S.

    2018-04-01

    Despite the potential importance of small (permafrost-affected WSL territory based on a combination of medium-resolution Landsat-8 images and high-resolution Kanopus-V scenes on 78 test sites across the WSL in a wide range of lake sizes (from 20 to 2 × 108 m2). The results were in fair agreement with other published data for world lakes including those in circum-polar regions. Based on available measurements of CH4, CO2, and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in thermokarst lakes and thaw ponds of the permafrost-affected part of the WSL, we found an inverse relationship between lake size and concentration, with concentrations of GHGs and DOC being highest in small thaw ponds. However, since these small ponds represent only a tiny fraction of the landscape (i.e. ~1.5% of the total lake area), their contribution to the total pool of GHG and DOC in inland lentic water of the permafrost-affected part of the WSL is less than 2%. As such, despite high concentrations of DOC and GHG in small ponds, their role in overall C storage can be negated. Ongoing lake drainage due to climate warming and permafrost thaw in the WSL may lead to a decrease in GHG emission potential from inland waters and DOC release from lakes to rivers.

  4. Modeling interactions of soil hydrological dynamics and soil thermal and permafrost dynamics and their effects on carbon cycling in northern high latitudes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhuang, Q.; Tang, J.

    2008-12-01

    Large areas of northern high latitude ecosystems are underlain with permafrost. The warming temperature and fires deteriorate the stability of those permafrost, altering hydrological cycle, and consequently soil temperature and active layer depth. These changes will determine the fate of large carbon pools in soils and permafrost over the region. We developed a modeling framework of hydrology, permafrost, and biogeochemical dynamics based on our existing modules of these components. The framework was incorporated with a new snow dynamics module and the effects of soil moisture on soil thermal properties. The framework was tested for tundra and boreal forest ecosystems at field sites with respect to soil thermal and hydrological regimes in Alaska and was then applied to the whole Alaskan ecosystems for the period of 1923-2000 at a daily time step. Our two sets of simulations with and without considering soil moisture effects indicated that the soil temperature profile and active layer depth between two simulations are significant different. The differences of soil thermal regime would expect to result in different carbon dynamics. Next, we will verify the framework with the observed data of soil moisture and soil temperature at poor-drain, moderate-drain, and well-drain boreal forest sites in Alaska. With the verified framework, we will evaluate the effects of interactions of soil thermal and hydrological dynamics on carbon dynamics for the whole northern high latitudes.

  5. Global warming hiatus contributed to the increased occurrence of intense tropical cyclones in the coastal regions along East Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Jiuwei; Zhan, Ruifen; Wang, Yuqing

    2018-04-16

    The recent global warming hiatus (GWH) was characterized by a La Niña-like cooling in the tropical Eastern Pacific accompanied with the Indian Ocean and the tropical Atlantic Ocean warming. Here we show that the recent GWH contributed significantly to the increased occurrence of intense tropical cyclones in the coastal regions along East Asia since 1998. The GWH associated sea surface temperature anomalies triggered a pair of anomalous cyclonic and anticyclonic circulations and equatorial easterly anomalies over the Northwest Pacific, which favored TC genesis and intensification over the western Northwest Pacific but suppressed TC genesis and intensification over the southeastern Northwest Pacific due to increased vertical wind shear and anticyclonic circulation anomalies. Results from atmospheric general circulation model experiments demonstrate that the Pacific La Niña-like cooling dominated the Indian Ocean and the tropical Atlantic Ocean warming in contributing to the observed GWH-related anomalous atmospheric circulation over the Northwest Pacific.

  6. Transient thermal effects in Alpine permafrost

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Noetzli

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available In high mountain areas, permafrost is important because it influences the occurrence of natural hazards, because it has to be considered in construction practices, and because it is sensitive to climate change. The assessment of its distribution and evolution is challenging because of highly variable conditions at and below the surface, steep topography and varying climatic conditions. This paper presents a systematic investigation of effects of topography and climate variability that are important for subsurface temperatures in Alpine bedrock permafrost. We studied the effects of both, past and projected future ground surface temperature variations on the basis of numerical experimentation with simplified mountain topography in order to demonstrate the principal effects. The modeling approach applied combines a distributed surface energy balance model and a three-dimensional subsurface heat conduction scheme. Results show that the past climate variations that essentially influence present-day permafrost temperatures at depth of the idealized mountains are the last glacial period and the major fluctuations in the past millennium. Transient effects from projected future warming, however, are likely larger than those from past climate conditions because larger temperature changes at the surface occur in shorter time periods. We further demonstrate the accelerating influence of multi-lateral warming in steep and complex topography for a temperature signal entering the subsurface as compared to the situation in flat areas. The effects of varying and uncertain material properties (i.e., thermal properties, porosity, and freezing characteristics on the subsurface temperature field were examined in sensitivity studies. A considerable influence of latent heat due to water in low-porosity bedrock was only shown for simulations over time periods of decades to centuries. At the end, the model was applied to the topographic setting of the Matterhorn

  7. Multi-century cool- and warm-season rainfall reconstructions for Australia's major climatic regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freund, Mandy; Henley, Benjamin J.; Karoly, David J.; Allen, Kathryn J.; Baker, Patrick J.

    2017-11-01

    Australian seasonal rainfall is strongly affected by large-scale ocean-atmosphere climate influences. In this study, we exploit the links between these precipitation influences, regional rainfall variations, and palaeoclimate proxies in the region to reconstruct Australian regional rainfall between four and eight centuries into the past. We use an extensive network of palaeoclimate records from the Southern Hemisphere to reconstruct cool (April-September) and warm (October-March) season rainfall in eight natural resource management (NRM) regions spanning the Australian continent. Our bi-seasonal rainfall reconstruction aligns well with independent early documentary sources and existing reconstructions. Critically, this reconstruction allows us, for the first time, to place recent observations at a bi-seasonal temporal resolution into a pre-instrumental context, across the entire continent of Australia. We find that recent 30- and 50-year trends towards wetter conditions in tropical northern Australia are highly unusual in the multi-century context of our reconstruction. Recent cool-season drying trends in parts of southern Australia are very unusual, although not unprecedented, across the multi-century context. We also use our reconstruction to investigate the spatial and temporal extent of historical drought events. Our reconstruction reveals that the spatial extent and duration of the Millennium Drought (1997-2009) appears either very much below average or unprecedented in southern Australia over at least the last 400 years. Our reconstruction identifies a number of severe droughts over the past several centuries that vary widely in their spatial footprint, highlighting the high degree of diversity in historical droughts across the Australian continent. We document distinct characteristics of major droughts in terms of their spatial extent, duration, intensity, and seasonality. Compared to the three largest droughts in the instrumental period (Federation Drought

  8. Multi-century cool- and warm-season rainfall reconstructions for Australia's major climatic regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Freund

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Australian seasonal rainfall is strongly affected by large-scale ocean–atmosphere climate influences. In this study, we exploit the links between these precipitation influences, regional rainfall variations, and palaeoclimate proxies in the region to reconstruct Australian regional rainfall between four and eight centuries into the past. We use an extensive network of palaeoclimate records from the Southern Hemisphere to reconstruct cool (April–September and warm (October–March season rainfall in eight natural resource management (NRM regions spanning the Australian continent. Our bi-seasonal rainfall reconstruction aligns well with independent early documentary sources and existing reconstructions. Critically, this reconstruction allows us, for the first time, to place recent observations at a bi-seasonal temporal resolution into a pre-instrumental context, across the entire continent of Australia. We find that recent 30- and 50-year trends towards wetter conditions in tropical northern Australia are highly unusual in the multi-century context of our reconstruction. Recent cool-season drying trends in parts of southern Australia are very unusual, although not unprecedented, across the multi-century context. We also use our reconstruction to investigate the spatial and temporal extent of historical drought events. Our reconstruction reveals that the spatial extent and duration of the Millennium Drought (1997–2009 appears either very much below average or unprecedented in southern Australia over at least the last 400 years. Our reconstruction identifies a number of severe droughts over the past several centuries that vary widely in their spatial footprint, highlighting the high degree of diversity in historical droughts across the Australian continent. We document distinct characteristics of major droughts in terms of their spatial extent, duration, intensity, and seasonality. Compared to the three largest droughts in the instrumental

  9. The Role of Arctic Soils in the Permafrost – Climate Feedback

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Richter, A.

    2016-01-01

    The total organic carbon pool in arctic and boreal permafrost soils has been estimated to be about 1,760 Petagram (10"1"5 g) C, more than twice today’s atmospheric C pool and about half of the global soil carbon. A significant proportion of this C pool may be vulnerable to climate warming through permafrost thawing and subsequent decomposition by microorganisms. Thus, it has been suggested that permafrost soils may become a future source of CO_2 and CH_4 to the atmosphere and lead to a strong positive feedback to global warming (up to + 0.5 °C until 2200). I will present results from several projects that aimed at understanding the mechanisms behind the permafrost-climate feedback, by identifying the major soil organic matter (SOM) stabilization mechanisms of permafrost SOM. I will address a range of different mechanisms by which SOM can be protected from decomposition, such as unfavourable temperature and moisture regimes, physical protection by formation of organo-mineral associations and chemical recalcitrance of SOM. I will focus, however, on energy and nutrient constraints of heterotrophic microbial communities and their role in SOM decomposition. I will then show that the physiology of the tiniest organisms on Earth will ultimately determine the vulnerability of the global permafrost carbon pool and thus the global permafrost-climate feedback. (author)

  10. Frozen-Ground Cartoons: An international collaboration between artists and permafrost scientists

    OpenAIRE

    Fritz, Michael; Bouchard, Fréderic; Deshpande, Bethany; Malenfant-Lepage, Julie; Nieuwendam, Alexandre; Paquette, Michel; Rudy, Ashley; Siewert, Matthias; Veillete, Audrey; Weege, Stefanie; Harbor, Jonathan M.; Habeck, J. O.; Sjöberg, Ylva

    2018-01-01

    Communicating science about a phenomenon found under ground and defined by its thermal properties in an easy, funny, and engaging way, can be a challenge. Two years ago, a group of young researchers from Canada and Europe united to tackle this problem by combining arts and science to produce a series of outreach comic strips about permafrost (frozen ground). Because this concerns us all. As the climate warms, permafrost thaws and becomes unstable for houses, roads and airports. The thawi...

  11. Response of climate to regional emissions of ozone precursors: sensitivities and warming potentials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Berntsen, T.K.; Fuglestvedt, J.S.; Joshi, M.M.; Shine, K.P.; Hauglustaine, D.A.; Li, L.

    2005-01-01

    The response of climate to ozone perturbations caused by regional emissions of NO x or CO has been studied through a sequence of model simulations. Changes C and OH concentrations due to emission perturbations in Europe and southeast Asia have been calculated with two global 3-D chemical tracer models(CTMs; LMDzINCA and Oslo-CTM2). The radiative transfer codes of three general circulation models (GCMs; ECHAM4, UREAD and LMD) have been used to calculate the radiative forcing of the O 3 perturbations, and for a subset of the cases full GCM simulations have been performed with ECHAM4 and UREAD. The results have been aggregated to a global number in two ways: first, through integrating the global-mean radiative forcing of a sustained step change in emissions, and second through a modified concept (SGWP*) which includes possible differences in the climate sensitivity of O 3 , CH 4 and CO 2 changes. In terms of change in global tropospheric O 3 burden the two CTMs differ by less than 30%. Both CTMs show a higher north/south gradient in the sensitivity to changes in NO x emission than for CO. We are not able to conclude whether real O 3 perturbations in general have a different climate sensitivity from CO 2 . However, in both GCMs high-latitude emission perturbations lead to climate perturbations with higher (10-30%) climate sensitivities. The calculated SGWP*, for a 100 yr time horizon, are negative for three of the four CTM/GCM combinations for European emissions (-9.6 to +6.9), while for the Asian emissions the SGWP* (H=100) is always positive (+2.9 to +25) indicating a warming. For CO the SGWP* values (3.8 and 4.4 for European and Asian emissions respectively, with only the Oslo-CTM2/ECHAM4 model combination) are less regionally dependent. Our results support the view that for NO x , regionally different weighting factors for the emissions are necessary. For CO the results are more robust and one global number may be acceptable

  12. Groundwater controls on post-fire permafrost thaw: Water and energy balance effects

    OpenAIRE

    Rocha, Adrian; Mckenzie, Jeffrey; Lamontagne-Halle, Pierrick; Zipper, Samuel

    2018-01-01

    Fire frequency and severity is increasing in high latitude regions, with large impacts on the water and energy balances. However, the degree to which groundwater flow impacts the permafrost response to fire remains poorly understood and understudied. Here, we use the Anaktuvuk River Fire (Alaska, USA) as an archetypal example to investigate groundwater-permafrost interactions following fire. We identify key thermal and hydrologic parameters controlling permafrost and active layer response to ...

  13. Methane production as key to the greenhouse gas budget of thawing permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knoblauch, Christian; Beer, Christian; Liebner, Susanne; Grigoriev, Mikhail N.; Pfeiffer, Eva-Maria

    2018-04-01

    Permafrost thaw liberates frozen organic carbon, which is decomposed into carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4). The release of these greenhouse gases (GHGs) forms a positive feedback to atmospheric CO2 and CH4 concentrations and accelerates climate change1,2. Current studies report a minor importance of CH4 production in water-saturated (anoxic) permafrost soils3-6 and a stronger permafrost carbon-climate feedback from drained (oxic) soils1,7. Here we show through seven-year laboratory incubations that equal amounts of CO2 and CH4 are formed in thawing permafrost under anoxic conditions after stable CH4-producing microbial communities have established. Less permafrost carbon was mineralized under anoxic conditions but more CO2-carbon equivalents (CO2-Ce) were formed than under oxic conditions when the higher global warming potential (GWP) of CH4 is taken into account8. A model of organic carbon decomposition, calibrated with the observed decomposition data, predicts a higher loss of permafrost carbon under oxic conditions (113 ± 58 g CO2-C kgC-1 (kgC, kilograms of carbon)) by 2100, but a twice as high production of CO2-Ce (241 ± 138 g CO2-Ce kgC-1) under anoxic conditions. These findings challenge the view of a stronger permafrost carbon-climate feedback from drained soils1,7 and emphasize the importance of CH4 production in thawing permafrost on climate-relevant timescales.

  14. Analyzing Regional Climate Change in Africa in a 1.5, 2, and 3°C Global Warming World

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, T.; Haensler, A.; Rechid, D.; Pfeifer, S.; Eggert, B.; Jacob, D.

    2018-04-01

    At the 21st session of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP21) in Paris, an agreement to strengthen the effort to limit the global temperature increase well below 2°C was decided. However, even if global warming is limited, some regions might still be substantially affected by climate change, especially for continents like Africa where the socio-economic conditions are strongly linked to the climatic conditions. In the paper we will discuss the analysis of indices assigned to the sectors health, agriculture, and infrastructure in a 1.5, 2, and 3°C global warming world for the African continent. For this analysis an ensemble of 10 different general circulation model-regional climate model simulations conducted in the framework of the COordinated Downscaling EXperiment for Africa was investigated. The results show that the African continent, in particular the regions between 15°S and 15°N, has to expect an increase in hot nights and longer and more frequent heat waves even if the global temperature will be kept below 2°C. These effects intensify if the global mean temperature will exceed the 2°C threshold. Moreover, the daily rainfall intensity is expected to increase toward higher global warming scenarios and will affect especially the African Sub-Saharan coastal regions.

  15. Impacts of Anthropogenic Aerosols on Regional Climate: Extreme Events, Stagnation, and the United States Warming Hole

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mascioli, Nora R.

    temperature response pattern in AER and GHG is characterized by strong responses over the western U.S. and weak or opposite signed responses over the southeast U.S., raising the question of whether the observed U.S. "warming hole" could have a forced component. To address this question, I systematically examine observed seasonal temperature trends over all time periods of at least 10 years during 1901-2015. In the northeast and southern U.S., significant summertime cooling occurs from the early 1950s to the mid 1970s, which I partially attribute to increasing anthropogenic aerosol emissions (median fraction of the observed temperature trends explained is 0.69 and 0.17, respectively). In winter, the northeast and southern U.S. cool significantly from the early 1950s to the early 1990s, which I attribute to long-term phase changes in the North Atlantic Oscillation and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation. Rather than being a single phenomenon stemming from a single cause, both the warming hole and its dominant drivers vary by season, region, and time period. Finally, I examine historical and projected future changes in atmospheric stagnation. Stagnation, which is characterized by weak winds and an absence of precipitation, is a meteorological contributor to heat waves, extreme pollution, and drought. Using CM3, I show that regional stagnation trends over the historical period (1860-2005) are driven by changes in anthropogenic aerosol emissions, rather than rising greenhouse gases. In the northeastern and central United States, aerosol-induced changes in surface and upper level winds produce significant decreases in the number of stagnant summer days, while decreasing precipitation in the southeast US increases the number of stagnant summer days. Outside of the U.S., significant drying over eastern China in response to rising aerosol emissions contributed to increased stagnation during 1860-2005. Additionally, this region was found to be particularly sensitive to changes in local

  16. Terrestrial Permafrost Models of Martian Habitats and Inhabitants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilichinsky, D.

    2011-12-01

    The terrestrial permafrost is the only rich depository of viable ancient microorganisms on Earth, and can be used as a bridge to possible Martian life forms and shallow subsurface habitats where the probability of finding life is highest. Since there is a place for water, the requisite condition for life, the analogous models are more or less realistic. If life ever existed on Mars, traces might have been preserved and could be found at depth within permafrost. The age of the terrestrial isolates corresponds to the longevity of the frozen state of the embedding strata, with the oldest known dating back to the late Pliocene in Arctic and late Miocene in Antarctica. Permafrost on Earth and Mars vary in age, from a few million years on Earth to a few billion years on Mars. Such a difference in time scale would have a significant impact on the possibility of preserving life on Mars, which is why the longevity of life forms preserved within terrestrial permafrost can only be an approximate model for Mars. 1. A number of studies indicate that the Antarctic cryosphere began to develop on the Eocene-Oligocene boundary, after the isolation of the continent. Permafrost degradation is only possible if mean annual ground temperature, -28°C now, rise above freezing, i.e., a significant warming to above 25°C is required. There is no evidence of such sharp temperature increase, which indicates that the climate and geological history was favorable to persistence of pre-Pliocene permafrost. These oldest relics (~30Myr) are possibly to be found at high hypsometric levels of ice-free areas (Dry Valleys and nearby mountains). It is desirable to test the layers for the presence of viable cells. The limiting age, if one exists, within this ancient permafrost, where the viable organisms were no longer present, could be established as the limit for life preservation below 0oC. Positive results will extend the known temporal limits of life in permafrost. 2. Even in this case, the age of

  17. Rapid climate variability during warm and cold periods in polar regions and Europe

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Masson-Delmotte, V.; Landais, A.; Combourieu-Nebout, N.

    2005-01-01

    Typical rapid climate events punctuating the last glacial period in Greenland, Europe and Antarctica are compared to two rapid events occurring under warmer conditions: (i) Dansgaard-Oeschger event 25, the first abrupt warming occurring during last glacial inception; (ii) 8.2 ka BP event, the only...... rapid cooling recorded during the Holocene in Greenland ice cores and in Ammersee, Germany. The rate of warming during previous warmer interglacial periods is estimated from polar ice cores to 1.5 °C per millennium, without abrupt changes. Climate change expected for the 21st century should however...

  18. Formation of Cool and Warm Jets by Magnetic Flux Emerging from the Solar Chromosphere to Transition Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Liping; Peter, Hardi; He, Jiansen; Tu, Chuanyi; Wang, Linghua; Zhang, Lei; Yan, Limei

    2018-01-01

    In the solar atmosphere, jets are ubiquitous at various spatial-temporal scales. They are important for understanding the energy and mass transports in the solar atmosphere. According to recent observational studies, the high-speed network jets are likely to be intermittent but continual sources of mass and energy for the solar wind. Here, we conduct a 2D magnetohydrodynamics simulation to investigate the mechanism of these network jets. A combination of magnetic flux emergence and horizontal advection is used to drive the magnetic reconnection in the transition region between a strong magnetic loop and a background open flux. The simulation results show that not only a fast warm jet, much similar to the network jets, is found, but also an adjacent slow cool jet, mostly like classical spicules, is launched. Differing from the fast warm jet driven by magnetic reconnection, the slow cool jet is mainly accelerated by gradients of both thermal pressure and magnetic pressure near the outer border of the mass-concentrated region compressed by the emerging loop. These results provide a different perspective on our understanding of the formation of both the slow cool jets from the solar chromosphere and the fast warm jets from the solar transition region.

  19. Large differences in regional precipitation change between a first and second 2 K of global warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Good, Peter; Booth, Ben B. B.; Chadwick, Robin; Hawkins, Ed; Jonko, Alexandra; Lowe, Jason A.

    2016-01-01

    For adaptation and mitigation planning, stakeholders need reliable information about regional precipitation changes under different emissions scenarios and for different time periods. A significant amount of current planning effort assumes that each K of global warming produces roughly the same regional climate change. Here using 25 climate models, we compare precipitation responses with three 2 K intervals of global ensemble mean warming: a fast and a slower route to a first 2 K above pre-industrial levels, and the end-of-century difference between high-emission and mitigation scenarios. We show that, although the two routes to a first 2 K give very similar precipitation changes, a second 2 K produces quite a different response. In particular, the balance of physical mechanisms responsible for climate model uncertainty is different for a first and a second 2 K of warming. The results are consistent with a significant influence from nonlinear physical mechanisms, but aerosol and land-use effects may be important regionally. PMID:27922014

  20. NORPERM, the Norwegian Permafrost Database - a TSP NORWAY IPY legacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juliussen, H.; Christiansen, H. H.; Strand, G. S.; Iversen, S.; Midttømme, K.; Rønning, J. S.

    2010-10-01

    NORPERM, the Norwegian Permafrost Database, was developed at the Geological Survey of Norway during the International Polar Year (IPY) 2007-2009 as the main data legacy of the IPY research project Permafrost Observatory Project: A Contribution to the Thermal State of Permafrost in Norway and Svalbard (TSP NORWAY). Its structural and technical design is described in this paper along with the ground temperature data infrastructure in Norway and Svalbard, focussing on the TSP NORWAY permafrost observatory installations in the North Scandinavian Permafrost Observatory and Nordenskiöld Land Permafrost Observatory, being the primary data providers of NORPERM. Further developments of the database, possibly towards a regional database for the Nordic area, are also discussed. The purpose of NORPERM is to store ground temperature data safely and in a standard format for use in future research. The IPY data policy of open, free, full and timely release of IPY data is followed, and the borehole metadata description follows the Global Terrestrial Network for Permafrost (GTN-P) standard. NORPERM is purely a temperature database, and the data is stored in a relation database management system and made publically available online through a map-based graphical user interface. The datasets include temperature time series from various depths in boreholes and from the air, snow cover, ground-surface or upper ground layer recorded by miniature temperature data-loggers, and temperature profiles with depth in boreholes obtained by occasional manual logging. All the temperature data from the TSP NORWAY research project is included in the database, totalling 32 temperature time series from boreholes, 98 time series of micrometeorological temperature conditions, and 6 temperature depth profiles obtained by manual logging in boreholes. The database content will gradually increase as data from previous and future projects are added. Links to near real-time permafrost temperatures, obtained

  1. Regional patterns of increasing Swiss needle cast impacts on Douglas-fir growth with warming temperatures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, E Henry; Beedlow, Peter A; Waschmann, Ronald S; Tingey, David T; Cline, Steven; Bollman, Michael; Wickham, Charlotte; Carlile, Cailie

    2017-12-01

    The fungal pathogen, Phaeocryptopus gaeumannii , causing Swiss needle cast (SNC) occurs wherever Douglas-fir is found but disease damage is believed to be limited in the U.S. Pacific Northwest (PNW) to the Coast Range of Oregon and Washington (Hansen et al., Plant Disease , 2000, 84 , 773; Rosso & Hansen, Phytopathology , 2003, 93 , 790; Shaw, et al., Journal of Forestry , 2011, 109 , 109). However, knowledge remains limited on the history and spatial distribution of SNC impacts in the PNW. We reconstructed the history of SNC impacts on mature Douglas-fir trees based on tree-ring width chronologies from western Oregon. Our findings show that SNC impacts on growth occur wherever Douglas-fir is found and is not limited to the coastal fog zone. The spatiotemporal patterns of growth impact from SNC disease were synchronous across the region, displayed periodicities of 12-40 years, and strongly correlated with winter and summer temperatures and summer precipitation. The primary climatic factor limiting pathogen dynamics varied spatially by location, topography, and elevation. SNC impacts were least severe in the first half of the 20th century when climatic conditions during the warm phase of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (1924-1945) were less conducive to pathogen development. At low- to mid-elevations, SNC impacts were most severe in 1984-1986 following several decades of warmer winters and cooler, wetter summers including a high summer precipitation anomaly in 1983. At high elevations on the west slope of the Cascade Range, SNC impacts peaked several years later and were the greatest in the 1990s, a period of warmer winter temperatures. Climate change is predicted to result in warmer winters and will likely continue to increase SNC severity at higher elevations, north along the coast from northern Oregon to British Columbia, and inland where low winter temperatures currently limit growth of the pathogen. Our findings indicate that SNC may become a significant

  2. Passive warming effect on soil microbial community and humic substance degradation in maritime Antarctic region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Dockyu; Park, Ha Ju; Kim, Jung Ho; Youn, Ui Joung; Yang, Yung Hun; Casanova-Katny, Angélica; Vargas, Cristina Muñoz; Venegas, Erick Zagal; Park, Hyun; Hong, Soon Gyu

    2018-06-01

    Although the maritime Antarctic has undergone rapid warming, the effects on indigenous soil-inhabiting microorganisms are not well known. Passive warming experiments using open-top chamber (OTC) have been performed on the Fildes Peninsula in the maritime Antarctic since 2008. When the soil temperature was measured at a depth of 2-5 cm during the 2013-2015 summer seasons, the mean temperature inside OTC (OTC-In) increased by approximately 0.8 °C compared with outside OTC (OTC-Out), while soil chemical and physical characteristics did not change. Soils (2015 summer) from OTC-In and OTC-Out were subjected to analysis for change in microbial community and degradation rate of humic substances (HS, the largest pool of recalcitrant organic carbon in soil). Archaeal and bacterial communities in OTC-In were minimally affected by warming compared with those in OTC-Out, with archaeal methanogenic Thermoplasmata slightly increased in abundance. The abundance of heterotrophic fungi Ascomycota was significantly altered in OTC-In. Total bacterial and fungal biomass in OTC-In increased by 20% compared to OTC-Out, indicating that this may be due to increased microbial degradation activity for soil organic matter (SOM) including HS, which would result in the release of more low-molecular-weight growth substrates from SOM. Despite the effects of warming on the microbial community over the 8-years-experiments warming did not induce any detectable change in content or structure of polymeric HS. These results suggest that increased temperature may have significant and direct effects on soil microbial communities inhabiting maritime Antarctic and that soil microbes would subsequently provide more available carbon sources for other indigenous microbes. © 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  3. Improving Permafrost Hydrology Prediction Through Data-Model Integration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, C. J.; Andresen, C. G.; Atchley, A. L.; Bolton, W. R.; Busey, R.; Coon, E.; Charsley-Groffman, L.

    2017-12-01

    The CMIP5 Earth System Models were unable to adequately predict the fate of the 16GT of permafrost carbon in a warming climate due to poor representation of Arctic ecosystem processes. The DOE Office of Science Next Generation Ecosystem Experiment, NGEE-Arctic project aims to reduce uncertainty in the Arctic carbon cycle and its impact on the Earth's climate system by improved representation of the coupled physical, chemical and biological processes that drive how much buried carbon will be converted to CO2 and CH4, how fast this will happen, which form will dominate, and the degree to which increased plant productivity will offset increased soil carbon emissions. These processes fundamentally depend on permafrost thaw rate and its influence on surface and subsurface hydrology through thermal erosion, land subsidence and changes to groundwater flow pathways as soil, bedrock and alluvial pore ice and massive ground ice melts. LANL and its NGEE colleagues are co-developing data and models to better understand controls on permafrost degradation and improve prediction of the evolution of permafrost and its impact on Arctic hydrology. The LANL Advanced Terrestrial Simulator was built using a state of the art HPC software framework to enable the first fully coupled 3-dimensional surface-subsurface thermal-hydrology and land surface deformation simulations to simulate the evolution of the physical Arctic environment. Here we show how field data including hydrology, snow, vegetation, geochemistry and soil properties, are informing the development and application of the ATS to improve understanding of controls on permafrost stability and permafrost hydrology. The ATS is being used to inform parameterizations of complex coupled physical, ecological and biogeochemical processes for implementation in the DOE ACME land model, to better predict the role of changing Arctic hydrology on the global climate system. LA-UR-17-26566.

  4. Multi-decadal degradation and persistence of permafrost in the Alaska Highway corridor, northwest Canada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    James, Megan; Lewkowicz, Antoni G; Smith, Sharon L; Miceli, Christina M

    2013-01-01

    Changes in permafrost distribution in the southern discontinuous zone were evaluated by repeating a 1964 survey through part of the Alaska Highway corridor (56° N–61° N) in northwest Canada. A total of 55 sites from the original survey in northern British Columbia and southern Yukon were located using archival maps and photographs. Probing for frozen ground, manual excavations, air and ground temperature monitoring, borehole drilling and geophysical techniques were used to gather information on present-day permafrost and climatic conditions. Mean annual air temperatures have increased by 1.5–2.0 ° C since the mid-1970s and significant degradation of permafrost has occurred. Almost half of the permafrost sites along the entire transect which exhibited permafrost in 1964 do so no longer. This change is especially evident in the south where two-thirds of the formerly permafrost sites have thawed and the limit of permafrost appears to have shifted northward. The permafrost that persists is patchy, generally less than 15 m thick, has mean annual surface temperatures >0 ° C, mean ground temperatures between −0.5 and 0 ° C, is in peat or beneath a thick organic mat, and appears to have a thicker active layer than in 1964. Its persistence may relate to the latent heat requirements of thawing permafrost or to the large thermal offset of organic soils. The study demonstrates that degradation of permafrost has occurred in the margins of its distribution in the last few decades, a trend that is expected to continue as the climate warms. (letter)

  5. Implications of a lightning-rich tundra biome for permafrost carbon and vegetation dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Y.; Veraverbeke, S.; Randerson, J. T.

    2017-12-01

    Lightning is a major ignition source of wildfires in circumpolar boreal forests but rarely occurs in arctic tundra. While theoretical and empirical work suggests that climate change will increase lightning strikes in temperate regions, much less is known about future changes in lightning across terrestrial ecosystems at high northern latitudes. Here we analyzed the spatial and temporal patterns of lightning flash rate (FR) from the satellite observations and surface detection networks. Regression models between the observed FR from the Optical Transient Detector on the MicroLab-1 satellite (later renamed OV-1) and meteorological parameters, including surface temperature (T), convective available potential energy (CAPE), and convective precipitation (CP) from ECMWF (European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts) ERA-interim reanalysis, were established and assessed. We found that FR had significant linear correlations with CAPE and CP, and a strong non-linear relationship with T. The statistical model based on T and CP can reproduce most of the spatial and temporal variability in FR in the circumpolar region. By using the regression model and meteorological predictions from 24 earth system models in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5), we estimated the spatial distribution of FR by the end of the 21st century. Due to increases in surface temperature and convection, modeled FR shows substantial increase in northern biomes, including a 338% change in arctic tundra and a 185% change in regions with permafrost soil carbon reservoirs. These changes highlight a new mechanism by which permafrost carbon is vulnerable to the sustained impacts of climate warming. Increased fire in a warmer and lightning-rich future near the treeline has the potential to accelerate the northward migration of trees, which may further enhance warming and the abundance of lightning strikes.

  6. Projected changes over western Canada using convection-permitting regional climate model and the pseudo-global warming method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Y.; Kurkute, S.; Chen, L.

    2017-12-01

    Results from the General Circulation Models (GCMs) suggest more frequent and more severe extreme rain events in a climate warmer than the present. However, current GCMs cannot accurately simulate extreme rainfall events of short duration due to their coarse model resolutions and parameterizations. This limitation makes it difficult to provide the detailed quantitative information for the development of regional adaptation and mitigation strategies. Dynamical downscaling using nested Regional Climate Models (RCMs) are able to capture key regional and local climate processes with an affordable computational cost. Recent studies have demonstrated that the downscaling of GCM results with weather-permitting mesoscale models, such as the pseudo-global warming (PGW) technique, could be a viable and economical approach of obtaining valuable climate change information on regional scales. We have conducted a regional climate 4-km Weather Research and Forecast Model (WRF) simulation with one domain covering the whole western Canada, for a historic run (2000-2015) and a 15-year future run to 2100 and beyond with the PGW forcing. The 4-km resolution allows direct use of microphysics and resolves the convection explicitly, thus providing very convincing spatial detail. With this high-resolution simulation, we are able to study the convective mechanisms, specifically the control of convections over the Prairies, the projected changes of rainfall regimes, and the shift of the convective mechanisms in a warming climate, which has never been examined before numerically at such large scale with such high resolution.

  7. Precipitation in a warming world: Assessing projected hydro-climate changes in California and other Mediterranean climate regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polade, Suraj D; Gershunov, Alexander; Cayan, Daniel R; Dettinger, Michael D; Pierce, David W

    2017-09-07

    In most Mediterranean climate (MedClim) regions around the world, global climate models (GCMs) consistently project drier futures. In California, however, projections of changes in annual precipitation are inconsistent. Analysis of daily precipitation in 30 GCMs reveals patterns in projected hydrometeorology over each of the five MedClm regions globally and helps disentangle their causes. MedClim regions, except California, are expected to dry via decreased frequency of winter precipitation. Frequencies of extreme precipitation, however, are projected to increase over the two MedClim regions of the Northern Hemisphere where projected warming is strongest. The increase in heavy and extreme precipitation is particularly robust over California, where it is only partially offset by projected decreases in low-medium intensity precipitation. Over the Mediterranean Basin, however, losses from decreasing frequency of low-medium-intensity precipitation are projected to dominate gains from intensifying projected extreme precipitation. MedClim regions are projected to become more sub-tropical, i.e. made dryer via pole-ward expanding subtropical subsidence. California's more nuanced hydrological future reflects a precarious balance between the expanding subtropical high from the south and the south-eastward extending Aleutian low from the north-west. These dynamical mechanisms and thermodynamic moistening of the warming atmosphere result in increased horizontal water vapor transport, bolstering extreme precipitation events.

  8. Premonsoon Aerosol Characterization and Radiative Effects Over the Indo-Gangetic Plains: Implications for Regional Climate Warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gautam, Ritesh; Hsu, N. Christina; Lau, K.-M.

    2010-01-01

    The Himalayas have a profound effect on the South Asian climate and the regional hydrological cycle, as it forms a barrier for the strong monsoon winds and serves as an elevated heat source, thus controlling the onset and distribution of precipitation during the Indian summer monsoon. Recent studies have suggested that radiative heating by absorbing aerosols, such as dust and black carbon over the Indo-Gangetic Plains (IGP) and slopes of the Himalayas, may significantly accelerate the seasonal warming of the Hindu Kush-Himalayas-Tibetan Plateau (HKHT) and influence the subsequent evolution of the summer monsoon. This paper presents a detailed characterization of aerosols over the IGP and their radiative effects during the premonsoon season (April-May-June) when dust transport constitutes the bulk of the regional aerosol loading, using ground radiometric and spaceborne observations. During the dust-laden period, there is a strong response of surface shortwave flux to aerosol absorption indicated by the diurnally averaged forcing efficiency of -70 W/sq m per unit optical depth. The simulated aerosol single-scattering albedo, constrained by surface flux and aerosol measurements, is estimated to be 0.89+/- 0.01 (at approx.550 nm) with diurnal mean surface and top-of-atmosphere forcing values ranging from -11 to -79.8 W/sq m and +1.4 to +12 W/sq m, respectively, for the premonsoon period. The model-simulated solar heating rate profile peaks in the lower troposphere with enhanced heating penetrating into the middle troposphere (5-6 km), caused by vertically extended aerosols over the IGP with peak altitude of approx.5 km as indicated by spaceborne Cloud-Aerosol Lidar with Orthogonal Polarization observations. On a long-term climate scale, our analysis, on the basis of microwave satellite measurements of tropospheric temperatures from 1979 to 2007, indicates accelerated annual mean warming rates found over the Himalayan-Hindu Kush region (0.21 C/decade+/-0.08 C

  9. Reviews and syntheses : Effects of permafrost thaw on Arctic aquatic ecosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vonk, J. E.; Tank, S. E.; Bowden, W.B.; Laurion, I.; Vincent, W. F.; Alekseychik, P.; Amyot, M.; Billet, M. F.; Canário, J.; Cory, R. M.; Deshpande, B. N.; Helbig, M.; Jammet, M.; Karlsson, J.; Larouche, J.; Macmillan, G.; Rautio, M.; Walter Anthony, K. M.; Wickland, K.P.

    2015-01-01

    The Arctic is a water-rich region, with freshwater systems covering about 16 % of the northern permafrost landscape. Permafrost thaw creates new freshwater ecosystems, while at the same time modifying the existing lakes, streams, and rivers that are impacted by thaw. Here, we describe the current

  10. Shifts of methanogenic communities in response to permafrost thaw results in rising methane emissions and soil property changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Shiping; Cui, Hongpeng; Zhu, Youhai; Lu, Zhenquan; Pang, Shouji; Zhang, Shuai; Dong, Hailiang; Su, Xin

    2018-05-01

    Permafrost thaw can bring negative consequences in terms of ecosystems, resulting in permafrost collapse, waterlogging, thermokarst lake development, and species composition changes. Little is known about how permafrost thaw influences microbial community shifts and their activities. Here, we show that the dominant archaeal community shifts from Methanomicrobiales to Methanosarcinales in response to the permafrost thaw, and the increase in methane emission is found to be associated with the methanogenic archaea, which rapidly bloom with nearly tenfold increase in total number. The mcrA gene clone libraries analyses indicate that Methanocellales/Rice Cluster I was predominant both in the original permafrost and in the thawed permafrost. However, only species belonging to Methanosarcinales showed higher transcriptional activities in the thawed permafrost, indicating a shift of methanogens from hydrogenotrophic to partly acetoclastic methane-generating metabolic processes. In addition, data also show the soil texture and features change as a result of microbial reproduction and activity induced by this permafrost thaw. Those data indicate that microbial ecology under warming permafrost has potential impacts on ecosystem and methane emissions.

  11. International Field School on Permafrost, Polar Urals, 2012

    Science.gov (United States)

    Streletskiy, D. A.; Grebenets, V.; Ivanov, M.; Sheinkman, V.; Shiklomanov, N. I.; Shmelev, D.

    2012-12-01

    The international field school on permafrost was held in the Polar Urals region from June, 30 to July 9, 2012 right after the Tenth International Conference on Permafrost which was held in Salekhard, Russia. The travel and accommodation support generously provided by government of Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Region allowed participation of 150 permafrost young research scientists, out of which 35 students from seven countries participated in the field school. The field school was organized under umbrella of International Permafrost Association and Permafrost Young Research Network. The students represented diverse educational backgrounds including hydrologists, engineers, geologists, soil scientists, geocryologists, glaciologists and geomorphologists. The base school camp was located near the Harp settlement in the vicinity of Polar Urals foothills. This unique location presented an opportunity to study a diversity of cryogenic processes and permafrost conditions characteristic for mountain and plain regions as well as transition between glacial and periglacial environments. A series of excursions was organized according to the following topics: structural geology of the Polar Urals and West Siberian Plain (Chromite mine "Centralnaya" and Core Storage in Labitnangy city); quaternary geomorphology (investigation of moraine complexes and glacial conditions of Ronamantikov and Topographov glaciers); principles of construction and maintains of structures built on permafrost (Labitnangy city and Obskaya-Bovanenkovo Railroad); methods of temperature and active-layer monitoring in tundra and forest-tundra; cryosols and soil formation in diverse landscape condition; periglacial geomorphology; types of ground ice, etc. Every evening students and professors gave a series of presentations on climate, vegetation, hydrology, soil conditions, permafrost and cryogenic processes of the region as well as on history, economic development, endogenous population of the Siberia and the

  12. Consequences of Global Warming of 1.5 °C and 2 °C for Regional Temperature and Precipitation Changes in the Contiguous United States.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ambarish V Karmalkar

    Full Text Available The differential warming of land and ocean leads to many continental regions in the Northern Hemisphere warming at rates higher than the global mean temperature. Adaptation and conservation efforts will, therefore, benefit from understanding regional consequences of limiting the global mean temperature increase to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, a limit agreed upon at the United Nations Climate Summit in Paris in December 2015. Here, we analyze climate model simulations from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5 to determine the timing and magnitude of regional temperature and precipitation changes across the contiguous United States (US for global warming of 1.5 and 2°C and highlight consensus and uncertainties in model projections and their implications for making decisions. The regional warming rates differ considerably across the contiguous US, but all regions are projected to reach 2°C about 10-20 years before the global mean temperature. Although there is uncertainty in the timing of exactly when the 1.5 and 2°C thresholds will be crossed regionally, over 80% of the models project at least 2°C warming by 2050 for all regions for the high emissions scenario. This threshold-based approach also highlights regional variations in the rate of warming across the US. The fastest warming region in the contiguous US is the Northeast, which is projected to warm by 3°C when global warming reaches 2°C. The signal-to-noise ratio calculations indicate that the regional warming estimates remain outside the envelope of uncertainty throughout the twenty-first century, making them potentially useful to planners. The regional precipitation projections for global warming of 1.5°C and 2°C are uncertain, but the eastern US is projected to experience wetter winters and the Great Plains and the Northwest US are projected to experience drier summers in the future. The impact of different scenarios on regional precipitation

  13. Consequences of Global Warming of 1.5 °C and 2 °C for Regional Temperature and Precipitation Changes in the Contiguous United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karmalkar, Ambarish V; Bradley, Raymond S

    2017-01-01

    The differential warming of land and ocean leads to many continental regions in the Northern Hemisphere warming at rates higher than the global mean temperature. Adaptation and conservation efforts will, therefore, benefit from understanding regional consequences of limiting the global mean temperature increase to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, a limit agreed upon at the United Nations Climate Summit in Paris in December 2015. Here, we analyze climate model simulations from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) to determine the timing and magnitude of regional temperature and precipitation changes across the contiguous United States (US) for global warming of 1.5 and 2°C and highlight consensus and uncertainties in model projections and their implications for making decisions. The regional warming rates differ considerably across the contiguous US, but all regions are projected to reach 2°C about 10-20 years before the global mean temperature. Although there is uncertainty in the timing of exactly when the 1.5 and 2°C thresholds will be crossed regionally, over 80% of the models project at least 2°C warming by 2050 for all regions for the high emissions scenario. This threshold-based approach also highlights regional variations in the rate of warming across the US. The fastest warming region in the contiguous US is the Northeast, which is projected to warm by 3°C when global warming reaches 2°C. The signal-to-noise ratio calculations indicate that the regional warming estimates remain outside the envelope of uncertainty throughout the twenty-first century, making them potentially useful to planners. The regional precipitation projections for global warming of 1.5°C and 2°C are uncertain, but the eastern US is projected to experience wetter winters and the Great Plains and the Northwest US are projected to experience drier summers in the future. The impact of different scenarios on regional precipitation projections is

  14. Rock glaciers in crystalline catchments: Hidden permafrost-related threats to alpine headwater lakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ilyashuk, Boris P; Ilyashuk, Elena A; Psenner, Roland; Tessadri, Richard; Koinig, Karin A

    2018-04-01

    A global warming-induced transition from glacial to periglacial processes has been identified in mountainous regions around the world. Degrading permafrost in pristine periglacial environments can produce acid rock drainage (ARD) and cause severe ecological damage in areas underlain by sulfide-bearing bedrock. Limnological and paleolimnological approaches were used to assess and compare ARDs generated by rock glaciers, a typical landform of the mountain permafrost domain, and their effects on alpine headwater lakes with similar morphometric features and underlying bedrock geology, but characterized by different intensities of frost action in their catchments during the year. We argue that ARD and its effects on lakes are more severe in the alpine periglacial belt with mean annual air temperatures (MAAT) between -2°C and +3°C, where groundwater persists in the liquid phase for most of the year, in contrast to ARD in the periglacial belt where frost action dominates (MAAT cycle of aquatic organisms should be considered when reconstructing long-term trends in the ecotoxicological state of lakes. © 2017 The Authors. Global Change Biology Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Impact of physical permafrost processes on hydrological change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagemann, Stefan; Blome, Tanja; Beer, Christian; Ekici, Altug

    2015-04-01

    Permafrost or perennially frozen ground is an important part of the terrestrial cryosphere; roughly one quarter of Earth's land surface is underlain by permafrost. As it is a thermal phenomenon, its characteristics are highly dependent on climatic factors. The impact of the currently observed warming, which is projected to persist during the coming decades due to anthropogenic CO2 input, certainly has effects for the vast permafrost areas of the high northern latitudes. The quantification of these effects, however, is scientifically still an open question. This is partly due to the complexity of the system, where several feedbacks are interacting between land and atmosphere, sometimes counterbalancing each other. Moreover, until recently, many global circulation models (GCMs) and Earth system models (ESMs) lacked the sufficient representation of permafrost physics in their land surface schemes. Within the European Union FP7 project PAGE21, the land surface scheme JSBACH of the Max-Planck-Institute for Meteorology ESM (MPI-ESM) has been equipped with the representation of relevant physical processes for permafrost studies. These processes include the effects of freezing and thawing of soil water for both energy and water cycles, thermal properties depending on soil water and ice contents, and soil moisture movement being influenced by the presence of soil ice. In the present study, it will be analysed how these permafrost relevant processes impact projected hydrological changes over northern hemisphere high latitude land areas. For this analysis, the atmosphere-land part of MPI-ESM, ECHAM6-JSBACH, is driven by prescribed SST and sea ice in an AMIP2-type setup with and without the newly implemented permafrost processes. Observed SST and sea ice for 1979-1999 are used to consider induced changes in the simulated hydrological cycle. In addition, simulated SST and sea ice are taken from a MPI-ESM simulation conducted for CMIP5 following the RCP8.5 scenario. The

  16. Dissolved organic carbon and major and trace elements in peat porewater of sporadic, discontinuous, and continuous permafrost zones of western Siberia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raudina, Tatiana V.; Loiko, Sergey V.; Lim, Artyom G.; Krickov, Ivan V.; Shirokova, Liudmila S.; Istigechev, Georgy I.; Kuzmina, Daria M.; Kulizhsky, Sergey P.; Vorobyev, Sergey N.; Pokrovsky, Oleg S.

    2017-07-01

    Mobilization of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and related trace elements (TEs) from the frozen peat to surface waters in the permafrost zone is expected to enhance under ongoing permafrost thaw and active layer thickness (ALT) deepening in high-latitude regions. The interstitial soil solutions are efficient tracers of ongoing bio-geochemical processes in the critical zone and can help to decipher the intensity of carbon and metals migration from the soil to the rivers and further to the ocean. To this end, we collected, across a 640 km latitudinal transect of the sporadic to continuous permafrost zone of western Siberia peatlands, soil porewaters from 30 cm depth using suction cups and we analyzed DOC, dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), and 40 major elements and TEs in 0.45 µm filtered fraction of 80 soil porewaters. Despite an expected decrease in the intensity of DOC and TE mobilization from the soil and vegetation litter to the interstitial fluids with the increase in the permafrost coverage and a decrease in the annual temperature and ALT, the DOC and many major and trace elements did not exhibit any distinct decrease in concentration along the latitudinal transect from 62.2 to 67.4° N. The DOC demonstrated a maximum of concentration at 66° N, on the border of the discontinuous/continuous permafrost zone, whereas the DOC concentration in peat soil solutions from the continuous permafrost zone was equal to or higher than that in the sporadic/discontinuous permafrost zone. Moreover, a number of major (Ca, Mg) and trace (Al, Ti, Sr, Ga, rare earth elements (REEs), Zr, Hf, Th) elements exhibited an increasing, not decreasing, northward concentration trend. We hypothesize that the effects of temperature and thickness of the ALT are of secondary importance relative to the leaching capacity of peat, which is in turn controlled by the water saturation of the peat core. The water residence time in peat pores also plays a role in enriching the fluids in some elements

  17. Dissolved organic carbon and major and trace elements in peat porewater of sporadic, discontinuous, and continuous permafrost zones of western Siberia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. V. Raudina

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Mobilization of dissolved organic carbon (DOC and related trace elements (TEs from the frozen peat to surface waters in the permafrost zone is expected to enhance under ongoing permafrost thaw and active layer thickness (ALT deepening in high-latitude regions. The interstitial soil solutions are efficient tracers of ongoing bio-geochemical processes in the critical zone and can help to decipher the intensity of carbon and metals migration from the soil to the rivers and further to the ocean. To this end, we collected, across a 640 km latitudinal transect of the sporadic to continuous permafrost zone of western Siberia peatlands, soil porewaters from 30 cm depth using suction cups and we analyzed DOC, dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC, and 40 major elements and TEs in 0.45 µm filtered fraction of 80 soil porewaters. Despite an expected decrease in the intensity of DOC and TE mobilization from the soil and vegetation litter to the interstitial fluids with the increase in the permafrost coverage and a decrease in the annual temperature and ALT, the DOC and many major and trace elements did not exhibit any distinct decrease in concentration along the latitudinal transect from 62.2 to 67.4° N. The DOC demonstrated a maximum of concentration at 66° N, on the border of the discontinuous/continuous permafrost zone, whereas the DOC concentration in peat soil solutions from the continuous permafrost zone was equal to or higher than that in the sporadic/discontinuous permafrost zone. Moreover, a number of major (Ca, Mg and trace (Al, Ti, Sr, Ga, rare earth elements (REEs, Zr, Hf, Th elements exhibited an increasing, not decreasing, northward concentration trend. We hypothesize that the effects of temperature and thickness of the ALT are of secondary importance relative to the leaching capacity of peat, which is in turn controlled by the water saturation of the peat core. The water residence time in peat pores also plays a role in enriching the

  18. Numerical investigations of the fluid flows at deep oceanic and arctic permafrost-associated gas hydrate deposits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frederick, Jennifer Mary

    older than the host sediment. Old pore fluid age may reflect complex flow patterns, such a fluid focusing, which can cause significant lateral migration as well as regions where downward flow reverses direction and returns toward the seafloor. Longer pathlines can produce pore fluid ages much older than that expected with a one-dimensional compaction model. For steady-state models with geometry representative of Blake Ridge (USA), a well-studied hydrate province, pore fluid ages beneath regions of topography and within fractured zones can be up to 70 Ma old. Results suggest that the measurements of 129-I/127-I reflect a mixture of new and old pore fluid. However, old pore fluid need not originate at great depths. Methane within pore fluids can travel laterally several kilometers, implying an extensive source region around the deposit. Iodine age measurements support the existence of fluid focusing beneath regions of seafloor topography at Blake Ridge, and suggest that the methane source at Blake Ridge is likely shallow. The response of methane hydrate reservoirs to warming is poorly understood. The great depths may protect deep oceanic hydrates from climate change for the time being because transfer of heat by conduction is slow, but warming will eventually be felt albeit in the far future. On the other hand, unique permafrost-associated methane hydrate deposits exist at shallow depths within the sediments of the circum-Arctic continental shelves. Arctic hydrates are thought to be a relict of cold glacial periods, aggrading when sea levels are much lower and shelf sediments are exposed to freezing air temperatures. During interglacial periods, rising sea levels flood the shelf, bringing dramatic warming to the permafrost- and hydrate-bearing sediments. Permafrost-associated methane hydrate deposits have been responding to warming since the last glacial maximum ~18 kaBP as a consequence of these natural glacial cycles. This `experiment,' set into motion by nature itself

  19. Effect of climate warming on the annual terrestrial net ecosystem CO2 exchange globally in the boreal and temperate regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zhiyuan; Zhang, Renduo; Cescatti, Alessandro; Wohlfahrt, Georg; Buchmann, Nina; Zhu, Juan; Chen, Guanhong; Moyano, Fernando; Pumpanen, Jukka; Hirano, Takashi; Takagi, Kentaro; Merbold, Lutz

    2017-06-08

    The net ecosystem CO 2 exchange is the result of the imbalance between the assimilation process (gross primary production, GPP) and ecosystem respiration (RE). The aim of this study was to investigate temperature sensitivities of these processes and the effect of climate warming on the annual terrestrial net ecosystem CO 2 exchange globally in the boreal and temperate regions. A database of 403 site-years of ecosystem flux data at 101 sites in the world was collected and analyzed. Temperature sensitivities of rates of RE and GPP were quantified with Q 10 , defined as the increase of RE (or GPP) rates with a temperature rise of 10 °C. Results showed that on the annual time scale, the intrinsic temperature sensitivity of GPP (Q 10sG ) was higher than or equivalent to the intrinsic temperature sensitivity of RE (Q 10sR ). Q 10sG was negatively correlated to the mean annual temperature (MAT), whereas Q 10sR was independent of MAT. The analysis of the current temperature sensitivities and net ecosystem production suggested that temperature rise might enhance the CO 2 sink of terrestrial ecosystems both in the boreal and temperate regions. In addition, ecosystems in these regions with different plant functional types should sequester more CO 2 with climate warming.

  20. Simulation of permafrost changes due to technogenic influences of different ingeneering constructions used in nothern oil and gas fields

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filimonov, M. Yu; Vaganova, N. A.

    2016-10-01

    Significant amount of oil and gas is producted in Russian Federation on the territories with permafrost soils. Ice-saturated rocks thawing due to global warming or effects of various human activity will be accompanied by termocarst and others dangerous geological processes in permafrost. Design and construction of well pads in permafrost zones have some special features. The main objective is to minimize the influence of different heat sources (engineering objects) inserted into permafrost and accounting long-term forecast of development of permafrost degradation due to different factors in particular generated by human activity. In this work on the basis a mathematical model and numerical algorithms approved on 11 northern oil and gas fields some effects obtained by carrying out numerical simulations for various engineering systems are discussed.

  1. Permafrost at its limits: The most easterly evidence of existing permafrost in the European Alps as indicated by ground temperature and geoelectrical measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kellerer-Pirklbauer, A.; Kühnast, B.

    2009-04-01

    Mountain permafrost is a widespread phenomenon in alpine regions in the European Alps. For instance, some 2000 km² or 4% of the Austrian Alps are underlain by permafrost. Up to recent times most research on permafrost issues in Austria focused on the central and highest section of the Austrian Alps. By contrast, knowledge concerning marginal permafrost zones is fairly limited. To increase knowledge about the easternmost limit of permafrost in the European Alps, a research project focusing on the Seckauer Tauern Mountains (14°30'E to 15°00'E) and particularly on the Hochreichart area was initiated in 2004 by the first author. Since then, different methods have been applied such as e.g. geomorphic mapping, numerical permafrost modelling, multi-annual BTS measurements (since 2004) or continuous ground surface and near ground surface temperature measurements by miniature temperature data loggers/MTDs (since 2004). In order to verify the temperature data and to extend the spatial knowledge about permafrost distribution beyond point information, a geoelectrical survey was carried out at the end of August 2008 by applying the electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) method along a 120 m long profile covering the upper part of the rooting zone of a (more-or-less) relict rock glacier and the talus slope above. For this survey the two-dimensional (2D) electrical surveys was performed using the Wenner-Alfa configuration with 2.5 m spacing and an LGM-Lippmann 4-Punkt light hp resistivity-meter. The ERT results indicate an active layer of 2 to 4 m underlain by a permafrost body along 3/4 of the entire profile with resistivity values between 50 to 100 kOhm.m and extending to a depth of 10 to 15 m. The permafrost body is substantially thicker at the lower part of the profile (rock glacier; first 50 m of profile) compared to most of the upper part (talus slope). Focusing on the talus slope, the permafrost body is thickest on the central section of the profile (~5-6 m thickness

  2. The role of climate change in regulating Arctic permafrost peatland hydrological and vegetation change over the last millennium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Hui; Piilo, Sanna R.; Amesbury, Matthew J.; Charman, Dan J.; Gallego-Sala, Angela V.; Väliranta, Minna M.

    2018-02-01

    Climate warming has inevitable impacts on the vegetation and hydrological dynamics of high-latitude permafrost peatlands. These impacts in turn determine the role of these peatlands in the global biogeochemical cycle. Here, we used six active layer peat cores from four permafrost peatlands in Northeast European Russia and Finnish Lapland to investigate permafrost peatland dynamics over the last millennium. Testate amoeba and plant macrofossils were used as proxies for hydrological and vegetation changes. Our results show that during the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA), Russian sites experienced short-term permafrost thawing and this induced alternating dry-wet habitat changes eventually followed by desiccation. During the Little Ice Age (LIA) both sites generally supported dry-hummock habitats, at least partly driven by permafrost aggradation. However, proxy data suggest that occasionally, MCA habitat conditions were drier than during the LIA, implying that evapotranspiration may create important additional eco-hydrological feedback mechanisms under warm conditions. All sites showed a tendency towards dry conditions as inferred from both proxies starting either from ca. 100 years ago or in the past few decades after slight permafrost thawing, suggesting that recent warming has stimulated surface desiccation rather than deeper permafrost thawing. This study shows links between two important controls over hydrology and vegetation changes in high-latitude peatlands: direct temperature-induced surface layer response and deeper permafrost layer-related dynamics. These data provide important backgrounds for predictions of Arctic permafrost peatlands and related feedback mechanisms. Our results highlight the importance of increased evapotranspiration and thus provide an additional perspective to understanding of peatland-climate feedback mechanisms.

  3. An Analysis of the Energetics of Tropical and Extra-Tropical Regions for Warm ENSO Composite Episodes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zayra Christine Sátyro

    Full Text Available Abstract This study focuses on the quantification and evaluation of the effects of ENSO (El Niño Southern Oscillation warm phases, using a composite of five intense El Niño episodes between 1979 – 2011 on the Energetic Lorenz Cycle for four distinct regions around the globe: 80° S – 5° N (region 1, 50° S – 5° N (region 2, 30° S – 5° N (region 3, and 30° S – 30° N (region 4, using Data from NCEP reanalysis-II. Briefly, the results showed that zonal terms of potential energy and kinetic energy were intensified, except for region 1, where zonal kinetic energy weakened. Through the analysis of the period in which higher energy production is observed, a strong communication between the available zonal potential and the zonal kinetic energy reservoirs can be identified. This communication weakened the modes linked to eddies of potential energy and kinetic energy, as well as in the other two baroclinic conversions terms. Furthermore, the results indicate that for all the regions, the system itself works to regain its stable condition.

  4. Permafrost hydrology in changing climatic conditions: seasonal variability of stable isotope composition in rivers in discontinuous permafrost

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Streletskiy, Dmitry A; Shiklomanov, Nikolay I; Nyland, Kelsey E; Tananaev, Nikita I; Opel, Thomas; Streletskaya, Irina D; Tokarev, Igor’; Shiklomanov, Alexandr I

    2015-01-01

    Role of changing climatic conditions on permafrost degradation and hydrology was investigated in the transition zone between the tundra and forest ecotones at the boundary of continuous and discontinuous permafrost of the lower Yenisei River. Three watersheds of various sizes were chosen to represent the characteristics of the regional landscape conditions. Samples of river flow, precipitation, snow cover, and permafrost ground ice were collected over the watersheds to determine isotopic composition of potential sources of water in a river flow over a two year period. Increases in air temperature over the last forty years have resulted in permafrost degradation and a decrease in the seasonal frost which is evident from soil temperature measurements, permafrost and active-layer monitoring, and analysis of satellite imagery. The lowering of the permafrost table has led to an increased storage capacity of permafrost affected soils and a higher contribution of ground water to river discharge during winter months. A progressive decrease in the thickness of the layer of seasonal freezing allows more water storage and pathways for water during the winter low period making winter discharge dependent on the timing and amount of late summer precipitation. There is a substantial seasonal variability of stable isotopic composition of river flow. Spring flooding corresponds to the isotopic composition of snow cover prior to the snowmelt. Isotopic composition of river flow during the summer period follows the variability of precipitation in smaller creeks, while the water flow of larger watersheds is influenced by the secondary evaporation of water temporarily stored in thermokarst lakes and bogs. Late summer precipitation determines the isotopic composition of texture ice within the active layer in tundra landscapes and the seasonal freezing layer in forested landscapes as well as the composition of the water flow during winter months. (letter)

  5. The transcriptional response of microbial communities in thawing Alaskan permafrost soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M J L Coolen

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Thawing of permafrost soils is expected to stimulate microbial decomposition and respiration of sequestered carbon. This could, in turn, increase atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide and methane, and create a positive feedback to climate warming. Recent metagenomic studies suggest that permafrost has a large metabolic potential for carbon processing, including pathways for fermentation and methanogenesis. Here, we performed a pilot study using ultrahigh throughput Illumina HiSeq sequencing of reverse transcribed messenger RNA to obtain a detailed overview of active metabolic pathways and responsible organisms in up to 70 cm deep permafrost soils at a moist acidic tundra location in Arctic Alaska. The transcriptional response of the permafrost microbial community was compared before and after eleven days of thaw. In general, the transcriptional profile under frozen conditions suggests a dominance of stress responses, survival strategies, and maintenance processes, whereas upon thaw a rapid enzymatic response to decomposing soil organic matter (SOM was observed. Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes, ascomycete fungi, and methanogens were responsible for largest transcriptional response upon thaw. Transcripts indicative of heterotrophic methanogenic pathways utilizing acetate, methanol, and methylamine were found predominantly in the permafrost table after thaw. Furthermore, transcripts involved in acetogenesis were expressed exclusively after thaw suggesting that acetogenic bacteria are a potential source of acetate for acetoclastic methanogenesis in freshly thawed permafrost. Metatranscriptomics is shown here to be a useful approach for inferring the activity of permafrost microbes that has potential to improve our understanding of permafrost SOM bioavailability and biogeochemical mechanisms contributing to greenhouse gas emissions as a result of permafrost thaw.

  6. The transcriptional response of microbial communities in thawing Alaskan permafrost soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coolen, Marco J. L.; Orsi, William D.

    2015-01-01

    Thawing of permafrost soils is expected to stimulate microbial decomposition and respiration of sequestered carbon. This could, in turn, increase atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gasses, such as carbon dioxide and methane, and create a positive feedback to climate warming. Recent metagenomic studies suggest that permafrost has a large metabolic potential for carbon processing, including pathways for fermentation and methanogenesis. Here, we performed a pilot study using ultrahigh throughput Illumina HiSeq sequencing of reverse transcribed messenger RNA to obtain a detailed overview of active metabolic pathways and responsible organisms in up to 70 cm deep permafrost soils at a moist acidic tundra location in Arctic Alaska. The transcriptional response of the permafrost microbial community was compared before and after 11 days of thaw. In general, the transcriptional profile under frozen conditions suggests a dominance of stress responses, survival strategies, and maintenance processes, whereas upon thaw a rapid enzymatic response to decomposing soil organic matter (SOM) was observed. Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes, ascomycete fungi, and methanogens were responsible for largest transcriptional response upon thaw. Transcripts indicative of heterotrophic methanogenic pathways utilizing acetate, methanol, and methylamine were found predominantly in the permafrost table after thaw. Furthermore, transcripts involved in acetogenesis were expressed exclusively after thaw suggesting that acetogenic bacteria are a potential source of acetate for acetoclastic methanogenesis in freshly thawed permafrost. Metatranscriptomics is shown here to be a useful approach for inferring the activity of permafrost microbes that has potential to improve our understanding of permafrost SOM bioavailability and biogeochemical mechanisms contributing to greenhouse gas emissions as a result of permafrost thaw. PMID:25852660

  7. Formonsella pyramidosa (Haptophyta, Papposphaeraceae): A new weakly calcified coccolithophore genus from warm-water regions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Helge Abildhauge; Cros, Lluïsa; Malinverno, Elisa

    2016-01-01

    A new species Formonsella pyramidosa gen. et sp. nov. is described to accommodate a widely distributed warm-water coccolithophore species that has previously been referred to as Pappomonas sp. 2. Formonsella differs from Pappomonas with respect to, in particular, the detailed structure of the rim...... on both calicate and non-calicate coccoliths. In Formonsella the rim comprises two cycles of rod-shaped elements. Although elements in the distal layer are higher at one end, giving this cycle a serrate outline, the overall appearance is very different from the Pappomonas rim which encompasses a distal...... cycle of pentagonal elements, giving the rim a very distinct toothed appearance. Inverted rectangular pyramidal structures terminate the calicate F. pyramidosa coccoliths. In non-calicate coccoliths the central area calcification comprises differently sized tile-shaped elements, mostly arranged along...

  8. Estimating Rates of Permafrost Degradation and their Impact on Ecosystems across Alaska and Northwest Canada using the Process-based Permafrost Dynamics Model GIPL as a Component of the Integrated Ecosystem Model (IEM)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marchenko, S. S.; Genet, H.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Breen, A. L.; McGuire, A. D.; Rupp, S. T.; Romanovsky, V. E.; Bolton, W. R.; Walsh, J. E.

    2016-12-01

    The impact of climate warming on permafrost and the potential of climate feedbacks resulting from permafrost thawing have recently received a great deal of attention. Permafrost temperature has increased in most locations in the Arctic and Sub-Arctic during the past 30-40 years. The typical increase in permafrost temperature is 1-3°C. The process-based permafrost dynamics model GIPL developed in the Geophysical Institute Permafrost Lab, and which is the permafrost module of the Integrated Ecosystem Model (IEM) has been using to quantify the nature and rate of permafrost degradation and its impact on ecosystems, infrastructure, CO2 and CH4fluxes and net C storage following permafrost thaw across Alaska and Northwest Canada. The IEM project is a multi-institutional and multi-disciplinary effort aimed at understanding potential landscape, habitat and ecosystem change across the IEM domain. The IEM project also aims to tie three scientific models together Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (TEM), the ALFRESCO (ALaska FRame-based EcoSystem Code) and GIPL so that they exchange data at run-time. The models produce forecasts of future fire, vegetation, organic matter, permafrost and hydrology regimes. The climate forcing data are based on the historical CRU3.1 data set for the retrospective analysis period (1901-2009) and the CMIP3 CCCMA-CGCM3.1 and MPI-ECHAM5/MPI-OM climate models for the future period (2009-2100). All data sets were downscaled to a 1 km resolution, using a differencing methodology (i.e., a delta method) and the Parameter-elevation Regressions on Independent Slopes Model (PRISM) climatology. We estimated the dynamics of permafrost temperature, active layer thickness, area occupied by permafrost, and volume of thawed soils across the IEM domain. The modeling results indicate how different types of ecosystems affect the thermal state of permafrost and its stability. Although the rate of soil warming and permafrost degradation in peatland areas are slower than

  9. Microbial Community Dynamics from Permafrost Across the Pleistocene-Holocene Boundary and Response to Abrupt Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammad, A.; Mahony, M.; Froese, D. G.; Lanoil, B. D.

    2014-12-01

    Earth is currently undergoing rapid warming similar to that observed about 10,000 years ago at the end of the Pleistocene. We know a considerable amount about the adaptations and extinctions of mammals and plants at the Pleistocene/Holocene (P/H) boundary, but relatively little about changes at the microbial level. Due to permafrost soils' freezing anoxic conditions, they act as microbial diversity archives allowing us to determine how microbial communities adapted to the abrupt warming at the end of P. Since microbial community composition only helps differentiate viable and extant microorganisms in frozen permafrost, microbial activity in thawing permafrost must be investigated to provide a clear understanding of microbial response to climate change. Current increased temperatures will result in warming and potential thaw of permafrost and release of stored organic carbon, freeing it for microbial utilization; turning permafrost into a carbon source. Studying permafrost viable microbial communities' diversity and activity will provide a better understanding of how these microorganisms respond to soil edaphic variability due to climate change across the P/H boundary, providing insight into the changes that the soil community is currently undergoing in this modern era of rapid climate change. Modern soil, H and P permafrost cores were collected from Lucky Lady II site outside Dawson City, Yukon. 16S rRNA high throughput sequencing of permafrost DNA showed the same trends for total and viable community richness and diversity with both decreasing with permafrost depth and only the richness increasing in mid and early P. The modern, H and P soils had 50.9, 33.9, and 27.3% unique viable species and only 14% of the total number of viable species were shared by all soils. Gas flux measurements of thawed permafrost showed metabolic activity in modern and permafrost soils, aerobic CH­­4 consumption in modern, some H and P soils, and anaerobic CH­­4 production in one H

  10. Evidence for 20th century climate warming and wetland drying in the North American Prairie Pothole Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werner, B.A.; Johnson, W. Carter; Guntenspergen, Glenn R.

    2013-01-01

    The Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) of North America is a globally important resource that provides abundant and valuable ecosystem goods and services in the form of biodiversity, groundwater recharge, water purification, flood attenuation, and water and forage for agriculture. Numerous studies have found these wetlands, which number in the millions, to be highly sensitive to climate variability. Here, we compare wetland conditions between two 30-year periods (1946–1975; 1976–2005) using a hindcast simulation approach to determine if recent climate warming in the region has already resulted in changes in wetland condition. Simulations using the WETLANDSCAPE model show that 20th century climate change may have been sufficient to have a significant impact on wetland cover cycling. Modeled wetlands in the PPR's western Canadian prairies show the most dramatic effects: a recent trend toward shorter hydroperiods and less dynamic vegetation cycles, which already may have reduced the productivity of hundreds of wetland-dependent species.

  11. Evidence for 20th century climate warming and wetland drying in the North American Prairie Pothole Region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werner, Brett A; Johnson, W Carter; Guntenspergen, Glenn R

    2013-09-01

    The Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) of North America is a globally important resource that provides abundant and valuable ecosystem goods and services in the form of biodiversity, groundwater recharge, water purification, flood attenuation, and water and forage for agriculture. Numerous studies have found these wetlands, which number in the millions, to be highly sensitive to climate variability. Here, we compare wetland conditions between two 30-year periods (1946-1975; 1976-2005) using a hindcast simulation approach to determine if recent climate warming in the region has already resulted in changes in wetland condition. Simulations using the WETLANDSCAPE model show that 20th century climate change may have been sufficient to have a significant impact on wetland cover cycling. Modeled wetlands in the PPR's western Canadian prairies show the most dramatic effects: a recent trend toward shorter hydroperiods and less dynamic vegetation cycles, which already may have reduced the productivity of hundreds of wetland-dependent species.

  12. Circumpolar Active-Layer Permafrost System (CAPS)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Circumpolar Active-Layer Permafrost System (CAPS) contains over 100 data sets pertaining to permafrost and frozen ground topics. It also contains detailed...

  13. Permafrost Meta-Omics and Climate Change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mackelprang, Rachel; Saleska, Scott R.; Jacobsen, Carsten Suhr

    2016-01-01

    Permanently frozen soil, or permafrost, covers a large portion of the Earth's terrestrial surface and represents a unique environment for cold-adapted microorganisms. As permafrost thaws, previously protected organic matter becomes available for microbial degradation. Microbes that decompose soil...

  14. Utilization of ancient permafrost carbon in headwaters of Arctic fluvial networks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mann, Paul J.; Eglinton, Timothy I.; McIntyre, Cameron P.; Zimov, Nikita; Davydova, Anna; Vonk, Jorien E.; Holmes, Robert M.; Spencer, Robert G M

    2015-01-01

    Northern high-latitude rivers are major conduits of carbon from land to coastal seas and the Arctic Ocean. Arctic warming is promoting terrestrial permafrost thaw and shifting hydrologic flowpaths, leading to fluvial mobilization of ancient carbon stores. Here we describe 14 C and 13 C

  15. Radiocarbon age-offsets in an arctic lake reveal the long-term response of permafrost carbon to climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Mann, Daniel H.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Pohlman, John W.; Kunz, Michael L.; Wooller, Matthew J.

    2014-01-01

    Continued warming of the Arctic may cause permafrost to thaw and speed the decomposition of large stores of soil organic carbon (OC), thereby accentuating global warming. However, it is unclear if recent warming has raised the current rates of permafrost OC release to anomalous levels or to what extent soil carbon release is sensitive to climate forcing. Here we use a time series of radiocarbon age-offsets (14C) between the bulk lake sediment and plant macrofossils deposited in an arctic lake as an archive for soil and permafrost OC release over the last 14,500 years. The lake traps and archives OC imported from the watershed and allows us to test whether prior warming events stimulated old carbon release and heightened age-offsets. Today, the age-offset (2 ka; thousand of calibrated years before A.D. 1950) and the depositional rate of ancient OC from the watershed into the lake are relatively low and similar to those during the Younger Dryas cold interval (occurring 12.9–11.7 ka). In contrast, age-offsets were higher (3.0–5.0 ka) when summer air temperatures were warmer than present during the Holocene Thermal Maximum (11.7–9.0 ka) and Bølling-Allerød periods (14.5–12.9 ka). During these warm times, permafrost thaw contributed to ancient OC depositional rates that were ~10 times greater than today. Although permafrost OC was vulnerable to climate warming in the past, we suggest surface soil organic horizons and peat are presently limiting summer thaw and carbon release. As a result, the temperature threshold to trigger widespread permafrost OC release is higher than during previous warming events.

  16. Dissolved organic carbon and nitrogen release from boreal Holocene permafrost and seasonally frozen soils of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wickland, Kimberly P.; Waldrop, Mark P.; Aiken, George R.; Koch, Joshua C.; Torre Jorgenson, M.; Striegl, Robert G.

    2018-06-01

    Permafrost (perennially frozen) soils store vast amounts of organic carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) that are vulnerable to mobilization as dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and dissolved organic and inorganic nitrogen (DON, DIN) upon thaw. Such releases will affect the biogeochemistry of permafrost regions, yet little is known about the chemical composition and source variability of active-layer (seasonally frozen) and permafrost soil DOC, DON and DIN. We quantified DOC, total dissolved N (TDN), DON, and DIN leachate yields from deep active-layer and near-surface boreal Holocene permafrost soils in interior Alaska varying in soil C and N content and radiocarbon age to determine potential release upon thaw. Soil cores were collected at three sites distributed across the Alaska boreal region in late winter, cut in 15 cm thick sections, and deep active-layer and shallow permafrost sections were thawed and leached. Leachates were analyzed for DOC, TDN, nitrate (NO3 ‑), and ammonium (NH4 +) concentrations, dissolved organic matter optical properties, and DOC biodegradability. Soils were analyzed for C, N, and radiocarbon (14C) content. Soil DOC, TDN, DON, and DIN yields increased linearly with soil C and N content, and decreased with increasing radiocarbon age. These relationships were significantly different for active-layer and permafrost soils such that for a given soil C or N content, or radiocarbon age, permafrost soils released more DOC and TDN (mostly as DON) per gram soil than active-layer soils. Permafrost soil DOC biodegradability was significantly correlated with soil Δ14C and DOM optical properties. Our results demonstrate that near-surface Holocene permafrost soils preserve greater relative potential DOC and TDN yields than overlying seasonally frozen soils that are exposed to annual leaching and decomposition. While many factors control the fate of DOC and TDN, the greater relative yields from newly thawed Holocene permafrost soils will have the largest

  17. Evaluation of Warm Season Turfgrass under Different Irrigation Regimes in Arid Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdullah Mohd Hassan ALSHEHHI

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Turfgrasses play a very important role in enhancing quality of life in modern urban living. Water quantity is the most important challenge worldwide in establishing and maintaining quality turf. The present study was aimed to test the performance of three warm season turfgrasses under four water levels for plantation in arid zones. Pits (48 measuring 1m length x 1m width x 0.6 m depth were planted with four replications of Common Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon, Tifway Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon x transvaalensis and Seashore Paspalum grass (Paspalum vaginatum in complete randomized design (CRD. Irrigation was done daily with 15 l/plot during the first 4 weeks (establishment period and four irrigation levels (5, 10, and 15, 20 l/lot were maintained in the following 8 weeks (treatment period. Physical parameters (canopy temperatures, ambient temperature, leaf area, shoot production and relative water content were measured once in two week as well as the visual quality (shoot color, shoot density and shoot uniformity was assessed, however, chlorophyll analysis was done in the end of the study. It was found that temperature has significant effect on performance of turfgrasses. Canopy temperature was higher than ambient temperature in the three turfgrasses but it has different level in each variety. Five liter of water per day per square meter gave acceptable turf quality when ambient temperature ranged from 20 to 33�C. Seashore paspalum performed best followed by Tifway Bermuda grass and common Bermuda grass respectively.

  18. Global Warming In A Regional Model of The Atlantic Ocean - Echam4/opyc3 In Flame 4/3

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schweckendiek, U.; Willebrand, J.

    The reaction of the Thermohaline Circulation (THC) in most climate models on global warming scenarios is a weakening of the THC. An exception is the ECHAM4/OPYC3 simulation whose stable behaviour is traced back to a strongly enhanced evaporation and as a consequence to a development of a salt anomaly in the tropics and subtropics of the Atlantic Ocean (Latif et al.,2000). This salt signal is advected into convection regions and compensates the reduction of surface density due to surface heating and freshening. To examine this scenario for a more realistic ocean model, data from this model is used to drive a reginal model of the Atlantic Ocean. In order to test the crucial mechanisms for the maintainance of the meridional overturning, we have performed sensitivity studies by focussing on different combinations of the anomalous freshwater and heat fluxes. The results demonstrate that for the stabilising effect to become effective the salt sig- nal has to enter the GIN-Seas and subsequently the overflow waters, underlining the importance of the overflows for the THC. The Labrador Sea Convection is however uneffected by this stabilising salt signal and its convection ultimatly breaks down un- der surface warming and freshening.

  19. Circumpolar assessment of permafrost C quality and its vulnerability over time using long-term incubation data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schädel, Christina; Schuur, Edward A.G.; Bracho, Rosvel

    2014-01-01

    High-latitude ecosystems store approximately 1700 Pg of soil carbon (C), which is twice as much C as is currently contained in the atmosphere. Permafrost thaw and subsequent microbial decomposition of permafrost organic matter could add large amounts of C to the atmosphere, thereby influencing...... the global C cycle. The rates at which C is being released from the permafrost zone at different soil depths and across different physiographic regions are poorly understood but crucial in understanding future changes in permafrost C storage with climate change. We assessed the inherent decomposability of C...... from the permafrost zone by assembling a database of long-term (>1 year) aerobic soil incubations from 121 individual samples from 23 high-latitude ecosystems located across the northern circumpolar permafrost zone. Using a three-pool (i.e., fast, slow and passive) decomposition model, we estimated...

  20. Increasing risks related to landslides from degrading permafrost into new lakes in de-glaciating mountain ranges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haeberli, Wilfried; Schaub, Yvonne; Huggel, Christian

    2017-09-01

    While glacier volumes in most cold mountain ranges rapidly decrease due to continued global warming, degradation of permafrost at altitudes above and below glaciers is much slower. As a consequence, many still existing glacier and permafrost landscapes probably transform within decades into new landscapes of bare bedrock, loose debris, sparse vegetation, numerous new lakes and steep slopes with slowly degrading permafrost. These new landscapes are likely to persist for centuries if not millennia to come. During variable but mostly extended future time periods, such new landscapes will be characterized by pronounced disequilibria within their geo- and ecosystems. This especially involves long-term stability reduction of steep/icy mountain slopes as a slow and delayed reaction to stress redistribution following de-buttressing by vanishing glaciers and to changes in mechanical strength and hydraulic permeability caused by permafrost degradation. Thereby, the probability of far-reaching flood waves from large mass movements into lakes systematically increases with the formation of many new lakes and systems of lakes in close neighborhood to, or even directly at the foot of, so-affected slopes. Results of recent studies in the Swiss Alps are reviewed and complemented with examples from the Cordillera Blanca in Peru and the Mount Everest region in Nepal. Hot spots of future hazards from potential flood waves caused by large rock falls into new lakes can already now be recognized. To this end, integrated spatial information on glacier/permafrost evolution and lake formation can be used together with scenario-based models for rapid mass movements, impact waves and flood propagation. The resulting information must then be combined with exposure and vulnerability considerations related to settlements and infrastructure. This enables timely planning of risk reduction options. Such risk reduction options consist of two components: Mitigation of hazards, which in the present

  1. Permafrost degradation in West Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Foged, Niels Nielsen; Ingeman-Nielsen, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    Important aspects of civil engineering in West Greenland relate to the presence of permafrost and mapping of the annual and future changes in the active layer due to the ongoing climatically changes in the Arctic. The Arctic Technology Centre (ARTEK) has worked more than 10 years on this topic...... and the first author has been involved since 1970 in engineering geology, geotechnical engineering and permafrost related studies for foundation construction and infrastructures in towns and communities mainly in West Greenland. We have since 2006 together with the Danish Meteorological Institute, Greenland...... Survey (ASIAQ) and the University of Alaska Fairbanks carried out the US NSF funded project ARC-0612533: Recent and future permafrost variability, retreat and degradation in Greenland and Alaska: An integrated approach. This contribution will present data and observations from the towns Ilulissat...

  2. Potential carbon emissions dominated by carbon dioxide from thawed permafrost soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schädel, Christina; Bader, Martin K.-F.; Schuur, Edward A.G.; Biasi, Christina; Bracho, Rosvel; Čapek, Petr; De Baets, Sarah; Diáková, Kateřina; Ernakovich, Jessica; Estop-Aragones, Cristian; Graham, David E.; Hartley, Iain P.; Iversen, Colleen M.; Kane, Evan S.; Knoblauch, Christian; Lupascu, Massimo; Martikainen, Pertti J.; Natali, Susan M.; Norby, Richard J.; O'Donnell, Jonathan A.; Roy Chowdhury, Taniya; Šantrůčková, Hana; Shaver, Gaius; Sloan, Victoria L.; Treat, Claire C.; Turetsky, Merritt R.; Waldrop, Mark P.; Wickland, Kimberly P.

    2016-01-01

    Increasing temperatures in northern high latitudes are causing permafrost to thaw, making large amounts of previously frozen organic matter vulnerable to microbial decomposition. Permafrost thaw also creates a fragmented landscape of drier and wetter soil conditions that determine the amount and form (carbon dioxide (CO2), or methane (CH4)) of carbon (C) released to the atmosphere. The rate and form of C release control the magnitude of the permafrost C feedback, so their relative contribution with a warming climate remains unclear. We quantified the effect of increasing temperature and changes from aerobic to anaerobic soil conditions using 25 soil incubation studies from the permafrost zone. Here we show, using two separate meta-analyses, that a 10 °C increase in incubation temperature increased C release by a factor of 2.0 (95% confidence interval (CI), 1.8 to 2.2). Under aerobic incubation conditions, soils released 3.4 (95% CI, 2.2 to 5.2) times more C than under anaerobic conditions. Even when accounting for the higher heat trapping capacity of CH4, soils released 2.3 (95% CI, 1.5 to 3.4) times more C under aerobic conditions. These results imply that permafrost ecosystems thawing under aerobic conditions and releasing CO2 will strengthen the permafrost C feedback more than waterlogged systems releasing CO2 and CH4 for a given amount of C.

  3. Complete and Partial Photo-oxidation of Dissolved Organic Matter Draining Permafrost Soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, Collin P; Cory, Rose M

    2016-04-05

    Photochemical degradation of dissolved organic matter (DOM) to carbon dioxide (CO2) and partially oxidized compounds is an important component of the carbon cycle in the Arctic. Thawing permafrost soils will change the chemical composition of DOM exported to arctic surface waters, but the molecular controls on DOM photodegradation remain poorly understood, making it difficult to predict how inputs of thawing permafrost DOM may alter its photodegradation. To address this knowledge gap, we quantified the susceptibility of DOM draining the shallow organic mat and the deeper permafrost layer of arctic soils to complete and partial photo-oxidation and investigated changes in the chemical composition of each DOM source following sunlight exposure. Permafrost and organic mat DOM had similar lability to photomineralization despite substantial differences in initial chemical composition. Concurrent losses of carboxyl moieties and shifts in chemical composition during photodegradation indicated that photodecarboxylation could account for 40-90% of DOM photomineralized to CO2. Permafrost DOM had a higher susceptibility to partial photo-oxidation compared to organic mat DOM, potentially due to a lower abundance of phenolic moieties with antioxidant properties. These results suggest that photodegradation will likely continue to be an important control on DOM fate in arctic freshwaters as the climate warms and permafrost soils thaw.

  4. Ancient low-molecular-weight organic acids in permafrost fuel rapid carbon dioxide production upon thaw.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drake, Travis W; Wickland, Kimberly P; Spencer, Robert G M; McKnight, Diane M; Striegl, Robert G

    2015-11-10

    Northern permafrost soils store a vast reservoir of carbon, nearly twice that of the present atmosphere. Current and projected climate warming threatens widespread thaw of these frozen, organic carbon (OC)-rich soils. Upon thaw, mobilized permafrost OC in dissolved and particulate forms can enter streams and rivers, which are important processors of OC and conduits for carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere. Here, we demonstrate that ancient dissolved organic carbon (DOC) leached from 35,800 y B.P. permafrost soils is rapidly mineralized to CO2. During 200-h experiments in a novel high-temporal-resolution bioreactor, DOC concentration decreased by an average of 53%, fueling a more than sevenfold increase in dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) concentration. Eighty-seven percent of the DOC loss to microbial uptake was derived from the low-molecular-weight (LMW) organic acids acetate and butyrate. To our knowledge, our study is the first to directly quantify high CO2 production rates from permafrost-derived LMW DOC mineralization. The observed DOC loss rates are among the highest reported for permafrost carbon and demonstrate the potential importance of LMW DOC in driving the rapid metabolism of Pleistocene-age permafrost carbon upon thaw and the outgassing of CO2 to the atmosphere by soils and nearby inland waters.

  5. Ancient low–molecular-weight organic acids in permafrost fuel rapid carbon dioxide production upon thaw

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drake, Travis W.; Wickland, Kimberly P.; Spencer, Robert G. M.; McKnight, Diane M.; Striegl, Robert G.

    2015-01-01

    Northern permafrost soils store a vast reservoir of carbon, nearly twice that of the present atmosphere. Current and projected climate warming threatens widespread thaw of these frozen, organic carbon (OC)-rich soils. Upon thaw, mobilized permafrost OC in dissolved and particulate forms can enter streams and rivers, which are important processors of OC and conduits for carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere. Here, we demonstrate that ancient dissolved organic carbon (DOC) leached from 35,800 y B.P. permafrost soils is rapidly mineralized to CO2. During 200-h experiments in a novel high–temporal-resolution bioreactor, DOC concentration decreased by an average of 53%, fueling a more than sevenfold increase in dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) concentration. Eighty-seven percent of the DOC loss to microbial uptake was derived from the low–molecular-weight (LMW) organic acids acetate and butyrate. To our knowledge, our study is the first to directly quantify high CO2 production rates from permafrost-derived LMW DOC mineralization. The observed DOC loss rates are among the highest reported for permafrost carbon and demonstrate the potential importance of LMW DOC in driving the rapid metabolism of Pleistocene-age permafrost carbon upon thaw and the outgassing of CO2 to the atmosphere by soils and nearby inland waters.

  6. Ground thermal and geomechanical conditions in a permafrost-affected high-latitude rock avalanche site (Polvartinden, northern Norway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Frauenfelder

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available On 26 June 2008, a rock avalanche detached in the northeast facing slope of Polvartinden, a high-alpine mountain in Signaldalen, northern Norway. Here, we report on the observed and modelled past and present near-surface temperature regime close to the failure zone, as well as on a subsequent simulation of the subsurface temperature regime, and on initial geomechanical mapping based on laser scanning. The volume of the rock avalanche was estimated to be approximately 500 000 m3. The depth to the actual failure surface was found to range from 40 m at the back of the failure zone to 0 m at its toe. Visible in situ ice was observed in the failure zone just after the rock avalanche. Between September 2009 and August 2013, ground surface temperatures were measured with miniature temperature data loggers at 14 different localities, close to the original failure zone along the northern ridge of Polvartinden and on the valley floor. The results from these measurements and from a basic three-dimensional heat conduction model suggest that the lower altitudinal limit of permafrost at present is at 600–650 m a.s.l., which corresponds to the upper limit of the failure zone. A coupling of our in situ data with regional climate data since 1958 suggests a general gradual warming and that the period with highest mean near surface temperatures on record ended four months before the Signaldalen rock avalanche detached. A comparison with a transient permafrost model run at 10 m depth, representative for areas where snow accumulates, strengthen these findings, which are also in congruence with measurements in nearby permafrost boreholes. It is likely that permafrost in and near the failure zone is presently subject to degradation. This degradation, in combination with the extreme warm year antecedent to the rock failure, is seen to have played an important role in the detaching of the Signaldalen rock avalanche.

  7. Newly Discovered Silicate Features in the Spectra of Young Warm Debris Disks: Probing Terrestrial Regions of Planetary Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballering, N.; Rieke, G.

    2014-03-01

    Terrestrial planets form by the collisional accretion of planetesimals during the first 100 Myr of a system’s lifetime. For most systems, the terrestrial regions are too near their host star to be directly seen with high-contrast imaging (e.g. with HST, MagAO, or LBTI) and too warm to be imaged with submillimeter interferometers (e.g. ALMA). Mid-infrared excess spectra—originating from the thermal emission of the circumstellar dust leftover from these collisions—remain the best data to constrain the properties of the debris in these regions. The spectra of most debris disks are featureless, taking the shape of (modified) blackbodies. Determining the properties of debris disks with featureless spectra is complicated by a degeneracy between the grain size and location (large grains near the star and small grains farther from the star may be indistinguishable). Debris disk spectra that exhibit solid state emission features allow for a more accurate determination of the dust size and location (e.g. Chen et al. 2006; Olofsson et al. 2012). Such features probe small, warm dust grains in the inner regions of these systems where terrestrial planet formation may be proceeding (Lisse et al. 2009). We report here a successful search for such features. We identified our targets with a preliminary search for signs of emission features in the Spitzer IRS spectra of a number of young early type stars known to harbor warm debris disks. We fit to each target a physically-motivated model spectrum consisting of the sum of the stellar photosphere (modeled as a blackbody) and thermal emission from two dust belts. Each belt was defined by 6 parameters: the inner and outer orbital radii (rin and rout), the index of the radial surface density power law (rexp), the minimum and maximum grain sizes (amin and amax), and the index of the grain size distribution power law (aexp). aexp was fixed to -3.65 and amax was fixed to 1000 μm for all models; all other parameters were allowed to

  8. Glacial-interglacial variations of microbial communities in permafrost and lake deposits in the Siberian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mangelsdorf, Kai; Bischoff, Juliane; Gattinger, Andreas; Wagner, Dirk

    2013-04-01

    The Artic regions are expected to be very sensitive to the currently observed climate change. When permafrost is thawing, the stored carbon becomes available again for microbial degradation, forming a potential source for the generation of carbon dioxide and methane with their positive feedback effect on the climate warming. For the prediction of future climate evolution it is, therefore, important to improve our knowledge about the microbial-driven greenhouse gas dynamics in the Siberian Arctic and their response to glacial-interglacial changes in the past. Sample material was drilled on Kurungnahk Island (Russian-German LENA expedition) located in the southern part of the Lena delta and in lake El'gygytgyn (ICDP-project) in the eastern part of Siberia. The Kurungnahk samples comprise Late Pleistocene to Holocene deposits, whereas the lake El'gygytgyn samples cover Middle to Late Pleistocene sediments. Samples were investigated applying a combined biogeochemical and microbiological approach. The methane profile of the Kurungnahk core reveals highest methane contents in the warm and wet Holocene and Late Pleistocene (LP) deposits and correlates largly to the organic carbon (TOC) contents. Archaeol concentrations, being a biomarker for past methanogenic archaea, are also high during the warm and wet Holocene and LP intervals and low during the cold and dry LP periods. This indicates that part of the methane might be produced and trapped in the past. However, biomarkers for living microorganisms (bacteria and archaea) and microbial activity measurements of methanogens point, especially, for the Holocene to a viable archaeal community, indicating a possible in-situ methane production. Furthermore, warm/wet-cold/dry climate cycles are recorded in the archaeal diversity as revealed by genetic fingerprint analysis. Although the overlying lake water buffers the temperature effect on the lake sediments, which never became permafrost, the bacterial and archaeal biomarker

  9. Influence of vertical and lateral heat transfer on permafrost thaw, peatland landscape transition, and groundwater flow

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurylyk, Barret L.; Masaki, Masaki; Quinton, William L.; McKenzie, Jeffrey M.; Voss, Clifford I.

    2016-01-01

    Recent climate change has reduced the spatial extent and thickness of permafrost in many discontinuous permafrost regions. Rapid permafrost thaw is producing distinct landscape changes in the Taiga Plains of the Northwest Territories, Canada. As permafrost bodies underlying forested peat plateaus shrink, the landscape slowly transitions into unforested wetlands. The expansion of wetlands has enhanced the hydrologic connectivity of many watersheds via new surface and near-surface flow paths, and increased streamflow has been observed. Furthermore, the decrease in forested peat plateaus results in a net loss of boreal forest and associated ecosystems. This study investigates fundamental processes that contribute to permafrost thaw by comparing observed and simulated thaw development and landscape transition of a peat plateau-wetland complex in the Northwest Territories, Canada from 1970 to 2012. Measured climate data are first used to drive surface energy balance simulations for the wetland and peat plateau. Near-surface soil temperatures simulated in the surface energy balance model are then applied as the upper boundary condition to a three-dimensional model of subsurface water flow and coupled energy transport with freeze-thaw. Simulation results demonstrate that lateral heat transfer, which is not considered in many permafrost models, can influence permafrost thaw rates. Furthermore, the simulations indicate that landscape evolution arising from permafrost thaw acts as a positive feedback mechanism that increases the energy absorbed at the land surface and produces additional permafrost thaw. The modeling results also demonstrate that flow rates in local groundwater flow systems may be enhanced by the degradation of isolated permafrost bodies.

  10. Quantifying Permafrost Extent, Condition, and Degradation at Department of Defense Installations in the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edlund, C. A.

    2017-12-01

    The Department of Defense (DoD) is planning over $500M in military construction on Eielson Air Force Base (AFB) within the next three fiscal years. This construction program will expand the footprint of facilities and change the storm water management scheme, which will have second order effects on the underlying permafrost layer. These changes in permafrost will drive engineering decision making at local and regional levels, and help shape the overall strategy for military readiness in the Arctic. Although many studies have attempted to predict climate change induced permafrost degradation, very little site-specific knowledge exists on the anthropogenic effects to permafrost at this location. In 2016, the permafrost degradation rates at Eielson AFB were modeled using the Geophysics Institute Permafrost Laboratory (GIPL) 2.1 model and limited available geotechnical and climate data. Model results indicated a degradation of the discontinuous permafrost layer at Eielson AFB of up to 7 meters in depth over the next century. To further refine an understanding of the geophysics at Eielson AFB and help engineers and commanders make more informed decisions on engineering and operations in the arctic, this project established two permafrost monitoring stations near the future construction sites. Installation of the stations occurred in July 2017. Permafrost was located and characterized using two Electrical Resistivity Tomography surveys, as well as direct frost probe measurements. Using this data, the research team optimized the placement location and depth of two long term ground temperature monitoring stations, and then installed the stations for data collection. The data set generated by these stations are the first of their kind at Eielson AFB, and represent the first systematic effort in the DoD to quantify permafrost condition before, during, and after construction and other anthropogenic activities in order to fully understand the effects of that activity in the

  11. Signatures of global warming and regional climate shift in the Arabian Sea

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    PrasannaKumar, S.; Roshin, R.P.; Narvekar, J.; DineshKumar, P.K.; Vivekanandan, E.

    phytoplankton biomass during fall and winter is attributed to the iron-fertilization driven by enhanced dust-delivery under this regional climate shift. Finally, it is shown that the increased fish (oil-sardine) catch in the eastern and western Arabian Sea after...

  12. The 1950-1998 warm ENSO events and regional implications to ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    1998 seasonal El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is investigated in 502 rivers gauged in 9 countries of the Southern African region. We found some evidence of possible links between available surface water resources in terms of mean annual ...

  13. Characterization and Modeling Of Microbial Carbon Metabolism In Thawing Permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, D. E.; Phelps, T. J.; Xu, X.; Carroll, S.; Jagadamma, S.; Shakya, M.; Thornton, P. E.; Elias, D. A.

    2012-12-01

    Increased annual temperatures in the Arctic are warming the surface and subsurface, resulting in thawing permafrost. Thawing exposes large pools of buried organic carbon to microbial degradation, increasing greenhouse gas generation and emission. Most global-scale land-surface models lack depth-dependent representations of carbon conversion and GHG transport; therefore they do not adequately describe permafrost thawing or microbial mineralization processes. The current work was performed to determine how permafrost thawing at moderately elevated temperatures and anoxic conditions would affect CO2 and CH4 generation, while parameterizing depth-dependent GHG production processes with respect to temperature and pH in biogeochemical models. These enhancements will improve the accuracy of GHG emission predictions and identify key biochemical and geochemical processes for further refinement. Three core samples were obtained from discontinuous permafrost terrain in Fairbanks, AK with a mean annual temperature of -3.3 °C. Each core was sectioned into surface/near surface (0-0.8 m), active layer (0.8-1.6 m), and permafrost (1.6-2.2 m) horizons, which were homogenized for physico-chemical characterization and microcosm construction. Surface samples had low pH values (6.0), low water content (18% by weight), low organic carbon (0.8%), and high C:N ratio (43). Active layer samples had higher pH values (6.4), higher water content (34%), more organic carbon (1.4%) and a lower C:N ratio (24). Permafrost samples had the highest pH (6.5), highest water content (46%), high organic carbon (2.5%) and the lowest C:N ratio (19). Most organic carbon was quantified as labile or intermediate pool versus stable pool in each sample, and all samples had low amounts of carbonate. Surface layer microcosms, containing 20 g sediment in septum-sealed vials, were incubated under oxic conditions, while similar active and permafrost layer samples were anoxic. These microcosms were incubated at -2

  14. Mountain Permafrost in the Yukon Territory, Canada: Mapping and Modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewkowicz, A. G.; Bonnaventure, P.; Schultz, E.; Etzelmuller, B.

    2006-12-01

    The distribution and characteristics of mountain permafrost in North America are poorly known compared to lowland permafrost, and predictions of climatic change impacts are therefore subject to a higher degree of uncertainty. Recent DC resistivity soundings in association with borehole temperature information in the Yukon Territory, show the wide range of permafrost conditions that can exist at sites separated by short distances. To provide baseline information for future modelling, efforts are underway to produce a detailed map of permafrost probability in the mountains of the southern half of the Yukon Territory (60-65°N), an area greater than 200 x 103km2. The methodology is based on the Basal Temperature of Snow (BTS) technique, first developed in the European Alps. Ground surface temperatures measured at the base of snow > 80 cm thick in late winter are an indicator of permafrost presence or absence. We have used this method successfully in three study areas of about 200 km2: first, Wolf Creek basin near Whitehorse (Lewkowicz and Ednie, 2004) and now the western side of the Ruby Range adjacent to Kluane Lake, and the Haines Summit area in northwestern British Columbia. In each area, (1) we installed miniature temperature loggers at the ground surface and in the air to check on the timing of the BTS measurements; (2) we measured BTS values in the elevation zone across which permafrost was expected to become widespread; (3) we modelled the BTS spatial field using elevation (from a 30 m DEM) and potential incoming solar radiation (PISR) as the independent variables; and (4) we used logistic regression to compare the modelled BTS values with pit observations made in late-summer of the presence or absence of frozen ground. Both elevation and PISR were significant in the Wolf Creek and Ruby Range sites which have relatively continental climates and fall within the Upper Yukon-Stikine Basin climatic region (Wahl et al., 1987). For the Haines Summit area, however

  15. The effects of permafrost thaw on soil hydrologic, thermal, and carbon dynamics in an Alaskan peatland

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donnell, Jonathan A.; Jorgenson, M. Torre; Harden, Jennifer W.; McGuire, A. David; Kanevskiy, Mikhail Z.; Wickland, Kimberly P.

    2012-01-01

    Recent warming at high-latitudes has accelerated permafrost thaw in northern peatlands, and thaw can have profound effects on local hydrology and ecosystem carbon balance. To assess the impact of permafrost thaw on soil organic carbon (OC) dynamics, we measured soil hydrologic and thermal dynamics and soil OC stocks across a collapse-scar bog chronosequence in interior Alaska. We observed dramatic changes in the distribution of soil water associated with thawing of ice-rich frozen peat. The impoundment of warm water in collapse-scar bogs initiated talik formation and the lateral expansion of bogs over time. On average, Permafrost Plateaus stored 137 ± 37 kg C m-2, whereas OC storage in Young Bogs and Old Bogs averaged 84 ± 13 kg C m-2. Based on our reconstructions, the accumulation of OC in near-surface bog peat continued for nearly 1,000 years following permafrost thaw, at which point accumulation rates slowed. Rapid decomposition of thawed forest peat reduced deep OC stocks by nearly half during the first 100 years following thaw. Using a simple mass-balance model, we show that accumulation rates at the bog surface were not sufficient to balance deep OC losses, resulting in a net loss of OC from the entire peat column. An uncertainty analysis also revealed that the magnitude and timing of soil OC loss from thawed forest peat depends substantially on variation in OC input rates to bog peat and variation in decay constants for shallow and deep OC stocks. These findings suggest that permafrost thaw and the subsequent release of OC from thawed peat will likely reduce the strength of northern permafrost-affected peatlands as a carbon dioxide sink, and consequently, will likely accelerate rates of atmospheric warming.

  16. Distribution of near-surface permafrost in Alaska: estimates of present and future conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pastick, Neal J.; Jorgenson, M. Torre; Wylie, Bruce K.; Nield, Shawn J.; Johnson, Kristofer D.; Finley, Andrew O.

    2015-01-01

    High-latitude regions are experiencing rapid and extensive changes in ecosystem composition and function as the result of increases in average air temperature. Increasing air temperatures have led to widespread thawing and degradation of permafrost, which in turn has affected ecosystems, socioeconomics, and the carbon cycle of high latitudes. Here we overcome complex interactions among surface and subsurface conditions to map nearsurface permafrost through decision and regression tree approaches that statistically and spatially extend field observations using remotely sensed imagery, climatic data, and thematic maps of a wide range of surface and subsurface biophysical characteristics. The data fusion approach generated medium-resolution (30-m pixels) maps of near-surface (within 1 m) permafrost, active-layer thickness, and associated uncertainty estimates throughout mainland Alaska. Our calibrated models (overall test accuracy of ~85%) were used to quantify changes in permafrost distribution under varying future climate scenarios assuming no other changes in biophysical factors. Models indicate that near-surface permafrost underlies 38% of mainland Alaska and that near-surface permafrost will disappear on 16 to 24% of the landscape by the end of the 21st Century. Simulations suggest that near-surface permafrost degradation is more probable in central regions of Alaska than more northerly regions. Taken together, these results have obvious implications for potential remobilization of frozen soil carbon pools under warmer temperatures. Additionally, warmer and drier conditions may increase fire activity and severity, which may exacerbate rates of permafrost thaw and carbon remobilization relative to climate alone. The mapping of permafrost distribution across Alaska is important for land-use planning, environmental assessments, and a wide-array of geophysical studies.

  17. Review of the regions and global warming: Impacts and response strategies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schmandt, J.; Clarkson, J.

    1992-01-01

    This book is a compilation of essays prepared by the winners and finalists of the 1991 competition for the George and Cynthia Mitchell International Prize for Sustainable Development. In that year, the prize was awarded for outstanding papers on regional implications of global climate change. In the introduction that precedes the 19 essays, the editors establish that the volume focuses on mitigative and adaptive strategies that can be carried out regionally. Because the authors of the essays are from a wide range of locations and affiliations, they present a diverse set of perspectives on the global change issue. The essays are simultaneously scholarly and of uniformly high readability, and should be understandable to a general college-level audience

  18. Regional difference of the start time of the recent warming in Eastern China: prompted by a 165-year temperature record deduced from tree rings in the Dabie Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Qiufang; Liu, Yu; Duan, Bingchuang; Sun, Changfeng

    2018-03-01

    Tree-ring studies from tropical to subtropical regions are rarer than that from extratropical regions, which greatly limit our understanding of some critical climate change issues. Based on the tree-ring-width chronology of samples collected from the Dabie Mountains, we reconstructed the April-June mean temperature for this region with an explained variance of 46.8%. Five cold (1861-1869, 1889-1899, 1913-1920, 1936-1942 and 1952-1990) and three warm (1870-1888, 1922-1934 and 2000-2005) periods were identified in the reconstruction. The reconstruction not only agreed well with the instrumental records in and around the study area, but also showed good resemblance to previous temperature reconstructions from nearby regions, indicating its spatial and temporal representativeness of the temperature variation in the central part of eastern China. Although no secular warming trend was found, the warming trend since 1970 was unambiguous in the Dabie Mountains (0.064 °C/year). Further temperature comparison indicated that the start time of the recent warming in eastern China was regional different. It delayed gradually from north to south, starting at least around 1940 AD in the north part, around 1970 AD in the central part and around 1980s in the south part. This work enriches the high-resolution temperature reconstructions in eastern China. We expect that climate warming in the future would promote the radial growth of alpine Pinus taiwanensis in the subtropical areas of China, therefore promote the carbon capture and carbon storage in the Pinus taiwanensis forest. It also helps to clarify the regional characteristic of recent warming in eastern China.

  19. Historical and Possible Future Changes in Permafrost and Active Layer Thickness in Alaska: Implications to Landscape Changes and Permafrost Carbon Pool.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marchenko, S. S.; Helene, G.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Breen, A. L.; McGuire, D.; Rupp, S. T.; Romanovsky, V. E.; Walsh, J. E.

    2017-12-01

    The Soil Temperature and Active Layer Thickness (ALT) Gridded Data was developed to quantify the nature and rate of permafrost degradation and its impact on ecosystems, infrastructure, CO2 and CH4 fluxes and net C storage following permafrost thaw across Alaska. To develop this database, we used the process-based permafrost dynamics model GIPL2 developed in the Geophysical Institute Permafrost Lab, UAF and which is the permafrost module of the Integrated Ecosystem Model (IEM) for Alaska and Northwest Canada. The climate forcing data for simulations were developed by the Scenarios Network for Alaska and Arctic Planning (SNAP, http://www.snap.uaf.edu/). These data are based on the historical CRU3.1 data set for the retrospective analysis period (1901-2009) and the five model averaged data were derived from the five CMIP5/AR5 IPCC Global Circulation Models that performed the best in Alaska and other northern regions: NCAR-CCSM4, GFDL-CM3, GISS-E2-R, IPSL-CM5A-LR, MRI-CGCM3. A composite of all five-model outputs for the RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 were used in these particular permafrost dynamics simulations. Data sets were downscaled to a 771 m resolution, using the Parameter-elevation Regressions on Independent Slopes Model (PRISM) climatology. Additional input data (snow characteristics, soil thermal properties, soil water content, organic matter accumulation or its loss due to fire, etc.) came from the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (TEM) and the ALFRESCO (ALaska FRame-based EcoSystem COde) model simulations. We estimated the dynamics of permafrost temperature, active layer thickness, area occupied by permafrost, and volume of seasonally thawed soils within the 4.75 upper meters (original TEM soil column) across the Alaska domain. Simulations of future changes in permafrost indicate that, by the end of the 21st century, late-Holocene permafrost in Alaska will be actively thawing at all locations and that some Late Pleistocene carbon-rich peatlands underlain by permafrost will

  20. The response of Antarctica MLT region for the recent Sudden Stratospheric Warming (SSW) over Southern Hemisphere (SH): An overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eswaraiah, S.; Kim, Y.; Lee, J.; Kim, J. H.; Venkat Ratnam, M.; Riggin, D. M.; Vijaya Bhaskara Rao, S.

    2017-12-01

    A minor Sudden Stratospheric Warming (SSW) was noticed in the southern hemisphere (SH) during the September (day 259) 2010 along with two episodic warmings in early August (day 212) and late October (day 300) 2010. The signature of the mesosphere and lower thermosphere (MLT) response was detected using the ground based and space borne observations along with the model predictions. The changes in the mesosphere wind field were studied from the observations of both meteor radar and MF radar located at King Sejong Station (62.22°S, 58.78°W) and Rothera (68oS, 68oW), Antarctica, respectively. The zonal winds in the mesosphere reversed approximately a week before the September SSW occurrence. We have also analyzed the MLT tides using both the radars and noticed strong enhancement of semi-diurnal tide (SDT) a few days later the cessation of 2010 SSW. We note the similar enhancement during the 2002 major SSW. Specifically, the SDT amplitude enhancement is greater for the 2010 SSW than 2002 SSW. We found that strong 14-16 day PWs prevailed prior to the 2010 minor SSW and disappeared suddenly after the SSW in the mesosphere by generating the quasi-secondary waves of periodicity 3-9 days. The mesosphere wind reversal is also noticed in "Specified Dynamics" version of Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (SD-WACCM) and Ground-to-topside model of Atmosphere and Ionosphere for Aeronomy (GAIA) simulations. The similar zonal wind weakening/reversal in the lower thermosphere between 100 and 140 km are simulated by GAIA. Further, we observed the mesospheric cooling in consistency with SSWs using Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) data. However, the GAIA simulations showed warming between 130 and 140 km after few days of SSW. Thus, the observation and model simulation indicate for the first time that the 2010 minor SSW also affects dynamics of the MLT region over SH in a manner similar to the 2002 major SSW.

  1. Interaction of thermal and mechanical processes in steep permafrost rock walls: A conceptual approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Draebing, D.; Krautblatter, M.; Dikau, R.

    2014-12-01

    Degradation of permafrost rock wall decreases stability and can initiate rock slope instability of all magnitudes. Rock instability is controlled by the balance of shear forces and shear resistances. The sensitivity of slope stability to warming results from a complex interplay of shear forces and resistances. Conductive, convective and advective heat transport processes act to warm, degrade and thaw permafrost in rock walls. On a seasonal scale, snow cover changes are a poorly understood key control of the timing and extent of thawing and permafrost degradation. We identified two potential critical time windows where shear forces might exceed shear resistances of the rock. In early summer combined hydrostatic and cryostatic pressure can cause a peak in shear force exceeding high frozen shear resistance and in autumn fast increasing shear forces can exceed slower increasing shear resistance. On a multiannual system scale, shear resistances change from predominantly rock-mechanically to ice-mechanically controlled. Progressive rock bridge failure results in an increase of sensitivity to warming. Climate change alters snow cover and duration and, hereby, thermal and mechanical processes in the rock wall. Amplified thawing of permafrost will result in higher rock slope instability and rock fall activity. We present a holistic conceptual approach connecting thermal and mechanical processes, validate parts of the model with geophysical and kinematic data and develop future scenarios to enhance understanding on system scale.

  2. The Role of Atmospheric Heating over the South China Sea and Western Pacific Regions in Modulating Asian Summer Climate under the Global Warming Background

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, B.

    2015-12-01

    Global warming is one of the most significant climate change signals at the earth's surface. However, the responses of monsoon precipitation to global warming show very distinct regional features, especially over the South China Sea (SCS) and surrounding regions during boreal summer. To understand the possible dynamics in these specific regions under the global warming background, the changes in atmospheric latent heating and their possible influences on global climate are investigated by both observational diagnosis and numerical sensitivity simulations. Results indicate that summertime latent heating has intensified in the SCS and western Pacific, accompanied by increased precipitation, cloud cover, lower-tropospheric convergence, and decreased sea level pressure. Sensitivity experiments show that middle and upper tropospheric heating causes an east-west feedback pattern between SCS-western Pacific and South Asia, which strengthens the South Asian High in the upper troposphere and moist convergence in the lower troposphere, consequently forcing a descending motion and adiabatic warming over continental South Asia and leading to a warm and dry climate. When air-sea interaction is considered, the simulation results are overall more similar to observations, and in particular the bias of precipitation over the Indian Ocean simulated by AGCMs has been reduced. The results highlight the important role of latent heating in adjusting the changes in sea surface temperature through atmospheric dynamics.

  3. Permafrost and lakes control river isotope composition across a boreal Arctic transect in the Western Siberian lowlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ala-aho, P.; Soulsby, C.; Pokrovsky, O. S.; Kirpotin, S. N.; Karlsson, J.; Serikova, S.; Manasypov, R.; Lim, A.; Krickov, I.; Kolesnichenko, L. G.; Laudon, H.; Tetzlaff, D.

    2018-03-01

    The Western Siberian Lowlands (WSL) store large quantities of organic carbon that will be exposed and mobilized by the thawing of permafrost. The fate of mobilized carbon, however, is not well understood, partly because of inadequate knowledge of hydrological controls in the region which has a vast low-relief surface area, extensive lake and wetland coverage and gradually increasing permafrost influence. We used stable water isotopes to improve our understanding of dominant landscape controls on the hydrology of the WSL. We sampled rivers along a 1700 km South-North transect from permafrost-free to continuous permafrost repeatedly over three years, and derived isotope proxies for catchment hydrological responsiveness and connectivity. We found correlations between the isotope proxies and catchment characteristics, suggesting that lakes and wetlands are intimately connected to rivers, and that permafrost increases the responsiveness of the catchment to rainfall and snowmelt events, reducing catchment mean transit times. Our work provides rare isotope-based field evidence that permafrost and lakes/wetlands influence hydrological pathways across a wide range of spatial scales (10-105 km2) and permafrost coverage (0%-70%). This has important implications, because both permafrost extent and lake/wetland coverage are affected by permafrost thaw in the changing climate. Changes in these hydrological landscape controls are likely to alter carbon export and emission via inland waters, which may be of global significance.

  4. Response of permafrost to projected climate change: Results from global offline model simulations with JSBACH

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blome, Tanja; Ekici, Altug; Beer, Christian; Hagemann, Stefan

    2014-05-01

    Permafrost or perennially frozen ground is an important part of the terrestrial cryosphere; roughly one quarter of Earth's land surface is underlain by permafrost. As it is a thermal phenomenon, its characteristics are highly dependent on climatic factors. The impact of the currently observed warming, which is projected to persist during the coming decades due to anthropogenic CO2 input, certainly has effects for the vast permafrost areas of the high northern latitudes. The quantification of these effects, however, is scientifically still an open question. This is partly due to the complexity of the system, where several feedbacks are interacting between land and atmosphere, sometimes counterbalancing each other. Moreover, until recently, many global circulation models (GCMs) lacked the sufficient representation of permafrost physics in their land surface schemes. In order to assess the response of permafrost to projected climate change for the 21st century, the land surface scheme of the Max-Planck-Institute for Meteorology, JSBACH, has recently been equipped with the important physical processes for permafrost studies, and was driven globally with bias corrected climate data, thereby spanning a period from 1850 until 2100. The applied land surface scheme JSBACH now considers the effects of freezing and thawing of soil water for both energy and water cycles, thermal properties depending on soil water and ice contents, and soil moisture movement being influenced by the presence of soil ice. To address the uncertainty range arising through different greenhouse gas concentrations as well as through different climate realisations when using various climate models, combinations of two Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) and two GCMs were used as driving data. In order to focus only on the climatic impact on permafrost, effects due to feedbacks between climate and permafrost (namely via carbon fluxes between land and atmosphere) are excluded in the experiments

  5. Differentiation regional climate impact indicators at 1.5°C and 2°C warming above pre-industrial levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schleussner, C. F.

    2016-12-01

    Robust appraisals of climate impacts at different levels of global-mean temperature increase are vital to guide assessments of dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system. By establishing 1.5°C as the long term temperature limit for global average temperature increase and inviting a special report of the IPCC on the impacts of 1.5°C, the Paris Agreement has put such assessments high on the post-Paris science agenda. Here I will present recent findings of climate impacts at 1.5°C, including extreme weather events, water availability, agricultural yields, sea-level rise and risk of coral reef loss. In particular, I will present findings from a recent study that attempts to differentiate between such impacts at warming levels of 1.5°¸C and 2°C above pre-industrial (Schleussner et al., 2016). By analyzing changes in indicators for 26 world regions as applicable, the study found regional dependent differences between a 1.5°C and 2°C warming. Regional hot-spots of change emerge with tropical regions bearing the brunt of the impacts of an additional 0.5°C warming. These findings highlight the importance of regional differentiation to assess both future climate risks and different vulnerabilities to incremental increases in global-mean temperature. Building on that analysis, I will discuss limitations of existing approaches to differentiate between warming levels and outline opportunities for future work on refining our understanding of the difference between impacts at 1.5°C and 2°C warming. ReferencesSchleussner, C.-F. et al. Differential climate impacts for policy relevant limits to global warming: the case of 1.5°C and 2°C. Earth Syst. Dyn. 7, 327-351 (2016).

  6. Methane bubbling from Siberian thaw lakes as a positive feedback to climate warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walter, K M; Zimov, S A; Chanton, J P; Verbyla, D; Chapin, F S

    2006-09-07

    Large uncertainties in the budget of atmospheric methane, an important greenhouse gas, limit the accuracy of climate change projections. Thaw lakes in North Siberia are known to emit methane, but the magnitude of these emissions remains uncertain because most methane is released through ebullition (bubbling), which is spatially and temporally variable. Here we report a new method of measuring ebullition and use it to quantify methane emissions from two thaw lakes in North Siberia. We show that ebullition accounts for 95 per cent of methane emissions from these lakes, and that methane flux from thaw lakes in our study region may be five times higher than previously estimated. Extrapolation of these fluxes indicates that thaw lakes in North Siberia emit 3.8 teragrams of methane per year, which increases present estimates of methane emissions from northern wetlands (< 6-40 teragrams per year; refs 1, 2, 4-6) by between 10 and 63 per cent. We find that thawing permafrost along lake margins accounts for most of the methane released from the lakes, and estimate that an expansion of thaw lakes between 1974 and 2000, which was concurrent with regional warming, increased methane emissions in our study region by 58 per cent. Furthermore, the Pleistocene age (35,260-42,900 years) of methane emitted from hotspots along thawing lake margins indicates that this positive feedback to climate warming has led to the release of old carbon stocks previously stored in permafrost.

  7. Permafrost: occurrence and physiochemical processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ahonen, L. [Geological Survey of Finland, Espoo (Finland)

    2001-10-01

    Bedrock of the Northern Hemisphere areas to the north of about the 60th latitude are nowadays dominated by permafrost conditions. Fennoscandia is a major exception being characterised by temperate climate. In studying deep geological disposal of long-living nuclear waste, long-term climatic changes have to be taken into account. One of the scenarios to be studied is the extension of the deep permafrost conditions to the disposal site. Quaternary climatic fluctuations and their possible reasons are discussed shortly. The author's conclusion is that future climatic changes cannot be undoubtedly derived from the past variations, mainly because of the current anthropogenic involvement and of the poorly known dynamics of the major climate-affecting factors like ocean currents, which cannot be treated in a deterministic way. In low-porosity crystalline rocks permafrost may propagate to the depth of about 500 metres in some thousands to ten thousands of years. On the other hand, the major effects of permafrost are related to the freezing of water in the pores. Water expands about 9 percent in freezing, and the increasing stress may lead to pressure melting of ice. Dissolved salts in water do not accommodate into the solid ice, but they form saline water or brine segregations having freezing point of even less than minus ten degrees. A front of saline water may develop beneath the frozen bedrock. Pockets of saline water may also occur in ice, and unfrozen adsorption water may occur on the grain boundaries. With respect to the radionuclide transport processes, permafrost as such is a barrier, while the unfrozen domains (taliks) beneath major lake and river systems are potential flow paths. (orig.)

  8. Permafrost: occurrence and physiochemical processes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ahonen, L.

    2001-10-01

    Bedrock of the Northern Hemisphere areas to the north of about the 60th latitude are nowadays dominated by permafrost conditions. Fennoscandia is a major exception being characterised by temperate climate. In studying deep geological disposal of long-living nuclear waste, long-term climatic changes have to be taken into account. One of the scenarios to be studied is the extension of the deep permafrost conditions to the disposal site. Quaternary climatic fluctuations and their possible reasons are discussed shortly. The author's conclusion is that future climatic changes cannot be undoubtedly derived from the past variations, mainly because of the current anthropogenic involvement and of the poorly known dynamics of the major climate-affecting factors like ocean currents, which cannot be treated in a deterministic way. In low-porosity crystalline rocks permafrost may propagate to the depth of about 500 metres in some thousands to ten thousands of years. On the other hand, the major effects of permafrost are related to the freezing of water in the pores. Water expands about 9 percent in freezing, and the increasing stress may lead to pressure melting of ice. Dissolved salts in water do not accommodate into the solid ice, but they form saline water or brine segregations having freezing point of even less than minus ten degrees. A front of saline water may develop beneath the frozen bedrock. Pockets of saline water may also occur in ice, and unfrozen adsorption water may occur on the grain boundaries. With respect to the radionuclide transport processes, permafrost as such is a barrier, while the unfrozen domains (taliks) beneath major lake and river systems are potential flow paths. (orig.)

  9. Collaborative Research. Quantifying Climate Feedbacks of the Terrestrial Biosphere under Thawing Permafrost Conditions in the Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhuang, Qianlai [Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States); Schlosser, Courtney [Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States); Melillo, Jerry [Marine Biological Lab. (MBL), Woods Hole, MA (United States); Walter, Katey [Univ. of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK (United States)

    2015-09-15

    Our overall goal is to quantify the potential for threshold changes in natural emission rates of trace gases, particularly methane and carbon dioxide, from pan-arctic terrestrial systems under the spectrum of anthropogenically-forced climate warming, and the conditions under which these emissions provide a strong feedback mechanism to global climate warming. This goal is motivated under the premise that polar amplification of global climate warming will induce widespread thaw and degradation of the permafrost, and would thus cause substantial changes to the landscape of wetlands and lakes, especially thermokarst (thaw) lakes, across the Arctic. Through a suite of numerical experiments that encapsulate the fundamental processes governing methane emissions and carbon exchanges – as well as their coupling to the global climate system - we intend to test the following hypothesis in the proposed research: There exists a climate warming threshold beyond which permafrost degradation becomes widespread and stimulates large increases in methane emissions (via thermokarst lakes and poorly-drained wetland areas upon thawing permafrost along with microbial metabolic responses to higher temperatures) and increases in carbon dioxide emissions from well-drained areas. Besides changes in biogeochemistry, this threshold will also influence global energy dynamics through effects on surface albedo, evapotranspiration and water vapor. These changes would outweigh any increased uptake of carbon (e.g. from peatlands and higher plant photosynthesis) and would result in a strong, positive feedback to global climate warming.

  10. Characterizing permafrost active layer dynamics and sensitivity to landscape spatial heterogeneity in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yi, Yonghong; Kimball, John S.; Chen, Richard H.; Moghaddam, Mahta; Reichle, Rolf H.; Mishra, Umakant; Zona, Donatella; Oechel, Walter C.

    2018-01-01

    An important feature of the Arctic is large spatial heterogeneity in active layer conditions, which is generally poorly represented by global models and can lead to large uncertainties in predicting regional ecosystem responses and climate feedbacks. In this study, we developed a spatially integrated modeling and analysis framework combining field observations, local-scale ( ˜ 50 m resolution) active layer thickness (ALT) and soil moisture maps derived from low-frequency (L + P-band) airborne radar measurements, and global satellite environmental observations to investigate the ALT sensitivity to recent climate trends and landscape heterogeneity in Alaska. Modeled ALT results show good correspondence with in situ measurements in higher-permafrost-probability (PP ≥ 70 %) areas (n = 33; R = 0.60; mean bias = 1.58 cm; RMSE = 20.32 cm), but with larger uncertainty in sporadic and discontinuous permafrost areas. The model results also reveal widespread ALT deepening since 2001, with smaller ALT increases in northern Alaska (mean trend = 0.32±1.18 cm yr-1) and much larger increases (> 3 cm yr-1) across interior and southern Alaska. The positive ALT trend coincides with regional warming and a longer snow-free season (R = 0.60 ± 0.32). A spatially integrated analysis of the radar retrievals and model sensitivity simulations demonstrated that uncertainty in the spatial and vertical distribution of soil organic carbon (SOC) was the largest factor affecting modeled ALT accuracy, while soil moisture played a secondary role. Potential improvements in characterizing SOC heterogeneity, including better spatial sampling of soil conditions and advances in remote sensing of SOC and soil moisture, will enable more accurate predictions of active layer conditions and refinement of the modeling framework across a larger domain.

  11. Microorganisms Trapped Within Permafrost Ice In The Fox Permafrost Tunnel, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katayama, T.; Tanaka, M.; Douglas, T. A.; Cai, Y.; Tomita, F.; Asano, K.; Fukuda, M.

    2008-12-01

    Several different types of massive ice are common in permafrost. Ice wedges are easily recognized by their shape and foliated structure. They grow syngenetically or epigenetically as a result of repeated cycles of frost cracking followed by the infiltration of snow, melt water, soil or other material into the open frost cracks. Material incorporated into ice wedges becomes frozen and preserved. Pool ice, another massive ice type, is formed by the freezing of water resting on top of frozen thermokarst sediment or melting wedges and is not foliated. The Fox Permafrost Tunnel in Fairbanks was excavated within the discontinuous permafrost zone of central Alaska and it contains permafrost, ice wedges, and pool ice preserved at roughly -3°C. We collected samples from five ice wedges and three pool ice structures in the Fox Permafrost Tunnel. If the microorganisms were incorporated into the ice during its formation, a community analysis of the microorganisms could elucidate the environment in which the ice was formed. Organic material from sediments in the tunnel was radiocarbon-dated between 14,000 and 30,000 years BP. However, it is still not clear when the ice wedges were formed or subsequently deformed because they are only partially exposed and their upper surfaces are above the tunnel walls. The objectives of our study were to determine the biogeochemical conditions during massive ice formation and to analyze the microbial community within the ices by incubation-based and DNA-based analyses. The geochemical profile and the PCR-DGGE band patterns of bacteria among five ice wedge and 3 portions of pool ice samples were markedly different. The DGGE band patterns of fungi were simple with a few bands of fungi or yeast. The dominant bands of ice wedge and pool ice samples were affiliated with the genus Geomyces and Doratomyces, respectively. Phylogenetic analysis using rRNA gene ITS regions indicated isolates of Geomyces spp. from different ice wedges were affiliated

  12. Global Warming and the Summertime Evapotranspiration Regime of the Alpine Region

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Calanca, P.; Jasper, K. [Agroscope FAL Reckenholz, Swiss Federal Research Station for Agroecology and Agriculture, CH-8046 Zuerich (Switzerland); Roesch, A.; Wild, M. [Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, CH-8092 Zuerich (Switzerland)

    2006-11-15

    Changes of the summer evapotranspiration regime under increased levels of atmospheric greenhouse gases are discussed for three Alpine river basins on the basis of a new set of simulations carried out with a high-resolution hydrological model. The climate change signal was inferred from the output of two simulations with a state-of-the-art global climate model (GCM), a reference run valid for 1961-1990 and a time-slice simulation valid for 2071-2100 under forcing from the A2 IPCC emission scenario. In this particular GCM experiment and with respect to the Alpine region summer temperature was found to increase by 3 to 4C, whereas precipitation was found to decrease by 10 to 20%. Global radiation and water vapor pressure deficit were found to increase by about 5% and 2 hPa, respectively. On this background, an overall increase of potential evapotranspiration of about 20% relative to the baseline was predicted by the hydrological model, with important variations between but also within individual basins. The results of the hydrological simulations also revealed a reduction in the evapotranspiration efficiency that depends on altitude. Accordingly, actual evapotranspiration was found to increase at high altitudes and to the south of the Alps, but to decrease in low elevation areas of the northern forelands and in the inner-Alpine domain. Such a differentiation does not appear in the GCM scenario, which predicts an overall increase in evapotranspiration over the Alps. This underlines the importance of detailed simulations for the quantitative assessment of the regional impact of climate change on the hydrological cycle.

  13. Subsea ice-bearing permafrost on the U.S. Beaufort Margin: 2. Borehole constraints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruppel, Carolyn D.; Herman, Bruce M.; Brothers, Laura L.; Hart, Patrick E.

    2016-01-01

    Borehole logging data from legacy wells directly constrain the contemporary distribution of subsea permafrost in the sedimentary section at discrete locations on the U.S. Beaufort Margin and complement recent regional analyses of exploration seismic data to delineate the permafrost's offshore extent. Most usable borehole data were acquired on a ∼500 km stretch of the margin and within 30 km of the contemporary coastline from north of Lake Teshekpuk to nearly the U.S.-Canada border. Relying primarily on deep resistivity logs that should be largely unaffected by drilling fluids and hole conditions, the analysis reveals the persistence of several hundred vertical meters of ice-bonded permafrost in nearshore wells near Prudhoe Bay and Foggy Island Bay, with less permafrost detected to the east and west. Permafrost is inferred beneath many barrier islands and in some nearshore and lagoonal (back-barrier) wells. The analysis of borehole logs confirms the offshore pattern of ice-bearing subsea permafrost distribution determined based on regional seismic analyses and reveals that ice content generally diminishes with distance from the coastline. Lacking better well distribution, it is not possible to determine the absolute seaward extent of ice-bearing permafrost, nor the distribution of permafrost beneath the present-day continental shelf at the end of the Pleistocene. However, the recovery of gas hydrate from an outer shelf well (Belcher) and previous delineation of a log signature possibly indicating gas hydrate in an inner shelf well (Hammerhead 2) imply that permafrost may once have extended across much of the shelf offshore Camden Bay.

  14. Changes to the Carbon and Energy fluxes in a Northern Peatland with Thawing Permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harder, S. R.; Roulet, N. T.; Crill, P. M.; Strachan, I. B.

    2017-12-01

    The maintenance of thaw of high carbon density landscapes in the permafrost region ultimately depends of how the energy balance is partitioned as temperatures and precipitation change, yet there are comparatively few energy balance studies, especially in peatlands that contain permafrost. While permafrost peatlands are currently net sinks of carbon, as Arctic temperatures rise and permafrost thaws, the future of these ecosystems and their capacity for carbon uptake is in question. Since 2012 we have been measuring the spatially integrated CO2, energy and water vapour fluxes from the Stordalen peatland (68°22'N, 19°03'E) using eddy covariance (EC). The Stordalen peatland is a heterogeneous peatland in the discontinuous permafrost zone where permafrost thaw is actively occurring, resulting in large changes to the landscape from year to year. Areas where permafrost is present are elevated by up to 1.5 m compared to the areas where permafrost has thawed causing differences in water table depth, peat temperatures, snow distribution, vegetation community and therefore in the carbon and energy fluxes. Our EC tower is located on the edge of a permafrost peat plateau (or palsa) where one fetch measures fluxes from an area underlain by permafrost and the other fetch sees the portion of the peatland where the permafrost has thawed. Within each sector, we have an array of soil temperature and water content sensors to determine the physical characteristics of each fetch. Extensive vegetation surveys (based on plant functional types or PFTs) have also been conducted to run a footprint analysis on the flux data to complete a comparative analysis of the magnitude and variability of the carbon and energy exchanges from PFT. The footprint analysis allows us to explain the difference in energy and carbon fluxes by examining the ecological, biogeochemical and physical characteristics within each footprint. We see distinctly different energy partitioning between the fetches

  15. Shifted energy fluxes, increased Bowen ratios, and reduced thaw depths linked with drainage-induced changes in permafrost ecosystem structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Göckede, Mathias; Kittler, Fanny; Kwon, Min Jung; Burjack, Ina; Heimann, Martin; Kolle, Olaf; Zimov, Nikita; Zimov, Sergey

    2017-12-01

    Hydrologic conditions are a key factor in Arctic ecosystems, with strong influences on ecosystem structure and related effects on biogeophysical and biogeochemical processes. With systematic changes in water availability expected for large parts of the northern high-latitude region in the coming centuries, knowledge on shifts in ecosystem functionality triggered by altered water levels is crucial for reducing uncertainties in climate change predictions. Here, we present findings from paired ecosystem observations in northeast Siberia comprising a drained and a control site. At the drainage site, the water table has been artificially lowered by up to 30 cm in summer for more than a decade. This sustained primary disturbance in hydrologic conditions has triggered a suite of secondary shifts in ecosystem properties, including vegetation community structure, snow cover dynamics, and radiation budget, all of which influence the net effects of drainage. Reduced thermal conductivity in dry organic soils was identified as the dominating drainage effect on energy budget and soil thermal regime. Through this effect, reduced heat transfer into deeper soil layers leads to shallower thaw depths, initially leading to a stabilization of organic permafrost soils, while the long-term effects on permafrost temperature trends still need to be assessed. At the same time, more energy is transferred back into the atmosphere as sensible heat in the drained area, which may trigger a warming of the lower atmospheric surface layer.

  16. Shifted energy fluxes, increased Bowen ratios, and reduced thaw depths linked with drainage-induced changes in permafrost ecosystem structure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Göckede

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Hydrologic conditions are a key factor in Arctic ecosystems, with strong influences on ecosystem structure and related effects on biogeophysical and biogeochemical processes. With systematic changes in water availability expected for large parts of the northern high-latitude region in the coming centuries, knowledge on shifts in ecosystem functionality triggered by altered water levels is crucial for reducing uncertainties in climate change predictions. Here, we present findings from paired ecosystem observations in northeast Siberia comprising a drained and a control site. At the drainage site, the water table has been artificially lowered by up to 30 cm in summer for more than a decade. This sustained primary disturbance in hydrologic conditions has triggered a suite of secondary shifts in ecosystem properties, including vegetation community structure, snow cover dynamics, and radiation budget, all of which influence the net effects of drainage. Reduced thermal conductivity in dry organic soils was identified as the dominating drainage effect on energy budget and soil thermal regime. Through this effect, reduced heat transfer into deeper soil layers leads to shallower thaw depths, initially leading to a stabilization of organic permafrost soils, while the long-term effects on permafrost temperature trends still need to be assessed. At the same time, more energy is transferred back into the atmosphere as sensible heat in the drained area, which may trigger a warming of the lower atmospheric surface layer.

  17. Derivation and analysis of a high-resolution estimate of global permafrost zonation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Gruber

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Permafrost underlies much of Earth's surface and interacts with climate, eco-systems and human systems. It is a complex phenomenon controlled by climate and (sub- surface properties and reacts to change with variable delay. Heterogeneity and sparse data challenge the modeling of its spatial distribution. Currently, there is no data set to adequately inform global studies of permafrost. The available data set for the Northern Hemisphere is frequently used for model evaluation, but its quality and consistency are difficult to assess. Here, a global model of permafrost extent and dataset of permafrost zonation are presented and discussed, extending earlier studies by including the Southern Hemisphere, by consistent data and methods, by attention to uncertainty and scaling. Established relationships between air temperature and the occurrence of permafrost are re-formulated into a model that is parametrized using published estimates. It is run with a high-resolution (<1 km global elevation data and air temperatures based on the NCAR-NCEP reanalysis and CRU TS 2.0. The resulting data provide more spatial detail and a consistent extrapolation to remote regions, while aggregated values resemble previous studies. The estimated uncertainties affect regional patterns and aggregate number, and provide interesting insight. The permafrost area, i.e. the actual surface area underlain by permafrost, north of 60° S is estimated to be 13–18 × 106 km2 or 9–14 % of the exposed land surface. The global permafrost area including Antarctic and sub-sea permafrost is estimated to be 16–21 × 106 km2. The global permafrost region, i.e. the exposed land surface below which some permafrost can be expected, is estimated to be 22 ± 3 × 106 km2. A large proportion of this exhibits considerable topography and spatially-discontinuous permafrost, underscoring the importance of attention to scaling issues

  18. PYRN-Bib: The Permafrost Young Researchers Network Bibliography of Permafrost-Related Degree-Earning Theses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grosse, Guido; Lantuit, Hugues; Gärtner-Roer, Isabelle

    2010-05-01

    PYRN-Bib is an international bibliographical database aiming at collecting and distributing information on all theses submitted for earning a scientific degree in permafrost-related research. PYRN-Bib is hosted by the Permafrost Young Researchers Network (PYRN, http://pyrn.ways.org), an international network of early career students and young scientists in permafrost related research with currently more than 750 members. The fully educational, non-profit project PYRN-Bib is published under the patronage of the International Permafrost Association (IPA). The bibliography covers all theses as long as they clearly treat aspects of permafrost research from such diverse fields as: Geophysics, Geology, Cryolithology, Biology, Biogeochemistry, Microbiology, Astrobiology, Chemistry, Engineering, Geomorphology, Remote Sensing, Modeling, Mineral and Hydrocarbon Exploration, and Science History and Education. The specific goals of PYRN-Bib are (1) to generate a comprehensive database that includes all degree-earning theses (e.g. Diploma, Ph.D., Master, etc.), coming from any country and any scientific field, under the single condition that the thesis is strongly related to research on permafrost and/or periglacial processes; (2) to reference unique but buried sources of information including theses published in languages other than English; (3) to make the database widely available to the scientific community and the general public; (4) to solicit PYRN membership; and (5) to provide a mean to map the evolution of permafrost research over the last decades, including regional trends, shifts in research direction, and/or the place of permafrost research in society. PYRN-Bib is available online and maintained by PYRN. The complete bibliography can be downloaded at no cost and is offered in different file formats: tagged Endnote library, XML, BibTex, and PDF. New entries are continuously provided by PYRN members and the scientific community. PYRN-Bib currently contains more than

  19. Impacts of the active layer on runoff in an upland permafrost basin, northern Tibetan Plateau.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Tanguang; Zhang, Tingjun; Guo, Hong; Hu, Yuantao; Shang, Jianguo; Zhang, Yulan

    2018-01-01

    The paucity of studies on permafrost runoff generation processes, especially in mountain permafrost, constrains the understanding of permafrost hydrology and prediction of hydrological responses to permafrost degradation. This study investigated runoff generation processes, in addition to the contribution of summer thaw depth, soil temperature, soil moisture, and precipitation to streamflow in a small upland permafrost basin in the northern Tibetan Plateau. Results indicated that the thawing period and the duration of the zero-curtain were longer in permafrost of the northern Tibetan Plateau than in the Arctic. Limited snowmelt delayed the initiation of surface runoff in the peat permafrost in the study area. The runoff displayed intermittent generation, with the duration of most runoff events lasting less than 24 h. Precipitation without runoff generation was generally correlated with lower soil moisture conditions. Combined analysis suggested runoff generation in this region was controlled by soil temperature, thaw depth, precipitation frequency and amount, and antecedent soil moisture. This study serves as an important baseline to evaluate future environmental changes on the Tibetan Plateau.

  20. Incorporating global warming risks in power sector planning: A case study of the New England region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Krause, F.; Busch, J.; Koomey, J.

    1992-11-01

    Growing international concern over the threat of global climate change has led to proposals to buy insurance against this threat by reducing emissions of carbon (short for carbon dioxide) and other greenhouse gases below current levels. Concern over these and other, non-climatic environmental effects of electricity generation has led a number of states to adopt or explore new mechanisms for incorporating environmental externalities in utility resource planning. For example, the New York and Massachusetts utility commissions have adopted monetized surcharges (or adders) to induce emission reductions of federally regulated air pollutants (notably, SO 2 , NO x , and particulates) beyond federally mandated levels. These regulations also include preliminary estimates of the cost of reducing carbon emissions, for which no federal regulations exist at this time. Within New England, regulators and utilities have also held several workshops and meetings to discuss alternative methods of incorporating externalities as well as the feasibility of regional approaches. This study examines the potential for reduced carbon emissions in the New England power sector as well as the cost and rate impacts of two policy approaches: environmental externality surcharges and a target- based approach. We analyze the following questions: Does New England have sufficient low-carbon resources to achieve significant reductions (10% to 20% below current levels) in fossil carbon emissions in its utility sector? What reductions could be achieved at a maximum? What is the expected cost of carbon reductions as a function of the reduction goal? How would carbon reduction strategies affect electricity rates? How effective are environmental externality cost surcharges as an instrument in bringing about carbon reductions? To what extent could the minimization of total electricity costs alone result in carbon reductions relative to conventional resource plans?

  1. Assemblages of micronektonic fishes and invertebrates in a gradient of regional warming along the Western Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Melanie L.; Fraser, William R.; Ashford, Julian; Patarnello, Tomaso; Zane, Lorenzo; Torres, Joseph J.

    2015-12-01

    mid-peninsula assemblage was oceanic in character, being overwhelmingly dominated by Thysanoessa macrura and T. gaudichaudii. Pleuragramma antarctica were captured at five sites: Joinville Island, Croker Passage, Marguerite Bay, and the two sites near Charcot Island. They were completely absent at the two sites near Anvers Island, at Renaud Island, and in the Marguerite Trough. One fish was captured in Croker Passage. The majority of fish captured in Marguerite Bay were larger than 150 mm standard length (SL), with very few fish of smaller size present. If resident populations of Pleuragramma reproduce and recruit locally rather than being sustained by larval advection, those populations will be highly susceptible to local disappearance. This may be the causative factor behind the absence of Pleuragramma from the mid-peninsula region. Continued warming and subsequent sea ice reductions may not only cause Pleuragramma population collapses in the Marguerite Bay and Charcot Island regions, but may also change the character of the faunal assemblages along the WAP to those of an oceanic system.

  2. Assessing the combined effect of dams and climate warming on streamflow in California's Sierra Nevada for regional-scale adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rheinheimer, D. E.; Viers, J. H.

    2012-12-01

    Dams and their operations harm river ecosystems, in part by altering the natural flow regimes that those ecosystems depend on. In the multi-reservoir water management systems of California's Sierra Nevada, greater emphasis is being placed on re-operating existing reservoir systems to recover downstream ecosystems. However, climate change is changing inflow patterns, affecting both ecosystems and traditional water system benefits across the region. As new reservoir operation schemes will be needed to manage for natural resources management objectives at the regional scale, characterizing historical and future environmental impacts of current operations across the region can aid in prioritizing planning efforts. We used a coarse-scale water resources simulation model developed for the western Sierra Nevada to explore the independent and combined effects of dams and climate warming on the flow regime directly below reservoirs, the focal point for instream flow requirements in operations licenses. We quantified changes to mean annual flow, annual low flow duration, annual runoff centroid timing, and weekly rate of decrease under binary combinations of management (unregulated/regulated) and climate (historical/future) conditions. We demonstrate that although rivers in the Sierra Nevada are currently managed in ways that are harmful to instream ecosystems, and that streamflow effects of operations are typically much worse than climate change effects, there are signals that reservoirs can potentially be used to help adapt to some of climate changes harmful effects with little additional effort in some cases. This study is the first step toward a better understanding of the environmental costs from and opportunities afforded by the current stock of reservoirs in a large hydroregion under changing social and environmental conditions.

  3. Tree communities of lowland warm-temperate old-growth and neighboring shelterbelt forests in the Shikoku region of southwestern Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shigeo Kuramoto; Shigenori Oshioka; Takahisa Hirayama; Kaori Sato; Yasumasa Hirata

    2007-01-01

    We characterized the tree species composition of a 30 ha old-growth and neighboring shelterbelt (reserved buffer strips among conifer plantations) in warm-temperate forests in the Shikoku region of southwestern Japan. Using a two-way indicator species analysis of data from 28 plots, we identified four structural groups in terms of relative basal area. These structural...

  4. Global warming

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Houghton, John

    2005-01-01

    'Global warming' is a phrase that refers to the effect on the climate of human activities, in particular the burning of fossil fuels (coal, oil and gas) and large-scale deforestation, which cause emissions to the atmosphere of large amounts of 'greenhouse gases', of which the most important is carbon dioxide. Such gases absorb infrared radiation emitted by the Earth's surface and act as blankets over the surface keeping it warmer than it would otherwise be. Associated with this warming are changes of climate. The basic science of the 'greenhouse effect' that leads to the warming is well understood. More detailed understanding relies on numerical models of the climate that integrate the basic dynamical and physical equations describing the complete climate system. Many of the likely characteristics of the resulting changes in climate (such as more frequent heat waves, increases in rainfall, increase in frequency and intensity of many extreme climate events) can be identified. Substantial uncertainties remain in knowledge of some of the feedbacks within the climate system (that affect the overall magnitude of change) and in much of the detail of likely regional change. Because of its negative impacts on human communities (including for instance substantial sea-level rise) and on ecosystems, global warming is the most important environmental problem the world faces. Adaptation to the inevitable impacts and mitigation to reduce their magnitude are both necessary. International action is being taken by the world's scientific and political communities. Because of the need for urgent action, the greatest challenge is to move rapidly to much increased energy efficiency and to non-fossil-fuel energy sources

  5. Surface-Atmosphere Moisture Interactions in the Frozen Ground Regions of Eurasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ford, Trent W; Frauenfeld, Oliver W

    2016-01-18

    Climate models simulate an intensifying Arctic hydrologic cycle in response to climatic warming, however the role of surface-atmosphere interactions from degrading frozen ground is unclear in these projections. Using Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis for Research and Applications (MERRA) data in high-latitude Eurasia, we examine long-term variability in surface-atmosphere coupling as represented by the statistical relationship between surface evaporative fraction (EF) and afternoon precipitation. Changes in EF, precipitation, and their statistical association are then related to underlying permafrost type and snow cover. Results indicate significant positive trends in July EF in the Central Siberian Plateau, corresponding to significant increases in afternoon precipitation. The positive trends are only significant over continuous permafrost, with non-significant or negative EF and precipitation trends over isolated, sporadic, and discontinuous permafrost areas. Concurrently, increasing EF and subsequent precipitation are found to coincide with significant trends in May and June snowmelt, which potentially provides the moisture source for the observed enhanced latent heating and moisture recycling in the region. As climate change causes continuous permafrost to transition to discontinuous, discontinuous to sporadic, sporadic to isolated, and isolated permafrost disappears, this will also alter patterns of atmospheric convection, moisture recycling, and hence the hydrologic cycle in high-latitude land areas.

  6. Differential response of carbon fluxes to climate in three peatland ecosystems that vary in the presence and stability of permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Euskirchen, Eugenie S; Edgar, C.W.; Turetsky, M.R.; Waldrop, Mark P.; Harden, Jennifer W.

    2016-01-01

    Changes in vegetation and soil properties following permafrost degradation and thermokarst development in peatlands may cause changes in net carbon storage. To better understand these dynamics, we established three sites in Alaska that vary in permafrost regime, including a black spruce peat plateau forest with stable permafrost, an internal collapse scar bog formed as a result of thermokarst, and a rich fen without permafrost. Measurements include year-round eddy covariance estimates of carbon dioxide (CO2), water, and energy fluxes, associated environmental variables, and methane (CH4) fluxes at the collapse scar bog. The ecosystems all acted as net sinks of CO2 in 2011 and 2012, when air temperature and precipitation remained near long-term means. In 2013, under a late snowmelt and late leaf out followed by a hot, dry summer, the permafrost forest and collapse scar bog were sources of CO2. In this same year, CO2 uptake in the fen increased, largely because summer inundation from groundwater inputs suppressed ecosystem respiration. CO2 exchange in the permafrost forest and collapse scar bog was sensitive to warm air temperatures, with 0.5 g C m−2 lost each day when maximum air temperature was very warm (≥29°C). The bog lost 4981 ± 300 mg CH4 m−2 between April and September 2013, indicating that this ecosystem acted as a significant source of both CO2 and CH4 to the atmosphere in 2013. These results suggest that boreal peatland responses to warming and drying, both of which are expected to occur in a changing climate, will depend on permafrost regime.

  7. The Global Terrestrial Network for Permafrost Database: metadata statistics and prospective analysis on future permafrost temperature and active layer depth monitoring site distribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biskaborn, B. K.; Lanckman, J.-P.; Lantuit, H.; Elger, K.; Streletskiy, D. A.; Cable, W. L.; Romanovsky, V. E.

    2015-03-01

    The Global Terrestrial Network for Permafrost (GTN-P) provides the first dynamic database associated with the Thermal State of Permafrost (TSP) and the Circumpolar Active Layer Monitoring (CALM) programs, which extensively collect permafrost temperature and active layer thickness data from Arctic, Antarctic and Mountain permafrost regions. The purpose of the database is to establish an "early warning system" for the consequences of climate change in permafrost regions and to provide standardized thermal permafrost data to global models. In this paper we perform statistical analysis of the GTN-P metadata aiming to identify the spatial gaps in the GTN-P site distribution in relation to climate-effective environmental parameters. We describe the concept and structure of the Data Management System in regard to user operability, data transfer and data policy. We outline data sources and data processing including quality control strategies. Assessment of the metadata and data quality reveals 63% metadata completeness at active layer sites and 50% metadata completeness for boreholes. Voronoi Tessellation Analysis on the spatial sample distribution of boreholes and active layer measurement sites quantifies the distribution inhomogeneity and provides potential locations of additional permafrost research sites to improve the representativeness of thermal monitoring across areas underlain by permafrost. The depth distribution of the boreholes reveals that 73% are shallower than 25 m and 27% are deeper, reaching a maximum of 1 km depth. Comparison of the GTN-P site distribution with permafrost zones, soil organic carbon contents and vegetation types exhibits different local to regional monitoring situations on maps. Preferential slope orientation at the sites most likely causes a bias in the temperature monitoring and should be taken into account when using the data for global models. The distribution of GTN-P sites within zones of projected temperature change show a high

  8. Nutrient Controls on Methane Emissions in a Permafrost Thaw Subarctic Peatland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kashi, N. N.; Perryman, C. R.; Malhotra, A.; Marek, E. A.; Giesler, R.; Varner, R. K.

    2015-12-01

    Permafrost peatlands in northern latitudes are large reservoirs of sequestered carbon that are vulnerable to climate change. While peatlands account for a small fraction of total global land surfaces, their potential to release sequestered carbon in response to higher temperatures is of concern. Of particular relevance is the conversion of these carbon stores into methane (CH4), a strong greenhouse gas with a global warming potential 20 times greater than that of CO2 over a 100-year time frame. Here, we explore how key nutrients impact the consumption of CH4 at the Stordalen Mire in Abisko, Sweden, a discontinuous permafrost peatland with expanding thaw over the last century. Peatland CH4 emissions are highly spatially variable due to multiple emission pathways and strong dependence on several environmental factors. Among controls on CH4 emissions, such as temperature and water table depth, primary production of wetland vegetation is also a strong factor in the variability of CH4 emissions. Plant community shifts among permafrost thaw stages subsequently change nutrient cycling and availability, which in turn impacts primary production. Early stages of permafrost thaw are mosaicked with a variety of vascular plants and mosses. We analyzed potential enzymatic activities of chitinase, glucosidase, and phosphatase as proxies for organic nitrogen, carbon, and phosphorus cycling, respectively, in tandem with potential CH4 oxidation rates. In addition, stoichiometric ratios of carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus concentrations are used to illustrate nutrient limitation controls on CH4 oxidation rates. While CH4 emissions are low throughout initial thaw stages, highest rates of potential CH4 oxidation. These permafrost thaw-induced CH4 oxidation rates are 5 and 11 times higher, in the surface and depth of the peat profile respectively, than subsequent aerobic permafrost thaw stages. As CH4 emissions are low in intact permafrost peatlands, these high rates of potential CH4

  9. Variations of Kelvin waves around the TTL region during the stratospheric sudden warming events in the Northern Hemisphere winter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Jia

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Spatial and temporal variabilities of Kelvin waves during stratospheric sudden warming (SSW events are investigated by the ERA-Interim reanalysis data, and the results are validated by the COSMIC temperature data. A case study on an exceptionally large SSW event in 2009, and a composite analysis comprising 18 events from 1980 to 2013 are presented. During SSW events, the average temperature increases by 20 K in the polar stratosphere, while the temperature in the tropical stratosphere decreases by about 4 K. Kelvin wave with wave numbers 1 and 2, and periods 10–20 days, clearly appear around the tropical tropopause layer (TTL during SSWs. The Kelvin wave activity shows obvious coupling with the convection localized in the India Ocean and western Pacific (Indo-Pacific region. Detailed analysis suggests that the enhanced meridional circulation driven by the extratropical planetary wave forcing during SSW events leads to tropical upwelling, which further produces temperature decrease in the tropical stratosphere. The tropical upwelling and cooling consequently result in enhancement of convection in the equatorial region, which excites the strong Kelvin wave activity. In addition, we investigated the Kelvin wave acceleration to the eastward zonal wind anomalies in the equatorial stratosphere during SSW events. The composite analysis shows that the proportion of Kelvin wave contribution ranges from 5 to 35 % during SSWs, much larger than in the non-SSW mid-winters (less than 5 % in the stratosphere. However, the Kelvin wave alone is insufficient to drive the equatorial eastward zonal wind anomalies during the SSW events, which suggests that the effects of other types of equatorial waves may not be neglected.

  10. Selective Leaching of Dissolved Organic Matter From Alpine Permafrost Soils on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yinghui; Xu, Yunping; Spencer, Robert G. M.; Zito, Phoebe; Kellerman, Anne; Podgorski, David; Xiao, Wenjie; Wei, Dandan; Rashid, Harunur; Yang, Yuanhe

    2018-03-01

    Ongoing global temperature rise has caused significant thaw and degradation of permafrost soils on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP). Leaching of organic matter from permafrost soils to aquatic systems is highly complex and difficult to reproduce in a laboratory setting. We collected samples from natural seeps of active and permafrost layers in an alpine swamp meadow on the QTP to shed light on the composition of mobilized dissolved organic matter (DOM) by combining optical measurements, ultrahigh-resolution Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry, radiocarbon (14C), and solid-state 13C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Our results show that even though the active layer soils contain large amounts of proteins and carbohydrates, there is a selective release of aromatic components, whereas in the deep permafrost layer, carbohydrate and protein components are preferentially leached during the thawing process. Given these different chemical characteristics of mobilized DOM, we hypothesize that photomineralization contributes significantly to the loss of DOM that is leached from the seasonally thawed surface layer. However, with continued warming, biodegradation will become more important since biolabile materials such as protein and carbohydrate are preferentially released from deep-layer permafrost soils. This transition in DOM leachate source and associated chemical composition has ramifications for downstream fluvial networks on the QTP particularly in terms of processing of carbon and associated fluxes.

  11. Projected Changes in the Asian-Australian Monsoon Region in 1.5°C and 2.0°C Global-Warming Scenarios

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chevuturi, Amulya; Klingaman, Nicholas P.; Turner, Andrew G.; Hannah, Shaun

    2018-03-01

    In light of the Paris Agreement, it is essential to identify regional impacts of half a degree additional global warming to inform climate adaptation and mitigation strategies. We investigate the effects of 1.5°C and 2.0°C global warming above preindustrial conditions, relative to present day (2006-2015), over the Asian-Australian monsoon region (AAMR) using five models from the Half a degree Additional warming, Prognosis and Projected Impacts (HAPPI) project. There is considerable intermodel variability in projected changes to mean climate and extreme events in 2.0°C and 1.5°C scenarios. There is high confidence in projected increases to mean and extreme surface temperatures over AAMR, as well as more-frequent persistent daily temperature extremes over East Asia, Australia, and northern India with an additional 0.5°C warming, which are likely to occur. Mean and extreme monsoon precipitation amplify over AAMR, except over Australia at 1.5°C where there is uncertainty in the sign of the change. Persistent daily extreme precipitation events are likely to become more frequent over parts of East Asia and India with an additional 0.5°C warming. There is lower confidence in projections of precipitation change than in projections of surface temperature change. These results highlight the benefits of limiting the global-mean temperature change to 1.5°C above preindustrial, as the severity of the above effects increases with an extra 0.5°C warming.

  12. Introduction to the special issue: permafrost and periglacial research from coasts to mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schrott, Lothar; Humlum, Ole

    2017-09-01

    This special issue of Geomorphology includes eleven papers dealing with permafrost and periglacial research from coasts to mountains. The compilation represents a selection from 47 presentations (oral and posters) given at the 4th European Conference on Permafrost - IPA Regional Conference (EUCOP4, June 2014) in the session ;Periglacial Geomorphology;. Geomorphology as a leading journal for our discipline is particularly suitable to publish advances in permafrost and periglacial research with a focus on geomorphic processes. Since 1989 Geomorphology has published 121 special issues and two special issues are explicitly dedicated to permafrost and periglacial research, however, only with a focus on research in Antarctica. In this special issue we present papers from the Canadian Beaufort Sea, Alaska, Spitzbergen, central western Poland, the European Alps, the eastern Sudetes, the southern Carpathians, Nepal, and Antarctica.

  13. Permafrost and indigenous land use in the northern Urals: Komi and Nenets reindeer husbandry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Istomin, Kirill V.; Habeck, Joachim Otto

    2016-09-01

    Permafrost is an integral part of the environmental conditions that frame indigenous peoples' livelihoods in many parts of the circumpolar region. On the basis of their long-term ethnographic field researches, the authors describe the various ways in which permafrost dynamics influence the lives and economic activities of two groups of reindeer-herding nomads in North-Eastern Europe and Western Siberia: Komi and Nenets. Permafrost affects the herders directly, for the herders have to take into account the probability of thermokarst while choosing the campsite and performing certain herding procedures. It also affects the herders indirectly, through its influence on landscape and vegetation and thus on reindeer behavior. More rapid permafrost degradation will have a range of adverse effects on reindeer herding.

  14. Human-Modified Permafrost Complexes in Urbanized Areas of the Russian North

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grebenets, V. I.; Streletskiy, D. A.

    2013-12-01

    Economic development in permafrost regions is accompanied by modification of natural geocryological conditions. Drastic landscape transformations in urbanized areas on permafrost are characterized by changes of heat and moisture exchange in permafrost - atmosphere system, and by engineering and technogenic influence upon the frozen ground, leading to alteration of its physical, thermal and mechanical properties. In northern cities this leads to overall increase of ground temperature relative to undisturbed areas and intensification of hazardous cryogenic processes in areas under engineering development, which together leads to reduction in stability of geotechnical environment. For example, deformations of structures in Norilsk district, Northern Siberia, in the last 15 years, became much more abundant than those revealed throughout the previous 50 years. About 250 large buildings in the local towns were deformed considerably due to deterioration of geocryological conditions, about 100 structures were functioning in emergency state, and almost 50 nine- and five-storey houses, built in the 1960-80s, have been recently disassembled. Increase in accident risk for various facilities (water and oil pipelines, industrial enterprises, etc.) enhances the technogenic pressure on permafrost, leading to the new milestone of changes in permafrost characteristics, i.e. to creation of 'another reality' of geocryological conditions. Social and natural factors dictate clustered spatial pattern of industrial development in permafrost regions. Cryogenic processes within the urban areas on permafrost are seldom similar with those under the natural conditions as intensity, duration and extent of the processes changes under technogenic impacts. Moreover, new cryogenic processes and phenomena may occur, which have not been typical for a given region. This makes mapping and characterization of these processes difficult task. Peculiar natural-technogenic geocryological complexes (NTGC

  15. Dynamics of Permafrost Associated Methane Hydrate in Response to Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    You, K.; Flemings, P. B.

    2014-12-01

    The formation and melting of methane hydrate and ice are intertwined in permafrost regions. A shortage of methane supply leads to formation of hydrate only at depth, below the base of permafrost. We consider a system with the ground surface initially at 0 oC with neither ice nor hydrate present. We abruptly decrease the temperature from 0 to -10 oC to simulate the effect of marine regression/ global cooling. A low methane supply rate of 0.005 kg m-2 yr-1 from depth leads to distinct ice and hydrate layers: a 100 m continuous hydrate layer is present beneath 850 m at 80 k.y.. However, a high methane supply rate of 0.1 kg m-2 yr-1 leads to 50 m ice-bonded methane hydrate at the base of permafrost, and the hydrate layer distributes between the depth of 350 and 700 m at 80 k.y.. We apply our model to illuminate future melting of hydrate at Mallik, a known Arctic hydrate accumulation. We assume a 600 m thick ice saturated (average 90%) layer extending downward from the ground surface. We increase the surface temperature linearly from -6 to 0 oC for 300 yr and then keep the surface temperature at 0 oC to reflect future climate warming caused by doubling of CO2. Hydrate melting is initiated at the base of the hydrate layer after 15 k.y.. Methane gas starts to vent to the atmosphere at 38 k.y. with an average flux of ~ 0.35 g m-2 yr-1. If the 600 m thick average ice saturation is decreased to half (45%) (or to zero), methane gas starts to vent to the atmosphere at 29 k.y. (or at 20 k.y.) with the same average flux. These results are found by a newly-developed fully-coupled multiphase multicomponent fluid flow and heat transport model. Our thermodynamic equilibrium-based model emphasizes the role of salinity in both ice and hydrate dynamics.

  16. Data analysis and mapping of the mountain permafrost distribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deluigi, Nicola; Lambiel, Christophe; Kanevski, Mikhail

    2017-04-01

    In Alpine environments mountain permafrost is defined as a thermal state of the ground and corresponds to any lithosphere material that is at or below 0°C for, at least, two years. Its degradation is potentially leading to an increasing rock fall activity, rock glacier accelerations and an increase in the sediment transfer rates. During the last 15 years, knowledge on this phenomenon has significantly increased thanks to many studies and monitoring projects. They revealed a spatial distribution extremely heterogeneous and complex. As a consequence, modelling the potential extent of the mountain permafrost recently became a very important task. Although existing statistical models generally offer a good overview at a regional scale, they are not always able to reproduce its strong spatial discontinuity at the micro scale. To overcome this lack, the objective of this study is to propose an alternative modelling approach using three classification algorithms belonging to statistics and machine learning: Logistic regression (LR), Support Vector Machines (SVM) and Random forests (RF). The former is a linear parametric classifier that commonly used as a benchmark classification algorithm to be employed before using more complex classifiers. Non-linear SVM is a non-parametric learning algorithm and it is a member of the so-called kernel methods. RF are an ensemble learning method based on bootstrap aggregating and offer an embedded measure of the variable importance. Permafrost evidences were selected in a 588 km2 area of the Western Swiss Alps and serve as training examples. They were mapped from field data (thermal and geoelectrical data) and ortho-image interpretation (rock glacier inventorying). The dataset was completed with environmental predictors such as altitude, mean annual air temperature, aspect, slope, potential incoming solar radiation, normalized difference vegetation index and planar, profile and combined terrain curvature indices. Aiming at predicting

  17. Dissolved organic carbon loss from Yedoma permafrost amplified by ice wedge thaw

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vonk, J E; Mann, P J; Spencer, R G M; Bulygina, E B; Holmes, R M; Dowdy, K L; Davydova, A; Davydov, S P; Zimov, N; Eglinton, T I

    2013-01-01

    Pleistocene Yedoma permafrost contains nearly a third of all organic matter (OM) stored in circum-arctic permafrost and is characterized by the presence of massive ice wedges. Due to its rapid formation by sediment accumulation and subsequent frozen storage, Yedoma OM is relatively well preserved and highly biologically available (biolabile) upon thaw. A better understanding of the processes regulating Yedoma degradation is important to improve estimates of the response and magnitude of permafrost carbon feedbacks to climate warming. In this study, we examine the composition of ice wedges and the influence of ice wedge thaw on the biolability of Yedoma OM. Incubation assays were used to assess OM biolability, fluorescence spectroscopy to characterize the OM composition, and potential enzyme activity rates to examine the controls and regulation of OM degradation. We show that increasing amounts of ice wedge melt water in Yedoma-leached incubations enhanced the loss of dissolved OM over time. This may be attributed to the presence of low-molecular weight compounds and low initial phenolic content in the OM of ice wedges, providing a readily available substrate that promotes the degradation of Yedoma OC. The physical vulnerability of ice wedges upon thaw (causing irreversible collapse), combined with the composition of ice wedge-engrained OM (co-metabolizing old OM), underlines the particularly strong potential of Yedoma to generate a positive feedback to climate warming relative to other forms of non-ice wedge permafrost. (letter)

  18. Threshold sensitivity of shallow Arctic lakes and sublake permafrost to changing winter climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arp, Christopher D.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Grosse, Guido; Bondurant, Allen C.; Romanovksy, Vladimir E.; Hinkel, Kenneth M.; Parsekian, Andrew D.

    2016-01-01

    Interactions and feedbacks between abundant surface waters and permafrost fundamentally shape lowland Arctic landscapes. Sublake permafrost is maintained when the maximum ice thickness (MIT) exceeds lake depth and mean annual bed temperatures (MABTs) remain below freezing. However, declining MIT since the 1970s is likely causing talik development below shallow lakes. Here we show high-temperature sensitivity to winter ice growth at the water-sediment interface of shallow lakes based on year-round lake sensor data. Empirical model experiments suggest that shallow (1 m depth) lakes have warmed substantially over the last 30 years (2.4°C), with MABT above freezing 5 of the last 7 years. This is in comparison to slower rates of warming in deeper (3 m) lakes (0.9°C), with already well-developed taliks. Our findings indicate that permafrost below shallow lakes has already begun crossing a critical thawing threshold approximately 70 years prior to predicted terrestrial permafrost thaw in northern Alaska.

  19. Air temperature changes and their impact on permafrost ecosystems in eastern Siberia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Desyatkin Roman

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Significant increasing of mean annual air temperatures, freezing index and thawing index - have exerted a considerable impact on the state of permafrost landscapes and ecosystems in Eastern Siberia on the last few decades. Many animals and plants have shifted their ranges and this may be the precursor of northward shifts of the landscape zones. Landscapes that contain ground ice bodies in the underlying permafrost are especially sensitive to climate warming. Increase of mean annual air temperature for 2-3°C over the last three decades has resulted an increase in ground temperature by 0.4-1.3°C in the upper part of permafrost, which in turn has led intensification of negative cryogenic processes. Previous year’s measurements of greenhouses gases emission in the Middle Taiga forest of central Yakutia were found to show high values and spatial variability. The wet meadow soils and shallow lakes have highest methane fluxes, almost comparable with emissions from tropical peatlands. Permafrost ecosystems respond to global warming quite rapidly. This makes the study of their changes somewhat easier, but still requires meticulous attention to observations, research, and analysis of the processes under way.

  20. Permafrost Favorability Index: Spatial Modeling in the French Alps Using a Rock Glacier Inventory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Marcer

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available In the present study we used the first rock glacier inventory for the entire French Alps to model spatial permafrost distribution in the region. Climatic and topographic data evaluated at the rock glacier locations were used as predictor variables in a Generalized Linear Model. Model performances are strong, suggesting that, in agreement with several previous studies, this methodology is able to model accurately rock glacier distribution. A methodology to estimate model uncertainties is proposed, revealing that the subjectivity in the interpretation of rock glacier activity and contours may substantially bias the model. The model highlights a North-South trend in the regional pattern of permafrost distribution which is attributed to the climatic influences of the Atlantic and Mediterranean climates. Further analysis suggest that lower amounts of precipitation in the early winter and a thinner snow cover, as typically found in the Mediterranean area, could contribute to the existence of permafrost at higher temperatures compared to the Northern Alps. A comparison with the Alpine Permafrost Index Map (APIM shows no major differences with our model, highlighting the very good predictive power of the APIM despite its tendency to slightly overestimate permafrost extension with respect to our database. The use of rock glaciers as indicators of permafrost existence despite their time response to climate change is discussed and an interpretation key is proposed in order to ensure the proper use of the model for research as well as for operational purposes.

  1. Unraveling of permafrost hydrological variabilities on Central Qinghai-Tibet Plateau using stable isotopic technique.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yuzhong; Wu, Qingbai; Hou, Yandong; Zhang, Zhongqiong; Zhan, Jing; Gao, Siru; Jin, Huijun

    2017-12-15

    Permafrost degradation on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP) will substantially alter the surface runoff discharge and generation, which changes the recharge processes and influences the hydrological cycle on the QTP. Hydrological connections between different water bodies and the influence of thawing permafrost (ground ice) are not well understood on the QTP. This study applied water stable isotopic method to investigate the permafrost hydrological variabilities in Beiluhe Basin (BLB) on Central QTP. Isotopic variations of precipitation, river flow, thermokarst lake, and near-surface ground ice were identified to figure out the moisture source of them, and to elaborate the hydrological connections in permafrost region. Results suggested that isotopic seasonalities in precipitation is evident, it is showing more positive values in summer seasons, and negative values in winter seasons. Stable isotopes of river flow are mainly distributed in the range of precipitation which is indicative of important replenishment from precipitation. δ 18 O, δD of thermokarst lakes are more positive than precipitation, indicating of basin-scale evaporation of lake water. Comparison of δ I values in different water bodies shows that hydrology of thermokarst lakes was related to thawing of permafrost (ground ice) and precipitation. Near-surface ground ice in BLB exhibits different isotopic characteristics, and generates a special δD-δ 18 O relationship (freezing line): δD=5.81δ 18 O-23.02, which reflects typical freezing of liquid water. From isotopic analysis, it is inferred that near-surface ground ice was mainly recharged by precipitation and active layer water. Stable isotopic and conceptual model is suggestive of striking hydrological connections between precipitation, river flow, thermokarst lake, and ground ice under degrading permafrost. This research provides fundamental comprehensions into the hydrological processes in permafrost regions on QTP, which should be considered

  2. International Permafrost Field Courses in Siberia: the Synthesis of Research and Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ablyazina, D.; Boitsov, A.; Grebenets, V.; Kaverin, D.; Klene, A.; Kurchatova, A.; Pfeiffer, E. M.; Zschocke, A.; Shiklomanov, N.; Streletskiy, D.

    2009-04-01

    During summers of 2007 and 2008 a series of International University Courses on Permafrost (IUCP) were conducted in West Siberia, Russia. Courses were organized as part of the International Permafrost Association (IPA) International Polar Year activities. The North of West Siberia region was selected to represent diverse permafrost, climatic and landscape conditions. The courses were jointly organized by the Moscow State University (MSU) and the Tumen' Oil and Gas University (TOGU) with the help from German and U.S. institutions. The program attracted undergraduate and graduate students with diverse interests and backgrounds from Germany, Russia and the U.S. and involved instructors specializing in different aspects of permafrost research. Courses were designed to address three major topics of permafrost-related research: a) permafrost environments characteristic of the discontinuous and continuous zones; b) field instrumentation and techniques; c) permafrost engineering and problems of development in permafrost regions. Methodologically, courses consisted of systematic permafrost investigations at long-term monitoring sites and survey-type expeditions. Systematic, process-based investigations were conducted at a network of sites which constitute the TEPO established by TOGU in collaboration with the gas company NadymGasProm. The observation complex includes an array of 30-m deep boreholes equipped with automatic data collection systems and representing characteristic permafrost landscapes of West Siberia. Boreholes are complemented by sites for snow cover, vegetation, soil, ground ice, and geomorphologic investigations. As part of student research activities, four new Circumpolar Active Layer Monitoring (CALM) sites were established in proximity to boreholes for monitoring spatial distribution and long-term dynamic of the active layer. New sites represent diverse landscapes characteristic of the West Siberian previously underrepresented in the CALM network

  3. Experimentally increased nutrient availability at the permafrost thaw front selectively enhances biomass production of deep-rooting subarctic peatland species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keuper, Frida; Dorrepaal, Ellen; van Bodegom, Peter M.; van Logtestijn, Richard; Venhuizen, Gemma; van Hal, Jurgen; Aerts, Rien

    2017-01-01

    Climate warming increases nitrogen (N) mineralization in superficial soil layers (the dominant rooting zone) of subarctic peatlands. Thawing and subsequent mineralization of permafrost increases plant-available N around the thaw-front. Because plant production in these peatlands is N-limited, such

  4. The relationship of lightning activity and short-duration rainfall events during warm seasons over the Beijing metropolitan region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Fan; Cui, Xiaopeng; Zhang, Da-Lin; Qiao, Lin

    2017-10-01

    The relationship between lightning activity and rainfall associated with 2925 short-duration rainfall (SDR) events over the Beijing metropolitan region (BMR) is examined during the warm seasons of 2006-2007, using the cloud-to-ground (CG) and intracloud (IC) lightning data from Surveillance et Alerte Foudre par Interférometrie Radioélectrique (SAFIR)-3000 and 5-min rainfall data from automatic weather stations (AWSs). An optimal radius of 10 km around selected AWSs is used to determine the lightning-rainfall relationship. The lightning-rainfall correlations vary significantly, depending upon the intensity of SDR events. That is, correlation coefficient (R 0.7) for the short-duration heavy rainfall (SDHR, i.e., ≥ 20 mm h- 1) events is found higher than that (R 0.4) for the weak SDR (i.e., 5-10 mm h- 1) events, and lower percentage of the SDHR events (< 10%) than the weak SDR events (40-50%) are observed with few flashes. Significant time-lagged correlations between lightning and rainfall are also found. About 80% of the SDR events could reach their highest correlation coefficients when the associated lightning flashes shift at time lags of < 25 min before and after rainfall begins. Those events with lightning preceding rainfall account for 50-60% of the total SDR events. Better lightning-rainfall correlations can be attained when time lags are incorporated, with the use of total (CG and IC) lightning data. These results appear to have important implications for improving the nowcast of SDHR events.

  5. The evolution of a thermokarst-lake landscape: Late Quaternary permafrost degradation and stabilization in interior Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Mary E.; Grosse, Guido; Jones, Benjamin M.; McDowell, Patricia F.

    2016-01-01

    Thermokarst processes characterize a variety of ice-rich permafrost terrains and often lead to lake formation. The long-term evolution of thermokarst landscapes and the stability and longevity of lakes depend upon climate, vegetation and ground conditions, including the volume of excess ground ice and its distribution. The current lake status of thermokarst-lake landscapes and their future trajectories under climate warming are better understood in the light of their long-term development. We studied the lake-rich southern marginal upland of the Yukon Flats (northern interior Alaska) using dated lake-sediment cores, observations of river-cut exposures, and remotely-sensed data. The region features thick (up to 40 m) Quaternary deposits (mainly loess) that contain massive ground ice. Two of three studied lakes formed ~ 11,000–12,000 cal yr BP through inferred thermokarst processes, and fire may have played a role in initiating thermokarst development. From ~ 9000 cal yr BP, all lakes exhibited steady sedimentation, and pollen stratigraphies are consistent with regional patterns. The current lake expansion rates are low (0 to drainage, nor of multiple lake generations within a basin. However, LiDAR images reveal linear “corrugations” (> 5 m amplitude), deep thermo-erosional gullies, and features resembling lake drainage channels, suggesting that highly dynamic surface processes have previously shaped the landscape. Evidently, widespread early Holocene permafrost degradation and thermokarst lake initiation were followed by lake longevity and landscape stabilization, the latter possibly related to establishment of dense forest cover. Partial or complete drainage of three lakes in 2013 reveals that there is some contemporary landscape dynamism. Holocene landscape evolution in the study area differs from that described from other thermokarst-affected regions; regional responses to future environmental change may be equally individualistic.

  6. A simplified, data-constrained approach to estimate the permafrost carbon-climate feedback.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koven, C D; Schuur, E A G; Schädel, C; Bohn, T J; Burke, E J; Chen, G; Chen, X; Ciais, P; Grosse, G; Harden, J W; Hayes, D J; Hugelius, G; Jafarov, E E; Krinner, G; Kuhry, P; Lawrence, D M; MacDougall, A H; Marchenko, S S; McGuire, A D; Natali, S M; Nicolsky, D J; Olefeldt, D; Peng, S; Romanovsky, V E; Schaefer, K M; Strauss, J; Treat, C C; Turetsky, M

    2015-11-13

    We present an approach to estimate the feedback from large-scale thawing of permafrost soils using a simplified, data-constrained model that combines three elements: soil carbon (C) maps and profiles to identify the distribution and type of C in permafrost soils; incubation experiments to quantify the rates of C lost after thaw; and models of soil thermal dynamics in response to climate warming. We call the approach the Permafrost Carbon Network Incubation-Panarctic Thermal scaling approach (PInc-PanTher). The approach assumes that C stocks do not decompose at all when frozen, but once thawed follow set decomposition trajectories as a function of soil temperature. The trajectories are determined according to a three-pool decomposition model fitted to incubation data using parameters specific to soil horizon types. We calculate litterfall C inputs required to maintain steady-state C balance for the current climate, and hold those inputs constant. Soil temperatures are taken from the soil thermal modules of ecosystem model simulations forced by a common set of future climate change anomalies under two warming scenarios over the period 2010 to 2100. Under a medium warming scenario (RCP4.5), the approach projects permafrost soil C losses of 12.2-33.4 Pg C; under a high warming scenario (RCP8.5), the approach projects C losses of 27.9-112.6 Pg C. Projected C losses are roughly linearly proportional to global temperature changes across the two scenarios. These results indicate a global sensitivity of frozen soil C to climate change (γ sensitivity) of -14 to -19 Pg C °C(-1) on a 100 year time scale. For CH4 emissions, our approach assumes a fixed saturated area and that increases in CH4 emissions are related to increased heterotrophic respiration in anoxic soil, yielding CH4 emission increases of 7% and 35% for the RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 scenarios, respectively, which add an additional greenhouse gas forcing of approximately 10-18%. The simplified approach

  7. A simplified, data-constrained approach to estimate the permafrost carbon–climate feedback

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koven, C.D.; Schuur, E.A.G.; Schädel, C.; Bohn, T. J.; Burke, E. J.; Chen, G.; Chen, X.; Ciais, P.; Grosse, G.; Harden, J.W.; Hayes, D.J.; Hugelius, G.; Jafarov, Elchin E.; Krinner, G.; Kuhry, P.; Lawrence, D.M.; MacDougall, A. H.; Marchenko, Sergey S.; McGuire, A. David; Natali, Susan M.; Nicolsky, D.J.; Olefeldt, David; Peng, S.; Romanovsky, V.E.; Schaefer, Kevin M.; Strauss, J.; Treat, C.C.; Turetsky, M.

    2015-01-01

    We present an approach to estimate the feedback from large-scale thawing of permafrost soils using a simplified, data-constrained model that combines three elements: soil carbon (C) maps and profiles to identify the distribution and type of C in permafrost soils; incubation experiments to quantify the rates of C lost after thaw; and models of soil thermal dynamics in response to climate warming. We call the approach the Permafrost Carbon Network Incubation–Panarctic Thermal scaling approach (PInc-PanTher). The approach assumes that C stocks do not decompose at all when frozen, but once thawed follow set decomposition trajectories as a function of soil temperature. The trajectories are determined according to a three-pool decomposition model fitted to incubation data using parameters specific to soil horizon types. We calculate litterfall C inputs required to maintain steady-state C balance for the current climate, and hold those inputs constant. Soil temperatures are taken from the soil thermal modules of ecosystem model simulations forced by a common set of future climate change anomalies under two warming scenarios over the period 2010 to 2100. Under a medium warming scenario (RCP4.5), the approach projects permafrost soil C losses of 12.2–33.4 Pg C; under a high warming scenario (RCP8.5), the approach projects C losses of 27.9–112.6 Pg C. Projected C losses are roughly linearly proportional to global temperature changes across the two scenarios. These results indicate a global sensitivity of frozen soil C to climate change (γ sensitivity) of −14 to −19 Pg C °C−1 on a 100 year time scale. For CH4 emissions, our approach assumes a fixed saturated area and that increases in CH4 emissions are related to increased heterotrophic respiration in anoxic soil, yielding CH4 emission increases of 7% and 35% for the RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 scenarios, respectively, which add an additional greenhouse gas forcing of approximately 10–18%. The

  8. Assessing the permafrost temperature and thickness conditions favorable for the occurrence of gas hydrate in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wu Qingbai; Jiang Guanli; Zhang Peng

    2010-01-01

    Permafrost accounts for about 52% of the total area of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, and the permafrost area is about 140 x 10 4 km 2 . The mean annual ground temperature of permafrost ranges from -0.1 to -5 deg. C, and lower than -5 deg. C at extreme high-mountains. Permafrost thickness ranges from 10 to 139.4 m by borehole data, and more than 200 m by geothermal gradients. The permafrost geothermal gradient ranges from 1.1 deg. C/100 m to 8.0 deg. C/100 m with an average of 2.9 deg. C/100 m, and the geothermal gradient of the soil beneath permafrost is about 2.8-8.5 deg. C/100 m with an average of 6.0 deg. C/100 m in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. For a minimum of permafrost geothermal gradients of 1.1 deg. C/100 m, the areas of the potential occurrence of methane hydrate (sI) is approximately estimated to be about 27.5% of the total area of permafrost regions in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. For an average of permafrost geothermal gradients of 2.9 deg. C/100 m, the areas of the potential occurrence of methane hydrate (sI) is approximately estimated about 14% of the total area of permafrost regions in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. For the sII hydrate, the areas of the potential occurrence of sII hydrate are more than that of sI methane hydrate.

  9. Role of atmospheric heating over the South China Sea and western Pacific regions in modulating Asian summer climate under the global warming background

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Bian; Yang, Song; Li, Zhenning

    2016-05-01

    The response of monsoon precipitation to global warming, which is one of the most significant climate change signals at the earth's surface, exhibits very distinct regional features, especially over the South China Sea (SCS) and adjacent regions in boreal summer. To understand the possible atmospheric dynamics in these specific regions under the global warming background, changes in atmospheric heating and their possible influences on Asian summer climate are investigated by both observational diagnosis and numerical simulations. Results indicate that heating in the middle troposphere has intensified in the SCS and western Pacific regions in boreal summer, accompanied by increased precipitation, cloud cover, and lower-tropospheric convergence and decreased sea level pressure. Sensitivity experiments show that middle and upper tropospheric heating causes an east-west feedback pattern between SCS and western Pacific and continental South Asia, which strengthens the South Asian High in the upper troposphere and moist convergence in the lower troposphere, consequently forcing a descending motion and adiabatic warming over continental South Asia. When air-sea interaction is considered, the simulation results are overall more similar to observations, and in particular the bias of precipitation over the Indian Ocean simulated by AGCMs has been reduced. The result highlights the important role of air-sea interaction in understanding the changes in Asian climate.

  10. Future active layer dynamics and carbon dioxide production from thawing permafrost layers in Northeast Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hollesen, Jørgen; Elberling, Bo; Jansson, P.E.

    2011-01-01

    Thawing permafrost and the resulting mineralization of previously frozen organic carbon (C) is considered an important future feedback from terrestrial ecosystems to the atmosphere. Here, we use a dynamic process oriented permafrost model, the CoupModel, to link surface and subsurface temperatures....... The model is successfully adjusted and applied for the study area and shown to be able to simulate active layer dynamics. Subsequently, the model is used to predict the active layer thickness under future warming scenarios. The model predicts an increase of maximum active layer thickness from today 70 to 80......–105 cm as a result of a 2–6 °C warming. An additional increase in the maximum active layer thickness of a few centimetres may be expected due to heat production from decomposition of organic matter. Simulated future soil temperatures and water contents are subsequently used with measured basal soil...

  11. A review of published literature on the effects of permafrost on the hydrogeochemistry of bedrock

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cascoyne, M.

    2000-06-01

    of seawater, enhanced or depleted sulphate concentrations in certain groundwaters, and lighter isotopic signature of the saline waters caused by the ice-water isotopic fractionation. This review has found that salt-rejection processes undoubtedly will have occurred in groundwaters in the marine sediments and bedrock of the Baltic coast during the Pleistocene. Deeply penetrating permafrost in the bedrock would cause relatively pure water to form as ice in fractures and displace residual saline fluids, under density flow, to greater depths. The process could have occurred to a sufficient extent that large volumes of saline water were generated, some of which may currently remain in the fractured rock. In these waters, loss of sulphate by mirabilite precipitation would be expected to have occurred but, on warming and degradation of the permafrost, lower-salinity meltwaters would re-dissolve the mirabilite, giving rise to a SO 4 -rich groundwater. This may be the origin of groundwater that is currently identified as Litorina Sea water at the Aespoe and Olkiluoto sites. This mechanism differs from that suggested by Israeli workers who propose freezing of open seawater and infiltration of residual brines into the bedrock followed by lateral migration inland. The hypothesis presented here, of formation of saline waters and brines by permafrost aggradation and salt-rejection is more acceptable from a hydrogeological standpoint because the saline waters are formed in situ and need not migrate laterally. Further field evidence, coupled with modelling of depths of permafrost penetration, could be used to assess the volume and concentration of saline groundwater formed as a result of downward advancement of permafrost in the crystalline bedrock. (orig.)

  12. A review of published literature on the effects of permafrost on the hydrogeochemistry of bedrock

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gascoyne, M.

    2000-04-01

    , enhanced or depleted sulphate concentrations in certain groundwaters, and lighter isotopic signature of the saline waters caused by the ice-water isotopic fractionation. This review has found that salt-rejection processes undoubtedly will have occurred in groundwaters in the marine sediments and bedrock of the Baltic coast during the Pleistocene. Deeply penetrating permafrost in the bedrock would cause relatively pure water to form as ice in fractures and displace residual saline fluids,under density flow, to greater depths. The process could have occurred to a sufficient extent that large volumes of saline water were generated, some of which may currently remain in the fractured rock. In these waters,loss of sulphate by mirabilite precipitation would be expected to have occurred but, on warming and degradation of the permafrost,lower-salinity meltwaters would re-dissolve the mirabilite, giving rise to a SO 4 -rich groundwater. This may be the origin of groundwater that is currently identified as Litorina Sea water at the Aespoe and Olkiluoto sites. This mechanism differs from that suggested by Israeli workers who propose freezing of open seawater and infiltration of residual brines into the bedrock followed by lateral migration inland. The hypothesis presented here, of formation of saline waters and brines by permafrost aggradation and salt-rejection is more acceptable from a hydrogeological standpoint because the saline waters are formed in situ and need not migrate laterally. Further field evidence, coupled with modelling of depths of permafrost penetration, could be used to assess the volume and concentration of saline groundwater formed as a result of downward advancement of permafrost in the crystalline bedrock

  13. A review of published literature on the effects of permafrost on the hydrogeochemistry of bedrock

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gascoyne, M. [Gascoyne GeoProjects Inc., Pinawa (Canada)

    2000-04-01

    seawater, enhanced or depleted sulphate concentrations in certain groundwaters, and lighter isotopic signature of the saline waters caused by the ice-water isotopic fractionation. This review has found that salt-rejection processes undoubtedly will have occurred in groundwaters in the marine sediments and bedrock of the Baltic coast during the Pleistocene. Deeply penetrating permafrost in the bedrock would cause relatively pure water to form as ice in fractures and displace residual saline fluids,under density flow, to greater depths. The process could have occurred to a sufficient extent that large volumes of saline water were generated, some of which may currently remain in the fractured rock. In these waters,loss of sulphate by mirabilite precipitation would be expected to have occurred but, on warming and degradation of the permafrost,lower-salinity meltwaters would re-dissolve the mirabilite, giving rise to a SO{sub 4}-rich groundwater. This may be the origin of groundwater that is currently identified as Litorina Sea water at the Aespoe and Olkiluoto sites. This mechanism differs from that suggested by Israeli workers who propose freezing of open seawater and infiltration of residual brines into the bedrock followed by lateral migration inland. The hypothesis presented here, of formation of saline waters and brines by permafrost aggradation and salt-rejection is more acceptable from a hydrogeological standpoint because the saline waters are formed in situ and need not migrate laterally. Further field evidence, coupled with modelling of depths of permafrost penetration, could be used to assess the volume and concentration of saline groundwater formed as a result of downward advancement of permafrost in the crystalline bedrock.

  14. A review of published literature on the effects of permafrost on the hydrogeochemistry of bedrock

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cascoyne, M. [Gascoyne GeoProjects Inc. (Canada)

    2000-06-01

    formed on freezing of seawater, enhanced or depleted sulphate concentrations in certain groundwaters, and lighter isotopic signature of the saline waters caused by the ice-water isotopic fractionation. This review has found that salt-rejection processes undoubtedly will have occurred in groundwaters in the marine sediments and bedrock of the Baltic coast during the Pleistocene. Deeply penetrating permafrost in the bedrock would cause relatively pure water to form as ice in fractures and displace residual saline fluids, under density flow, to greater depths. The process could have occurred to a sufficient extent that large volumes of saline water were generated, some of which may currently remain in the fractured rock. In these waters, loss of sulphate by mirabilite precipitation would be expected to have occurred but, on warming and degradation of the permafrost, lower-salinity meltwaters would re-dissolve the mirabilite, giving rise to a SO{sub 4}-rich groundwater. This may be the origin of groundwater that is currently identified as Litorina Sea water at the Aespoe and Olkiluoto sites. This mechanism differs from that suggested by Israeli workers who propose freezing of open seawater and infiltration of residual brines into the bedrock followed by lateral migration inland. The hypothesis presented here, of formation of saline waters and brines by permafrost aggradation and salt-rejection is more acceptable from a hydrogeological standpoint because the saline waters are formed in situ and need not migrate laterally. Further field evidence, coupled with modelling of depths of permafrost penetration, could be used to assess the volume and concentration of saline groundwater formed as a result of downward advancement of permafrost in the crystalline bedrock. (orig.)

  15. New insights into the ground thermal regime of talus slopes with permafrost below the timberline

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwindt, Daniel; Kneisel, Christof

    2013-04-01

    talus material are lowest. The interaction of factors driving the ground thermal regime turned out to be more complex than assumed with differences between the investigated sites. Besides convective heat transport of the chimney effect, conductive heat flow within the humus layer strongly influences the ground thermal regime. Supercooling of the talus material in winter and autumn is aggravated by a high thermal conductivity of the organic material under frozen and wet conditions. The preservation of permafrost is favoured by the high insulation capacity of dry organic material in summer and by a prolonged zero-curtain period of up to 3 months - driven by high water-storage capacity of the organic material - that buffers the propagation of warm temperatures into the subsurface in spring. The income of solar radiation at the foot of the slope does not state a major driving factor for the occurrence of permafrost. Variability is low between areas with and without permafrost. In fact, differences were detected upslope, below the rock-walls, with summer-values being lowest in areas above the permafrost occurrences. It must be assumed that this affects the thermal circulation of the chimney effect during summer and favours the persistence of frozen ground in spatially limited slope areas.

  16. Temperature sensitivity of gaseous elemental mercury in the active layer of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau permafrost.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ci, Zhijia; Peng, Fei; Xue, Xian; Zhang, Xiaoshan

    2018-07-01

    Soils represent the single largest mercury (Hg) reservoir in the global environment, indicating that a tiny change of Hg behavior in soil ecosystem could greatly affect the global Hg cycle. Climate warming is strongly altering the structure and functions of permafrost and then would influence the Hg cycle in permafrost soils. However, Hg biogeochemistry in climate-sensitive permafrost is poorly investigated. Here we report a data set of soil Hg (0) concentrations in four different depths of the active layer in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau permafrost. We find that soil Hg (0) concentrations exhibited a strongly positive and exponential relationship with temperature and showed different temperature sensitivity under the frozen and unfrozen condition. We conservatively estimate that temperature increases following latest temperature scenarios of the IPCC could result in up to a 54.9% increase in Hg (0) concentrations in surface permafrost soils by 2100. Combining the simultaneous measurement of air-soil Hg (0) exchange, we find that enhanced Hg (0) concentrations in upper soils could favor Hg (0) emissions from surface soil. Our findings indicate that Hg (0) emission could be stimulated by permafrost thawing in a warmer world. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Estimation of permafrost thawing rates in a sub-arctic catchment using recession flow analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. W. Lyon

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Permafrost thawing is likely to change the flow pathways taken by water as it moves through arctic and sub-arctic landscapes. The location and distribution of these pathways directly influence the carbon and other biogeochemical cycling in northern latitude catchments. While permafrost thawing due to climate change has been observed in the arctic and sub-arctic, direct observations of permafrost depth are difficult to perform at scales larger than a local scale. Using recession flow analysis, it may be possible to detect and estimate the rate of permafrost thawing based on a long-term streamflow record. We demonstrate the application of this approach to the sub-arctic Abiskojokken catchment in northern Sweden. Based on recession flow analysis, we estimate that permafrost in this catchment may be thawing at an average rate of about 0.9 cm/yr during the past 90 years. This estimated thawing rate is consistent with direct observations of permafrost thawing rates, ranging from 0.7 to 1.3 cm/yr over the past 30 years in the region.

  18. The potential significance of permafrost to the behaviour of a deep radioactive waste repository

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McEwen, T.; Marsily, G.de

    1991-02-01

    Permafrost is one of the scenarios that is being considered as part of the groundwater flow and transport modelling for the Project-90 assessment. It is included as one of the primary Features, Events and Processes (FEPs) which are being kept outside the Process System in the SKB/SKI scenario development project. There is a large amount of evidence that Sweden has suffered several cycles of permafrost development over the Quaternary, approximately the last 2My, and climatic predictions for the next hundred thousand years suggest that similar climatic cycling is likely to occur. The presence of permafrost could have important effects on the hydrogeological regime and could therefore be important in modifying the release and dispersion of radionuclides from a repository. The climatic conditions of permafrost would also influence radionuclide migration and accumulation in the biosphere and the associated radiation exposure of man. These biosphere aspects are not considered here but the implications for discharge into the biosphere are examined, including the abstraction of groundwater by man in permafrost regions. This report reviews the evidence relating to permafrost development and discusses the possible implications for the long-term safety of a deep repository. (78 refs.) (au)

  19. Regional Warming and Emerging Vector-Borne Zoonotic Dirofilariosis in the Russian Federation, Ukraine, and Other Post-Soviet States from 1981 to 2011 and Projection by 2030

    OpenAIRE

    Kartashev, Vladimir; Afonin, Alexandr; González-Miguel, Javier; Sepúlveda, Rosa; Simón, Luis; Morchón, Rodrigo; Simón, Fernando

    2014-01-01

    We analyze through a climatic model the influence of regional warming on the geographical spreading and potential risk of infection of human dirofilariosis in Russia, Ukraine, and other post-Soviet states from 1981 to 2011 and estimate the situation by 2030. The model correctly predicts the spatiotemporal location of 97.10% of 2154 clinical cases reported in the area during the studied period, identified by a retrospective review of the literature. There exists also a significant correlation ...

  20. Spatial and temporal characteristics of warm season convection over Pearl River Delta region, China, based on 3 years of operational radar data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xingchao; Zhao, Kun; Xue, Ming

    2014-11-01

    This study examines the temporal and spatial characteristics and distributions of convection over the Pearl River Delta region of Guangzhou, China, during the May-September warm season, using, for the first time for such a purpose, 3 years of operational Doppler radar data in the region. Results show that convective features occur most frequently along the southern coast and the windward slope of the eastern mountainous area of Pearl River Delta, with the highest frequency occurring in June and the lowest in September among the 5 months. The spatial frequency distribution pattern also roughly matches the accumulated precipitation pattern. The occurrence of convection in this region also exhibits strong diurnal cycles. During May and June, the diurnal distribution is bimodal, with the maximum frequency occurring in the early afternoon and a secondary peak occurring between midnight and early morning. The secondary peak is much weaker in July, August, and September. Convection near the coast is found to occur preferentially on days when a southerly low-level jet (LLJ) exists, especially during the Meiyu season. Warm, moist, and unstable air is transported from the ocean to land by LLJs on these days, and the lifting along the coast by convergence induced by differential surface friction between the land and ocean is believed to be the primary cause for the high frequency along the coast. In contrast, the high frequency over mountainous area is believed to be due to orographic lifting of generally southerly flows during the warm season.

  1. Modeling the effects of fire severity and climate warming on active layer thickness and soil carbon storage of black spruce forests across the landscape in interior Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Genet, H; Euskirchen, E S; McGuire, A D; Barrett, K; Breen, A; Bennett, A; Rupp, T S; Johnstone, J F; Kasischke, E S; Melvin, A M; Mack, M C; Schuur, A E G; Turetsky, M R; Yuan, F

    2013-01-01

    There is a substantial amount of carbon stored in the permafrost soils of boreal forest ecosystems, where it is currently protected from decomposition. The surface organic horizons insulate the deeper soil from variations in atmospheric temperature. The removal of these insulating horizons through consumption by fire increases the vulnerability of permafrost to thaw, and the carbon stored in permafrost to decomposition. In this study we ask how warming and fire regime may influence spatial and temporal changes in active layer and carbon dynamics across a boreal forest landscape in interior Alaska. To address this question, we (1) developed and tested a predictive model of the effect of fire severity on soil organic horizons that depends on landscape-level conditions and (2) used this model to evaluate the long-term consequences of warming and changes in fire regime on active layer and soil carbon dynamics of black spruce forests across interior Alaska. The predictive model of fire severity, designed from the analysis of field observations, reproduces the effect of local topography (landform category, the slope angle and aspect and flow accumulation), weather conditions (drought index, soil moisture) and fire characteristics (day of year and size of the fire) on the reduction of the organic layer caused by fire. The integration of the fire severity model into an ecosystem process-based model allowed us to document the relative importance and interactions among local topography, fire regime and climate warming on active layer and soil carbon dynamics. Lowlands were more resistant to severe fires and climate warming, showing smaller increases in active layer thickness and soil carbon loss compared to drier flat uplands and slopes. In simulations that included the effects of both warming and fire at the regional scale, fire was primarily responsible for a reduction in organic layer thickness of 0.06 m on average by 2100 that led to an increase in active layer thickness

  2. The relationship of lightning activity and short-duation rainfall events during warm seasons over the Beijing metropolitan region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, F.; Cui, X.; Zhang, D. L.; Lin, Q.

    2017-12-01

    The relationship between lightning activity and rainfall associated with 2925 short-duration rainfall (SDR) events over the Beijing metropolitan region (BMR) is examined during the warm seasons of 2006-2007, using the cloud-to-ground (CG) and intracloud (IC) lightning data from Surveillance et Alerte Foudre par Interférometrie Radioélectrique (SAFIR)-3000 and 5-min rainfall data from automatic weather stations (AWSs). To facilitate the analysis of the rainfall-lightning correlations, the SDR events are categorized into six different intensity grades according to their hourly rainfall rates (HRRs), and an optimal radius of 10 km from individual AWSs for counting their associated lightning flashes is used. Results show that the lightning-rainfall correlations vary significantly with different intensity grades. Weak correlations (R 0.4) are found in the weak SDR events, and 40-50% of the events are no-flash ones. And moderate correlation (R 0.6) are found in the moderate SDR events, and > 10-20% of the events are no-flash ones. In contrast, high correlations (R 0.7) are obtained in the SDHR events, and < 10% of the events are no-flash ones. The results indicate that lightning activity is observed more frequently and correlated more robust with the rainfall in the SDHR events. Significant time lagged correlations between lightning and rainfall are also found. About 80% of the SDR events could reach their highest correlation coefficients when the associated lightning flashes shift at time lags of < 25 min before and after rainfall begins. The percentages of SDR events with CG or total lightning activity preceding, lagging or coinciding with rainfall shows that (i) in about 55% of the SDR events lightning flashes preceded rainfall; (ii) the SDR events with lightning flashes lagging behind rainfall accounted for about 30%; and (iii) the SDR events without any time shifts accounted for the remaining 15%. Better lightning-rainfall correlations can be attained when time

  3. Nonlinear CO2 flux response to 7 years of experimentally induced permafrost thaw.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mauritz, Marguerite; Bracho, Rosvel; Celis, Gerardo; Hutchings, Jack; Natali, Susan M; Pegoraro, Elaine; Salmon, Verity G; Schädel, Christina; Webb, Elizabeth E; Schuur, Edward A G

    2017-09-01

    Rapid Arctic warming is expected to increase global greenhouse gas concentrations as permafrost thaw exposes immense stores of frozen carbon (C) to microbial decomposition. Permafrost thaw also stimulates plant growth, which could offset C loss. Using data from 7 years of experimental Air and Soil warming in moist acidic tundra, we show that Soil warming had a much stronger effect on CO 2 flux than Air warming. Soil warming caused rapid permafrost thaw and increased ecosystem respiration (R eco ), gross primary productivity (GPP), and net summer CO 2 storage (NEE). Over 7 years R eco , GPP, and NEE also increased in Control (i.e., ambient plots), but this change could be explained by slow thaw in Control areas. In the initial stages of thaw, R eco , GPP, and NEE increased linearly with thaw across all treatments, despite different rates of thaw. As thaw in Soil warming continued to increase linearly, ground surface subsidence created saturated microsites and suppressed R eco , GPP, and NEE. However R eco and GPP remained high in areas with large Eriophorum vaginatum biomass. In general NEE increased with thaw, but was more strongly correlated with plant biomass than thaw, indicating that higher R eco in deeply thawed areas during summer months was balanced by GPP. Summer CO 2 flux across treatments fit a single quadratic relationship that captured the functional response of CO 2 flux to thaw, water table depth, and plant biomass. These results demonstrate the importance of indirect thaw effects on CO 2 flux: plant growth and water table dynamics. Nonsummer R eco models estimated that the area was an annual CO 2 source during all years of observation. Nonsummer CO 2 loss in warmer, more deeply thawed soils exceeded the increases in summer GPP, and thawed tundra was a net annual CO 2 source. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  4. Seasonal and multi-year surface displacements measured by DInSAR in a High Arctic permafrost environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudy, Ashley C. A.; Lamoureux, Scott F.; Treitz, Paul; Short, Naomi; Brisco, Brian

    2018-02-01

    Arctic landscapes undergo seasonal and long-term changes as the active layer thaws and freezes, which can result in localized or irregular subsidence leading to the formation of thermokarst terrain. Differential Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (DInSAR) is a technique capable of measuring ground surface displacements resulting from thawing permafrost at centimetre precision and is quickly gaining acceptance as a means of measuring ground displacement in permafrost regions. Using RADARSAT-2 stacked DInSAR data from 2013 and 2015 we determined the magnitude and patterns of land surface change in a continuous permafrost environment. At our study site situated in the Canadian High Arctic, DInSAR seasonal ground displacement patterns were consistent with field observations of permafrost degradation. As expected, many DInSAR values are close to the detection threshold (i.e., 1 cm) and therefore do not indicate significant change; however, DInSAR seasonal ground displacement patterns aligned well with climatological and soil conditions and offer geomorphological insight into subsurface processes in permafrost environments. While our dataset is limited to two years of data representing a three-year time period, the displacements derived from DInSAR provide insight into permafrost change in a High Arctic environment and demonstrate that DInSAR is an applicable tool for understanding environmental change in remote permafrost regions.

  5. A method to determine warm and cool steppe biomes from pollen data; application to the Mediterranean and Kazakhstan regions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tarasov, PE; Cheddadi, R; Guiot, J; Bottema, S; Peyron, O; Belmonte, J; Ruiz-Sanchez, [No Value; Saadi, F; Brewer, S

    1998-01-01

    An objective method for the assignment of pollen spectra to appropriate biomes has been published recently. The aim of this paper is to improve the distinction between warm and cool steppes, thus refining vegetation and climate reconstruction, particularly during the Last Glacial Maximum. A set of

  6. Substrate potential of last interglacial to Holocene permafrost organic matter for future microbial greenhouse gas production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stapel, Janina G.; Schwamborn, Georg; Schirrmeister, Lutz; Horsfield, Brian; Mangelsdorf, Kai

    2018-04-01

    In this study the organic matter (OM) in several permafrost cores from Bol'shoy Lyakhovsky Island in NE Siberia was investigated. In the context of the observed global warming the aim was to evaluate the potential of freeze-locked OM from different depositional ages to act as a substrate provider for microbial production of greenhouse gases from thawing permafrost. To assess this potential, the concentrations of free and bound acetate, which form an appropriate substrate for methanogenesis, were determined. The largest free-acetate (in pore water) and bound-acetate (organic-matrix-linked) substrate pools were present in interstadial marine isotope stage (MIS) 3 and stadial MIS 4 Yedoma permafrost deposits. In contrast, deposits from the last interglacial MIS 5e (Eemian) contained only a small pool of substrates. The Holocene (MIS 1) deposits revealed a significant bound-acetate pool, representing a future substrate potential upon release during OM degradation. Additionally, pyrolysis experiments on the OM allocated an increased aliphatic character to the MIS 3 and 4 Late Pleistocene deposits, which might indicate less decomposed and presumably more easily degradable OM. Biomarkers for past microbial communities, including those for methanogenic archaea, also showed the highest abundance during MIS 3 and 4, which indicated OM-stimulated microbial degradation and presumably greenhouse gas production during time of deposition. On a broader perspective, Arctic warming will increase and deepen permafrost thaw and favor substrate availability from older freeze-locked permafrost deposits. Thus, the Yedoma deposits especially showed a high potential for providing substrates relevant for microbial greenhouse gas production.

  7. Greenhouse gas balance over thaw-freeze cycles in discontinuous zone permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, R. M.; Fitzhugh, L.; Whiting, G. J.; Frolking, S.; Harrison, M. D.; Dimova, N.; Burnett, W. C.; Chanton, J. P.

    2017-02-01

    Peat in the discontinuous permafrost zone contains a globally significant reservoir of carbon that has undergone multiple permafrost-thaw cycles since the end of the mid-Holocene ( 3700 years before present). Periods of thaw increase C decomposition rates which leads to the release of CO2 and CH4 to the atmosphere creating potential climate feedback. To determine the magnitude and direction of such feedback, we measured CO2 and CH4 emissions and modeled C accumulation rates and radiative fluxes from measurements of two radioactive tracers with differing lifetimes to describe the C balance of the peatland over multiple permafrost-thaw cycles since the initiation of permafrost at the site. At thaw features, the balance between increased primary production and higher CH4 emission stimulated by warmer temperatures and wetter conditions favors C sequestration and enhanced peat accumulation. Flux measurements suggest that frozen plateaus may intermittently (order of years to decades) act as CO2 sources depending on temperature and net ecosystem respiration rates, but modeling results suggest that—despite brief periods of net C loss to the atmosphere at the initiation of thaw—integrated over millennia, these sites have acted as net C sinks via peat accumulation. In greenhouse gas terms, the transition from frozen permafrost to thawed wetland is accompanied by increasing CO2 uptake that is partially offset by increasing CH4 emissions. In the short-term (decadal time scale) the net effect of this transition is likely enhanced warming via increased radiative C emissions, while in the long-term (centuries) net C deposition provides a negative feedback to climate warming.

  8. Midlatitude atmospheric circulation responses under 1.5 and 2.0 °C warming and implications for regional impacts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Li

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available This study investigates the global response of the midlatitude atmospheric circulation to 1.5 and 2.0 °C of warming using the HAPPI (Half a degree Additional warming, Prognosis and Projected Impacts ensemble, with a focus on the winter season. Characterising and understanding this response is critical for accurately assessing the near-term regional impacts of climate change and the benefits of limiting warming to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels, as advocated by the Paris Agreement of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC. The HAPPI experimental design allows an assessment of uncertainty in the circulation response due to model dependence and internal variability. Internal variability is found to dominate the multi-model mean response of the jet streams, storm tracks, and stationary waves across most of the midlatitudes; larger signals in these features are mostly consistent with those seen in more strongly forced warming scenarios. Signals that emerge in the 1.5 °C experiment are a weakening of storm activity over North America, an inland shift of the North American stationary ridge, an equatorward shift of the North Pacific jet exit, and an equatorward intensification of the South Pacific jet. Signals that emerge under an additional 0.5 °C of warming include a poleward shift of the North Atlantic jet exit, an eastward extension of the North Atlantic storm track, and an intensification on the flanks of the Southern Hemisphere storm track. Case studies explore the implications of these circulation responses for precipitation impacts in the Mediterranean, in western Europe, and on the North American west coast, paying particular attention to possible outcomes at the tails of the response distributions. For example, the projected weakening of the Mediterranean storm track emerges in the 2 °C warmer world, with exceptionally dry decades becoming 5 times more likely.

  9. Midlatitude atmospheric circulation responses under 1.5 and 2.0 °C warming and implications for regional impacts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Camille; Michel, Clio; Seland Graff, Lise; Bethke, Ingo; Zappa, Giuseppe; Bracegirdle, Thomas J.; Fischer, Erich; Harvey, Ben J.; Iversen, Trond; King, Martin P.; Krishnan, Harinarayan; Lierhammer, Ludwig; Mitchell, Daniel; Scinocca, John; Shiogama, Hideo; Stone, Dáithí A.; Wettstein, Justin J.

    2018-04-01

    This study investigates the global response of the midlatitude atmospheric circulation to 1.5 and 2.0 °C of warming using the HAPPI (Half a degree Additional warming, Prognosis and Projected Impacts) ensemble, with a focus on the winter season. Characterising and understanding this response is critical for accurately assessing the near-term regional impacts of climate change and the benefits of limiting warming to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels, as advocated by the Paris Agreement of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The HAPPI experimental design allows an assessment of uncertainty in the circulation response due to model dependence and internal variability. Internal variability is found to dominate the multi-model mean response of the jet streams, storm tracks, and stationary waves across most of the midlatitudes; larger signals in these features are mostly consistent with those seen in more strongly forced warming scenarios. Signals that emerge in the 1.5 °C experiment are a weakening of storm activity over North America, an inland shift of the North American stationary ridge, an equatorward shift of the North Pacific jet exit, and an equatorward intensification of the South Pacific jet. Signals that emerge under an additional 0.5 °C of warming include a poleward shift of the North Atlantic jet exit, an eastward extension of the North Atlantic storm track, and an intensification on the flanks of the Southern Hemisphere storm track. Case studies explore the implications of these circulation responses for precipitation impacts in the Mediterranean, in western Europe, and on the North American west coast, paying particular attention to possible outcomes at the tails of the response distributions. For example, the projected weakening of the Mediterranean storm track emerges in the 2 °C warmer world, with exceptionally dry decades becoming 5 times more likely.

  10. From global to regional and back again: common climate stressors of marine ecosystems relevant for adaptation across five ocean warming hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popova, Ekaterina; Yool, Andrew; Byfield, Valborg; Cochrane, Kevern; Coward, Andrew C; Salim, Shyam S; Gasalla, Maria A; Henson, Stephanie A; Hobday, Alistair J; Pecl, Gretta T; Sauer, Warwick H; Roberts, Michael J

    2016-06-01

    Ocean warming 'hotspots' are regions characterized by above-average temperature increases over recent years, for which there are significant consequences for both living marine resources and the societies that depend on them. As such, they represent early warning systems for understanding the impacts of marine climate change, and test-beds for developing adaptation options for coping with those impacts. Here, we examine five hotspots off the coasts of eastern Australia, South Africa, Madagascar, India and Brazil. These particular hotspots have underpinned a large international partnership that is working towards improving community adaptation by characterizing, assessing and projecting the likely future of coastal-marine food resources through the provision and sharing of knowledge. To inform this effort, we employ a high-resolution global ocean model forced by Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 and simulated to year 2099. In addition to the sea surface temperature, we analyse projected stratification, nutrient supply, primary production, anthropogenic CO2 -driven ocean acidification, deoxygenation and ocean circulation. Our simulation finds that the temperature-defined hotspots studied here will continue to experience warming but, with the exception of eastern Australia, may not remain the fastest warming ocean areas over the next century as the strongest warming is projected to occur in the subpolar and polar areas of the Northern Hemisphere. Additionally, we find that recent rapid change in SST is not necessarily an indicator that these areas are also hotspots of the other climatic stressors examined. However, a consistent facet of the hotspots studied here is that they are all strongly influenced by ocean circulation, which has already shown changes in the recent past and is projected to undergo further strong change into the future. In addition to the fast warming, change in local ocean circulation represents a distinct feature of present and future

  11. Deglacial remobilization of permafrost carbon to sediments along the East Siberian Arctic Seas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martens, J.; Wild, B.; Bröder, L.; Andersson, A.; Pearce, C.; O'Regan, M.; Jakobsson, M.; Tesi, T.; Muschitiello, F.; Sköld, M.; Semiletov, I. P.; Dudarev, O.; Gustafsson, O.

    2017-12-01

    Current climate change is expected to thaw large quantities of permafrost carbon (PF-C) and expose it to degradation which emits greenhouse gases (i.e. CO2 and CH4). Warming causes a gradual deepening of the seasonally thawed active layer surface of permafrost soils, but also the abrupt collapse of deeper Ice Complex Deposits (ICD), especially along Siberian coastlines. It was recently hypothesized that past warming already induced large-scale permafrost degradation after the last glacial, which ultimately amplified climate forcing. We here assess the mobilization of PF-C to East Siberian Arctic Sea sediments during these warming periods. We perform source apportionment using bulk carbon isotopes (ΔΔ14C, δ13C) together with terrestrial biomarkers (CuO-derived lignin phenols) as indicators for PF-C transfer. We apply these techniques to sediment cores (SWERUS-L2) from the Chukchi Sea (4-PC1) and the southern Lomonosov Ridge (31-PC1). We found that PF-C fluxes during the Bølling-Allerød warming (14.7 to 12.7 cal ka BP), the Younger Dryas cooling (12.7 to 11.7 cal ka BP) and the early Holocene warming (until 11 cal ka BP) were overall higher than mid and late Holocene fluxes. In the Chukchi Sea, PF-C burial was 2x higher during the deglaciation (7.2 g m-2 a-1) than in the mid and late Holocene (3.6 g m-2 a-1), and ICD were the dominant source of PF-C (79.1%). Smaller fractions originated from the active layer (9.1%) and marine sources (11.7%). We conclude that thermo-erosion of ICD released large amounts of PF-C to the Chukchi Sea, likely driven by climate warming and the deglacial sea level rise. This contrasts to earlier analyses of Laptev Sea sediments where active layer material from river transport dominated the carbon flux. Preliminary data on lignin phenol concentrations of Lomonosov Ridge sediments suggest that the postglacial remobilization of PF-C was one order of magnitude higher (10x) than during both the preceding glacial and the subsequent Holocene

  12. Applying GIPL2.0 Model to assess the permafrost dynamics on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, T.

    2017-12-01

    The modeling of active layer and permafrost distribution is of great importance to understand the permafrost dynamics of cold regions, especially in those regions where are difficult to approach such as the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP). In this study we have applied the Geophysical Institute Permafrost Lab model (GIPL2.0) to estimate the active layer thickness and assess the permafrost thermal regime on the QTP. The GIPL 2.0 have been widely applied in the Arctic regions of Alaska, however less on the QTP. The model has been calibrated according to the four active layer in-situ measurement sites which have different underlying surface and soil characteristics. We extended the original GIPL2 model depth to the depth of 18 m. After the calibration of the GIPL2.0 at those four sites, the first-hand single point model is expanded to a regional model. The key permafrost parameters were simulated, including active layer thickness (ALT), mean annual ground temperature (MAGT) at multiple soil layers, and the permafrost classification was also carried out in order to study the permafrost the thermal stability across the QTP. To validate the performance of expanded regional-GIPL2 model, we compare simulated ALT and MAGT at the depth of zero annual amplitude (DZAA) with observed data. It is demonstrated that the modifications regional-GIPL2 model are able to improve the accuracy of permafrost thermal regime simulations greatly on the QTP. The simulated ALT are generally underestimate the observed ones with the MBE value of -0.14 m and the RMSE value of 0.22 m. For the MAGT at the DZAA of all 51 sites, the simulation errors range from - 0.9 ° to 0.9 ° with the RMSE value of 0.41 °. For the whole permafrost area of the QTP, the simulated ALT ranges from 0 to 8 m, with an average of 2.30 m. The simulated results indicate that most of regions were underlain by the sub-stable permafrost and less regions were underlain by the extremely stable permafrost.

  13. COLD HARDINESS AND RANGE OF THE MYRIAPOD Angarozonium amurense (POLYZONIIDAE, DIPLOPODA, ARTHROPODA) IN PERMAFROST ENVIRONMENTS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berman, D I; Meshcheryakova, E N; Mikhaljova, E V

    2015-01-01

    Angarozonium amurense (Gerstfeldt, 1859) is the only one out of more than a hundred diplopod species described in Siberia and the Far East that inhabits regions with solid permafrost. To evaluate the cold hardiness of A. amurense that allows this species to inhabit permafrost regions. The survival temperature thresholds and supercooling points (SCP) were measured. The temperature thresholds for adult animal survival are -8.5 C in summer and -27 C in winter. Average SCP decreases from -7.7 in summer to -16.9 in winter. Water content decreases from 55.7% in summer to 49.4% in winter. The cold hardiness of A. amurense sets the record in this class of animals. It allows it to overwinter in the upper 15 centimeters layer of soil in most biotopes of the coldest permafrost regions in North Asia.

  14. The spatial distribution of silicoflagellates in the region of the Gulf Stream warm-core ring 82B: application to water mass tracer studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahashi, Kozo; Blackwelder, Patricia L.

    1992-03-01

    To delineate potential water mass affinities, we investigated silicoflagellates from the region of Gulf Stream warm-core ring (WCR) 82B in the northwestern Atlantic. Silicoflagellates from 202 samples from N-S and an E-W transects across WCR 82B during late April were analysed. Shelf to Sargasso Sea transects, one completed in early May and the other in June 1982 were also examined. Eight to 11 vertical profiles to 200 m comprised each of the transects. Six taxa of silicoflagellates were found in the samples studied and a total of more than 8000 specimens were encountered. Three major taxa dominated standing stocks: Distephanus speculum, Dictyocha messanensis (intermediate-sized form) and D. mandrai. D. speculum, considered a cold-water taxon in the literature, showed a higher standing stock in the cooler high-velocity region (HVR) of the warm-core ring, continental shelf (SH) and slope (SL) waters. Fewer were present in the wanner ring center (RC), Gulf Stream (GS) and Sargasso Sea (SS). D. mandrai showed a similar distribution to that of D. speculum, but its preference for slightly warmer waters (>~10°C) was noted. In contrast, Dictyocha messanensis (intermediate-sized) and Distephanus pulchra, known to be warm-water taxa, were relatively abundant in the warm ring center. In contrast to standing stock data, ratios between cold- and warm-water taxa correlate well with temperature and salinity in the warm-core ring. Since these ratios are not effected by convective loss, they are excellent water mass tracers in this system. Distribution of the silicoflagellate taxa suggests that WCR82B April had a higher affinity with the Gulf Stream than the Sargasso Sea. Scores derived from factor analysis indicate that silicoflagellate species distributions are highly correlative with water masses. This was evident from correlations with temperature, salinity and with distance from ring center. Nutrients were generally not correlated with species data. This may be due to deep

  15. DOE Final Report on Collaborative Research. Quantifying Climate Feedbacks of the Terrestrial Biosphere under Thawing Permafrost Conditions in the Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhuang, Qianlai [Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States); Schlosser, C. Adam [Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States); Melillo, Jerry M. [Marine Biological Lab. (MBL), Woods Hole, MA (United States); Anthony, Katey Walter [Univ. of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK (United States); Kicklighter, David [Marine Biological Lab. (MBL), Woods Hole, MA (United States); Gao, Xiang [Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)

    2015-11-03

    Our overall goal is to quantify the potential for threshold changes in natural emission rates of trace gases, particularly methane and carbon dioxide, from pan-arctic terrestrial systems under the spectrum of anthropogenically-forced climate warming, and the conditions under which these emissions provide a strong feedback mechanism to global climate warming. This goal is motivated under the premise that polar amplification of global climate warming will induce widespread thaw and degradation of the permafrost, and would thus cause substantial changes to the landscape of wetlands and lakes, especially thermokarst (thaw) lakes, across the Arctic. Through a suite of numerical experiments that encapsulate the fundamental processes governing methane emissions and carbon exchanges – as well as their coupling to the global climate system - we intend to test the following hypothesis in the proposed research: There exists a climate warming threshold beyond which permafrost degradation becomes widespread and stimulates large increases in methane emissions (via thermokarst lakes and poorly-drained wetland areas upon thawing permafrost along with microbial metabolic responses to higher temperatures) and increases in carbon dioxide emissions from well-drained areas. Besides changes in biogeochemistry, this threshold will also influence global energy dynamics through effects on surface albedo, evapotranspiration and water vapor. These changes would outweigh any increased uptake of carbon (e.g. from peatlands and higher plant photosynthesis) and would result in a strong, positive feedback to global climate warming.

  16. The effects of fire on the thermal stability of permafrost in lowland and upland black spruce forests of interior Alaska in a changing climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jafarov, E E; Romanovsky, V E; Marchenko, S S; Genet, H; McGuire, A D

    2013-01-01

    Fire is an important factor controlling the composition and thickness of the organic layer in the black spruce forest ecosystems of interior Alaska. Fire that burns the organic layer can trigger dramatic changes in the underlying permafrost, leading to accelerated ground thawing within a relatively short time. In this study, we addressed the following questions. (1) Which factors determine post-fire ground temperature dynamics in lowland and upland black spruce forests? (2) What levels of burn severity will cause irreversible permafrost degradation in these ecosystems? We evaluated these questions in a transient modeling–sensitivity analysis framework to assess the sensitivity of permafrost to climate, burn severity, soil organic layer thickness, and soil moisture content in lowland (with thick organic layers, ∼80 cm) and upland (with thin organic layers, ∼30 cm) black spruce ecosystems. The results indicate that climate warming accompanied by fire disturbance could significantly accelerate permafrost degradation. In upland black spruce forest, permafrost could completely degrade in an 18 m soil column within 120 years of a severe fire in an unchanging climate. In contrast, in a lowland black spruce forest, permafrost is more resilient to disturbance and can persist under a combination of moderate burn severity and climate warming. (letter)

  17. Monitoring of thermal regime of permafrost in the coastal zone of Western Yamal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasiliev, A.

    2009-04-01

    Data on thermal regime of permafrost are required for estimation of the climate change influence on permafrost dynamics. Monitoring of thermal regime of permafrost was arranged in the area of weather station "Marre-Sale", western Yamal. In terms of geomorphology, the area of our observations belongs to the second and third marine terraces; the surface of these terraces has been partly modified by recent cryogenic processes. The elevation varies from 10 to 30 m a.s.l. Marine clays lie at the base of the geological section of the coastal deposits. Their upper part was eroded and uneven surface of marine sediments is overlain by continental sandy sediments. Marine clays are saline. In the southern part of study area, low accumulative islands are forming. Their heights above sea level do not exceed 0.5 meters, and during high tides their surface is covered by sea water. The sediments accumulating at these islands are saline silty clays. Western Yamal region is located within continuous permafrost zone with thickness of 150 to 200 meters. Study of thermal regime in the on-shore zone has been performed since 1979 using the 10-12-m-deep boreholes. In 2007, five boreholes were included in the work program of the Thermal State of Permafrost (TSP) project developed as a part of IPY scientific activities. According to TSP program, temperature sensors were installed at depths 2, 3, 5, and 10 meters; measurements have been performed every six hours. In this presentation, results of our observations related to climate change are discussed. For different terrain units, increase of mean annual permafrost temperature during the last 30 years has reached 0.6 to 1.5 deg. C. In the transit zone, monitoring of thermal regime have been performed since 2006. Sensors were installed at depths 0, 0.25, 0.6, 0.75, 1.25, 1.75, and 2.25 meters. The active layer depth here reaches 1.9 meters, thus the 2.25-m-sensor is located within permafrost. Monitoring data show the sharp increase in mean

  18. Permafrost conditions at the Upper Kuskokwim river area and its influence on local communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kholodov, A. L.; Panda, S. K.; Hanson, T.

    2017-12-01

    Research area located within the zone of discontinuous permafrost distribution. Recent mean annual air temperature here is close to the 0C. It means, that taking in consideration warming influence of the snow cower during winter, mean annual temperature at the ground surface is well above freezing point. It means that presence or absence of permafrost here completely controlled by the ecological conditions. Based on remote sensing data and the surveys conducted in 2016-17 we selected 6 main ecotypes typical for this area: black spruce boreal forest, wetlands, low and tall shrubs, deciduous and mixed forest. Most of them (low shrubs, deciduous and mixed forest) represent different stages of area recovering after forest fires that was confirmed by the presence of ashy layer close to ground surface in soil pits had been dug within these landscapes. Permafrost was observed only within 2 of them: low shrubs and black spruce boreal forest. Within these types of terrain temperature at the bottom of active layer varies from -0.2/-0.5C at the areas of low shrubs, recovered after relatively recent (approximately 30-50 years old) fires to -1/-1.5 within black spruce forest. Active (seasonally thawed) layer as thick as 0.6 to 0.8 m. Warmest ecotypes for the area are tall shrubs and deciduous forest, temperature at the depth close to 1 m is about +3C. At the mixed forest temperature at the same depth consists of +1/+2C. Active (seasonally frozen) layer thickness within permafrost free areas is 1-1.5 m at the drained sites and about 0.5 within wetlands. Ice-rich permafrost underlying the active layer was noticed only within the black spruce forest. Areas which are free of permafrost are much better drained, typical moisture of mineral soil is less than 30% versus 45-50% in seasonally thawed layer. The current state of permafrost and the fact that it presence completely depends on ecosystems limits land use abilities of local inhabitants. Any changes of forest coverage or organic

  19. Isolation of dissolved organic matter from permafrost soil and freshwater environments of the Kolyma River basin, east Siberia, for high resolution structural analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dubinenkov, I. V.; Perminova, I. V.; Bulygina, E. B.; Holmes, R. M.; Davydov, S.; Mann, P. J.; Vonk, J.; Zimov, S. A.

    2010-12-01

    The Arctic and Subarctic ecosystems are known to be the most vulnerable with respect to climate change. Hence, research on carbon cycling in the Arctic region is very important for understanding the current climatic trends and their consequences. The Kolyma River watershed is one of the Arctic Ocean’s largest. It is dominated by continuous permafrost which is underlain with rich organic soils susceptible to increased fluvial transport. The thaw of permafrost enhanced due to global warming might provide additional large source of organic carbon to the Kolyma River and to the Arctic Ocean as a whole. For estimating the contribution of this source to the total pool of organic carbon, specific structural features of permafrost dissolved organic matter (DOM) as opposed to the waterborne DOM of the Kolyma River should be identified and monitored. The objective of this work was to isolate a representive set of the DOM samples from permafrost soil and freshwater environments of the Kolyma River basin suitable for further structural analysis using high resolution Fourier Transform Ion Cyclotron Resonance Mass Spectroscopy (FTICR-MS) and 1H NMR spectroscopy. The isolation protocol of DOM used in this study has been developed by Dittmar et al, 2008 for sampling marine DOM for NMR studies. It is based on the solid phase extraction of DOM from seawater using PPL Varian Bond Elute cartridges Those cartridges were shown to possess the highest efficiency in DOM isolation from marine water. Prior to discharge through the cartridge, a water sample was filtered through 0.45 μm filter for separation of particulate matter and acidified to pH 2 using HCl. About 50mg of DOM could be sequestered from aqueous phase using one cartridge. Sorption extent was monitored by measurements of DOC concentration and UV-vis spectra at the inlet and outlet of the cartridge. It was determined that from 60 to 65% of the total DOC could be extracted from the tested samples of freshwater. As a result

  20. Groundwater storage changes in arctic permafrost watersheds from GRACE and in situ measurements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muskett, Reginald R; Romanovsky, Vladimir E

    2009-01-01

    The Arctic permafrost regions make up the largest area component of the cryosphere. Observations from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) mission offer to provide a greater understanding of changes in water mass within permafrost regions. We investigate a GRACE monthly time series, snow water equivalent from the special scanning microwave imager (SSM/I), vegetation water content and soil moisture from the advanced microwave scanning radiometer for the Earth observation system (AMSR-E) and in situ discharge of the Lena, Yenisei, Ob', and Mackenzie watersheds. The GRACE water equivalent mass change responded to mass loading by snow accumulation in winter and mass unloading by runoff in spring-summer. Comparison of secular trends from GRACE to runoff suggests groundwater storage increased in the Lena and Yenisei watersheds, decreased in the Mackenzie watershed, and was unchanged in the Ob' watershed. We hypothesize that the groundwater storage changes are linked to the development of closed- and open-talik in the continuous permafrost zone and the decrease of permafrost lateral extent in the discontinuous permafrost zone of the watersheds.

  1. Biomass offsets little or none of permafrost carbon release from soils, streams, and wildfire

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abbott, Benjamin W.; Jones, Jeremy B.; Schuur, Edward A. G.

    2016-01-01

    estimates of net carbon balance increases the risk of further overshooting international emissions targets. Precise empirical or model-based assessments of the critical factors driving carbon balance are unlikely in the near future, so to address this gap, we present estimates from 98 permafrost......-region experts of the response of biomass, wildfire, and hydrologic carbon flux to climate change. Results suggest that contrary to model projections, total permafrost-region biomass could decrease due to water stress and disturbance, factors that are not adequately incorporated in current models. Assessments...... indicate that end-of-the-century organic carbon release from Arctic rivers and collapsing coastlines could increase by 75% while carbon loss via burning could increase four-fold. Experts identified water balance, shifts in vegetation community, and permafrost degradation as the key sources of uncertainty...

  2. Multidecadal increases in the Yukon River Basin of chemical fluxes as indicators of changing flowpaths, groundwater, and permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toohey, Ryan C; Herman-Mercer, Nicole M.; Schuster, Paul F.; Mutter, Edda A.; Koch, Joshua C.

    2016-01-01

    The Yukon River Basin, underlain by discontinuous permafrost, has experienced a warming climate over the last century that has altered air temperature, precipitation, and permafrost. We investigated a water chemistry database from 1982 to 2014 for the Yukon River and its major tributary, the Tanana River. Significant increases of Ca, Mg, and Na annual flux were found in both rivers. Additionally, SO4 and P annual flux increased in the Yukon River. No annual trends were observed for dissolved organic carbon (DOC) from 2001 to 2014. In the Yukon River, Mg and SO4 flux increased throughout the year, while some of the most positive trends for Ca, Mg, Na, SO4, and P flux occurred during the fall and winter months. Both rivers exhibited positive monthly DOC flux trends for summer (Yukon River) and winter (Tanana River). These trends suggest increased active layer expansion, weathering, and sulfide oxidation due to permafrost degradation throughout the Yukon River Basin.

  3. Modelling the Effects of Temperature and Cloud Cover Change on Mountain Permafrost Distribution, Northwest Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonnaventure, P. P.; Lewkowicz, A. G.

    2008-12-01

    Spatial models of permafrost probability for three study areas in northwest Canada between 59°N and 61°N were perturbed to investigate climate change impacts. The models are empirical-statistical in nature, based on basal temperature of snow (BTS) measurements in winter, and summer ground-truthing of the presence or absence of frozen ground. Predictions of BTS values are made using independent variables of elevation and potential incoming solar radiation (PISR), both derived from a 30 m DEM. These are then transformed into the probability of the presence or absence of permafrost through logistic regression. Under present climate conditions, permafrost percentages in the study areas are 44% for Haines Summit, British Columbia, 38% for Wolf Creek, Yukon, and 69% for part of the Ruby Range, Yukon (Bonnaventure and Lewkowicz, 2008; Lewkowicz and Bonaventure, 2008). Scenarios of air temperature change from -2K (approximating Neoglacial conditions) to +5K (possible within the next century according to the IPCC) were examined for the three sites. Manipulations were carried out by lowering or raising the terrain within the DEM assuming a mean environmental lapse rate of 6.5K/km. Under a -2K scenario, permafrost extent increased by 22-43% in the three study areas. Under a +5K warming, permafrost essentially disappeared in Haines Summit and Wolf Creek, while in the Ruby Range less than 12% of the area remained perennially frozen. It should be emphasized that these model predictions are for equilibrium conditions which might not be attained for several decades or longer in areas of cold permafrost. Cloud cover changes of -10% to +10% were examined through adjusting the partitioning of direct beam and diffuse radiation in the PISR input field. Changes to permafrost extent were small, ranging from -2% to -4% for greater cloudiness with changes of the opposite magnitude for less cloud. The results show that air temperature change has a much greater potential to affect mountain

  4. Evolving hydrologic connectivity in discontinuous permafrost lowlands: what it means for lake systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walvoord, M. A.; Jepsen, S. M.; Rover, J.; Voss, C. I.; Briggs, M. A.

    2015-12-01

    Permafrost influence on the hydrologic connectivity of surface water bodies in high-latitude lowlands is complicated by subsurface heterogeneity and the propensity of the system to change over time. In general, permafrost limits the subsurface exchange of water, solute, and nutrients between lakes and rivers. It follows that permafrost thaw could enhance subsurface hydrologic connectivity among surface water bodies, but the impact of this process on lake distribution is not well known. Changes in the extent of lakes in interior Alaska have important ecological and societal impacts since lakes provide (1) critical habitat for migratory arctic shorebirds and waterfowl, fish, and wildlife, and (2) provisional, recreational, and cultural resources for local communities. We utilize electromagnetic imaging of the shallow subsurface and remote sensing of lake level dynamics in the Yukon Flats of interior Alaska, USA, together with water balance modeling, to gain insight into the influence of discontinuous permafrost on lowland lake systems. In the study region with relatively low precipitation, observations suggest that lakes that are hydrologically isolated during normal conditions are sustained by periodic river flooding events, including ice-jam floods that occur during river ice break-up. Climatically-influenced alterations in flooding frequency and intensity, as well as depth to permafrost, are quantitatively assessed in the context of lake maintenance. Scenario modeling is used to evaluate lake level evolution under plausible changing conditions. Model results demonstrate how permafrost degradation can reduce the dependence of typical lowland lakes on flooding events. Study results also suggest that river flooding may recharge a more spatially widespread zone of lakes and wetlands under future scenarios of permafrost table deepening and enhanced subsurface hydrologic connectivity.

  5. Sources and pathways of 90Sr in the North Atlantic-Arctic region: present day and global warming

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gao Yongqi; Drange, Helge; Johannessen, Ola M.; Pettersson, Lasse H.

    2009-01-01

    The spatial and temporal distributions of the anthropogenic radionuclides 137 Cs and 90 Sr, originating from nuclear bomb testing, the Sellafield reprocessing plant in the Irish Sea (UK), and from the Ob and Yenisey river discharges to the Arctic Ocean, have been simulated using the global version of the Miami Isopycnic Coordinate Ocean Model (MICOM). The physical model is forced with daily atmospheric re-analysis fields for the period of 1948-1999. Comparison of the temporal evolution of the observed and the simulated concentrations of 90 Sr has been performed in the Kara Sea. The relative contributions of the different sources on the temporal and spatial distributions of the surface 90 Sr are quantified over the simulated period. It follows that the Ob river discharge dominated the surface 90 Sr over most of the Arctic Ocean and along the eastern and western coasts of Greenland before 1960. During the period of 1980-1990, the atmospheric fallout and the Ob river discharge were equally important for the 90 Sr distribution in the Arctic Ocean. Furthermore, an attempt has been made to explore the possible dispersion of accidental released 90 Sr from the Ob and Yenisey rivers under a global warming scenario (2 x CO 2 ). The difference between the present-day and the global warming scenario runs indicates that more of the released 90 Sr from the Ob and Yenisey rivers is confined to the Arctic Ocean in the global warming run, particularly in the near coastal, non-European part of the Arctic Ocean.

  6. Global warming

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1992-01-01

    Canada's Green Plan strategy for dealing with global warming is being implemented as a multidepartmental partnership involving all Canadians and the international community. Many of the elements of this strategy are built on an existing base of activities predating the Green Plan. Elements of the strategy include programs to limit emissions of greenhouse gases, such as initiatives to encourage more energy-efficient practices and development of alternate fuel sources; studies and policy developments to help Canadians prepare and adapt to climate change; research on the global warming phenomenon; and stimulation of international action on global warming, including obligations arising out of the Framework Convention on Climate Change. All the program elements have been approved, funded, and announced. Major achievements to date are summarized, including improvements in the Energy Efficiency Act, studies on the socioeconomic impacts of global warming, and participation in monitoring networks. Milestones associated with the remaining global warming initiatives are listed

  7. Numerical simulation of permafrost depth during a future glaciation, Campine area, Northern Belgium

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Govaerts, Joan; Weetjens, Eef; Beerten, Koen

    2012-01-01

    Document available in extended abstract form only. Given the long time frames involved and their potential detrimental effects, climate changes are considered in the safety assessment of long-term geological disposal of radioactive waste. One such effect that climate changes may govern is the re-appearance of permafrost in north-western Europe. This condition already existed during previous glaciations (e.g., Weichselian glacial, 115-11 ka BP), and may have several consequences for the hydrosphere, geosphere, biosphere and repository. Here, we present calculations of permafrost depth based on the climatic scenario with the Weichselian (last glacial) as an analog to estimate the permafrost depth during a future glaciation. Whereas the lateral extent of permafrost can be deduced from surface features, not much is known about the maximum depth of permafrost during a cold stage in the Campine region. Realistic values of the latent heat of melting of pure water, and thermal conductivity of dry or frozen and unfrozen saturated sand and clay are used as input parameters. In addition, detailed and refined climatic scenarios for the last glacial are used to improve the quality of boundary conditions, together with a more advanced description of freezing/thawing processes. To describe heat transport in the subsoil of the Mol site, the one-dimensional enthalpy conservation equation is used with heat transport only occurring by conduction. In the first calculation case, the temperature at the top of the soil layer is set equal to the air temperatures of a realistic glacial cycle (Weichselian glaciation). In a second calculation case, the insulating effects of the surface cover are considered, and the air temperatures are converted into surface temperatures by making use of the 'n-factor concept', which yields an empirical relationship between the mean annual surface temperature, T s , and the mean annual air temperature, T a . In Figure 1 the permafrost pro-gradation front

  8. METHANE HYDRATE PRODUCTION FROM ALASKAN PERMAFROST

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Richard Sigal; Kent Newsham; Thomas Williams; Barry Freifeld; Timothy Kneafsey; Carl Sondergeld; Shandra Rai; Jonathan Kwan; Stephen Kirby; Robert Kleinberg; Doug Griffin

    2005-02-01

    Natural-gas hydrates have been encountered beneath the permafrost and considered a nuisance by the oil and gas industry for years. Engineers working in Russia, Canada and the USA have documented numerous drilling problems, including kicks and uncontrolled gas releases, in arctic regions. Information has been generated in laboratory studies pertaining to the extent, volume, chemistry and phase behavior of gas hydrates. Scientists studying hydrate potential agree that the potential is great--on the North Slope of Alaska alone, it has been estimated at 590 TCF. However, little information has been obtained on physical samples taken from actual rock containing hydrates. The work scope drilled and cored a well The Hot Ice No. 1 on Anadarko leases beginning in FY 2003 and completed in 2004. An on-site core analysis laboratory was built and utilized for determining the physical characteristics of the hydrates and surrounding rock. The well was drilled from a new Anadarko Arctic Platform that has a minimal footprint and environmental impact. The final efforts of the project are to correlate geology, geophysics, logs, and drilling and production data and provide this information to scientists developing reservoir models. No gas hydrates were encountered in this well; however, a wealth of information was generated and is contained in this report. The Hot Ice No. 1 well was drilled from the surface to a measured depth of 2300 ft. There was almost 100% core recovery from the bottom of surface casing at 107 ft to total depth. Based on the best estimate of the bottom of the methane hydrate stability zone (which used new data obtained from Hot Ice No. 1 and new analysis of data from adjacent wells), core was recovered over its complete range. Approximately 580 ft of porous, mostly frozen, sandstone and 155 of conglomerate were recovered in the Ugnu Formation and approximately 215 ft of porous sandstone were recovered in the West Sak Formation. There were gas shows in the bottom

  9. The effects of climate, permafrost and fire on vegetation change in Siberia in a changing climate

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tchebakova, N M; Parfenova, E [V N Sukachev Institute of Forest, Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Academgorodok, Krasnoyarsk, 660036 (Russian Federation); Soja, A J, E-mail: ncheby@forest.akadem.r, E-mail: Amber.J.Soja@nasa.go [National Institute of Aerospace (NIA), NASA Langley Research Center, Climate Sciences, 21 Langley Boulevard, Mail Stop 420, Hampton, VA 23681-2199 (United States)

    2009-10-15

    Observations and general circulation model projections suggest significant temperature increases in Siberia this century that are expected to have profound effects on Siberian vegetation. Potential vegetation change across Siberia was modeled, coupling our Siberian BioClimatic Model with several Hadley Centre climate change scenarios for 2020, 2050 and 2080, with explicit consideration of permafrost and fire activity. In the warmer and drier climate projected by these scenarios, Siberian forests are predicted to decrease and shift northwards and forest-steppe and steppe ecosystems are predicted to dominate over half of Siberia due to the dryer climate by 2080. Despite the large predicted increases in warming, permafrost is not predicted to thaw deep enough to sustain dark (Pinus sibirica, Abies sibirica, and Picea obovata) taiga. Over eastern Siberia, larch (Larix dahurica) taiga is predicted to continue to be the dominant zonobiome because of its ability to withstand continuous permafrost. The model also predicts new temperate broadleaf forest and forest-steppe habitats by 2080. Potential fire danger evaluated with the annual number of high fire danger days (Nesterov index is 4000-10 000) is predicted to increase by 2080, especially in southern Siberia and central Yakutia. In a warming climate, fuel load accumulated due to replacement of forest by steppe together with frequent fire weather promotes high risks of large fires in southern Siberia and central Yakutia, where wild fires would create habitats for grasslands because the drier climate would no longer be suitable for forests.

  10. The effect of permafrost thaw on short- and long-term carbon accumulation in permafrost mires

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olid, Carolina; Klaminder, Jonatan; Monteux, Sylvain; Johansson, Margareta; Dorrepaal, Ellen

    2017-04-01

    Permafrost stores twice as much carbon (C) as is currently present in the atmosphere. During recent years, warmer temperatures in the Arctic has caused rapid thawing of permafrost, which have dramatically altered permafrost C storage by increasing both microbial decomposition and plant productivity. Although current research focuses on the effects of climate change on these two processes, there are still no scientific consensus about the magnitude or even the direction of future C feedbacks from permafrost ecosystems. Field manipulation experiments have been widely used during the last decade to improve our knowledge about the net effects of permafrost thaw in the permafrost C storage. However, due to the slow response (decades) of permafrost ecosystems to environmental changes and the short-time nature of these experiments (usually shorter than 5-9 years), there are still concerns when attempting to extrapolate the results to predict long term effects. In addition, measurements are mostly taken exclusively during the summer season, without taking into account inter-annual variability in C fluxes and underestimating microbial activity throughout the cold season. The need to develop a comprehensive understanding of C fluxes over the entire year and at long temporal scales sets the basis of this study. This study aims to quantify the effects of permafrost thawing in permafrost C fluxes using a 12 years permafrost thaw experiment in northern Sweden. Our aims were to quantify the effect of permafrost thaw in both decomposition and primary production in active layer and newly thawed permafrost, and its implications for the C balance. Based on previous observations, we hypothesized that 1) soil decomposition rates were higher in manipulated thaw plots. However, 2) the observed increase in nutrients availability and the higher presence of vascular plants after thawing stimulate primary production, which compensates to some extent the increased C losses by respiration. To

  11. The Effects of Permafrost Thaw on Organic Matter Quality and Availability Along a Hill Slope in Northeastern Siberia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Connolly, C. T.; Spawn, S.; Ludwig, S.; Schade, J. D.; Natali, S.

    2014-12-01

    Climate warming and permafrost thaw in northeastern Siberia are expected to change the quantity and quality of organic matter (OM) transported through watersheds, releasing previously frozen carbon (C) to biologically available pool. Hill slopes have shown to influence the distribution of OM, resulting in a downhill accumulation of available C and nutrients relative to uphill. Here we examine how future permafrost thaw will change OM quality and availability along a hill slope in a larch-dominated watershed. We collected soils from the thawed organic and mineral layers, and 1m deep permafrost cores for dissolved organic C (DOC) and total dissolved N (TDN), C composition from measures of colored dissolved organic matter (CDOM), DOC lability from biodegradable DOC (BDOC) incubations, C and nutrient availability from extracellular-enzyme assays (EEA's), and microbial respiration from aerobic soil incubations. Here we show that organic soils (O), in comparison to mineral soils (M) and permafrost (P) are the most abundant source of C (avg O DOC: 51.6mg/L), exhibiting low molecular complexity (avg O SUVA254: 4.05) and high quality. Evidence suggests permafrost OM may be an equally abundant, and more labile source of C than mineral soils (highest P DOC: 16.1 mg/L, lowest P SUVA254: 6.32; median M DOC: 18.5 mg/L, median M SUVA254: 24.0). Furthermore, we demonstrate that there may be a positive relationship in the rate of C mineralization and distance downhill, showing 15-30% greater CO2 production/gC downhill relative to uphill. Evidence also supports a similar relationship in permafrost DOC content and molecular complexity, showing more DOC of a lower complexity further downhill. This indicates DOC transport may have been occurring through the active layer and downhill during ice-rich permafrost formation, and may supply a labile source of carbon to lowland areas and adjacent stream networks upon thaw.

  12. Using Distributed Fiber Optic Sensing to Monitor Large Scale Permafrost Transitions: Preliminary Results from a Controlled Thaw Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ajo Franklin, J. B.; Wagner, A. M.; Lindsey, N.; Dou, S.; Bjella, K.; Daley, T. M.; Freifeld, B. M.; Ulrich, C.; Gelvin, A.; Morales, A.; James, S. R.; Saari, S.; Ekblaw, I.; Wood, T.; Robertson, M.; Martin, E. R.

    2016-12-01

    In a warming world, permafrost landscapes are being rapidly transformed by thaw, yielding surface subsidence and groundwater flow alteration. The same transformations pose a threat to arctic infrastructure and can induce catastrophic failure of the roads, runways, and pipelines on which human habitation depends. Scalable solutions to monitoring permafrost thaw dynamics are required to both quantitatively understand biogeochemical feedbacks as well as to protect built infrastructure from damage. Unfortunately, permafrost alteration happens over the time scale of climate change, years to decades, a decided challenge for testing new sensing technologies in a limited context. One solution is to engineer systems capable of rapidly thawing large permafrost units to allow short duration experiments targeting next-generation sensing approaches. We present preliminary results from a large-scale controlled permafrost thaw experiment designed to evaluate the utility of different geophysical approaches for tracking the cause, precursors, and early phases of thaw subsidence. We focus on the use of distributed fiber optic sensing for this challenge and deployed distributed temperature (DTS), strain (DSS), and acoustic (DAS) sensing systems in a 2D array to detect thaw signatures. A 10 x 15 x 1 m section of subsurface permafrost was heated using an array of 120 downhole heaters (60 w) at an experimental site near Fairbanks, AK. Ambient noise analysis of DAS datasets collected at the plot, coupled to shear wave inversion, was utilized to evaluate changes in shear wave velocity associated with heating and thaw. These measurements were confirmed by seismic surveys collected using a semi-permanent orbital seismic source activated on a daily basis. Fiber optic measurements were complemented by subsurface thermistor and thermocouple arrays, timelapse total station surveys, LIDAR, secondary seismic measurements (geophone and broadband recordings), timelapse ERT, borehole NMR, soil

  13. Simulations of permafrost evolution at Olkiluoto

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hartikainen, J. [Aalto Univ., Espoo (Finland)

    2013-07-15

    This report provides numerical estimations of the evolution of permafrost and perennially frozen ground at Olkiluoto on time-scales of 60,000 and 125,000 years using Olkiluoto's site-specific information on time histories of ground level temperatures, ice sheet thickness, basal conditions, shoreline migration, soil and vegetation cover as well as heat generation from the spent fuel at a depth of 420 metres. When considering environmental conditions akin to the last glacial cycle for a 125,000 years long period, the maximum permafrost depth over the repository area can exceed the depth of 300 m and the maximum depth of perennially frozen ground the depth of 270 m. If Olkiluoto, after a 50,000 years long temperate phase of boreal climate, was subjected to a 10,000 years long periglacial period with air temperature decreased between -5 deg C and -10 deg C, the maximum permafrost depth would range between 60 and 240 m and the maximum depth of perennially frozen ground between 50 and 220 m. Furthermore, permafrost would reach the repository depth in 10,000 years, if the air temperature was lowered down to -15 deg C and the ground surface had a very thin vegetation and snow cover. Alternatively, if Olkiluoto experienced a 125,000 years long glacial cycle with a very long periglacial periods of low air temperatures and thin vegetation and snow cover and without any ice sheet development, permafrost would reach the depth of 400 m in 98,000 years and perennially frozen ground in 101,000 years. The areal distribution of permafrost and perennially frozen ground are broadly affected by the snow cover, lakes and the peat areas, especially when an extensive peat growth occurs. The lack of snow cover can enhance the evolution of the maximum depth of permafrost and perennially frozen ground by over 50 %. In addition, ground thermal conditions and the heat generation from the spent fuel modify the spatial and temporal development of permafrost and perennially frozen ground. A

  14. Simulations of permafrost evolution at Olkiluoto

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hartikainen, J.

    2013-07-01

    This report provides numerical estimations of the evolution of permafrost and perennially frozen ground at Olkiluoto on time-scales of 60,000 and 125,000 years using Olkiluoto's site-specific information on time histories of ground level temperatures, ice sheet thickness, basal conditions, shoreline migration, soil and vegetation cover as well as heat generation from the spent fuel at a depth of 420 metres. When considering environmental conditions akin to the last glacial cycle for a 125,000 years long period, the maximum permafrost depth over the repository area can exceed the depth of 300 m and the maximum depth of perennially frozen ground the depth of 270 m. If Olkiluoto, after a 50,000 years long temperate phase of boreal climate, was subjected to a 10,000 years long periglacial period with air temperature decreased between -5 deg C and -10 deg C, the maximum permafrost depth would range between 60 and 240 m and the maximum depth of perennially frozen ground between 50 and 220 m. Furthermore, permafrost would reach the repository depth in 10,000 years, if the air temperature was lowered down to -15 deg C and the ground surface had a very thin vegetation and snow cover. Alternatively, if Olkiluoto experienced a 125,000 years long glacial cycle with a very long periglacial periods of low air temperatures and thin vegetation and snow cover and without any ice sheet development, permafrost would reach the depth of 400 m in 98,000 years and perennially frozen ground in 101,000 years. The areal distribution of permafrost and perennially frozen ground are broadly affected by the snow cover, lakes and the peat areas, especially when an extensive peat growth occurs. The lack of snow cover can enhance the evolution of the maximum depth of permafrost and perennially frozen ground by over 50 %. In addition, ground thermal conditions and the heat generation from the spent fuel modify the spatial and temporal development of permafrost and perennially frozen ground. A