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Vegetation matters: Correcting chamber carbon flux measurements using plant volumes

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Publication details

JournalScience of the Total Environment
DateAccepted/In press - 15 May 2018
DateE-pub ahead of print - 25 May 2018
DatePublished (current) - 15 Oct 2018
Volume639
Number of pages4
Pages (from-to)769–772
Early online date25/05/18
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Chamber carbon flux measurements are routinely used to assess ecosystem carbon sink/source dynamics. Often these point measurements enclose considerable vegetation biomass, with fluxes upscaled in space and time for each vegetation type. Here we assess the importance of including the volume of peatland dwarf shrub vegetation in chamber flux calculations and outline a simple but effective method of assessing plant volumes. We show that inclusion of plant volumes significantly affects fluxes and that this effect becomes greater as the proportion of chamber volume occupied by plants increases. Moreover, we demonstrate that, with an initial destructive laboratory assessment for each plant species and a little practice at volume estimation, plant volumes can be accurately assessed non-destructively in the field.

Bibliographical note

© 2018 The Authors.

    Research areas

  • Net ecosystem exchange, vegetation volume, carbon cycling, chamber flux measurements, Calluna vulgaris, peatlands

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