Influence of weather variables on methane and carbon dioxide flux from a shallow pond
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Freshwaters are important sources of the greenhouse gases methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere. Knowledge about temporal variability in these fluxes is very limited, yet critical for proper study design and evaluating flux data. Further, to understand the reasons for the variability and allow predictive modeling, the temporal variability has to be related to relevant environmental variables. Here we analyzed the effect of weather variables on CH4 and CO2 flux from a small shallow pond during a period of 4 months. Mean CH4 flux and surface water CH4 concentration were 8.0 [3.3–15.1] ± 3.1 mmol m−2 day−1 (mean [range] ± 1 SD) and 1.3 [0.3–3.5] ± 0.9 µM respectively. Mean CO2 flux was 1.1 [−9.8 to 16.0] ± 6.9 mmol m−2 day−1. Substantial diel changes in CO2 flux and surface water CH4 concentration were observed during detailed measurements over a 24 h cycle. Thus diel patterns need to be accounted for in future measurements. Significant positive correlations of CH4 emissions with temperature were found and could include both direct temperature effects as well as indirect effects (e.g. related to the growth season and macrophyte primary productivity providing organic substrates). CO2 flux on the other hand was negatively correlated to temperature and solar radiation, presumably because CO2 consumption by plants was higher relative to CO2 production by respiration during warm sunny days. Interestingly, CH4 fluxes were comparable to ponds with similar morphometry and macrophyte abundance in the tropics. We therefore hypothesize that CH4 and CO2 summer emissions from ponds could be more related to the morphometry and dominating primary producers rather than latitude per se. Data indicate that CH4 emissions, given the system characteristic frameworks, is positively affected by increased temperatures or prolonged growth seasons.
KeywordsCH4 flux CO2 flux Surface water CH4 concentration Pond Diel variability Weather Temperature
We thank Henrik Reyier for his help in sampling and analysis of this study. Magnus Öhrman and Ulf Jacobsson from Akademiska Hus kindly provided the weather data and the information about the studied pond.
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