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Ecosystem-scale flux of CO2 from a restored vacuum harvested peatland

Abstract

At the ecosystem scale, the water and gasexchange processes are strongly coupled.Drainage and removal of a peatland'ssurface vegetation cover for peatharvesting alters its hydrology, and as adirect consequence the carbon budget.Previous studies have measuredpeatland-atmosphere carbon exchange usingthe chamber methodology. These studies haveindicated that the spatial and temporalvariability is large, suggesting the needfor continuous ecosystem-scalemeasurements. This paper presents ecosystemscale measurements of the atmosphericexchange of water and carbon dioxide(CO2) from a restored vacuum-harvestedpeatland in eastern Québec, Canada,using the eddy correlation measurementapproach.Results indicate that the adoptedrestoration practices reduce the loss ofwater from the peat. Evapotranspirationfrom the restored site was 20 and 25% lessthan that from an adjacent abandonedcomparison site in 2000 and 2001respectively. However, CO2 emissionsremain large during non-snow periods (478and 468 g C m-2 in 2000 and 2001,respectively). The blockage of drainageditches and the existence of a mulch coverat the site keep the moisture and thermalconditions more or less constant.Consequently, the CO2 flux, which ispredominantly soil respiration, is stronglycontrolled by peat temperaturefluctuations.

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Correspondence to Richard M. Petrone.

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Petrone, R.M., Waddington, J. & Price, J.S. Ecosystem-scale flux of CO2 from a restored vacuum harvested peatland. Wetlands Ecology and Management 11, 419–432 (2003). https://doi.org/10.1023/B:WETL.0000007192.78408.62

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1023/B:WETL.0000007192.78408.62

  • carbon dioxide
  • eddy correlation
  • evapotranspiration
  • peatland
  • restoration