greenhouse gases

Teatime4science

Emily Goldstein Museum

Emily Goldstein Museum

Teatime4science

Project summary

The decay of organic material, or decomposition, is a critical process for life. While plant material decomposes, it loses weight, releases nutrients and the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2). Changes in climate and decomposition potentially reinforce each other; With global warming, decomposition increases, leading to higher CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere, which in turn accelerates global warming. These feedbacks substantially influence our future climate. However, the current climate models lack sufficient measured data to accurately include feedbacks between decomposition and climate. Solving this requires a new approach and a huge quantity of data. A recently developed method that uses tea bags as test kits is such an approach. By involving citizen scientists, decomposition rates will be measured at a previously unattainable scale and resolution, within a relatively short time. This will break new ground in our understanding of climate effects on decomposition. We will test the effects of changed climate conditions by burying tea worldwide alongside climate manipulation experiments (with open top chambers and rain shelters). We further calibrate the method and measure decomposition under a large variety of environmental conditions in the laboratory. The tea time for science project will thus compile a global soil map of decomposition, and perform the most rigorous test of the relation between climate factors and decay rates using models with increased accuracy

Project website

www.teatime4science.org

Project Dates: 2015 - 2019

Funding Organisations

Vetenskapsrådet

Collaborators

Mariet Hefting, Utrecht University
Taru Sandén, Department for Soil Health and Plant Nutrition at the Austrian Agency for Health and Food
Safety (AGES)
Joost Keuskamp, Biont Research

Changing ice-cover regimes in a warmer climate: Effects on northern aquatic ecosystems

Ice Sampling at Lake Almberga

Ice Sampling at Lake Almberga

Changing ice-cover regimes in a warmer climate: Effects on northern aquatic ecosystems

Project summary

The goal of this project is to assess the effects of changing ice-cover regimes on aquatic primary production and carbon metabolism in northern freshwater and brackish water coastal ecosystems. Northern aquatic ecosystems are seasonally variable due to long, cold and dark ice-covered winters as well as 24-hour sunlight during summer. A warmer climate has effects on the extensions and magnitudes of snow- and ice-cover, with shorter duration of ice-cover expected for northern aquatic ecosystems. The ice-cover is important for carbon accumulation (CO2 and CH4), aquatic-atmosphere gas exchange and a number of biological processes. Hence, a changing ice-cover regime will have important implications for the function of northern aquatic ecosystems and for the role of these systems in the global carbon cycle.

Project Dates: 2017 - 2020

Funding Organisations

Formas
EcoChange

Collaborators

Erin Hotchkiss, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Rolf Vinebrooke, University of Alberta

Climate change induced regime shifts in Northern lake ecosystems

Sunset over lake Törnetrask (as seen from the Abisko Scientific Research Station)

Sunset over lake Törnetrask (as seen from the Abisko Scientific Research Station)

Climate change induced regime shifts in Northern lake ecosystems

Project Summary

A present major scientific challenge is to understand and predict effects of climate change on lake ecosystems and the services they deliver. Globally, lakes are concentrated at northern latitudes where the magnitude of climate change is expected to be strongest. Recent advances in lake research suggest that responses of Northern lakes to global warming are fundamentally different from the expectations based on conventional knowledge. This project brings together new tools and concepts in biogeochemistry and ecology, with the aims of understanding and predicting the effects of climate change on the delivery of two major ecosystem services, fish production and the net greenhouse gas balance of Northern lakes.

Specific objectives include:

  1. Assessment of long vs. short term effects of climate change;

  2. Assessment of nonlinear dynamics and regime shifts; and,

  3. Projection of responses to future climate conditions.

The project’s core is made up of a multi-scale (pond to whole-lake) experimental test of ecosystem responses to increases in temperature and precipitation/runoff. Further, we will use aDNA techniques to address past regime shifts and ecosystem resilience to climate change from paleolimnological sediment records. Finally, the project will develop process-based models to be used in the projection of future conditions in lakes at the whole ecosystem scale.

Project Dates: 2017-2021

Funding Organizations

Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation

Collaborators

David Bastviken, Linköping University
Ann-Kristin Bergström, Umeå University
Christian Bigler, Umeå University
Richard Bindler, Umeå University
Åke Brännström, Umeå University
Pär Byström, Umeå University
Sebastian Diehl, Umeå University
Isabelle Domaizon, French National Institute for Agricultural Research
Göran Englund, Umeå University
Cristian Gudasz, Umeå University
Dag Hessen, Oslo University, Norway
Jonatan Klaminder, Umeå University
Sally MacIntyre, University of California Santa Barbara, USA
Frank Peeters, University of Konstanz, Germany
André de Roos, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Martin Rosvall, Umeå University
David Seekell, Umeå University
Ryan Sponseller, Umeå University
Xiau-Ru Wang, Umeå University
Marcus Klaus, Umeå University

Climate impact on sources and sinks of greenhouse gases in high-latitude lakes

Törnetrask in the Autumn (as viewed from the Abisko Scientific Research Station)

Törnetrask in the Autumn (as viewed from the Abisko Scientific Research Station)

Climate impact on sources and sinks of greenhouse gases in high-latitude lakes

Project Summary

Arctic and subarctic lakes play an important role in the global carbon (C) cycle by burying C in sediments and emitting greenhouse gases as carbon dioxide and methane to the atmosphere. The relative magnitude of these different pathways has large implications for their role in the C cycle, i.e. to what extent they act as C sources or sinks. Still, the knowledge of C cycling in lakes is in many important aspects incomplete, preventing accurate quantification and predictions of their C source-sink function and response to climate change. The aim of the project is to assess climate impacts on C emission and burial in arctic–subarctic lakes. We will specifically investigate direct impacts by temperature and precipitation, and indirect impacts via changes in terrestrial surroundings, and how these various drivers influence the C source-sink function of lakes depending on the rate and magnitude of change. An important part is to assess the various sources and pathways underpinning emission and burial in lakes. The core of the project is made up of (i) comparative studies of lakes across gradients in temperature and precipitation and (ii) large-scale experimental test of responses in C emission and burial to increases in temperature and precipitation/runoff.

Project Dates: 2017-2020

Funding Organization

The Swedish Research Council (VR)

Collaborators

Jan Karlsson, Umeå University
David Bastviken, Linköpings University
Blaize Denfeld, Umeå University (Post Doctoral Researcher)
Cristian Gudasz, Umeå University
Sally MacIntyre, University of California Santa Barbara, USA
Oleg S. Pokrovsky, University Toulouse, France
Chris Soulsby, University of Aberdeen, UK
Bror Holmgren, Umeå University (PhD Student)