Modelling carbon dynamics in coniferous forest soils in a temperature gradient.

R. Hyvonen, M.P. Berg, G.I. Agren

    Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


    Climate change and changes in land use will alter the stores of carbon and turnover of soil organic matter. We have used a theory for carbon cycles in terrestrial ecosystems to analyse changes in soil organic matter turnover in coniferous forests. The central concepts of the theory are a continuously changing substrate quality, a constant decomposer efficiency and a climatically controlled decomposer growth rate. Measurements on litter production and soil carbon stores from field experiments have been used to successfully validate the model predictions. Measured litter production increased with increasing temperature but the response was not identical for forests of different vegetation types which reflect variations in productivity. The temperature response of needle-litter production and decomposition rate were strongest in the most productive forests and weakest for the low productive forests. Initial decay rates of soil C store from steady state showed the same trend in temperature response as decay of a single litter cohort did, but the absolute values are 16% of the decay rates of a single litter cohort. Predicted soil C ranged from 5 to 9 kg C m
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)33-39
    JournalPlant and Soil
    Publication statusPublished - 2002


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