EGU General Assembly 2007
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  Information - BG1.02 Methane fluxes from permafrost ecosystems in relation to climate change

Event Information
The feedback on climate warming from increased methane fluxes from permafrost ecosystems has attracted considerable attention, also outside the scientific community. Recent years have seen a shift from observational and process studies to modelling for incorporation of the wetland methane feedback into earth system models. However, much remains to be discovered in terms of process knowledge, spatial and temporal variability, from the level of microbial and plant species specific processes up to landscape scale. Effects of climate change on northern wetland methane fluxes are the result of a complex interaction between climate, vegetation, hydrology, permafrost, soil microbial populations and soil/permafrost carbon stores. Some effects may be transient, e.g. the effect of melting permafrost on wetland hydrology. Further uncertainties are introduced by the lack of longer observational records that actually could demonstrate increasing fluxes, the scarcity of data from the vast Eurasian continent, and the relation of methane fluxes to drainage basin hydrology. This session aims to bring together field and modelling studies of methane flux changes in permafrost ecosystems. We intend to focus on processes and spatial/temporal variation, with special attention to areas with a hitherto poor data coverage.

Preliminary List of Solicited Speakers
Dr. S.A. Zimov


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