Climate change: High risk of permafrost thaw

  title={Climate change: High risk of permafrost thaw},
  author={Edward. A.G. Schuur and Benjamin W. Abbott},
Northern soils will release huge amounts of carbon in a warmer world, say Edward A. G. Schuur, Benjamin Abbott and the Permafrost Carbon Network. 

Assessing effects of permafrost thaw on C fluxes based on multiyear modeling across a permafrost thaw gradient at Stordalen, Sweden

Northern peatlands in permafrost regions contain a large amount of organic carbon (C) in the soil. Climate warming and associated permafrost degradation are expected to have significant impacts on ...

Tundra soil carbon is vulnerable to rapid microbial decomposition under climate warming

Release of carbon previously locked in permafrost is a potentially important positive climate feedback. Now metagenomics reveal the vulnerability of active-layer soil carbon to warming-induced

Mechanisms and impacts of climate tipping elements

"Climate tipping elements" often refer to large-scale earth systems with the potential to respond nonlinearly to anthropogenic climate change by transitioning towards substantially different long-t...

Examining changes to forest and permafrost distribution in the southern Northwest Territories and northeastern British Columbia

Thank you to the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council for their financial support of this project. This project was also graciously funded through the Consortium for Permafrost

Mapping the degree of decomposition and thaw remobilization potential of soil organic matter in discontinuous permafrost terrain

Soil organic matter (SOM) stored in permafrost terrain is a key component in the global carbon cycle, but its composition and lability are largely unknown. We characterize and assess the degree of ...

Climate change and the permafrost carbon feedback

It is found that current evidence suggests a gradual and prolonged release of greenhouse gas emissions in a warming climate and a research strategy with which to target poorly understood aspects of permafrost carbon dynamics is presented.

Evaluating tephrochronology in the permafrost peatlands of northern Sweden

The impact of lower sea-ice extent on Arctic greenhouse-gas exchange

An increasingly ice-free Arctic Ocean could have significant implications for greenhouse-gas sources and sinks in the Northern high latitudes. In this Review, the impact of diminishing sea-ice extent


Potential Contrasts in CO 2 and CH 4 Flux Response under Changing Climate Conditions : A Satellite Remote Sensing Driven Analysis of the Net Ecosystem Carbon Budget for Arctic and Boreal Regions



The effect of permafrost thaw on old carbon release and net carbon exchange from tundra

Net ecosystem carbon exchange and the radiocarbon age of ecosystem respiration in a tundra landscape undergoing permafrost thaw is measured to determine the influence of old carbon loss on ecosystem carbon balance and it is found that areas that thawed over the past 15 years had 40 per cent more annual losses than minimally thawed areas, but had overall net ecosystem carbon uptake as increased plant growth offset these losses.

Permafrost carbon-climate feedbacks accelerate global warming

A terrestrial ecosystem model that includespermafrost carbon dynamics, inhibition of respiration in frozen soil layers, vertical mixing of soil carbon from surface to permafrost layers, and CH4 emissions from flooded areas is used, to explore the potential for carbon-climate feedbacks at high latitudes.

Amount and timing of permafrost carbon release in response to climate warming

The thawand release of carbon currently frozen in permafrost will increase atmospheric CO2 concentrations and amplify surface warming to initiate a positive permafrost carbon feedback (PCF) on

Carbon loss from an unprecedented Arctic tundra wildfire

The magnitude of ecosystem C lost by fire, relative to both ecosystem and biome-scale fluxes, demonstrates that a climate-driven increase in tundra fire disturbance may represent a positive feedback, potentially offsetting Arctic greening and influencing the net C balance of the tundRA biome.

Thermokarst Lakes as a Source of Atmospheric CH4 During the Last Deglaciation

It is found that CH4 bubbling from newly forming thermokarst lakes comprised 33 to 87% of the high-latitude increase in atmospheric methane concentration and, in turn, contributed to the climate warming at the Pleistocene-Holocene transition.

Methane bubbling from Siberian thaw lakes as a positive feedback to climate warming

It is found that thawing permafrost along lake margins accounts for most of the methane released from the lakes, and it is estimated that an expansion of thaw lakes between 1974 and 2000, which was concurrent with regional warming, increased methane emissions in the study region by 58 per cent.

Soil organic carbon pools in the northern circumpolar permafrost region

The Northern Circumpolar Soil Carbon Database was developed in order to determine carbon pools in soils of the northern circumpolar permafrost region. The area of all soils in the northern permafrost

Changing boreal methane sources and constant biomass burning during the last termination

An ice core record of carbon isotopic ratios in methane over the entire last glacial–interglacial transition shows that the carbon in atmospheric methane was isotopically much heavier in cold climate periods, and the atmospheric lifetime of methane is reduced duringcold climate periods.

Abrupt increase in permafrost degradation in Arctic Alaska

Even though the arctic zone of continuous permafrost has relatively cold mean annual air temperatures, we found an abrupt, large increase in the extent of permafrost degradation in northern Alaska