6. Mountain Soils in a Changing Climate – Vulnerability of Carbon Stocks and Ecosystem Feedbacks

  1. Robert Jandl10,11,
  2. Mirco Rodeghiero12,13 and
  3. Mats Olsson14
  1. Sofie Sjögersten1,
  2. Christine Alewell2,
  3. Lauric Cécillon3,
  4. Frank Hagedorn4,
  5. Robert Jandl10,11,
  6. Jens Leifeld5,
  7. Vegard Martinsen6,
  8. Andreas Schindlbacher7,
  9. M. -Teresa Sebastià8 and
  10. Helga Van Miegroet9

Published Online: 23 OCT 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9781119970255.ch6

Soil Carbon in Sensitive European Ecosystems: From Science to Land Management

Soil Carbon in Sensitive European Ecosystems: From Science to Land Management

How to Cite

Sjögersten, S., Alewell, C., Cécillon, L., Hagedorn, F., Jandl, R., Leifeld, J., Martinsen, V., Schindlbacher, A., Sebastià, M. .-T. and Van Miegroet, H. (2011) Mountain Soils in a Changing Climate – Vulnerability of Carbon Stocks and Ecosystem Feedbacks, in Soil Carbon in Sensitive European Ecosystems: From Science to Land Management (eds R. Jandl, M. Rodeghiero and M. Olsson), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781119970255.ch6

Editor Information

  1. 10

    Federal Research and Training Centre for Forests, Natural Hazards and Landscape (BFW), Austria

  2. 11

    Bundesamt und Forschungszentrum für Wald (Forest Research Centre), Seckendorff-Gudent-Weg 8, 1130 Vienna, Austria

  3. 12

    Centre for Alpine Ecology, Italy

  4. 13

    IASMA, Research and Innovation Centre, Fondazione Edmund Mach, Forests and Biogeochemical Cycles, 38010 San Michele All'Adige, Italy

  5. 14

    Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU), Box 7014, 750 07 Uppsala, Sweden

Author Information

  1. 1

    University of Nottingham, School of Biosciences, University Park, Nottingham, NG7 2RD, UK

  2. 2

    Institute of Environmental Geosciences, University of Basel, Schonbeinstrasse 6, 4056 Basel, Switzerland

  3. 3

    ISTerre – Geochimie 4D, University Joseph Fourier, Maison des Geosciences, BP 53, 38041 Grenoble Cedex 9, France

  4. 4

    Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research (WSL), Zürcherstrasse 11, 8903 Birmensdorf, Switzerland

  5. 5

    Agroscope Reckenholz-Tänikon Research Station ART, Reckenholzstrasse 191, CH-8046, Zürich, Switzerland

  6. 6

    Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, PO Box 5003, NO-1432 Ås, Norway

  7. 7

    Bundesamt und Forschungszentrum für Wald (Forest Research Centre), Seckendorff-Gudent-Weg 8, 1130 Vienna, Austria

  8. 8

    Laboratory of Plant Ecology and Forest Botany, Forest Technology Centre of Catalonia, Ctra. Sant Llorenç km 2, 25280 Solsona, Spain

  9. 9

    Department of Wildland Resources, Utah State University, Logan, UT 84322-5230, USA

  10. 10

    Federal Research and Training Centre for Forests, Natural Hazards and Landscape (BFW), Austria

  11. 11

    Bundesamt und Forschungszentrum für Wald (Forest Research Centre), Seckendorff-Gudent-Weg 8, 1130 Vienna, Austria

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 23 OCT 2011
  2. Published Print: 11 OCT 2011

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781119970019

Online ISBN: 9781119970255

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Keywords:

  • Carbon;
  • greenhouse gases;
  • high altitude;
  • precipitation;
  • soils;
  • tree-lines;
  • warming

Summary

Mountain areas in Europe have been experiencing greater changes in climate over the last century than other European landscapes. This considerable shift in the climate towards warmer conditions together with substantial labile soil carbon stocks found in mountain areas raises concerns about the future increases of greenhouse gas emissions from mountain ecosystems. The evidence from climate change experiments in alpine areas suggests that large increases in CO2 emissions will occur as the climate warms. However, the lack of long term warming experiment makes it difficult to assess if such elevated CO2 emission would be sustained over long periods. In addition to warming, precipitation changes are also likely to increase CO2 emissions but this might be compensated for by increased productivity of the vegetation. In addition to the direct effects of changes in the climate, shifts in the above ground vegetation either in response to climate change or land management will have profound effects on soil carbon storage, possibly to a greater extent than the direct effects of altered temperature and precipitation on the microbial degradation of soil carbon. The overall trends appear to be for strong initial increases in carbon losses in response to both warming and tree-line shifts/afforestation.