The timing of snow melt controls the annual CO2 balance in a subarctic fen
Article first published online: 31 AUG 2004
Copyright 2004 by the American Geophysical Union.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 31, Issue 16, August 2004
How to Cite
2004), The timing of snow melt controls the annual CO2 balance in a subarctic fen, Geophys. Res. Lett., 31, L16119, doi:10.1029/2004GL020315., , and (
- Issue published online: 31 AUG 2004
- Article first published online: 31 AUG 2004
- Manuscript Accepted: 7 JUL 2004
- Manuscript Revised: 29 JUN 2004
- Manuscript Received: 21 APR 2004
 The first continuous multi-year measurements of the CO2 exchange between a subarctic fen and the atmosphere were conducted at Kaamanen in northern Finland (69°N). According to our six-year data-set, the fen is presently a sink of atmospheric CO2 with a mean rate of −22 g C m−2 yr−1. The interannual variation of the CO2 balances originates almost completely from the variations during the snow-free period, but the efflux in the wintertime constitutes a significant part of the annual balance. The snow melt timing is the most important single determinant of the annual carbon balance. In contrast to a commonly-held view, the hydrometeorological conditions during the growing season had only a minor effect on the annual balance, emphasizing the importance of year-round measurements. This study indicates that climate warming may increase the length of the growing season and thus benefit rather than threaten the carbon pool of subarctic peatlands.