The ice age methane budget
Article first published online: 27 JAN 2005
Copyright 2005 by the American Geophysical Union.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 32, Issue 2, January 2005
How to Cite
2005), The ice age methane budget, Geophys. Res. Lett., 32, L02704, doi:10.1029/2004GL021004., , and (
- Issue published online: 27 JAN 2005
- Article first published online: 27 JAN 2005
- Manuscript Accepted: 16 DEC 2004
- Manuscript Revised: 2 NOV 2004
- Manuscript Received: 14 JUL 2004
 Accounting for the natural 40% reduction in methane during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) represents one of the most challenging problems posed by polar ice core studies. Inverse modelling, constrained by observations, suggest it is driven by a decline in wetland sources, but this is not supported by forward modelling. Using a comprehensive Earth system model, we show that closure of the methane budget requires reduced emissions and an amplified sink caused by reduction in emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from LGM forests. Our study emphasizes a key role for the terrestrial biosphere in the methane budget during the Quaternary.