Peatlands and the carbon cycle: From local processes to global implications



Boreal and subarctic peatlands cover about 3% of the Earth's land surface and store 15–30% of the world's soil carbon (200–400 petagrams) as peat. This large C pool, in addition to C in Arctic soils, lies at higher latitudes that are experiencing ongoing climate change. Tropical peatlands also contain large C reservoirs, the stability of which is threatened by ongoing land use change. In response to a call from PeatNet (a National Science Foundation-supported research coordination network), Juul Limpens and Gabriela Schaepman-Strub proposed a small workshop on peatland C cycling, an idea that morphed into a meeting with 180 participants from 18 countries,