Influence of typhoons on annual CO2 flux from a subtropical, humic lake


Stuart E. Jones, fax +1 608 262 5199, e-mail:


The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change predicts dramatic changes in precipitation patterns over the next century. One potential method for inferring how these changes in annual precipitation and intensity of storm events will influence aquatic ecosystems is to study and model present-day lakes that share climatic characteristics with future climate scenarios. A small lake in north-central Taiwan provided an excellent opportunity to explore the influence of intense meteorological events on CO2 exchange between surface waters and the atmosphere. Each year Yuan Yang Lake (YYL) is influenced by multiple typhoons that pass near the island of Taiwan. This lake has been instrumented with a sensor network that monitors water column and meteorological parameters at a high temporal resolution (2–10 min intervals). Using this high-resolution data and manually collected CO2 samples, a mass-balance model of CO2 dynamics in YYL was developed. In addition, a generalized simulation model was used to explore how typhoon frequency, intensity, and timing impact CO2 efflux to the atmosphere. Our findings suggest that increased annual precipitation and frequency of storm events results in greater epilimnetic interaction with the watershed and hypolimnion. These interactions resulted in elevated epilimetic CO2 concentrations and therefore greater evasion of CO2 to the atmosphere.