skip to main content
OSTI.GOV title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Observations of 14CO 2 in ecosystem respiration from a temperate deciduous forest in Northern Wisconsin

Abstract

We show that the 14CO 2 composition of plant and soil respiration can be used to determine the residence time of photosynthetically fixed carbon before it is released back to the atmosphere. To estimate the residence time of actively cycled carbon in a temperate forest, we employed two approaches for estimating the Δ 14CO 2 of ecosystem respiration (Δ 14C-R eco) at the Willow Creek AmeriFlux site in Northern Wisconsin, USA. Our first approach was to construct nighttime Keeling plots from subcanopy profiles of Δ 14CO 2 and CO 2, providing estimates of Δ 14C-R eco of 121.7‰ in June and 42.0‰ in August 2012. These measurements are likely dominated by soil fluxes due to proximity to the ground level. Our second approach utilized samples taken over 20 months within the forest canopy and from 396 m above ground level at the nearby LEF NOAA tall tower site (Park Falls, WI). In this canopy-minus-background approach we employed a mixing model described by Miller and Tans (2003) for estimating isotopic sources by subtracting time-varying background conditions. For the period from May 2011 to December 2012 the estimated Δ 14C-R eco using the Miller-Tans model was 76.8‰. Together, these Δ 14C-R ecomore » values represent mean R eco carbon ages of approximately 1–19 years. We also found that heterotrophic soil-respired Δ 14C at Willow Creek was 5–38‰ higher (i.e., 1–10 years older) than predicted by the Carnegie-Ames-Stanford Approach global biosphere carbon model for the 1 × 1 pixel nearest to the site. Finally, this study provides much needed observational constraints of ecosystem carbon residence times, which are a major source of uncertainty in terrestrial carbon cycle models.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [3];  [4];  [5];  [6]
  1. Oregon State Univ., Corvallis, OR (United States). Department of Crops and Soil Science
  2. Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States). Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry
  3. Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States). Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry; Sandia National Lab. (SNL-CA), Livermore, CA (United States)
  4. Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States). Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences
  5. NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory, Boulder, CO (United States). Global Monitoring Division; Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO (United States). CIRES
  6. Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO (United States). INSTAAR
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1409977
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1402188
Report Number(s):
LLNL-JRNL-741230
Journal ID: ISSN 2169-8953
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC52-07NA27344; LDRD 11-ERD-053; 10-06
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Journal of Geophysical Research. Biogeosciences
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 120; Journal Issue: 4; Journal ID: ISSN 2169-8953
Publisher:
American Geophysical Union
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; Radiocarbon; Keeling plot; AmeriFlux; respiration

Citation Formats

Phillips, Claire L., McFarlane, Karis J., LaFranchi, Brian, Desai, Ankur R., Miller, John B., and Lehman, Scott J. Observations of 14CO2 in ecosystem respiration from a temperate deciduous forest in Northern Wisconsin. United States: N. p., 2015. Web. doi:10.1002/2014JG002808.
Phillips, Claire L., McFarlane, Karis J., LaFranchi, Brian, Desai, Ankur R., Miller, John B., & Lehman, Scott J. Observations of 14CO2 in ecosystem respiration from a temperate deciduous forest in Northern Wisconsin. United States. doi:10.1002/2014JG002808.
Phillips, Claire L., McFarlane, Karis J., LaFranchi, Brian, Desai, Ankur R., Miller, John B., and Lehman, Scott J. Tue . "Observations of 14CO2 in ecosystem respiration from a temperate deciduous forest in Northern Wisconsin". United States. doi:10.1002/2014JG002808. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1409977.
@article{osti_1409977,
title = {Observations of 14CO2 in ecosystem respiration from a temperate deciduous forest in Northern Wisconsin},
author = {Phillips, Claire L. and McFarlane, Karis J. and LaFranchi, Brian and Desai, Ankur R. and Miller, John B. and Lehman, Scott J.},
abstractNote = {We show that the 14CO2 composition of plant and soil respiration can be used to determine the residence time of photosynthetically fixed carbon before it is released back to the atmosphere. To estimate the residence time of actively cycled carbon in a temperate forest, we employed two approaches for estimating the Δ14CO2 of ecosystem respiration (Δ14C-Reco) at the Willow Creek AmeriFlux site in Northern Wisconsin, USA. Our first approach was to construct nighttime Keeling plots from subcanopy profiles of Δ14CO2 and CO2, providing estimates of Δ14C-Reco of 121.7‰ in June and 42.0‰ in August 2012. These measurements are likely dominated by soil fluxes due to proximity to the ground level. Our second approach utilized samples taken over 20 months within the forest canopy and from 396 m above ground level at the nearby LEF NOAA tall tower site (Park Falls, WI). In this canopy-minus-background approach we employed a mixing model described by Miller and Tans (2003) for estimating isotopic sources by subtracting time-varying background conditions. For the period from May 2011 to December 2012 the estimated Δ14C-Reco using the Miller-Tans model was 76.8‰. Together, these Δ14C-Reco values represent mean Reco carbon ages of approximately 1–19 years. We also found that heterotrophic soil-respired Δ 14C at Willow Creek was 5–38‰ higher (i.e., 1–10 years older) than predicted by the Carnegie-Ames-Stanford Approach global biosphere carbon model for the 1 × 1 pixel nearest to the site. Finally, this study provides much needed observational constraints of ecosystem carbon residence times, which are a major source of uncertainty in terrestrial carbon cycle models.},
doi = {10.1002/2014JG002808},
journal = {Journal of Geophysical Research. Biogeosciences},
issn = {2169-8953},
number = 4,
volume = 120,
place = {United States},
year = {2015},
month = {4}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record

Citation Metrics:
Cited by: 3 works
Citation information provided by
Web of Science

Save / Share:

Works referenced in this record:

Observations and modelling of the global distribution and long-term trend of atmospheric 14 CO 2
journal, January 2010


Atmospheric Radiocarbon for the Period 1950–2010
journal, January 2013


What is the concentration footprint of a tall tower?
journal, August 2001

  • Gloor, Manuel; Bakwin, Peter; Hurst, Dale
  • Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, Vol. 106, Issue D16
  • DOI: 10.1029/2001JD900021

Forced Diffusion soil flux: A new technique for continuous monitoring of soil gas efflux
journal, December 2011


Linking emissions of fossil fuel CO 2 and other anthropogenic trace gases using atmospheric 14 CO 2 : THE
journal, April 2012

  • Miller, John B.; Lehman, Scott J.; Montzka, Stephen A.
  • Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, Vol. 117, Issue D8
  • DOI: 10.1029/2011JD017048

Impulse response functions of terrestrial carbon cycle models: method and application
journal, April 1999


Carbon residence time dominates uncertainty in terrestrial vegetation responses to future climate and atmospheric CO 2
journal, December 2013

  • Friend, Andrew D.; Lucht, Wolfgang; Rademacher, Tim T.
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 111, Issue 9
  • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1222477110

Geologic carbon sources may confound ecosystem carbon balance estimates: Evidence from a semiarid steppe in the southeast of Spain: EVIDENCE OF GEOLOGIC C IN AN ARID STEPPE
journal, September 2012

  • Rey, A.; Etiope, G.; Belelli-Marchesini, L.
  • Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences, Vol. 117, Issue G3
  • DOI: 10.1029/2012JG001991

Ecosystem-level controls on root-rhizosphere respiration
journal, April 2013

  • Hopkins, Francesca; Gonzalez-Meler, Miquel A.; Flower, Charles E.
  • New Phytologist, Vol. 199, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.1111/nph.12271

Use of stored carbon reserves in growth of temperate tree roots and leaf buds: analyses using radiocarbon measurements and modeling
journal, April 2009


Changing sources of soil respiration with time since fire in a boreal forest
journal, June 2006


Subsurface approaches for measuring soil CO 2 isotopologue flux: Theory and application : Subsurface Isotopologue Flux Approaches
journal, April 2014

  • Nickerson, Nick; Egan, Jocelyn; Risk, David
  • Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences, Vol. 119, Issue 4
  • DOI: 10.1002/2013JG002508

Measuring and modeling the spectrum of fine-root turnover times in three forests using isotopes, minirhizotrons, and the Radix model: FINE ROOT TURNOVER TIMES
journal, September 2010

  • Gaudinski, Julia B.; Torn, M. S.; Riley, W. J.
  • Global Biogeochemical Cycles, Vol. 24, Issue 3
  • DOI: 10.1029/2009GB003649

Factors affecting the molecular structure and mean residence time of occluded organics in a lithosequence of soils under ponderosa pine
journal, October 2014


Comparing net ecosystem exchange of carbon dioxide between an old-growth and mature forest in the upper Midwest, USA
journal, January 2005


The influence of carbon exchange of a large lake on regional tracer-transport inversions: results from Lake Superior
journal, July 2011


Global covariation of carbon turnover times with climate in terrestrial ecosystems
journal, September 2014

  • Carvalhais, Nuno; Forkel, Matthias; Khomik, Myroslava
  • Nature, Vol. 514, Issue 7521
  • DOI: 10.1038/nature13731

The concentration and isotopic abundances of atmospheric carbon dioxide in rural areas
journal, January 1958


Persistence of soil organic matter as an ecosystem property
journal, October 2011

  • Schmidt, Michael W. I.; Torn, Margaret S.; Abiven, Samuel
  • Nature, Vol. 478, Issue 7367
  • DOI: 10.1038/nature10386

The annual cycles of CO2 and H2O exchange over a northern mixed forest as observed from a very tall tower
journal, September 2003


Seasonal changes in the age and structure of dissolved organic carbon in Siberian rivers and streams
journal, January 2006

  • Neff, J. C.; Finlay, J. C.; Zimov, S. A.
  • Geophysical Research Letters, Vol. 33, Issue 23
  • DOI: 10.1029/2006GL028222

On the use of 14 CO 2 as a tracer for fossil fuel CO 2 : Quantifying uncertainties using an atmospheric transport model
journal, January 2009

  • Turnbull, Jocelyn; Rayner, Peter; Miller, John
  • Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol. 114, Issue D22
  • DOI: 10.1029/2009JD012308

Initial Results of an Intercomparison of AMS-Based Atmospheric 14CO2 Measurements
journal, January 2013


Closing the global radiocarbon budget 1945–2005
journal, January 2006

  • Naegler, Tobias; Levin, Ingeborg
  • Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol. 111, Issue D12
  • DOI: 10.1029/2005JD006758

13C content of ecosystem respiration is linked to precipitation and vapor pressure deficit
journal, March 2002


Biological and physical influences on soil 14 CO 2 seasonal dynamics in a temperate hardwood forest
journal, January 2013


Allocation of Terrestrial Carbon Sources Using 14 CO 2 : Methods, Measurement, and Modeling
journal, January 2013


Isotopic composition of carbon dioxide from a boreal forest fire: Inferring carbon loss from measurements and modeling: ISOTOPIC COMPOSITION OF CARBON DIOXIDE FROM A BOREAL FOREST FIRE
journal, January 2003

  • Schuur, Edward A. G.; Trumbore, Susan E.; Mack, Michelle C.
  • Global Biogeochemical Cycles, Vol. 17, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1029/2001GB001840

Age, allocation and availability of nonstructural carbon in mature red maple trees
journal, August 2013

  • Carbone, Mariah S.; Czimczik, Claudia I.; Keenan, Trevor F.
  • New Phytologist, Vol. 200, Issue 4
  • DOI: 10.1111/nph.12448

Mineral control of soil organic carbon storage and turnover
journal, September 1997

  • Torn, Margaret S.; Trumbore, Susan E.; Chadwick, Oliver A.
  • Nature, Vol. 389, Issue 6647
  • DOI: 10.1038/38260

Sensitivity analysis and quantification of uncertainty for isotopic mixing relationships in carbon cycle research
journal, January 2006


Calculating isotopic fractionation from atmospheric measurements at various scales
journal, January 2003


Bomb-14C analysis of ecosystem respiration reveals that peatland vegetation facilitates release of old carbon
journal, November 2009


Observations of radiocarbon in CO 2 at La Jolla, California, USA 1992-2007: Analysis of the long-term trend
journal, January 2012

  • Graven, Heather D.; Guilderson, Thomas P.; Keeling, Ralph F.
  • Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, Vol. 117, Issue D2
  • DOI: 10.1029/2011JD016533

Increased belowground carbon inputs and warming promote loss of soil organic carbon through complementary microbial responses
journal, September 2014


Extensive observations of CO 2 carbon isotope content in and above a high-elevation subalpine forest : CO
journal, September 2005

  • Bowling, D. R.; Burns, S. P.; Conway, T. J.
  • Global Biogeochemical Cycles, Vol. 19, Issue 3
  • DOI: 10.1029/2004GB002394

The application and interpretation of Keeling plots in terrestrial carbon cycle research
journal, March 2003

  • Pataki, D. E.; Ehleringer, J. R.; Flanagan, L. B.
  • Global Biogeochemical Cycles, Vol. 17, Issue 1, Article No. 1022
  • DOI: 10.1029/2001GB001850

Thawing permafrost increases old soil and autotrophic respiration in tundra: Partitioning ecosystem respiration using δ 13 C and ∆ 14 C
journal, November 2012

  • Hicks Pries, Caitlin E.; Schuur, Edward A. G.; Crummer, Kathryn G.
  • Global Change Biology, Vol. 19, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.1111/gcb.12058

Component and whole-system respiration fluxes in northern deciduous forests
journal, May 2004


Methods for High-Precision 14 C AMS Measurement of Atmospheric CO 2 at LLNL
journal, January 2007


Role of large-scale soil structure in organic carbon turnover: Evidence from California grassland soils
journal, January 2006

  • Ewing, Stephanie A.; Sanderman, Jonathan; Baisden, W. Troy
  • Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol. 111, Issue G3
  • DOI: 10.1029/2006JG000174

Large-scale forest girdling shows that current photosynthesis drives soil respiration
journal, June 2001

  • Högberg, Peter; Nordgren, Anders; Buchmann, Nina
  • Nature, Vol. 411, Issue 6839
  • DOI: 10.1038/35081058

A practical approach for uncertainty quantification of high-frequency soil respiration using Forced Diffusion chambers: uncertainty of soil respiration
journal, January 2015

  • Lavoie, Martin; Phillips, C. L.; Risk, David
  • Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences, Vol. 120, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1002/2014JG002773

Estimating nocturnal ecosystem respiration from the vertical turbulent flux and change in storage of CO2
journal, November 2009


Seasonal dynamics and age of stemwood nonstructural carbohydrates in temperate forest trees
journal, November 2012

  • Richardson, Andrew D.; Carbone, Mariah S.; Keenan, Trevor F.
  • New Phytologist, Vol. 197, Issue 3
  • DOI: 10.1111/nph.12042

Discussion Reporting of 14 C Data
journal, January 1977


Radiocarbon and Soil Carbon Dynamics
journal, May 2009


Partitioning sources of soil respiration in boreal black spruce forest using radiocarbon
journal, February 2006


Forest carbon use efficiency: is respiration a constant fraction of gross primary production?
journal, June 2007


Carbon exchange and venting anomalies in an upland deciduous forest in northern Wisconsin, USA
journal, November 2004