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Title: Methane emissions from pan-Arctic lakes during the 21st century: An analysis with process-based models of lake evolution and biogeochemistry

Abstract

The importance of methane emissions from pan-Arctic lakes in the global carbon cycle has been suggested by recent studies. These studies indicated that climate change influences this methane source mainly in two ways: the warming of lake sediments and the evolution of thermokarst lakes. Few studies have been conducted to quantify the two impacts together in a unified modeling framework. Here we adapt a region-specific lake evolution model to the pan-Arctic scale and couple it with a lake methane biogeochemical model to quantify the change of this freshwater methane source in the 21st century. Our simulations show that the extent of thaw lakes will increase throughout the 21st century in the northern lowlands of the pan-Arctic where the reworking of epigenetic ice in drained lake basins will continue. The projected methane emissions by 2100 are 28.3 ± 4.5 Tg CH 4 yr -1 under a low warming scenario (Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) 2.6) and 32.7±5.2 Tg CH 4 yr -1 under a high warming scenario (RCP 8.5), which are about 2.5 and 2.9 times the simulated present-day emissions. Most of the emitted methane originates from nonpermafrost carbon stock. For permafrost carbon, the methanogenesis will mineralize a cumulative amount of 3.4more » ± 0.8 Pg C under RCP 2.6 and 3.9 ± 0.9 Pg C under RCP 8.5 from 2006 to 2099. The projected emissions could increase atmospheric methane concentrations by 55.0–69.3 ppb. In conclusion, this study further indicates that the warming of lake sediments dominates the increase of methane emissions from pan-Arctic lakes in the future.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2]
  1. Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States). Dept. of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences; Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States). Purdue Climate Change Research Center
  2. Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States). Dept. of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences; Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States). Purdue Climate Change Research Center, and Dept. of Agronomy
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States); Univ. of California, Oakland, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER)
OSTI Identifier:
1469113
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1402311
Grant/Contract Number:  
FG02-08ER64599; AC02-05CH11231; DE‐FG02‐08ER64599
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Journal of Geophysical Research. Biogeosciences
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 120; Journal Issue: 12; Journal ID: ISSN 2169-8953
Publisher:
American Geophysical Union
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; methane emissions; pan‐Arctic lakes; Arctic landscape evolution; permafrost carbon

Citation Formats

Tan, Zeli, and Zhuang, Qianlai. Methane emissions from pan-Arctic lakes during the 21st century: An analysis with process-based models of lake evolution and biogeochemistry. United States: N. p., 2015. Web. doi:10.1002/2015JG003184.
Tan, Zeli, & Zhuang, Qianlai. Methane emissions from pan-Arctic lakes during the 21st century: An analysis with process-based models of lake evolution and biogeochemistry. United States. doi:10.1002/2015JG003184.
Tan, Zeli, and Zhuang, Qianlai. Wed . "Methane emissions from pan-Arctic lakes during the 21st century: An analysis with process-based models of lake evolution and biogeochemistry". United States. doi:10.1002/2015JG003184. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1469113.
@article{osti_1469113,
title = {Methane emissions from pan-Arctic lakes during the 21st century: An analysis with process-based models of lake evolution and biogeochemistry},
author = {Tan, Zeli and Zhuang, Qianlai},
abstractNote = {The importance of methane emissions from pan-Arctic lakes in the global carbon cycle has been suggested by recent studies. These studies indicated that climate change influences this methane source mainly in two ways: the warming of lake sediments and the evolution of thermokarst lakes. Few studies have been conducted to quantify the two impacts together in a unified modeling framework. Here we adapt a region-specific lake evolution model to the pan-Arctic scale and couple it with a lake methane biogeochemical model to quantify the change of this freshwater methane source in the 21st century. Our simulations show that the extent of thaw lakes will increase throughout the 21st century in the northern lowlands of the pan-Arctic where the reworking of epigenetic ice in drained lake basins will continue. The projected methane emissions by 2100 are 28.3 ± 4.5 Tg CH4 yr-1 under a low warming scenario (Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) 2.6) and 32.7±5.2 Tg CH4 yr-1 under a high warming scenario (RCP 8.5), which are about 2.5 and 2.9 times the simulated present-day emissions. Most of the emitted methane originates from nonpermafrost carbon stock. For permafrost carbon, the methanogenesis will mineralize a cumulative amount of 3.4 ± 0.8 Pg C under RCP 2.6 and 3.9 ± 0.9 Pg C under RCP 8.5 from 2006 to 2099. The projected emissions could increase atmospheric methane concentrations by 55.0–69.3 ppb. In conclusion, this study further indicates that the warming of lake sediments dominates the increase of methane emissions from pan-Arctic lakes in the future.},
doi = {10.1002/2015JG003184},
journal = {Journal of Geophysical Research. Biogeosciences},
issn = {2169-8953},
number = 12,
volume = 120,
place = {United States},
year = {2015},
month = {12}
}

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    Works referencing / citing this record:

    Minor contribution of small thaw ponds to the pools of carbon and methane in the inland waters of the permafrost-affected part of the Western Siberian Lowland
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