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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Comparing Short-Term C Metabolism in Soils from Four Different Ecosystems

item Smith, Jeffrey
item Bolton, Harvey - PACIFIC NW NATIONAL LAB

Submitted to: National Energy Technology Lab C Sequestration Symposium
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: March 10, 2003
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: The rate at which a soil metabolizes new carbon may suggest its potential to sequester C. Soils from different ecosystems have different microorganisms and thus, may mineralize C differently. The soils were from four ecosystems: tallgrass prairie, cropland, shrub-steppe, and Douglas fir forest. We monitored transformation of a simple 14C-labeled substrate (glucose) over 12 weeks. Specific activities of evolved CO2 were used to compare soils. The prairie soil showed no evidence of preferential metabolism of glucose-C, nor did it appear that endogenous C was particularly metabolized. Respiration patterns in the other three soils indicate that preferential metabolism did occur. This indicates that each ecosystem may have a unique C mineralization pattern which could be interrupted or altered to induce a greater C sequestration potential.

Last Modified: 4/19/2015
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