Response of Southern Shrub Peatland Phenolics and Carbon Dioxide Flux to Drought and Nitrogen Additions

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2013-04-26

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Abstract

Peat forms under wetland conditions where flooding obstructs flows of oxygen from the atmosphere and reduces the decomposition rate of plant litter. Peatlands only cover three percent of land area worldwide, yet they store one third of all terrestrial carbon due to thwarted decay. Wetlands are currently threatened by increasingly severe and frequent drought as well as nitrogen loading from agriculture and atmospheric deposition. Furthermore, the length of exposure to these inputs may produce varying outcomes. The degradation of critical wetland ecosystems amplifies carbon dioxide emissions and dissolved organic carbon release. Existing research focuses on sphagnum or grassland peat while this study examines shrub peatland soil from the Pocosin Lakes region of Eastern North Carolina. This project utilizes chemical and statistical analyses to determine the impacts of drought and nitrogen on the biogeochemical processes that occur within a shrub peatland.

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Burke, Meaghan (2013). Response of Southern Shrub Peatland Phenolics and Carbon Dioxide Flux to Drought and Nitrogen Additions. Master's project, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/6920.


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