(Article of periodic en Anglais - 2013)

Document title

Effect of permafrost on the formation of soil organic carbon pools and their physical–chemical properties in the Eastern Swiss Alps

Authors(s) and Affiliation(s)

ZOLLINGER B. (1) ; ALEWELL C. (2) ; KNEISEL C. (3) ; MEUSBURGER K. (2) ; GÄRTNER H. (4) ; BRANDOVÁ D. (1) ; IVY-OCHS S. (5) ; SCHMIDT M.W.I. (1) ; EGLI M. (1) ;
(1) Dept. of Geography, Univ., Zürich, SUISSE
(2) Inst. of Environmental geosciences, Univ., Basel, SUISSE
(3) Inst. of Geography and Geology, Univ., Würzburg, ALLEMAGNE
(4) Unit Landscape Dynamics, Swiss Federal Research Inst. WSL, Birmensdorf, SUISSE
(5) Lab. of Ion Beam Physics, ETH, Zürich, SUISSE


The AA. investigated the potential effect of permafrost thawing by the analysis of the physical-chemical soil properties of permafrost versus non-permafrost sites. Specifically, they 1) quantified the SOM stocks at such sites, 2) characterised SOM and its physical and chemical fractions and 3) estimated the age range of the bulk soil and stable C-fraction (radiocarbon dating). In south-eastern Switzerland, two areas above the timberline and one below the timberline (where isolated permafrost was verified) were investigated in detail. It is confirmed that different decomposition processes occur between permafrost and non-permafrost sites. The results suggest that a warmer climate may not necessarily lead to an increased CO2 release from SOM-degradation in permafrost soils compared to non-permafrost soils. High-alpine soils and OM furthermore integrate a multi-facetted response to the past and ongoing surrounding conditions. The melting of permafrost will most likely enhance vegetation growth, which to a certain degree will probably compensate for carbon losses on the long-term


Article of periodic

published at : Catena / ISSN 0341-8162

Editor : Catena, Cremlingen-Destedt - ALLEMAGNE (1973)

Millesime : 2013, vol. 110 [pp. 70-85]

Bibliographic references : 2 p.

Collation : 6 fig., 6 tabl.



INIST-CNRS, Cote INIST : 16767

Digital Object Identifier

Go to electronic document thanks to its DOI : doi:10.1016/j.catena.2013.06.010

Tous droits réservés © Prodig - Bibliographie Géographique Internationale (BGI), 2013
Refdoc record number (ud4) : 28016411 : Permanent link - XML version
Powered by Pxxo