Climate Change Impacts on Canadian Arctic Tundra Ecosystems: Interdisciplinary and Multi-scale Assessments: Spatial and Temporal Variation

Regions: North Slave Region

Tags: physical sciences, soil, climate change, ecology

Principal Investigator: Siciliano, Steven D (2)
Licence Number: 14164
Organization: University of Saskatchewan
Licenced Year(s): 2008 2007
Issued: Jun 01, 2007
Project Team: Greg Henry (Principal Investigator of larger CiCAT program, UBC), Paul Grogan (Researcher, Queens University), Bing Si (Researcher, University of Saskatchewan), Angela Bedard-Haughn (Researcher, University of Saskatchewan), Darwyn Coxson (Researcher, UNBC), Keith Egger (Researcher, UNBC), Mario Tenuta (Researcher, University of Manitoba)

Objective(s): To study how soils in close proximity (termed "geospatially linked") cycle nitrogen and carbon and thereby produce greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide or nitrous oxide. In northern soils there is no current information on how soils are geospatially linked. This research will allow modelers to forecast how these soils will respond to climate change.

Project Description: Tundra ecosystems are known to be strongly patterned. Understanding how these patterns control carbon and nutrient fluxes is critical to successfully modeling changes in the tundra ecosystems. The hypothesis is that the geospatial relationship between soil carbon and nitrogen cycling with community composition controls ecosystem response to global warming. To answer this, the links between various factors and geospatial drivers of nutrient cycles, and soil warming will be studied.

The Daring Lake site will be surveyed. Three transects will be set up with 31 sampling locations. At each sampling location, a Time Domain Reflectometry (TDR) probe and thermocouple will be set up and monitored continuously. Gas flux from these locations will be measured. In addition, 500 g soil samples will be gathered from each location and to send to the lab. Short term incubations may be set up while monitoring on site.

Copies of any papers that result form the research will be sent to the Aurora Research Institute. The research group will directly participate in larger IPY project outreach activities, including delivering a workshop to the ACUNS student conference.
Fieldwork will be carried out from June 4 to September 13, 2007. The work location is upland tundra (64.868N, 111.575 W), and will be based out of Daring Lake Terrestrial Ecological Research Station.