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Linked Cycles

ARC LTER research over several decades has revealed strong linkages between carbon and nitrogen cycling through organic matter. This linkage is key to understanding and predicting changes in the arctic carbon cycle in response to climate change.

Shaver, G. R., W. D. Billings, F. S. Chapin, III, A. E. Giblin, K. J. Nadelhoffer, W. C. Oechel and E. B. Rastetter 1992. Global change and the carbon balance of arctic ecosystems. BioScience 42:433-441.
McKane, R. B., E. B. Rastetter, G. R. Shaver, K. J. Nadelhoffer, A. E. Giblin, and J. A. Laundre. Climatic effects on tundra carbon storage inferred from experimental data and a model. Ecology 78:1170-1187.
Mack, M.C., E.A.G. Schuur, M.S. Bret-Harte, G.R. Shaver, and F.S. Chapin, III. 2004. Ecosystem carbon storage in arctic tundra reduced by long-term nutrient fertilization. Nature 431: 440-443
Gaius R Shaver
The ARC LTER uses plastic-covered greenhouses, shade frames, and fertilizer addition in long-term manipulations of tundra ecosystems. Effects of N fertilizers are shown in the middle ground of this photo, where the vegetation is taller, denser, more productive, less species rich, and dominated by the deciduous dwarf shrub Betula nana.
After 20 years of fertilizer addition at Toolik Lake, the C and N content of both plants and the upper soil horizons had doubled while C and N stocks in lower soil horizons had decreased. Losses in deeper soil were greater so whole system C and N stocks decreased
Mack et al. 2004



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