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The impact of wildfire on biogeochemical fluxes and water quality in boreal catchments

Granath, Gustaf and Evans, Christopher and Strengbom, Joachim and Fölster, Jens and Grelle, Achim and Stromqvist, Johan and Köhler, Stephan (2021). The impact of wildfire on biogeochemical fluxes and water quality in boreal catchments. Biogeosciences. 18 , 3243-3261
[Research article]

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Abstract

Wildfires are the major disturbance in boreal ecosystems and are of great importance for the biogeochemical cycles of carbon (C) and nutrients. However, these fire-induced impacts are hard to quantify and are rarely assessed together at an ecosystem level incorporating both aquatic and terrestrial environments. Following a wildfire in Sweden in an area with ongoing monitoring, we conducted a pre-fire (9 years) and post-fire (4 years) multi-catchment investigation of element losses (combustion and leaching) and impacts on water quality. Direct C and nitrogen (N) losses through combustion were ca. 4500 and 100 gm(-2), respectively. Net CO2 loss associated with soil and biomass respiration was similar to 150 g C m(-2) during the first year, but the ecosystem started to show net CO2 uptake in June 3 years post-fire. Aquatic C and N losses the first 12 months post-fire were 7 and 0.6 gm(-2), respectively. Hence, soil respiration comprised a non-negligible part of the post-fire C loss, whereas aquatic C losses were minor and did not increase post-fire. However, other elements (e.g. Ca, S) exhibited ecologically relevant increases in fluvial export and concentration with large peaks in the immediate post-fire period. The temporal dynamics of stream concentrations (Ca2+, Mg2+, K+,SO4-2, Cl-, NH4+, total organic N) suggest the presence of faster- and slower-release nutrient pools with half-lives of around 2 weeks and 4 months which we attribute to physicochemically and biologically mediated mobilization processes, respectively. Three years after the fire, it appears that dissolved fluxes of nutrients have largely returned to pre-fire conditions, but there is still net release of CO2.

Authors/Creators:Granath, Gustaf and Evans, Christopher and Strengbom, Joachim and Fölster, Jens and Grelle, Achim and Stromqvist, Johan and Köhler, Stephan
Title:The impact of wildfire on biogeochemical fluxes and water quality in boreal catchments
Series Name/Journal:Biogeosciences
Year of publishing :2021
Volume:18
Page range:3243-3261
Number of Pages:19
Publisher:COPERNICUS GESELLSCHAFT MBH
ISSN:1726-4170
Language:English
Publication Type:Research article
Article category:Scientific peer reviewed
Version:Published version
Copyright:Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0
Full Text Status:Public
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 4 Agricultural Sciences > 401 Agricultural, Forestry and Fisheries > Soil Science
(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 1 Natural sciences > 106 Biological Sciences (Medical to be 3 and Agricultural to be 4) > Ecology
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-112610
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-112610
Additional ID:
Type of IDID
DOI10.5194/bg-18-3243-2021
Web of Science (WoS)000658346600001
ID Code:24764
Faculty:NJ - Fakulteten för naturresurser och jordbruksvetenskap
S - Faculty of Forest Sciences
Department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Aquatic Sciences and Assessment
(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Ecology
(S) > Dept. of Ecology
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:30 Jun 2021 09:52
Metadata Last Modified:30 Jun 2021 10:01

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