Beyond burial: redefining the blue carbon paradigm

  • Maher, Damien (Principal Investigator/Chief Investigator A)
  • Sanders, Christian (Co Investigator/Chief Investigator B)
  • Johnston, Scott (Chief Investigator C)
  • Ho, David (Chief Investigator D)
  • Hutley, Lindsay B. (Principal Investigator/Chief Investigator A)

    Project: Other

    Project Details

    Description

    Summary
    Mangroves cover <0.03% of the Earth’s surface yet account for ~14% of oceanic carbon burial. Mangroves also export alkalinity to the coastal ocean, and act as sources/sinks of methane and nitrous oxide. The effect of these fluxes on climate may exceed carbon burial by several-fold, but are unaccounted for in blue carbon budgets. This proposal aims to constrain the magnitude and drivers of alkalinity and greenhouse gas fluxes in mangroves. Innovatively this study will bridge the terrestrial-aquatic divide by coupling high resolution radionuclide geochronology of soil carbon cycling with autonomous measurements of aquatic exports and greenhouse gas fluxes. This study will provide the detailed data required to refine the blue carbon paradigm.
    Impact
    Australia has the second highest area of mangroves globally. A significant global push has been made towards integrating mangroves into climate change mitigation strategies (e.g. REDD+). These schemes have focussed primarily on valuing carbon stored in plants and soils. Alkalinity exchange may several-fold more beneficial, but a lack of data has hampered the inclusion of this flux. This project will provide the key data required to incorporate this process into global blue carbon initiatives.
    StatusFinished
    Effective start/end date12/03/1812/03/21