Characteristics of wet dissolved carbon deposition in a semi-arid catchment at the Loess Plateau, China

Wang, Linhua; Yen, Haw; Chen, Liding; E, Xinhui; Wang, Yafeng

Wet dissolved carbon deposition is a critical node of the global carbon cycle, but little is known about dissolved organic and inorganic carbon (DOC and DIC) concentrations and fluxes in the semi-arid areas of the Loess Plateau Region (LPR). In this study, we measured variations in DOC and DIC concentrations in rainfalls at Yangjuangou Ecological Restoration and Soil and Water Observatory. Rainwater samples were collected in 16 rainfall events from July to September and the event-based, monthly concentrations and fluxes of DOC and DIC were quantified. The results showed that the event-based concentrations and fluxes of DOC and DIC were highly variable, ranging from 0.56 to 28.71 mg C Linline-formula−1 and from 3.47 to 17.49 mg C Linline-formula−1, respectively. The corresponding event-based fluxes ranged from 0.21–258.36 mg C minline-formula−2 and from 4.12 to 42.32 mg C minline-formula−2. The monthly concentrations of DOC and DIC were 24.62 and 4.30 (July), 3.58 and 10.52 (August), and 1.01 and 5.89 (September) mg C Linline-formula−1, respectively. Thus, the monthly deposition fluxes of DOC and DIC were 541.64/94.60, 131.03/385.03, and 44.44/259.16 mg C minline-formula−2 for July, August, and September, respectively. In addition, the concentrations of DOC and DIC for the concentrated rainfall season (July–September) in the studied catchment were 7.06 and 7.00 mg C Linline-formula−1, respectively. The estimated annual wet dissolved carbon depositions were 1.91 and 1.89 g C minline-formula−2 yrinline-formula−1 for DOC and DIC, respectively. The results of this study suggest the variation in concentrations and fluxes of DOC and DIC and explore that these variation may be related to the dissolved carbon source and the rainfall characteristics during the concentrated rainfall season in the semi-arid catchment of the LPR. Furthermore, these results also suggest that dissolved carbon may be an important external input of carbon into terrestrial ecosystems.

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Wang, Linhua / Yen, Haw / Chen, Liding / et al: Characteristics of wet dissolved carbon deposition in a semi-arid catchment at the Loess Plateau, China. 2018. Copernicus Publications.

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