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Relative stability of soil carbon revealed by shifts in delta N-15 and C:N ratio
JournalArticle (Originalarbeit in einer wissenschaftlichen Zeitschrift)
ID 69379
Author(s) Conen, F.; Zimmermann, M.; Leifeld, J.; Seth, B.; Alewell, C.
Author(s) at UniBasel Conen, Franz
Alewell, Christine
Year 2008
Title Relative stability of soil carbon revealed by shifts in delta N-15 and C:N ratio
Journal Biogeosciences
Volume 5
Number 1
Pages / Article-Number 123-128
Abstract Life on earth drives a continuous exchange of carbon between soils and the atmosphere. Some forms of soil carbon, or organic matter, are more stable and have a longer residence time in soil than others. Relative differences in stability have often been derived from shifts in delta C-13 (which is bound to a vegetation change from C3 to C4 type) or through C-14-dating (which is bound to small sample numbers because of high measurement costs). Here, we propose a new concept based on the increase in delta N-15 and the decrease in C:N ratio with increasing stability. We tested the concept on grasslands at different elevations in the Swiss Alps. Depending on elevation and soil depth, it predicted mineral-associated organic carbon to be 3 to 73 times more stable than particulate organic carbon. Analysis of C-14-ages generally endorsed these predictions.
Publisher Copernicus
ISSN/ISBN 1726-4170
Full Text on edoc Available
Digital Object Identifier DOI 10.5194/bg-5-123-2008
ISI-Number WOS:000252859100009
Document type (ISI) Article

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