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Characteristics of ice-rich permafrost soils and their effect on thermokarst expansion rates in Interior Alaskan peatlands

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dc.contributor.advisor Turetsky, Merritt Zwanenburg, Natalie 2018-04-10T20:12:38Z 2018-04-10T20:12:38Z 2018-04 2018-03-20 2018-04-10
dc.description.abstract This thesis addresses two uncertainties concerning permafrost thaw in peatlands by quantifying: (i) how soil characteristics and collapse-scar feature morphology interact to influence lateral expansion rates of thermokarst features; and (ii) the consequences of thermokarst expansion rates on terrestrial carbon storage. I collected peat cores within and adjacent to collapse-scar features to develop a chronosequence of time-following-thaw. I explored feature morphology and soil characteristics using grain size analysis. Radiocarbon dating of the organic and mineral soils from each peat core was used to quantify lateral expansion and peat accumulation rates. Grain size was uniform across the study region, suggesting other physical characteristics (such as ice content and organic matter) influence thaw rate of collapse-scar features. Permafrost carbon stocks rapidly decrease post-thaw, while new surface peat carbon gradually accumulates. My findings suggest anywhere from 250-700 years of surface peat accumulation is required to compensate for deep permafrost carbon losses. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Northern Scientific Training Program en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.rights Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada *
dc.rights.uri *
dc.subject Thermokarst en_US
dc.subject Permafrost en_US
dc.subject Terrestrial Carbon Storage en_US
dc.subject Lateral Expansion Rates en_US
dc.subject Collapse-Scar Features en_US
dc.subject Grainsize en_US
dc.title Characteristics of ice-rich permafrost soils and their effect on thermokarst expansion rates in Interior Alaskan peatlands en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US Integrative Biology en_US Master of Science en_US Department of Integrative Biology en_US
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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada