Carbon metabolic rates and GHG emissions in different wetland types of the Ebro Delta
Santamans, Anna C.
Deltaic wetlands are highly productive ecosystems, which characteristically can act as C-sinks. However, they are among the most threatened ecosystems, being very vulnerable to global change, and require special attention towards its conservation. Knowing their climate change mitigating potential, conservation measures should also be oriented with a climatic approach, to strengthen their regulatory services. In this work we studied the carbon biogeochemistry and the specific relevance of certain microbial guilds on carbon metabolisms of the three main types of deltaic wetlands located in the Ebro Delta, north-eastern Spain, as well as how they deal with human pressures and climate change effects. We estimated the metabolic rates of the main carbon-related metabolisms (primary production and respiration) and the resulting carbon and global warming potential balances in sites with a different salinity range and trophic status. With the results obtained, we tried to define the influence of possible changes in salinity and trophic level linked to the main impacts currently threatening deltaic wetlands, on the C-metabolisms and GHG emissions, for a better understanding of the mitigating capacity and their possible enhancement when applying specific management actions. Metabolic rates showed a pattern highly influenced by the salinity range and nutrients inputs. Freshwater and brackish wetlands, with higher nutrient inputs from agricultural runoff, showed higher C-capture capacity (around 220–250 g C m-2 y-1), but also higher rates of degradative metabolisms (aerobic respiration and CH4 emissions). Contrastingly, the rates of C-related metabolisms and C-retention of Salicornia-type coastal salt marshes were lower (42 g C m-2 y-1). The study of the microbial metacommunity composition by the16S RNA gene sequencing revealed a significant higher presence of methanogens in the salt marsh, and also higher metabolic potential, where there was significantly more organic matter content in sediment. Salinity inhibition, however, explained the lower respiration rates, both aerobic and anaerobic, and prevented higher rates of methanogenesis despite the major presence of methanogens. Conservation measures for these wetlands would require, overall, maintaining the sediment contributions of the river basin intending to overcome the regression of the Delta and its salt marshes in a climate change scenario. Particularly, for reducing degradative metabolisms, and favour C-retention, nutrient inputs should be controlled in freshwater and brackish wetlands in order to reduce eutrophication. In salt marshes, the reduction of salinity should be avoided to control increases in methanogenesis and CH4 emissions.
574 - General ecology and biodiversity
Public Library of Science
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Morant, Daniel, Antonio Picazo, Carlos Rochera, Anna C. Santamans, Javier Miralles-Lorenzo, Alba Camacho-Santamans, Carles Ibañez, Maite Martínez-Eixarch, and Antonio Camacho. 2020. "Carbon Metabolic Rates And GHG Emissions In Different Wetland Types Of The Ebro Delta". PLOS ONE 15 (4): e0231713. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0231713.
Grant agreement number
MINECO-FEDER/Programa Estatal de I+D+I orientada a los retos de la sociedad/CGL2015-69557-R/ES/MITIGACION Y ADAPTACION AL CAMBIO CLIMATICO EN LOS PRINCIPALES TIPOS DE HUMEDALES MEDITERRANEOS IBERICOS: BALANCES DE CARBONO Y MODELOS DE RESPUESTA DE ESPECIES Y HABITATS/CLIMAWET
Aigües Marines i Continentals
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- ARTICLES CIENTÍFICS 
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