Articles | Volume 17, issue 15
Research article
 | Highlight paper
10 Aug 2020
Research article | Highlight paper |  | 10 Aug 2020

Rainfall intensification increases the contribution of rewetting pulses to soil heterotrophic respiration

Stefano Manzoni, Arjun Chakrawal, Thomas Fischer, Joshua P. Schimel, Amilcare Porporato, and Giulia Vico


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Short summary
Carbon dioxide is produced by soil microbes through respiration, which is particularly fast when soils are moistened by rain. Will respiration increase with future more intense rains and longer dry spells? With a mathematical model, we show that wetter conditions increase respiration. In contrast, if rainfall totals stay the same, but rain comes all at once after long dry spells, the average respiration will not change, but the contribution of the respiration bursts after rain will increase.
Final-revised paper