Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-2020-433
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-2020-433

  13 Jan 2021

13 Jan 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal BG.

An improved process-oriented hydro-biogeochemical model for simulating dynamic fluxes of methane and nitrous oxide in alpine ecosystems with seasonally frozen soils

Wei Zhang1, Zhisheng Yao1, Siqi Li1, Xunhua Zheng1,2, Han Zhang1,3, Lei Ma1,4, Kai Wang1, Rui Wang1, Chunyan Liu1, Shenghui Han1, Jia Deng5, and Yong Li6 Wei Zhang et al.
  • 1State Key Laboratory of Atmospheric Boundary Layer Physics and Atmospheric Chemistry, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029, P. R. China
  • 2College of Earth and Planetary Science, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, P. R. China
  • 3School of Geographic and Environmental Sciences, Tianjin Normal University, Tianjin 300387, P. R. China
  • 4Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research, Atmospheric Environmental Research (IMK-IFU), Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Kreuzeckbahnstrasse 19, 82467 Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany
  • 5Complex Systems Research Center, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans and Space, University of New Hampshire, 39 College Road, Durham, NH 03824, USA
  • 6Key Laboratory of Agro-ecological Processes in Subtropical Region, Institute of Subtropical Agriculture, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Hunan 410125, P. R. China

Abstract. To evaluate the sustainability of terrestrial ecosystems, the hydro-biogeochemical model Catchment Nutrient Management Model – DeNitrification-DeComposition (CNMM-DNDC) was established to simultaneously quantify ecosystem productivity and losses of nitrogen and carbon at the site or catchment scale. As a process-oriented model, this model is expected to be universally applied to different climate zones, soils, land uses and field management practices. This study, as one of many efforts to fulfil such an expectation, was performed to improve the CNMM-DNDC by incorporating a physical-based soil thermal module to simulate the soil thermal regime in the presence of freeze-thaw cycles. The modified model was validated with simultaneous field observations in three typical alpine ecosystems (wetlands, meadows and forests) within a catchment located in the seasonally frozen region of the eastern Tibetan Plateau. Then, the model was further applied to evaluate its performance in simulating the effects of alpine wetland degradation on methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) fluxes. The validation showed that the modified CNMM-DNDC was able to simulate the observed seasonal dynamics of soil temperature, moisture, and fluxes of CH4 and N2O in the three typical alpine ecosystems, with index of agreement values of 0.91–1.00, 0.49–0.83, 0.57–0.88 and 0.26–0.47, respectively. Consistent with the emissions determined from the field observations, the simulated aggregate emissions of CH4 and N2O were significantly reduced due to wetland degradation and were dominated by a reduction in CH4 emissions. This study indicates the potential for utilizing the process-oriented model CNMM-DNDC to predict hydro-biogeochemical processes, as well as related gas emissions, in seasonally frozen regions. As the original CNMM-DNDC was previously validated in some unfrozen regions, the modified CNMM-DNDC could be applied to evaluate the sustainability of various ecosystems under different climates, soils and field management practices at the site or catchment scale.

Wei Zhang et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on bg-2020-433', Tobias Houska, 11 Feb 2021
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC1', Xunhua Zheng, 10 Apr 2021
  • CC1: 'Comment on bg-2020-433', Marc Pansu, 05 Mar 2021

Wei Zhang et al.

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Short summary
The hydro-biogeochemical model (CNMM-DNDC) is improved by incorporating a soil thermal module to simulate the soil thermal regime in the presence of freeze-thaw cycles. The modified model was validated at a seasonally frozen catchment with typical alpine ecosystems (wetlands, meadows and forests). The simulated aggregate emissions of methane and nitrous oxide were significantly reduced due to wetland degradation and were dominated by a reduction in methane emissions.
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