The accumulation of carbon in forest soils and forest succession status


Head: Lukina Natalya

Date: 06.05.2016 – 31.12.2018

Abstract: Development of the concept of biogeochemical cycles of carbon among the most important scientific problems having fundamental character and have great practical significance. The recent Paris Climate Conference, the results of which, after two weeks of negotiations, delegations of 196 countries unanimously adopted the new agreement the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (Adoption of the Paris agreement, 2015) confirms the very high relevance of evaluation of contribution of forests to the  carbon cycle regulation. However, there are still many uncertainties in the estimates of the parameters of the carbon cycle, including soil carbon in forests at different stages of succession. Russia accounts for 22% of the world’s forest resources and more than half of the world’s boreal forests. The whole mosaic of successional stages of the boreal forest is presented in Russia. However, research results on the basis of which it is possible to draw certain conclusions about the relationships between the forest succession status of the different forest types and soil organic carbon accumulation  and dynamics are not sufficient. Since the proportion of the soil organic carbon out of all carbon pool in the old-growth forests  could achieve  90% (Johnsson et al, 2010), these issues would make a significant contribution to the assessment of the role of forest soils in regulating climate and development of sustainable forest management.

The project aims to assess the links between the soil carbon reserve and successional status of forests, role of mycorrhizal fungi in soil carbon stock of forests in different stages of succession of coniferous-deciduous forests< and  leaching of dissolved organic carbons from the soil of coniferous and coniferous- deciduous forests at the different stages of successions. There are three main objectives: 1- evaluation of carbon stocks in forest soils of different types at different stages of development and successional dynamics model predictions of carbon stocks in the post-fire and post-plowing  successions of forests; 2- assess the role of mycorrhizal fungi in soil carbon stock of forests in different stages of succession; 3- evaluation of leaching and losses of  the dissolved organic carbon, including black carbon,  with soil waters.

Scientific novelty lem is in assessment of  the relationships between the successional status of forests and soil carbon accumulation and dynamics in forests at the northern tree line, in northern, middle taiga and mixed coniferous-deciduous forests, taking into account vertical (within the profile) and horizontal (within- the- biogeocoensis, between the biogeocoenoses,  landscape) variability.

The contribution of ectomycorrhizal fungi into the soil carbon stock in lowland coniferous-deciduous forests at different stages of post-fire successions will be evaluated. The  long-term (over 20 years) assessment of the dynamics of leaching of dissolved organic carbon from the soil in forests at the northern tree line on the different stages of successions will be given. The model forecast of the dynamics of carbon stock in forest soils of different types at different stages of post-fire and post-plowing successions, taking into account different scenarios of climate change, will be done.