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Elevated CO2 does not stimulate carbon sink in a semi-arid grassland

Song, J, Wan, S, Piao, S, Hui, D, Hovenden, MJ ORCID: 0000-0001-7208-9700, Ciais, P, Liu, Y, Zhong, M, Zheng, M, Ma, G, Zhou, Z and Ru, J 2019 , 'Elevated CO2 does not stimulate carbon sink in a semi-arid grassland' , Ecology Letters, vol. 22, no. 3 , pp. 458-468 , doi: 10.1111/ele.13202.

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Abstract

Elevated CO2 is widely accepted to enhance terrestrial carbon sink, especially in arid and semi‐arid regions. However, great uncertainties exist for the CO2 fertilisation effects, particularly when its interactions with other global change factors are considered. A four‐factor (CO2, temperature, precipitation and nitrogen) experiment revealed that elevated CO2 did not affect either gross ecosystem productivity or ecosystem respiration, and consequently resulted in no changes of net ecosystem productivity in a semi‐arid grassland despite whether temperature, precipitation and nitrogen were elevated or not. The observations could be primarily attributable to the offset of ecosystem carbon uptake by enhanced soil carbon release under CO2 enrichment. Our findings indicate that arid and semi‐arid ecosystems may not be sensitive to CO2 enrichment as previously expected and highlight the urgent need to incorporate this mechanism into most IPCC carbon‐cycle models for convincing projection of terrestrial carbon sink and its feedback to climate change.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Song, J and Wan, S and Piao, S and Hui, D and Hovenden, MJ and Ciais, P and Liu, Y and Zhong, M and Zheng, M and Ma, G and Zhou, Z and Ru, J
Keywords: elevated CO2, global climate change, experiment, grassland, productivity, carbon cycle, climate warming, CO2 enrichment, forb, grass, increased precipitation, modelling, multi-factor experiment, nitrogen addition, species composition
Journal or Publication Title: Ecology Letters
Publisher: Blackwell Publishing Ltd
ISSN: 1461-023X
DOI / ID Number: 10.1111/ele.13202
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2019 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS

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