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How do water table drawdown, duration of drainage and warming influence greenhouse gas emissions from drained peatlands of the Zoige Plateau?
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  • Dan Xue,
  • Huai Chen,
  • Wei Zhan,
  • Xinya Huang,
  • Yixin He,
  • chuan zhao,
  • Dan Zhu,
  • Jianliang Liu
Dan Xue
Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China, Centre for Ecological Studies Chengdu, CN
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Huai Chen
Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
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Wei Zhan
Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
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Xinya Huang
Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
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Yixin He
Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
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chuan zhao
Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
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Dan Zhu
Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
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Jianliang Liu
Chengdu Institute of Biology, CAS
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Abstract

As an important soil carbon pool in Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP), alpine peatland are extremely sensitive to global change. Duration of drainage and water table drawdown accelerate peatland degradation as the soils are no longer protected by anaerobic condition, which may worsen under climate warming. Hence, the purpose of our study was to evaluate the effect of drainage on microbial characteristics, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and their influencing factors, and further analyze whether the the variability of GHG emissions increases with warming. The results showed that the influence of water table drawdown on microbial communities were greater than that of duration of drainage. Both the fungal and prokaryotic community compositions varied with water table gradient, and soil microbiota may served as a biomarker to analyze the differences in GHG emissions among three different water table treatments. Intriguingly, the GHG emission decreased with the increase of drainage age, while water table drawdown reduced the CO2 and CH4 emission rates, and increased N2O emission rates. In addition, high temperature increased CO2 by 75% and N2O by 42%, but not significantly decreased the CH4 emission rates. Structural equation modeling showed that microbe was the primary factor affecting GHG emissions from drained peatlands, especially prokaryotes. Overall, our results indicate that water table has a greater impact on GHG emissions than duration of drainage, and the variability of GHG emissions increases with warming.