M. M. Loranty


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Range shifts in a foundation sedge potentially induce large Arctic ecosystem carbon losses and gains
Salvatore R. Curasi, Ned Fetcher, Rebecca E. Hewitt, Peter M. Lafleur, M. M. Loranty, Michelle C. Mack, Jeremy L. May, Isla H. Myers‐Smith, Susan M. Natali, Steven F. Oberbauer, Thomas C. Parker, Oliver Sonnentag, S. A. Vargas Zesati, Stan D. Wullschleger, A. V. Rocha
Environmental Research Letters, Volume 17, Issue 4

Abstract Foundation species have disproportionately large impacts on ecosystem structure and function. As a result, future changes to their distribution may be important determinants of ecosystem carbon (C) cycling in a warmer world. We assessed the role of a foundation tussock sedge ( Eriophorum vaginatum ) as a climatically vulnerable C stock using field data, a machine learning ecological niche model, and an ensemble of terrestrial biosphere models (TBMs). Field data indicated that tussock density has decreased by ~0.97 tussocks per m2 over the past ~38 years on Alaska’s North Slope from ~1981 to 2019. This declining trend is concerning because tussocks are a large Arctic C stock, which enhances soil organic layer C stocks by 6.9% on average and represents 745 Tg C across our study area. By 2100, we project that changes in tussock density may decrease the tussock C stock by 41% in regions where tussocks are currently abundant (e.g. -0.8 tussocks per m2 and -85 Tg C on the North Slope) and may increase the tussock C stock by 46% in regions where tussocks are currently scarce (e.g. +0.9 tussocks per m2 and +81 Tg C on Victoria Island). These climate-induced changes to the tussock C stock were comparable to, but sometimes opposite in sign, to vegetation C stock changes predicted by an ensemble of TBMs. Our results illustrate the important role of tussocks as a foundation species in determining future Arctic C stocks and highlights the need for better representation of this species in TBMs.


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Global transpiration data from sap flow measurements: the SAPFLUXNET database
Rafael Poyatos, Víctor Granda, Víctor Flo, Mark A. Adams, Balázs Adorján, David Aguadé, Marcos Pereira Marinho Aidar, Scott T. Allen, M. Susana Alvarado-Barrientos, Kristina J. Anderson‐Teixeira, L. M. T. Aparecido, M. Altaf Arain, Ismael Aranda, Heidi Asbjornsen, Robert C. Baxter, Eric Beamesderfer, Z. Carter Berry, Daniel Berveiller, B. Blakely, Johnny L. Boggs, Gil Bohrer, Paul V. Bolstad, Damien Bonal, Rosvel Bracho, Patricia Brito, Jason Brodeur, Fernando Casanoves, Jérôme Chave, Hui Chen, César Cisneros Vaca, Kenneth L. Clark, Edoardo Cremonese, Jorge S. David, Teresa S. David, Nicolas Delpierre, Ankur R. Desai, Frédéric Chauvaud, Michal Dohnal, Jean‐Christophe Domec, Sebinasi Dzikiti, C. Edgar, Rebekka Eichstaedt, Tarek S. El‐Madany, J.A. Elbers, Cleiton B. Eller, Eugénie Euskirchen, B. E. Ewers, Patrick Fonti, Alicia Forner, David I. Forrester, Helber C. Freitas, Marta Galvagno, Omar García-Tejera, Chandra Prasad Ghimire, Teresa E. Gimeno, J. P. Grace, André Granier, Anne Griebel, Guangyu Yang, Mark B Gush, P. J. Hanson, Niles J. Hasselquist, Ingo Heinrich, Virginia Hernández‐Santana, Valentine Herrmann, Teemu Hölttä, F. Holwerda, Hongzhong Dang, J. E. Irvine, Supat Isarangkool Na Ayutthaya, P. G. Jarvis, Hubert Jochheim, Carlos A. Joly, Julia Kaplick, Hyun‐Seok Kim, Leif Klemedtsson, Heather Kropp, Fredrik Lagergren, Patrick Lane, Petra Lang, Andrei Lapenas, Víctor Lechuga, Minsu Lee, Christoph Leuschner, Jean‐Marc Limousin, Juan Carlos Linares, Maj-Lena Linderson, A. Lindroth, Pilar Llorens, Álvaro López-Bernal, M. M. Loranty, Dietmar Lüttschwager, Cate Macinnis‐Ng, Isabelle Maréchaux, Timothy A. Martin, Ashley M. Matheny, Nate G. McDowell, Sean M. McMahon, Patrick Meir, Ilona Mészáros, Mirco Migliavacca, Patrick J. Mitchell, Meelis Mölder, Leonardo Montagnani, Georgianne W. Moore, Ryogo Nakada, Furong Niu, Rachael H. Nolan, R. J. Norby, Kimberly A. Novick, Walter Oberhuber, Nikolaus Obojes, Christopher A. Oishi, Rafael S. Oliveira, Ram Oren, Jean‐Marc Ourcival, Teemu Paljakka, Óscar Pérez-Priego, Pablo Luís Peri, Richard L. Peters, Sebastian Pfautsch, William T. Pockman, Yakir Preisler, Katherine G. Rascher, George R. Robinson, Humberto Ribeiro da Rocha, Alain Rocheteau, Alexander Röll, Bruno H. P. Rosado, Lucy Rowland, Alexey V. Rubtsov, Santiago Sabaté, Yann Salmon, Roberto L. Salomón, Elisenda Sánchez-Costa, Karina V. R. Schäfer, Bernhard Schuldt, A. V. Shashkin, Clément Stahl, Marko Stojanović, Juan Carlos Suárez, Ge Sun, Justyna Szatniewska, Fyodor Tatarinov, Miroslav Tesař, Frank M. Thomas, Pantana Tor‐ngern, Josef Urban, Fernando Valladares, Christiaan van der Tol, Ilja van Meerveld, Andrej Varlagin, Holm Voigt, Jeffrey M. Warren, Christiane Werner, Willy Werner, Gerhard Wieser, Lisa Wingate, Stan D. Wullschleger, K. Yi, Roman Zweifel, Kathy Steppe, Maurizio Mencuccini, Jordi Martínez‐Vilalta
Earth System Science Data, Volume 13, Issue 6

Abstract. Plant transpiration links physiological responses of vegetation to water supply and demand with hydrological, energy, and carbon budgets at the land–atmosphere interface. However, despite being the main land evaporative flux at the global scale, transpiration and its response to environmental drivers are currently not well constrained by observations. Here we introduce the first global compilation of whole-plant transpiration data from sap flow measurements (SAPFLUXNET, https://sapfluxnet.creaf.cat/, last access: 8 June 2021). We harmonized and quality-controlled individual datasets supplied by contributors worldwide in a semi-automatic data workflow implemented in the R programming language. Datasets include sub-daily time series of sap flow and hydrometeorological drivers for one or more growing seasons, as well as metadata on the stand characteristics, plant attributes, and technical details of the measurements. SAPFLUXNET contains 202 globally distributed datasets with sap flow time series for 2714 plants, mostly trees, of 174 species. SAPFLUXNET has a broad bioclimatic coverage, with woodland/shrubland and temperate forest biomes especially well represented (80 % of the datasets). The measurements cover a wide variety of stand structural characteristics and plant sizes. The datasets encompass the period between 1995 and 2018, with 50 % of the datasets being at least 3 years long. Accompanying radiation and vapour pressure deficit data are available for most of the datasets, while on-site soil water content is available for 56 % of the datasets. Many datasets contain data for species that make up 90 % or more of the total stand basal area, allowing the estimation of stand transpiration in diverse ecological settings. SAPFLUXNET adds to existing plant trait datasets, ecosystem flux networks, and remote sensing products to help increase our understanding of plant water use, plant responses to drought, and ecohydrological processes. SAPFLUXNET version 0.1.5 is freely available from the Zenodo repository (https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3971689; Poyatos et al., 2020a). The “sapfluxnetr” R package – designed to access, visualize, and process SAPFLUXNET data – is available from CRAN.


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Shallow soils are warmer under trees and tall shrubs across Arctic and Boreal ecosystems
Heather Kropp, M. M. Loranty, Susan M. Natali, Alexander Kholodov, A. V. Rocha, Isla H. Myers‐Smith, Benjamin W Abbot, Jakob Abermann, E. Blanc‐Betes, Daan Blok, Gesche Blume‐Werry, Julia Boike, A. L. Breen, Sean M. P. Cahoon, Casper T. Christiansen, Thomas A. Douglas, Howard E. Epstein, G. V. Frost, Mathias Goeckede, Toke T. Høye, Steven D. Mamet, J. A. O’Donnell, David Olefeldt, Gareth K. Phoenix, V. G. Salmon, A. Britta K. Sannel, Sharon L. Smith, Oliver Sonnentag, Lydia Smith Vaughn, Mathew Williams, Bo Elberling, Laura Gough, Jan Hjort, Peter M. Lafleur, Eugénie Euskirchen, M.M.P.D. Heijmans, Elyn Humphreys, Hiroyasu Iwata, Benjamin M. Jones, M. Torre Jorgenson, Inge Grünberg, Yongwon Kim, James A. Laundre, Marguerite Mauritz, Anders Michelsen, Gabriela Schaepman‐Strub, Ken D. Tape, Masahito Ueyama, Bang-Yong Lee, Kirsty Langley, Magnus Lund
Environmental Research Letters, Volume 16, Issue 1

Abstract Soils are warming as air temperatures rise across the Arctic and Boreal region concurrent with the expansion of tall-statured shrubs and trees in the tundra. Changes in vegetation structure and function are expected to alter soil thermal regimes, thereby modifying climate feedbacks related to permafrost thaw and carbon cycling. However, current understanding of vegetation impacts on soil temperature is limited to local or regional scales and lacks the generality necessary to predict soil warming and permafrost stability on a pan-Arctic scale. Here we synthesize shallow soil and air temperature observations with broad spatial and temporal coverage collected across 106 sites representing nine different vegetation types in the permafrost region. We showed ecosystems with tall-statured shrubs and trees (>40 cm) have warmer shallow soils than those with short-statured tundra vegetation when normalized to a constant air temperature. In tree and tall shrub vegetation types, cooler temperatures in the warm season do not lead to cooler mean annual soil temperature indicating that ground thermal regimes in the cold-season rather than the warm-season are most critical for predicting soil warming in ecosystems underlain by permafrost. Our results suggest that the expansion of tall shrubs and trees into tundra regions can amplify shallow soil warming, and could increase the potential for increased seasonal thaw depth and increase soil carbon cycling rates and lead to increased carbon dioxide loss and further permafrost thaw.


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Large loss of CO2 in winter observed across the northern permafrost region
Susan M. Natali, Jennifer D. Watts, Brendan M. Rogers, Stefano Potter, S. Ludwig, A. K. Selbmann, Patrick F. Sullivan, Benjamin W. Abbott, Kyle A. Arndt, Leah Birch, Mats Björkman, A. Anthony Bloom, Gerardo Celis, Torben R. Christensen, Casper T. Christiansen, R. Commane, Elisabeth J. Cooper, Patrick Crill, C. I. Czimczik, S. P. Davydov, Jinyang Du, Jocelyn Egan, Bo Elberling, Eugénie Euskirchen, Thomas Friborg, Hélène Genet, Mathias Göckede, Jordan P. Goodrich, Paul Grogan, Manuel Helbig, Elchin Jafarov, Julie D. Jastrow, Aram Kalhori, Yongwon Kim, J. S. Kimball, Lars Kutzbach, Mark J. Lara, Klaus Steenberg Larsen, Bang Yong Lee, Zhihua Liu, M. M. Loranty, Magnus Lund, Massimo Lupascu, Nima Madani, Avni Malhotra, Roser Matamala, J. W. Mcfarland, A. David McGuire, Anders Michelsen, C. Minions, Walter C. Oechel, David Olefeldt, Frans‐Jan W. Parmentier, Norbert Pirk, Benjamin Poulter, William L. Quinton, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, David Risk, Torsten Sachs, Kevin Schaefer, Niels Martin Schmidt, Edward A. G. Schuur, Philipp Semenchuk, Gaius R. Shaver, Oliver Sonnentag, Gregory Starr, Claire C. Treat, Mark P. Waldrop, Yihui Wang, Jeffrey M. Welker, Christian Wille, Xiaofeng Xu, Zhen Zhang, Qianlai Zhuang, Donatella Zona
Nature Climate Change, Volume 9, Issue 11

Recent warming in the Arctic, which has been amplified during the winter1-3, greatly enhances microbial decomposition of soil organic matter and subsequent release of carbon dioxide (CO2)4. However, the amount of CO2 released in winter is highly uncertain and has not been well represented by ecosystem models or by empirically-based estimates5,6. Here we synthesize regional in situ observations of CO2 flux from arctic and boreal soils to assess current and future winter carbon losses from the northern permafrost domain. We estimate a contemporary loss of 1662 Tg C yr-1 from the permafrost region during the winter season (October through April). This loss is greater than the average growing season carbon uptake for this region estimated from process models (-1032 Tg C yr-1). Extending model predictions to warmer conditions in 2100 indicates that winter CO2 emissions will increase 17% under a moderate mitigation scenario-Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP) 4.5-and 41% under business-as-usual emissions scenario-RCP 8.5. Our results provide a new baseline for winter CO2 emissions from northern terrestrial regions and indicate that enhanced soil CO2 loss due to winter warming may offset growing season carbon uptake under future climatic conditions.


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Reviews and syntheses: Changing ecosystem influences on soil thermal regimes in northern high-latitude permafrost regions
M. M. Loranty, Benjamin W. Abbott, Daan Blok, Thomas A. Douglas, Howard E. Epstein, Bruce C. Forbes, Benjamin M. Jones, Alexander Kholodov, Heather Kropp, Avni Malhotra, Steven D. Mamet, Isla H. Myers‐Smith, Susan M. Natali, J. A. O’Donnell, Gareth K. Phoenix, A. V. Rocha, Oliver Sonnentag, Ken D. Tape, Donald A. Walker
Biogeosciences, Volume 15, Issue 17

Abstract. Soils in Arctic and boreal ecosystems store twice as much carbon as the atmosphere, a portion of which may be released as high-latitude soils warm. Some of the uncertainty in the timing and magnitude of the permafrost–climate feedback stems from complex interactions between ecosystem properties and soil thermal dynamics. Terrestrial ecosystems fundamentally regulate the response of permafrost to climate change by influencing surface energy partitioning and the thermal properties of soil itself. Here we review how Arctic and boreal ecosystem processes influence thermal dynamics in permafrost soil and how these linkages may evolve in response to climate change. While many of the ecosystem characteristics and processes affecting soil thermal dynamics have been examined individually (e.g., vegetation, soil moisture, and soil structure), interactions among these processes are less understood. Changes in ecosystem type and vegetation characteristics will alter spatial patterns of interactions between climate and permafrost. In addition to shrub expansion, other vegetation responses to changes in climate and rapidly changing disturbance regimes will affect ecosystem surface energy partitioning in ways that are important for permafrost. Lastly, changes in vegetation and ecosystem distribution will lead to regional and global biophysical and biogeochemical climate feedbacks that may compound or offset local impacts on permafrost soils. Consequently, accurate prediction of the permafrost carbon climate feedback will require detailed understanding of changes in terrestrial ecosystem distribution and function, which depend on the net effects of multiple feedback processes operating across scales in space and time.

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Validation of the SMAP freeze/thaw product using categorical triple collocation
Haobo Lyu, Kaighin A. McColl, Xinlu Li, Chris Derksen, Aaron Berg, T. A. Black, Eugénie Euskirchen, M. M. Loranty, Jouni Pulliainen, Kimmo Rautiainen, Tracy Rowlandson, Alexandre Roy, A. Royer, Alexandre Langlois, Jilmarie Stephens, Hui Lu, Dara Entekhabi
Remote Sensing of Environment, Volume 205

Abstract The landscape freeze/thaw (FT) state plays an important role in local, regional and global weather and climate, but is difficult to monitor. The Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) satellite mission provides hemispheric estimates of landscape FT state at a spatial resolution of approximately 36 2  km 2 . Previous validation studies of SMAP and other satellite FT products have compared satellite retrievals with point estimates obtained from in-situ measurements of air and/or soil temperature. Differences between the two are attributed to errors in the satellite retrieval. However, significant differences can occur between satellite and in-situ estimates solely due to differences in scale between the measurements; these differences can be viewed as ‘representativeness errors’ in the in-situ product, caused by using a point estimate to represent a large-scale spatial average. Most previous validation studies of landscape FT state have neglected representativeness errors entirely, resulting in conservative estimates of satellite retrieval skill. In this study, we use a variant of triple collocation called ‘categorical triple collocation’ – a technique that uses model, satellite and in-situ estimates to obtain relative performance rankings of all three products, without neglecting representativeness errors – to validate the SMAP landscape FT product. Performance rankings are obtained for nine sites at northern latitudes. We also investigate differences between using air or soil temperatures to estimate FT state, and between using morning (6 AM) or evening (6 PM) estimates. Overall, at most sites, the SMAP product or in-situ FT measurement is ranked first, and the model FT product is ranked last (although rankings vary across sites). These results suggest SMAP is adding value to model simulations, providing higher-accuracy estimates of landscape FT states compared to models and, in some cases, even in-situ estimates, when representativeness errors are properly accounted for in the validation analysis.