Scientific article
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Seasonality of photochemical dissolved organic carbon mineralization and its relative contribution to pelagic CO2 production in northern lakes

Published inJournal of geophysical research. Biogeosciences, vol. 121, no. 3, p. 864-878
Publication date2016

Boreal and northern temperate lakes (hereinafter referred to as northern lakes) are sites of intense processing of dissolved organic carbon (DOC), which is reflected in part in the persistent CO2 supersaturation of their surface waters. These ecosystems are subject to strong seasonal fluctuations in both irradiance and DOC amount and quality, which in turn should result in temporal shifts in the magnitude of DOC photodegradation. Here we explore the temporal patterns in the magnitude of water column DOC photomineralization and its potential contribution to pelagic CO2 production in three northern lakes of different DOC content.We performed laboratory DOC photodegradation incubations and combined the resulting rates with field measurements and modeling to reconstruct the annual cycle in depth-integrated DOC photomineralization. We found that areal rates of DOC photomineralization were driven by both irradiance and intrinsic DOC photoreactivity, both of which showed seasonality. Over an annual cycle, depth-integrated DOC photomineralization rates were remarkably similar across lakes, averaging 4.4 (SD = 0.7) g C m-2 yr-1 and daily rates followed an apparent seasonal pattern. The contribution of DOC photomineralization to total pelagic CO2 production (as the sum of respiration and DOC photomineralization) peaked after ice melt (up to 49%), averaging 14% for the entire open water season. Our study identifies potential hot periods of photochemical activity that result from the interplay between DOC properties and environmental conditions, which should be incorporated intomodels of lake functioning.

Affiliation Not a UNIGE publication
Citation (ISO format)
VACHON, Dominic, LAPIERRE, Jean-François, DEL GIORGIO, Paul A. Seasonality of photochemical dissolved organic carbon mineralization and its relative contribution to pelagic CO<sub>2</sub> production in northern lakes. In: Journal of geophysical research. Biogeosciences, 2016, vol. 121, n° 3, p. 864–878. doi: 10.1002/2015JG003244
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Article (Published version)
ISSN of the journal2169-8953

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