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Phosphorus alleviation of nitrogen-suppressed methane sink in global grasslands

Journal Contribution - Journal Article

Grassland ecosystems account for more than 10% of the global CH4 sink in soils. A 4-year field experiment found that addition of P alone did not affect CH4 uptake and experimental addition of N alone significantly suppressed CH4 uptake, whereas concurrent N and P additions suppressed CH4 uptake to a lesser degree. A meta-analysis including 382 data points in global grasslands corroborated these findings. Global extrapolation with an empirical modelling approach estimated that contemporary N addition suppresses CH4 sink in global grassland by 11.4% and concurrent N and P deposition alleviates this suppression to 5.8%. The P alleviation of N-suppressed CH4 sink is primarily attributed to substrate competition, defined as the competition between ammonium and CH4 for the methane mono-oxygenase enzyme. The N and P impacts on CH4 uptake indicate that projected increases in N and P depositions might substantially affect CH4 uptake and alter the global CH4 cycle.
Journal: Ecology Letters
ISSN: 1461-023X
Volume: 99
Pages: 1 - 10
Publication year:2020
Keywords:Pure & applied ecology