The C-biogeochemistry of a Midwestern USA agricultural impoundment in context

Lake Decatur in the intensively managed landscape critical zone observatory

Neal E. Blair, Elana L. Leithold, A. N. Thanos Papanicolaou, Christopher G. Wilson, Laura Lynn Keefer, Erin Kirton, David Vinson, Doug Schnoebelen, Bruce L Rhoads, Mingjing Yu, Quinn Lewis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The damming of rivers has created hotspots for organic carbon sequestration and methane production on a global scale as the reservoirs intercept fluvial suspended and dissolved loads. To better understand how the C-biogeochemistry of a reservoir responds to watershed processes and evolves over time, Lake Decatur, located in the Intensively Managed Landscape Critical Zone Observatory (IML-CZO) was studied. Solid phase analyses (% organic C, C/N, δ13C, δ15N) of soils and sediments sampled from stream bank exposures, river suspensions, and the lake bottom were conducted to characterize organic C (OC) sources throughout the sedimentary system. Agriculturally-driven soil erosion rapidly altered lake bathymetry causing an evolution of sedimentary and OC deposition patterns, which in turn shaped where and when methane production occurred. A positive correlation between OC accumulation rate and porewater dissolved inorganic C (DIC) δ13C profiles indicates that methane generation is strongly influenced by OC burial rate. The sources of the lake bed particulate organic C (POC) have also evolved over time. Drowned vegetation and/or shoreline inputs were dominant initially in areas adjacent to the original river channel but were rapidly overwhelmed by the deposition of sediments derived from eroded agricultural soils. Eutrophication of the lake followed with the onset of heavy fertilizer application post-1960. This succession of sources is expected to be commonplace for reservoirs greater than ~ 50–60 years old in agricultural settings because of the relative timing of tillage and fertilizer practices. The 13C/12C ratios of methane from Lake Decatur were more depleted in 13C than what is commonly expected for freshwater sedimentary environments. The 13C-depletion suggests that CO2-reduction is the dominant methanogenic pathway rather than the anticipated acetate dissimilation process. The isotopic observations reveal that commonly held assumptions about methane production and its C-isotopic signature in freshwater systems are over-simplified and not strictly applicable to this system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)171-195
Number of pages25
JournalBiogeochemistry
Volume138
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2018

Fingerprint

Biogeochemistry
Observatories
biogeochemistry
impoundment
Methane
Lakes
observatory
methane
lake
Rivers
Fertilizers
Soils
Sediments
dissolved load
Banks (bodies of water)
Bathymetry
Eutrophication
suspended load
river channel
fertilizer application

Keywords

  • C-cycle
  • Carbon sequestration
  • Methane
  • Reservoirs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Earth-Surface Processes

Cite this

The C-biogeochemistry of a Midwestern USA agricultural impoundment in context : Lake Decatur in the intensively managed landscape critical zone observatory. / Blair, Neal E.; Leithold, Elana L.; Thanos Papanicolaou, A. N.; Wilson, Christopher G.; Keefer, Laura Lynn; Kirton, Erin; Vinson, David; Schnoebelen, Doug; Rhoads, Bruce L; Yu, Mingjing; Lewis, Quinn.

In: Biogeochemistry, Vol. 138, No. 2, 01.04.2018, p. 171-195.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Blair, NE, Leithold, EL, Thanos Papanicolaou, AN, Wilson, CG, Keefer, LL, Kirton, E, Vinson, D, Schnoebelen, D, Rhoads, BL, Yu, M & Lewis, Q 2018, 'The C-biogeochemistry of a Midwestern USA agricultural impoundment in context: Lake Decatur in the intensively managed landscape critical zone observatory', Biogeochemistry, vol. 138, no. 2, pp. 171-195. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10533-018-0439-9
Blair, Neal E. ; Leithold, Elana L. ; Thanos Papanicolaou, A. N. ; Wilson, Christopher G. ; Keefer, Laura Lynn ; Kirton, Erin ; Vinson, David ; Schnoebelen, Doug ; Rhoads, Bruce L ; Yu, Mingjing ; Lewis, Quinn. / The C-biogeochemistry of a Midwestern USA agricultural impoundment in context : Lake Decatur in the intensively managed landscape critical zone observatory. In: Biogeochemistry. 2018 ; Vol. 138, No. 2. pp. 171-195.
@article{d15093d88485487eb4b8d55f7b586266,
title = "The C-biogeochemistry of a Midwestern USA agricultural impoundment in context: Lake Decatur in the intensively managed landscape critical zone observatory",
abstract = "The damming of rivers has created hotspots for organic carbon sequestration and methane production on a global scale as the reservoirs intercept fluvial suspended and dissolved loads. To better understand how the C-biogeochemistry of a reservoir responds to watershed processes and evolves over time, Lake Decatur, located in the Intensively Managed Landscape Critical Zone Observatory (IML-CZO) was studied. Solid phase analyses ({\%} organic C, C/N, δ13C, δ15N) of soils and sediments sampled from stream bank exposures, river suspensions, and the lake bottom were conducted to characterize organic C (OC) sources throughout the sedimentary system. Agriculturally-driven soil erosion rapidly altered lake bathymetry causing an evolution of sedimentary and OC deposition patterns, which in turn shaped where and when methane production occurred. A positive correlation between OC accumulation rate and porewater dissolved inorganic C (DIC) δ13C profiles indicates that methane generation is strongly influenced by OC burial rate. The sources of the lake bed particulate organic C (POC) have also evolved over time. Drowned vegetation and/or shoreline inputs were dominant initially in areas adjacent to the original river channel but were rapidly overwhelmed by the deposition of sediments derived from eroded agricultural soils. Eutrophication of the lake followed with the onset of heavy fertilizer application post-1960. This succession of sources is expected to be commonplace for reservoirs greater than ~ 50–60 years old in agricultural settings because of the relative timing of tillage and fertilizer practices. The 13C/12C ratios of methane from Lake Decatur were more depleted in 13C than what is commonly expected for freshwater sedimentary environments. The 13C-depletion suggests that CO2-reduction is the dominant methanogenic pathway rather than the anticipated acetate dissimilation process. The isotopic observations reveal that commonly held assumptions about methane production and its C-isotopic signature in freshwater systems are over-simplified and not strictly applicable to this system.",
keywords = "C-cycle, Carbon sequestration, Methane, Reservoirs",
author = "Blair, {Neal E.} and Leithold, {Elana L.} and {Thanos Papanicolaou}, {A. N.} and Wilson, {Christopher G.} and Keefer, {Laura Lynn} and Erin Kirton and David Vinson and Doug Schnoebelen and Rhoads, {Bruce L} and Mingjing Yu and Quinn Lewis",
year = "2018",
month = "4",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1007/s10533-018-0439-9",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "138",
pages = "171--195",
journal = "Biogeochemistry",
issn = "0168-2563",
publisher = "Springer Netherlands",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The C-biogeochemistry of a Midwestern USA agricultural impoundment in context

T2 - Lake Decatur in the intensively managed landscape critical zone observatory

AU - Blair, Neal E.

AU - Leithold, Elana L.

AU - Thanos Papanicolaou, A. N.

AU - Wilson, Christopher G.

AU - Keefer, Laura Lynn

AU - Kirton, Erin

AU - Vinson, David

AU - Schnoebelen, Doug

AU - Rhoads, Bruce L

AU - Yu, Mingjing

AU - Lewis, Quinn

PY - 2018/4/1

Y1 - 2018/4/1

N2 - The damming of rivers has created hotspots for organic carbon sequestration and methane production on a global scale as the reservoirs intercept fluvial suspended and dissolved loads. To better understand how the C-biogeochemistry of a reservoir responds to watershed processes and evolves over time, Lake Decatur, located in the Intensively Managed Landscape Critical Zone Observatory (IML-CZO) was studied. Solid phase analyses (% organic C, C/N, δ13C, δ15N) of soils and sediments sampled from stream bank exposures, river suspensions, and the lake bottom were conducted to characterize organic C (OC) sources throughout the sedimentary system. Agriculturally-driven soil erosion rapidly altered lake bathymetry causing an evolution of sedimentary and OC deposition patterns, which in turn shaped where and when methane production occurred. A positive correlation between OC accumulation rate and porewater dissolved inorganic C (DIC) δ13C profiles indicates that methane generation is strongly influenced by OC burial rate. The sources of the lake bed particulate organic C (POC) have also evolved over time. Drowned vegetation and/or shoreline inputs were dominant initially in areas adjacent to the original river channel but were rapidly overwhelmed by the deposition of sediments derived from eroded agricultural soils. Eutrophication of the lake followed with the onset of heavy fertilizer application post-1960. This succession of sources is expected to be commonplace for reservoirs greater than ~ 50–60 years old in agricultural settings because of the relative timing of tillage and fertilizer practices. The 13C/12C ratios of methane from Lake Decatur were more depleted in 13C than what is commonly expected for freshwater sedimentary environments. The 13C-depletion suggests that CO2-reduction is the dominant methanogenic pathway rather than the anticipated acetate dissimilation process. The isotopic observations reveal that commonly held assumptions about methane production and its C-isotopic signature in freshwater systems are over-simplified and not strictly applicable to this system.

AB - The damming of rivers has created hotspots for organic carbon sequestration and methane production on a global scale as the reservoirs intercept fluvial suspended and dissolved loads. To better understand how the C-biogeochemistry of a reservoir responds to watershed processes and evolves over time, Lake Decatur, located in the Intensively Managed Landscape Critical Zone Observatory (IML-CZO) was studied. Solid phase analyses (% organic C, C/N, δ13C, δ15N) of soils and sediments sampled from stream bank exposures, river suspensions, and the lake bottom were conducted to characterize organic C (OC) sources throughout the sedimentary system. Agriculturally-driven soil erosion rapidly altered lake bathymetry causing an evolution of sedimentary and OC deposition patterns, which in turn shaped where and when methane production occurred. A positive correlation between OC accumulation rate and porewater dissolved inorganic C (DIC) δ13C profiles indicates that methane generation is strongly influenced by OC burial rate. The sources of the lake bed particulate organic C (POC) have also evolved over time. Drowned vegetation and/or shoreline inputs were dominant initially in areas adjacent to the original river channel but were rapidly overwhelmed by the deposition of sediments derived from eroded agricultural soils. Eutrophication of the lake followed with the onset of heavy fertilizer application post-1960. This succession of sources is expected to be commonplace for reservoirs greater than ~ 50–60 years old in agricultural settings because of the relative timing of tillage and fertilizer practices. The 13C/12C ratios of methane from Lake Decatur were more depleted in 13C than what is commonly expected for freshwater sedimentary environments. The 13C-depletion suggests that CO2-reduction is the dominant methanogenic pathway rather than the anticipated acetate dissimilation process. The isotopic observations reveal that commonly held assumptions about methane production and its C-isotopic signature in freshwater systems are over-simplified and not strictly applicable to this system.

KW - C-cycle

KW - Carbon sequestration

KW - Methane

KW - Reservoirs

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85044368700&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85044368700&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1007/s10533-018-0439-9

DO - 10.1007/s10533-018-0439-9

M3 - Article

VL - 138

SP - 171

EP - 195

JO - Biogeochemistry

JF - Biogeochemistry

SN - 0168-2563

IS - 2

ER -