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  1. Abstract Background

    Countries have long been making efforts by reducing greenhouse-gas emissions to mitigate climate change. In the agreements of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, involved countries have committed to reduction targets. However, carbon (C) sink and its involving processes by natural ecosystems remain difficult to quantify.

    Methods

    Using a transient traceability framework, we estimated country-level land C sink and its causing components by 2050 simulated by 12 Earth System Models involved in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) under RCP8.5.

    Results

    The top 20 countries with highest C sink have the potential to sequester 62 Pg C in total, among which, Russia, Canada, USA, China, and Brazil sequester the most. This C sink consists of four components: production-driven change, turnover-driven change, change in instantaneous C storage potential, and interaction between production-driven change and turnover-driven change. The four components account for 49.5%, 28.1%, 14.5%, and 7.9% of the land C sink, respectively.

    Conclusion

    The model-based estimates highlight that land C sink potentially offsets a substantial proportion of greenhouse-gas emissions, especially for countries where net primary production (NPP) likely increases substantially and inherent residence time elongates.

  2. Abstract

    Global soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks may decline with a warmer climate. However, model projections of changes in SOC due to climate warming depend on microbially-driven processes that are usually parameterized based on laboratory incubations. To assess how lab-scale incubation datasets inform model projections over decades, we optimized five microbially-relevant parameters in the Microbial-ENzyme Decomposition (MEND) model using 16 short-term glucose (6-day), 16 short-term cellulose (30-day) and 16 long-term cellulose (729-day) incubation datasets with soils from forests and grasslands across contrasting soil types. Our analysis identified consistently higher parameter estimates given the short-term versus long-term datasets. Implementing the short-term and long-term parameters, respectively, resulted in SOC loss (–8.2 ± 5.1% or –3.9 ± 2.8%), and minor SOC gain (1.8 ± 1.0%) in response to 5 °C warming, while only the latter is consistent with a meta-analysis of 149 field warming observations (1.6 ± 4.0%). Comparing multiple subsets of cellulose incubations (i.e., 6, 30, 90, 180, 360, 480 and 729-day) revealed comparable projections to the observed long-term SOC changes under warming only on 480- and 729-day. Integrating multi-year datasets of soil incubations (e.g., > 1.5 years) with microbial models can thus achieve more reasonable parameterization of key microbial processes and subsequently boost the accuracy and confidence of long-term SOCmore »projections.

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