Navigation Links
Melting snow provides clues for acidification
Date:2/15/2008

MADISON, WI, February 11, 2008 -- In forests of the northeastern United States, sulfate and nitrate are the dominant dissolved forms of sulfur and nitrogen in precipitation. In winter, these acidic agents accumulate in the snowpack and are released to groundwater and streams over a short period of time during spring snowmelt. This pulsed release of sulfate and nitrate in snowmelt can cause episodic acidification in poorly buffered soils, ultimately threatening the health of acid-sensitive biota.

There have been recent studies showing that biological cycling of sulfur and nitrogen persists in cold weather, despite below freezing air temperatures. Much of this activity occurs in soils, where an insulating snow layer keeps soil temperatures warm enough for a range of biological processes. Despite the growing awareness of winters role in sulfur and nitrogen cycling, many questions remain unanswered. In particular, there is much uncertainty about how sulfate and nitrate are retained or transformed in forest soils during cold weather.

In the November-December 2007 issue of the Soil Science Society of America Journal (SSSAJ), scientists from the U.S. Forest Service, SUNY-ESF, University of Calgary, and Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies tracked the movement of sulfate and nitrate deposited in snow. A solution containing isotopically enriched sulfate and nitrate was sprayed on the surface of the snowpack during mid winter. The isotopic values of the labeled sulfate and nitrate were well above background levels and served as a tracer to follow the movement and transformation of these compounds in the ecosystem.

The researchers found that almost all of the labeled sulfate and nitrate deposited on the surface of the snow was recovered in snowmelt water, indicating that there were no significant transformations of sulfate and nitrate in the snowpack. In contrast, about half of the sulfate and nitrate was retained or transformed in the forest floor, suggesting that organic soils are a sink for these compounds during winter. For sulfate, the amount retained or transformed in the forest floor was nearly equal to the amount released, resulting in no significant net gains or losses. A significant amount of ammonium was produced in the forest floor indicating that N mineralization can be important, even when soil temperatures are near freezing. By contrast, net nitrification rates were very low during winter. Tracer results indicated that microbes did not immobilize snowpack nitrate and that other processes such as plant uptake, denitrification, and abiotic nitrate retention were probably more important factors affecting nitrate during snowmelt. More information on controls on nitrogen and sulfur cycling during winter is critical to our understanding of long-term trends and will help us predict how forest ecosystems will respond to future disturbances and global change processes.


'/>"/>

Contact: Sara Uttech
suttech@soils.org
608-268-4948
Soil Science Society of America
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Investigational New Drug Application for Fat Melting Injections Cleared by the FDA
2. Non-Invasive Fat-Melting Procedures - Hype or Reality?
3. Study provides hope that some transplant patients could live free of antirejection drugs
4. Study provides hope that some transplant patients could live free of anti-rejection drugs
5. USAID Provides Additional Wildfire Assistance to Greece
6. LifeMasters Provides Tips for Maintaining a Healthy Blood Cholesterol Level
7. New knock-out gene model provides molecular clues to breast cancer
8. PreMD Provides Update on 510(k) Application for PREVU(x) POC
9. SIV infection of natural hosts provides new insights into HIV disease complexity
10. Microarray provides 3 genomic guides to breast cancer treatment decisions
11. Access Innovations Provides Support Services for Agis Network
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... May 03, 2016 , ... ... Carnival Vista – the line’s largest cruise ship ever. To help guests ... an infographic spotlighting the Carnival Vista ’s most exciting features and ...
(Date:5/2/2016)... ... ... It has just been announced Jack Uldrich, renowned futurist and ... of May. , Uldrich is the author of 11 books and a regular guest ... the Science Channel’s FutureScape and Discovery Channel’s Inside Out. , Known the world over ...
(Date:5/2/2016)... Dallas, Texas (PRWEB) , ... May 02, 2016 ... ... Volume 3, Issue 1 of Patient Experience Journal (PXJ), an international, open ... patient experience. With almost half the issue representing international (non-US) based authors, the ...
(Date:5/2/2016)... ... 02, 2016 , ... Beanfields, PBC, makers of Beanfields Bean ... students at University of Colorado in Boulder to create new advertising campaigns. , ... the School of Journalism, who selected Beanfields as the brand on which to ...
(Date:5/2/2016)... ... May 02, 2016 , ... Amica Life Insurance ... understand life insurance throughout various life stages. , The site launched on April ... calculator and content specific to the times when life insurance matters most. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/29/2016)... Jersey , April 29, 2016 ... Suite for Life Sciences, Product Development Capabilities in ... Life Science Customer Base . ... provider, today announced the acquisition of Skura Corporation,s ... global leader in adaptive sales enablement technology for ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... , April 28, 2016  While Abbott,s ... complement the company,s valve repair and stent business, ... also places Abbott more firmly into patient monitoring.  ... the fastest growing device areas, with double-digit growth ... recent report,  Advanced Remote Patient Monitoring ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... April 28, 2016 Treato ... on healthcare, announced today that it has been named ... Cool Vendor in Life Sciences, 2016, Stephen ...  The report focuses on life-science- oriented analytics, algorithms and ... patients and doctors, confirm medication ingestion, and analyze unstructured ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: