1 Introduction</h5> Polar deserts cover 1 358 000 km 2 in the Arctic, or approximately 26% of land not covered by ice ( Walker et al., 2002 ). These ecosystems are predicted to change rapidly under a warming climate ( IPCC, 2007 ), and until recently their contributions to global greenhouse gas (GHG) budgets have not been considered. Burnham and Sletten (2010) found that these deserts may have more stored carbon than had been previously thought. Recent work revealed that GHG emission rates in the deserts were surprisingly high and similar to wetter Arctic tundra soils ( Brummell et al., 2012 ). Despite the importance of desert soils to global climate change models, polar deserts remain poorly understood ecosystems and it is not understood how ecosystems such as polar deserts can produce so much GHG.</P>Quantification of GHG emissions from a range of Arctic vegetation communities may allow estimation of landscape-scale soil GHG emissions through the use of remote sensing and other tools based on measurement of the extent of vegetation communities such as the CAVM ( Walker et al., 2002 ). Furthermore, consideration of each major GHG individually may not provide necessary insight into the underlying processes responsible
Soil Biology and Biochemistry – Elsevier
Published: Jan 1, 2014
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