Longer growing seasons do not increase net carbon uptake in Northeastern Siberian tundra

F.J.W. Parmentier, M.K. van der Molen, J. van Huissteden, S. Karsanaev, A.V. Kononov, D. Suzdalov, T.C. Maximov, A.J. Dolman

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57 Citations (Scopus)


With global warming, snowmelt is occurring earlier and growing seasons are becoming longer around the Arctic. It has been suggested that this would lead to more uptake of carbon due to a lengthening of the period in which plants photosynthesize. To investigate this suggestion, 8 consecutive years of eddy covariance measurements at a northeastern Siberian graminoid tundra site were investigated for patterns in net ecosystem exchange, gross primary production (GPP) and ecosystem respiration (Reco). While GPP showed no clear increase with longer growing seasons, it was significantly increased in warmer summers. Due to these warmer temperatures however, the increase in uptake was mostly offset by an increase in Reco. Therefore, overall variability in net carbon uptake was low, and no relationship with growing season length was found. Furthermore, the highest net uptake of carbon occurred with the shortest and the coldest growing season. Low uptake of carbon mostly occurred with longer or warmer growing seasons. We thus conclude that the net carbon uptake of this ecosystem is more likely to decrease rather than to increase under a warmer climate. These results contradict previous research that has showed more net carbon uptake with longer growing seasons. We hypothesize that this difference is due to site-specific differences, such as climate type and soil, and that changes in the carbon cycle with longer growing seasons will not be uniform around the Arctic
Original languageEnglish
Article numberG04013
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • eddy covariance
  • ecosystem exchange
  • climate-change
  • arctic tundra
  • co2 exchange
  • respiration
  • flux
  • vegetation
  • dioxide
  • cycle

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