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Forest Fires Affect Distributive Features of Soil Carbon and Nutrients in Permafrost Regions



Forest fires have important influences on chemical properties of soils in permafrost regions, and changes in soil characteristics affected by forest fires are related with fire severity and post-fire recovery time. 

However, the research on the fire-induced changes in carbon and other nutrients of soils has received much less attention, particularly that of soils in the active layer and near-surface permafrost. 

Recently, a research group from Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources (NIEER) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences investigated the effects of forest fires on soil nutrients of larch forest soils in the discontinuous permafrost zone in the northern Da Xing’anling (Hinggan) Mountains. 

Scientists analyzed pH, carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium contents at sites affected by different fires in two areas in the Da Xing’anling Mountains. 

The results suggested that the forest fire had greatly changed total organic carbon contents and also other nutrients, including nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium contents. 

Besides, the study also showed that the increase of ground temperature had a certain effect on the thickening of the active layer, the decreasing of the total nitrogen and organic carbon, and the changing of the other nutritions. 

This study on the feedback mechanisms between forest fires and nutrients in discontinuous permafrost regions in the northern Da Xing’anling Mountains is of importance for understanding the boreal carbon pool and cycling. 

The study result was published In CATENA. 



JIN Huijun 

Da-Xing’anling Observational and Research Station for Frozen-ground Engineering and Environment, State Key Laboratory of Frozen Soils Enginering and Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China. 


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