Reproduction of methane emissions from terrestrial plants under aerobic conditions

University essay from Lunds universitet/Institutionen för naturgeografi och ekosystemvetenskap

Abstract: Latest research confirmed that plant matter can also produce a non negligible amount of the greenhouse gas methane under aerobic conditions. These findings have led to discussions and controversy within the research community. While KEPPLER ET AL. (2006) as one of the first researchers published results supporting this hypothesis others like DUECK ET AL. (2007) refuted these results within their experiments. In this study we demonstrate – using experimental techniques partly based on Kepplers study from 2006 – that detached and air dried organic matter emits methane under aerobic conditions. Plants were incubated under laboratory conditions while the data was collected first under light followed by dark conditions. Released methane was found for all 20 investigated species in a range of 1.7 to 25.8ppm under light conditions (mean value) and in a range of 1.9 to 28.8ppm under dark conditions (mean value). Significant amounts occurred for coniferous wood including spruce and fir. Further high methane concentrations could be observed for the specie bux. We assume that these findings have an important influence on the previous suggestions concerning the global distribution of methane sources.

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