Carbon Emissions From Oil Palm Plantations on Peat Soil

Frances Claire Manning (Corresponding Author), Lip Khoon Kho, Timothy Charles Hill, Thomas Cornulier, Yit Arn Teh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Southeast Asian peatlands have undergone recent land use change with an increase in industrial agricultural plantations, including oil palm. Cultivating peatlands requires creating drainage ditches and other surface microforms (i.e., harvest paths, frond piles, cover plants, and next to the palm). However, it is currently unclear how these management actions affect rates of carbon losses from the peat. Here we report carbon fluxes from each of the different surface microforms measured monthly (soil CO2 [total soil respiration—Rtot] and stem CH4) and bimonthly (soil CH4, drain CO2 and drain CH4). We calculated annual carbon fluxes and partitioned heterotrophic (Rh) and root-rhizosphere respiration by sampling rhizosphere and root-free soil. Linear mixed effect models were used to determine which environmental factors best-predicted carbon fluxes, and to develop recommendations for management solutions that could reduce carbon losses. Carbon fluxes varied significantly between the different microforms; the greatest CO2 fluxes were measured next to the palm and the greatest CH4 fluxes were measured from the drainage ditches. Annual estimates of Rtot, Rh and drain CO2 were 22.08 ± 0.50, 17.75 ± 1.54, and 1.5 ± 0.10 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1, respectively. Rh varied between the two plantations: Sebungan averaged 11.43 ± 1.37 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1 and Sabaju averaged 24.08 ± 1.42 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1. Net ecosystem CH4 fluxes averaged 61.02 ± 17.78 kg CH4-C ha−1 yr−1–similar to unmanaged swamp forests. The two plantations did not vary in overall CH4 flux, but did vary in transport pathway. CH4 fluxes from the soil, drains and stems followed a ratio of 50:50:0 from Sabaju (water table depth [WTD]: −0.49 ± 0.004 m) and 11:98:0 from Sebungan (WTD: −0.77 ± 0.007 m). Rh dominated the peat carbon losses. WTD controlled variation in Rh from Sebungan where the WTD was deeper. Air and soil temperature controlled variation in Sabaju, with greater fluxes from the harvest path, attributed to the absence of shade. These results suggest that shading the soil (e.g., through addition of frond piles) and raising the water table may be the most effective ways to reduce peat carbon loss from drained peat soils.
Original languageEnglish
Article number37
JournalFrontiers in Forests and Global Change
Volume2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 16 Aug 2019

Fingerprint

peat soil
carbon emission
plantation
water table
carbon flux
drain
oil
peat
soil
carbon
peatland
rhizosphere
pile
stem
drainage
swamp forest
shading
soil temperature
land use change
respiration

Keywords

  • oil palm
  • peat
  • peat oxidation
  • heterotrophic respiration
  • methane

Cite this

Carbon Emissions From Oil Palm Plantations on Peat Soil. / Manning, Frances Claire (Corresponding Author); Kho, Lip Khoon; Hill, Timothy Charles; Cornulier, Thomas; Teh, Yit Arn.

In: Frontiers in Forests and Global Change, Vol. 2, 37, 16.08.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Manning, Frances Claire ; Kho, Lip Khoon ; Hill, Timothy Charles ; Cornulier, Thomas ; Teh, Yit Arn. / Carbon Emissions From Oil Palm Plantations on Peat Soil. In: Frontiers in Forests and Global Change. 2019 ; Vol. 2.
@article{823c343995ae4231b0eb579567807d84,
title = "Carbon Emissions From Oil Palm Plantations on Peat Soil",
abstract = "Southeast Asian peatlands have undergone recent land use change with an increase in industrial agricultural plantations, including oil palm. Cultivating peatlands requires creating drainage ditches and other surface microforms (i.e., harvest paths, frond piles, cover plants, and next to the palm). However, it is currently unclear how these management actions affect rates of carbon losses from the peat. Here we report carbon fluxes from each of the different surface microforms measured monthly (soil CO2 [total soil respiration—Rtot] and stem CH4) and bimonthly (soil CH4, drain CO2 and drain CH4). We calculated annual carbon fluxes and partitioned heterotrophic (Rh) and root-rhizosphere respiration by sampling rhizosphere and root-free soil. Linear mixed effect models were used to determine which environmental factors best-predicted carbon fluxes, and to develop recommendations for management solutions that could reduce carbon losses. Carbon fluxes varied significantly between the different microforms; the greatest CO2 fluxes were measured next to the palm and the greatest CH4 fluxes were measured from the drainage ditches. Annual estimates of Rtot, Rh and drain CO2 were 22.08 ± 0.50, 17.75 ± 1.54, and 1.5 ± 0.10 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1, respectively. Rh varied between the two plantations: Sebungan averaged 11.43 ± 1.37 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1 and Sabaju averaged 24.08 ± 1.42 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1. Net ecosystem CH4 fluxes averaged 61.02 ± 17.78 kg CH4-C ha−1 yr−1–similar to unmanaged swamp forests. The two plantations did not vary in overall CH4 flux, but did vary in transport pathway. CH4 fluxes from the soil, drains and stems followed a ratio of 50:50:0 from Sabaju (water table depth [WTD]: −0.49 ± 0.004 m) and 11:98:0 from Sebungan (WTD: −0.77 ± 0.007 m). Rh dominated the peat carbon losses. WTD controlled variation in Rh from Sebungan where the WTD was deeper. Air and soil temperature controlled variation in Sabaju, with greater fluxes from the harvest path, attributed to the absence of shade. These results suggest that shading the soil (e.g., through addition of frond piles) and raising the water table may be the most effective ways to reduce peat carbon loss from drained peat soils.",
keywords = "oil palm, peat, peat oxidation, heterotrophic respiration, methane",
author = "Manning, {Frances Claire} and Kho, {Lip Khoon} and Hill, {Timothy Charles} and Thomas Cornulier and Teh, {Yit Arn}",
note = "This project was funded by the Natural Environmental Research Council, UK (grant code: 1368637) and the Malaysian Palm Oil Board (grant code: R010913000).",
year = "2019",
month = "8",
day = "16",
doi = "10.3389/ffgc.2019.00037",
language = "English",
volume = "2",
journal = "Frontiers in Forests and Global Change",
issn = "2624-893X",
publisher = "Frontiers Media S.A.",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Carbon Emissions From Oil Palm Plantations on Peat Soil

AU - Manning, Frances Claire

AU - Kho, Lip Khoon

AU - Hill, Timothy Charles

AU - Cornulier, Thomas

AU - Teh, Yit Arn

N1 - This project was funded by the Natural Environmental Research Council, UK (grant code: 1368637) and the Malaysian Palm Oil Board (grant code: R010913000).

PY - 2019/8/16

Y1 - 2019/8/16

N2 - Southeast Asian peatlands have undergone recent land use change with an increase in industrial agricultural plantations, including oil palm. Cultivating peatlands requires creating drainage ditches and other surface microforms (i.e., harvest paths, frond piles, cover plants, and next to the palm). However, it is currently unclear how these management actions affect rates of carbon losses from the peat. Here we report carbon fluxes from each of the different surface microforms measured monthly (soil CO2 [total soil respiration—Rtot] and stem CH4) and bimonthly (soil CH4, drain CO2 and drain CH4). We calculated annual carbon fluxes and partitioned heterotrophic (Rh) and root-rhizosphere respiration by sampling rhizosphere and root-free soil. Linear mixed effect models were used to determine which environmental factors best-predicted carbon fluxes, and to develop recommendations for management solutions that could reduce carbon losses. Carbon fluxes varied significantly between the different microforms; the greatest CO2 fluxes were measured next to the palm and the greatest CH4 fluxes were measured from the drainage ditches. Annual estimates of Rtot, Rh and drain CO2 were 22.08 ± 0.50, 17.75 ± 1.54, and 1.5 ± 0.10 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1, respectively. Rh varied between the two plantations: Sebungan averaged 11.43 ± 1.37 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1 and Sabaju averaged 24.08 ± 1.42 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1. Net ecosystem CH4 fluxes averaged 61.02 ± 17.78 kg CH4-C ha−1 yr−1–similar to unmanaged swamp forests. The two plantations did not vary in overall CH4 flux, but did vary in transport pathway. CH4 fluxes from the soil, drains and stems followed a ratio of 50:50:0 from Sabaju (water table depth [WTD]: −0.49 ± 0.004 m) and 11:98:0 from Sebungan (WTD: −0.77 ± 0.007 m). Rh dominated the peat carbon losses. WTD controlled variation in Rh from Sebungan where the WTD was deeper. Air and soil temperature controlled variation in Sabaju, with greater fluxes from the harvest path, attributed to the absence of shade. These results suggest that shading the soil (e.g., through addition of frond piles) and raising the water table may be the most effective ways to reduce peat carbon loss from drained peat soils.

AB - Southeast Asian peatlands have undergone recent land use change with an increase in industrial agricultural plantations, including oil palm. Cultivating peatlands requires creating drainage ditches and other surface microforms (i.e., harvest paths, frond piles, cover plants, and next to the palm). However, it is currently unclear how these management actions affect rates of carbon losses from the peat. Here we report carbon fluxes from each of the different surface microforms measured monthly (soil CO2 [total soil respiration—Rtot] and stem CH4) and bimonthly (soil CH4, drain CO2 and drain CH4). We calculated annual carbon fluxes and partitioned heterotrophic (Rh) and root-rhizosphere respiration by sampling rhizosphere and root-free soil. Linear mixed effect models were used to determine which environmental factors best-predicted carbon fluxes, and to develop recommendations for management solutions that could reduce carbon losses. Carbon fluxes varied significantly between the different microforms; the greatest CO2 fluxes were measured next to the palm and the greatest CH4 fluxes were measured from the drainage ditches. Annual estimates of Rtot, Rh and drain CO2 were 22.08 ± 0.50, 17.75 ± 1.54, and 1.5 ± 0.10 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1, respectively. Rh varied between the two plantations: Sebungan averaged 11.43 ± 1.37 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1 and Sabaju averaged 24.08 ± 1.42 Mg CO2-C ha−1 yr−1. Net ecosystem CH4 fluxes averaged 61.02 ± 17.78 kg CH4-C ha−1 yr−1–similar to unmanaged swamp forests. The two plantations did not vary in overall CH4 flux, but did vary in transport pathway. CH4 fluxes from the soil, drains and stems followed a ratio of 50:50:0 from Sabaju (water table depth [WTD]: −0.49 ± 0.004 m) and 11:98:0 from Sebungan (WTD: −0.77 ± 0.007 m). Rh dominated the peat carbon losses. WTD controlled variation in Rh from Sebungan where the WTD was deeper. Air and soil temperature controlled variation in Sabaju, with greater fluxes from the harvest path, attributed to the absence of shade. These results suggest that shading the soil (e.g., through addition of frond piles) and raising the water table may be the most effective ways to reduce peat carbon loss from drained peat soils.

KW - oil palm

KW - peat

KW - peat oxidation

KW - heterotrophic respiration

KW - methane

U2 - 10.3389/ffgc.2019.00037

DO - 10.3389/ffgc.2019.00037

M3 - Article

VL - 2

JO - Frontiers in Forests and Global Change

JF - Frontiers in Forests and Global Change

SN - 2624-893X

M1 - 37

ER -