Cross-regional prediction of long-term trajectory of stream water DOC response to climate change

Hjalmar Laudon, Jim Buttle, Sean K. Carey, Jeff McDonnell, Kevin McGuire, Jan Seibert, Jamie Shanley, Chris Soulsby, Doerthe Tetzlaff

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Abstract

There is no scientific consensus about how dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in surface waters is regulated. Here we combine recent literature data from 49 catchments with detailed stream and catchment process information from nine well established research catchments at mid- to high latitudes to examine the question of how climate controls stream water DOC. We show for the first time that mean annual temperature (MAT) in the range from -3 degrees to +10 degrees C has a strong control over the regional stream water DOC concentration in catchments, with highest concentrations in areas ranging between 0 degrees and +3 degrees C MAT. Although relatively large deviations from this model occur for individual streams, catchment topography appears to explain much of this divergence. These findings suggest that the long-term trajectory of stream water DOC response to climate change may be more predictable than previously thought. Citation: Laudon, H., J. Buttle, S. K. Carey, J. McDonnell, K. McGuire, J. Seibert, J. Shanley, C. Soulsby, and D. Tetzlaff (2012), Cross-regional prediction of long-term trajectory of stream water DOC response to climate change, Geophys. Res. Lett., 39, L18404, doi: 10.1029/2012GL053033.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberL18404
Number of pages6
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume39
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 22 Sep 2012

Cite this

Laudon, H., Buttle, J., Carey, S. K., McDonnell, J., McGuire, K., Seibert, J., Shanley, J., Soulsby, C., & Tetzlaff, D. (2012). Cross-regional prediction of long-term trajectory of stream water DOC response to climate change. Geophysical Research Letters, 39, [L18404]. https://doi.org/10.1029/2012GL053033