From left to right, you can see a peatland with a pond, a peatland with a measuring chamber, a peatland with a drainage ditch and EC station, and a measuring chamber between tall grass.

QS_II | MODELPEAT: Modelling of greenhouse gas emissions from peatlands: process-based, rationalised GHG modelling

Due to the heavy agricultural utilisation of peatlands, they have lost their original carbon storage effect, and CO2 is released on a large scale. Peatlands are, therefore, a source of greenhouse gases that should not be underestimated. Moreover, the exact source and sink strength over the area cannot be determined in high temporal resolution. However, this is of great importance for an integrated analysis such as that taking place within the framework of ITMS.
Through the further development of empirical and process-oriented modelling approaches, MODELPEAT is developing tools to provide ITMS with GHG emissions from peatland soils in unprecedented spatial and temporal resolution.

The joint project MODELPEAT with the partner institutes KIT IMK-IFU and the Peatland Science Centre of the Weihenstephan-Triesdorf University of Applied Sciences deals with the greenhouse gas emissions of peatlands. Peatlands have been drained on a large scale for agricultural and forestry use. As a result, their carbon storage capacity has been lost, and the carbon contained in the soil is released into the atmosphere to a large extent. For the ITMS project, peatlands and former peatlands represent an important and relatively large source of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions despite their small area.

The German GHG reporting for peatlands has so far been based on national emission factors specific to land use and static modelling. Although process-based biogeochemical models such as LandscapeDNDC are validated and applicable for the calculation of GHG inventories for many ecosystems, the robustness of these models with regard to GHG emissions from peatlands is still very limited due to their particular hydrological characteristics, which influence C and N dynamics. By combining current experimental data from previous projects with spatially and temporally high-resolution activity and GHG exchange data, this project aims to develop empirical and process-oriented modelling approaches further. Such improved models are important and necessary tools to provide GHG emissions from peatland soils in unprecedented spatial and temporal resolution within the framework of ITMS.

The objectives of the approach include:

  • Creating a GIS-based modelling framework for regionalising GHG emissions of all peatland soils and land use types at high spatial & temporal resolution.
  • Refinement and optimisation of both statistical and process-based modelling approaches
  • Model comparison of a statistical model with a process-based model and assessment of uncertainty at different spatial scales
  • Calculation of detailed emission inventories of peatland soils
  • Identification of spatial and temporal patterns of GHG exchange of natural, drained and rewetted peatlands and development of GHG mitigation strategies

Participating institutions:

Beteiligte Personen:

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