Tree-stem trace gas fluxes in rainforest transformation systems

I will investigate whether or not tree stems in lowland tropical plantations contribute to the emission of N2O and CH4 to the atmosphere. We hypothesize that once these trace gases are produced in the soil, they may diffuse into tree roots and then be transported upward through the xylem. Once carried into the stem through sap flow, the gases may then diffuse out of the tree stems, entering the atmosphere.
In this study I aim to:

  • identify whether trees in lowland tropical plantations are important conduits of N2O and/or CH4;
  • test whether tree-stem fluxes change with height, tree species or landscape position;
  • to quantify tree-stem fluxes and add these measurements to previous and ongoing soil-atmosphere measurements of N2O and CH4 in our study areas.