Shining light on priming in euphotic sediments: Nutrient enrichment stimulates export of stored organic matter

This is a Preprint and has not been peer reviewed. The published version of this Preprint is available: http://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.0c01914. This is version 3 of this Preprint.

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Authors

Philip Riekenberg, Joanne Oakes, Bradley Eyre

Abstract

Estuarine sediments are important sites for the interception, processing and retention of organic matter, prior to its export to the coastal oceans. Stimulated microbial co-metabolism (priming) potentially increases export of refractory organic matter through increased production of hydrolytic enzymes. By using the microphytobenthos community to directly introduce a pulse of labile carbon into sediment, we traced a priming effect and assessed the decomposition and export of pre-existing organic matter. We show enhanced efflux of pre-existing carbon from intertidal sediments enriched with water column nutrients. Nutrient enrichment increased production of labile microphytobenthos-carbon which stimulated degradation of previously unavailable organic matter and led to increased liberation of “old” (6855 ± 120 years BP) refractory carbon as dissolved organic carbon. These enhanced DOC effluxes occurred at a scale that decreases estimates for global organic carbon burial in coastal systems and should be considered as an impact of eutrophication on estuarine carbon budgets.

DOI

https://doi.org/10.31223/osf.io/5auxz

Subjects

Biogeochemistry, Earth Sciences, Life Sciences, Oceanography and Atmospheric Sciences and Meteorology, Physical Sciences and Mathematics

Keywords

benthic, carbon, microalgae, microphytobenthos, nutrient enrichment

Dates

Published: 2020-05-25 21:17

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License

CC BY Attribution 4.0 International

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