A K Raha
Articles written in Journal of Earth System Science
Volume 123 Issue 5 July 2014 pp 1089-1096
We report the initial results of the methane flux measured using eddy covariance method during summer months from the world’s largest mangrove ecosystem, Sundarbans of India. Mangrove ecosystems are known sources for methane (CH4) having very high global warming potential. In order to quantify the methane flux in mangroves, an eddy covariance flux tower was recently erected in the largest unpolluted and undisturbed mangrove ecosystem in Sundarbans (India). The tower is equipped with eddy covariance flux tower instruments to continuously measure methane fluxes besides the mass and energy fluxes. This paper presents the preliminary results of methane flux variations during summer months (i.e., April and May 2012) in Sundarbans mangrove ecosystem. The mean concentrations of CH4 emission over the study period was 1682 ± 956 ppb. The measured CH4 fluxes computed from eddy covariance technique showed that the study area acts as a net source for CH4 with daily mean flux of 150.22 ± 248.87 mg m−2 day−1. The methane emission as well as its flux showed very high variability diurnally. Though the environmental conditions controlling methane emission is not yet fully understood, an attempt has been made in the present study to analyse the relationships of methane efflux with tidal activity. This present study is part of Indian Space Research Organisation–Geosphere Biosphere Program (ISRO–GBP) initiative under ‘National Carbon Project’.