EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Biogeochemical carbon transformations in a drained coastal peatland of the southern Baltic Sea: An isotope and trace element perspective

Anna-Kathrina Jenner1, Iris Schmiedinger1, Jens Kallmeyer4, Cordula Gutekunst5, Gerald Jurasinski5, and Michael Ernst Böttcher1,2,3
Anna-Kathrina Jenner et al.
  • 1Geochemistry & Isotope Biogeochemistry Group, Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research (IOW), Warnemünde, Germany.(
  • 2Marine Geochemistry, University of Greifswald, Greifswald, Germany
  • 3Interdisciplinary Faculty, University of Rostock, Rostock, Germany
  • 4Geomicrobiology, GFZ Potsdam, Potsdam, Germany
  • 5AUF, University of Rostock, Rostock, Germany

Peatlands serve as important ecosystems since they store a substantial fraction of global soil carbon. Through draining the internal biogeochemical processes may be changed impacting the transformation of stored carbon and plant material. Pristine peatlands are primarily associated with methanogenic and iron-cycling conditions, however, minor sulfur cycling may contribute to carbon mineralization in these ecosystems depending on the amount of atmospheric sulfur deposition and accumulation. In near coastal peatlands the element budget may be altered through natural or artificial flooding by brackish/marine waters. When introducing sulfate-bearing solutions, the concentrations of electron acceptors for anaerobic mineralization or organic matter increase when compared to fresh water conditions. The investigated area is planned to be flooded by Baltic Sea coastal waters in the near future.

Here we present results from a study from a drained peatland located in the southern part of the Baltic Sea. In the past the area was agriculturally used as grassland. Soil cores were retrieved along a transect perpendicular to the coast line for (isotope) biogeochemical analyses of pore water and solid phases. Analyses included the CNS composition of soils, and dissolved major elements, nutrients, sulphide, trace metals and stable isotopes of water, DIC, and sulfate (H, O, C, S). Furthermore, acid-extractions of metals were carried out to identify zones of dissolution and formation of authigenic phases. For quantification of microbial sulphate reduction rates (SRR) additional cores were retrieved and SRR were measured in whole-core incubations. 

The pore water isotopic composition is close to the local meteoric water line at the German Baltic Seas coast line. Concentration and stable isotope composition of DIC indicate mineralization of C3 type organic matter. Pore water trace metals content indicates the importance of anaerobic mineralization for release of metals into the pore and surface waters.


Acknowledgement: This study is supported by the DFG research training group BALTIC TRANSCOAST and Leibniz IOW.

How to cite: Jenner, A.-K., Schmiedinger, I., Kallmeyer, J., Gutekunst, C., Jurasinski, G., and Böttcher, M. E.: Biogeochemical carbon transformations in a drained coastal peatland of the southern Baltic Sea: An isotope and trace element perspective, EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-8022,, 2021.