PhD Oral Defence of Ianina Altshuler, Natural Resource Sciences
Anthropogenic climate change is thought to have a disproportionately larger impact on polar regions, resulting in permafrost thaw and microorganism mediated greenhouse gas (GHG) emission. Permafrost soils contain between 25-50 % of the total soil organic carbon pool and as permafrost thaws, this carbon will become accessible to microbial degradation. Carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O) are the most important GHGs and their flux from permafrost affected soils contributes to a positive feedback loop of climatic warming. However, our understanding of how microorganisms contribute to the biogeochemical cycling and flux of these gases in Arctic soils remains limited.