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Holocene peatland carbon dynamics in the circum-Arctic region: An introduction

Yu, Zicheng, Loisel, Julie, Charman, Daniel J, Beilman, David W, Camill, Philip
biosphere, carbon, carbon cycle, carbon sinks, peat, peatlands
Peatlands represent the largest and most concentrated carbon pool in the terrestrial biosphere, and their dynamics during the Holocene have had significant impacts on the global carbon cycle. In this Introduction paper, we provide an overview of the contributions presented in this Special Issue on Holocene peatland carbon dynamics. We also provide a brief history and current status of peat-core-based research on peatland carbon dynamics. Finally, we identify and discuss some challenges and opportunities that would guide peatland carbon research in the near future. These challenges and opportunities include the need to fill data gaps and increase geographic representations of peat carbon accumulation records, a better understanding of peatland lateral expansion process and improved estimate of peatland area change over time, developing regional carbon accumulation histories and carbon pool estimates, and projecting and quantifying overall peatland net carbon balance in a changing world.