Patterns and drivers of CH4 concentration and diffusive flux from a temperate river–reservoir system in North China

Lei Zhang , Fanyan Yang , Jicheng Zhong , Shaoming Wang , Xiaokang Hu , Hongwei Wang , Mengyao Tang , Min Zhang , Chuanzhe Sun


Received October 16, 2021,Revised , Accepted December 07, 2021, Available online December 21, 2021

Volume 34,2022,Pages 184-197

Freshwater reservoirs are regarded as an important anthropogenic source of methane (CH4) emissions. The temporal and spatial variability of CH4 emissions from different reservoirs results in uncertainty in the estimation of the global CH4 budget. In this study, surface water CH4 concentrations were measured and diffusive CH4 fluxes were estimated via a thin boundary layer model in a temperate river–reservoir system in North China, using spatial (33 sites) and temporal (four seasons) monitoring; the system has experienced intensive aquaculture disturbance. Our results indicated that the dissolved CH4 concentration in the reservoir ranged from 0.07 to 0.58 µmol/L, with an annual average of 0.13 ± 0.10 µmol/L, and the diffusive CH4 flux across the water–air interface ranged from 0.66 to 3.61 μmol/(m2•hr), with an annual average of 1.67 ± 0.75 μmol/(m2•hr). During the study period, the dissolved CH4 concentration was supersaturated and was a net source of atmospheric CH4. Notably, CH4 concentration and diffusive flux portrayed large temporal and spatial heterogeneity. The river inflow zone was determined to be a hotspot for CH4 emissions, and its flux was significantly higher than that of the tributary and main basin; the CH4 flux in autumn was greater than that in other seasons. We also deduced that the CH4 concentration/diffusive flux was co-regulated mainly by water temperature, water depth, and water productivity (Chla, trophic status). Our results highlight the importance of considering the spatiotemporal variability of diffusive CH4 flux from temperate reservoirs to estimate the CH4 budget at regional and global scales.

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