Comparison of the impacts of elevated CO₂ soil gas concentrations on selected European terrestrial environments

West, J.M., Jones, D.G., Annunziatellis, A., Barlow, T.S., Beaubien, S.E., Bond, A., Breward, N., Coombs, P., de Angelis, D., Gardner, A., Gemeni, V., Graziani, S., Green, K.A., Gregory, S., Gwosdz, Simone, Hannis, S., Kirk, K., Koukouzas, N., Krüger, M., Libertini, S., Lister, T.R., Lombardi, S., Metcalfe, R., Pearce, J.M., Smith, Karon L., Steven, Michael D., Thatcher, K. and Ziogou, F. (2015) Comparison of the impacts of elevated CO₂ soil gas concentrations on selected European terrestrial environments. International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control, 42 . pp. 357-371. ISSN 1750-5836

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Selected European studies have illustrated the impacts of elevated CO₂ concentrations in shallow soils on pasture. For the first time, general unified conclusions can be made, providing CO₂ thresholds where effects on plants and soil microbiology are observed and making recommendations on how this information can be used when planning projects for CO₂ storage. The sites include those where CO₂ is being naturally released to the atmosphere from deep geological formations; and a non-adapted site, with no previous history of CO₂ seepage, where CO₂ has been injected into the unsaturated soil horizon. Whilst soil gas concentrations will be influenced by flux rates and other factors, the results suggest that a concentration of between 10% and 15% CO₂ soil gas at 20 cm depth, which is within the root zone, is an important threshold level for observing changes in plant coverage. Site-specific plant ‘indicators’ are also observed for CO₂ concentrations at ≥35%. Microbiological changes are seen where CO₂ soil gas concentrations are between 15% and 40%. As part of site characterisation, an evaluation of the risks of leakage and their potential environmental impacts should be undertaken.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: CO₂ storage; Leakage; Site monitoring; Leakage detection; Natural systems; Controlled injection; Environmental impacts
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Geography
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Depositing User: Eprints, Support
Date Deposited: 06 Nov 2017 15:03
Last Modified: 04 May 2020 17:17

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