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Biogeochemical characterization of carbon sources in the Strickland and Fly rivers, Papua New Guinea Public Deposited

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  • The highstanding islands of Oceania are recognized as a source of significant particulate organic carbon delivered to nearshore marine environments. The existing data on carbon export in Oceania are largely derived from small mountainous watersheds (<10,000 km2) with little or no sediment storage capacity and located in subtropical to temperate regions. The Fly-Strickland fluvial dispersal system is the largest in tropical Oceania and has high sediment yields, aged organic matter in its suspended-sediment load, and lowland sediment storage capacity. The Fly River system also has very high soil organic carbon content and conditions favorable to perennially high production, oxidation, and discharge within the watershed. We used stable and radiogenic isotopes (δ13C, Δ14C, and δ15N), lignin phenols, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy to examine the organic and inorganic composition of particulate and dissolved carbon at several lowland sites in the Fly and Strickland rivers and on the Strickland River floodplain. Isotopic, elemental, and biomarker results suggest that organic carbon in the Strickland River was more degraded than in the Fly River, with a greater input of ancient organics from upland sources, and that aquatic production constituted a larger source in the Fly River. Radiocarbon results indicate that all carbon fractions were older in the Strickland than in the Fly and that Strickland floodplain sediments were also depleted in radiocarbon. Collectively, these results suggest that rivers of New Guinea export a comparable amount of particulate organic carbon to the Amazon, with a significant contribution from radiocarbon-depleted sources.
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  • Alin, S. R., R. Aalto, M. A. Goñi, J. E. Richey, and W. E. Dietrich (2008), Biogeochemical characterization of carbon sources in the Strickland and Fly rivers, Papua New Guinea, J. Geophys. Res., 113, F01S05, doi:10.1029/2006JF000625.
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  • This research was supported by funds from the National Science Foundation, including grants EAR-0223521 to J. E. Richey., EAR-0203577 to W. E. Dietrich, and OCE-0220600 to M. A. Goñi. In addition, development and refinement of the 210Pb dating technique was supported in part by NSF EAR-0310339 and EAR-0403722.
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  • description.provenance : Submitted by Linda Lamb (llamb@coas.oregonstate.edu) on 2010-04-05T22:37:46Z No. of bitstreams: 1 Alin et al Strickland Fly rivers JGR 2008.pdf: 817579 bytes, checksum: 16b672611f012bbf17cc75589e15d2c3 (MD5)
  • description.provenance : Made available in DSpace on 2010-04-06T13:14:12Z (GMT). No. of bitstreams: 1 Alin et al Strickland Fly rivers JGR 2008.pdf: 817579 bytes, checksum: 16b672611f012bbf17cc75589e15d2c3 (MD5) Previous issue date: 2008-01-12
  • description.provenance : Approved for entry into archive by Linda Kathman(linda.kathman@oregonstate.edu) on 2010-04-06T13:14:12Z (GMT) No. of bitstreams: 1 Alin et al Strickland Fly rivers JGR 2008.pdf: 817579 bytes, checksum: 16b672611f012bbf17cc75589e15d2c3 (MD5)
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  • 0148-0227

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