Investigation of geochemical, biological and physical controls on the carbon storage capacity in Hong Kong coastal wetlands

  • Date

    August 28,2020

  • Time

    10:00 AM

  • Venue


  • Speaker

    Mrs. ALLAIS Laetitia (Supervisor: Dr. Benoit Thibodeau) Department of Earth Sciences, HKU

Wetlands are very important carbon storage ecosystems pertaining to high organic matter preservation. The storage of carbon is a balance between the carbon that is preserved and the one that is lost from the ecosystem by microbial degradation. Therefore, to generate new knowledge about carbon storage in Hong Kong we are investigating the impact of geochemical, biological and physical controls on the preservation and degradation of carbon. While microbes are known to play a crucial role in the interconnectivity between biogeochemical cycles, there is a lack of understanding of how microbial variation may influence carbon balance in soils of wetlands and how variation in the microbial community could affect the carbon sequestration capacity. Moreover, with global change affecting environmental parameters and anthropogenic activities increasing pollution in ecosystems, addressing how microorganisms may be impacted by those changes will help us apprehend how carbon sequestration in wetland might evolve in the long term. This project investigates the linkages between biogeochemical cycles, microbial communities, environment parameters and carbon sequestration in a key wetland ecosystem. Here, it focuses on mangrove ecosystems as they are one of the most efficient carbon sinks worldwide and are abundant in Hong Kong. In addition, mangroves of Hong Kong are also likely subject to pollution on the western side through water discharged by the Pearl River while less polluted water are found on the eastern side, bordered by the South China Sea. They are, therefore, of great potential to evaluate the impact that pollutants and climate change could have on the complex biogeochemical interactions involved in carbon sequestration in wetlands. Understanding the role and changes in the microbial influence in the carbon storage can prove extremely important for a better managing of wetland ecosystems in the future.

(Meeting ID: 984 1588 6760)

Please contact Mrs ALLAIS Laetitia Julie Marie, for Zoom password