Mobilization and transport of coarse woody debris to the oceans triggered by an extreme tropical storm

West, A. J. and Lin, C.-W. and Lin, T.-C. and Hilton, R. G. and Liu, S.-H. and Chang, C.-T. and Lin, K.-C. and Galy, A. and Sparkes, R. B. and Hovius, N. (2011) Mobilization and transport of coarse woody debris to the oceans triggered by an extreme tropical storm. Limnology and Oceanography, 56 (1). p. 77. ISSN 00243590 DOI 10.4319/lo.2011.56.1.0077

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.4319/lo.2011.56.1.0077

Abstract

A significant consequence of Typhoon Morakot in August 2009 was the production of vast volumes of driftwood in Pacific Asia. We have quantified the flux of this coarse woody debris (CWD) to the oceans from typhoon triggered landslides in Taiwan, where Morakot made landfall, by combining remote sensing (using FORMOSAT-2 imagery and aerial photography), analysis of forest biomass, and field observations. A total of 3.8–8.4 TgCWD was transported to the oceans, carrying 1.8–4.0 Tg of organic carbon. In addition to the local effects on the marine and coastal environment from such a highly concentrated flux of carbon and nutrients, storm-driven mobilization of CWD may represent a significant, if infrequent, transfer of terrestrial biomass to the oceans. If the frequency of relatively rare, extreme storms such as Morakot increases in a changing climate, this transport mechanism may play an important role in feedbacks between global climate, storm intensity, and carbon cycling.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 2010AREP; IA61;
Subjects: 01 - Climate Change and Earth-Ocean Atmosphere Systems
Divisions: 01 - Climate Change and Earth-Ocean Atmosphere Systems
Journal or Publication Title: Limnology and Oceanography
Volume: 56
Page Range: p. 77
Identification Number: 10.4319/lo.2011.56.1.0077
Depositing User: Sarah Humbert
Date Deposited: 19 Nov 2010 08:37
Last Modified: 23 Jul 2013 10:00
URI: http://eprints.esc.cam.ac.uk/id/eprint/1966

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