• Eight Mile Lake, AK; C. Schädel
  • Eight Mile Lake, AK; C. Schädel
  • Alaska Range; credit: C. Schädel
  • Automated Flux Chambers
  • Eriophorum Vaginatum
  • foggy mountains in Healy
  • Winter setting in Healy, AK
  • Winter snow fences
  • Dall Sheep, Denali National Park
  • Fall at CiPEHR
  • Spring at CiPEHR
  • Fall at the Gradient site; credit: E. Webb
  • Snowfences at CiPEHR; credit: S. Natali
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News and Updates:

August 2021: Monthly Carbon Updates from Eight Mile Lake, AK

We show the cumulative flux of carbon (as carbon dioxide) to the atmosphere since eddy covariance measurements at Eight Mile Lake began in May 2008.

Check out the monthly update here


May 2021: New NAU study measures long-term carbon loss from thawing permafrost in Alaska

New long-term data from a permafrost monitoring site in Healy, Alaska, suggest it was a net carbon source to the atmosphere at least since 2004 and, under current climate conditions as the region grows warmer, will continue to be one, potentially losing up to a fifth of all carbon stored in the active layer of soil by the end of the century.

Read the full article here


New research from Rodenhizer and members of the Ecosystem Dynamics lab suggests that subsidence, gradually sinking terrain caused by the loss of ice and soil mass in permafrost, is causing deeper thaw than previously thought and making twice as much carbon vulnerable as estimates that don’t account for this shifting ground. Read the publication here and the NAU news article here.


In a new publication, the Schuurlab shows that more carbon is being released from thawed permafrost than previously thought. The new paper in Nature Geoscience introduces a new way to track soil carbon in permafrost, which changes the understanding of how environmental change influences ecosystem carbon storage. The experiment builds on a long-term permafrost tundra warming study Schuur and collaborators are doing in Alaska.

Read the publication here and the NAU news story here.


New paper in PNAS

Rising temperatures in the tundra of the Earth’s northern latitudes could affect microbial communities in ways likely to increase their production of greenhouse gases methane and carbon dioxide, a new study of experimentally warmed Alaskan soil suggests. 

The new study was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation, and reported July 8 in the early edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Researchers from the University of Oklahoma, Michigan State University and Northern Arizona University collaborated with Georgia Tech on the study.

Read the news article here


EOS Research Spotlight features the work 'Adding Depth to Our Understanding of Nitrogen Dynamics in Permafrost Soils' of former PhD student Verity Salmon. Read the Research Spotlight here (November 2018).

The article describes Salmon's work: The study offers critical insights into how warming temperatures in the Arctic could dramatically increase permafrost thaw and initiate profound changes in carbon and nitrogen cycling in tundra ecosystems. (Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences, 2018). Read the full paper here.


Christina Schädel and Ted Schuur are featured in an NAU news article (April 2018).

The article describes their most recent publication in the Proceedings of the National Acadmey of Sciences. The findings of the study, organized by the Permafrost Carbon Network, suggest that putting more effective greenhouse gas controls in place for the rest of this century could help mitigate the effects of climate change on the release of carbon from thawing soils of the northern permafrost region.

Read the full NAU news article here.


We frequently communicate to the media, find the latest press releases and news articles here

This is the home page for Dr. Ted Schuur's laboratory at the Center of Ecosystem Science and Society (ECOSS) at Northern Arizona University.

The research in our lab focuses on:

  • the interactions between terrestrial ecosystems and global change
  • the exchange of carbon between plants, soils, and the atmosphere
  • understanding the response of terrestrial ecosystems to changes in climate and disturbance regimes
  • responses of arctic ecosystems to climate change
  • radiocarbon dating

    Please see below for details on our research, our lab members and publications


    our research

    our lab

    new publications

    Garnello A et al. 2021 Projecting Permafrost Thaw of Sub-Arctic Tundra With a Thermodynamic Model Calibrated to Site Measurements Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences 126 e2020JG006218

    Mauritz M et al. 2021 Investigating thaw and plant productivity constraints on old soil carbon respiration from permafrost Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciencese2020JG006000

    Pegoraro EF et al. 2021 Lower soil moisture and deep soil temperatures in thermokarst features increase old soil carbon loss after 10 years of experimental permafrost warming Global Change Biology 27 1293–308

    Schuur EAG et al. 2021 Tundra Underlain By Thawing Permafrost Persistently Emits Carbon to the Atmosphere Over 15 Years of Measurements Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences 126 e2020JG006044