Articles | Volume 7, issue 1
SOIL, 7, 145–159, 2021
https://doi.org/10.5194/soil-7-145-2021
SOIL, 7, 145–159, 2021
https://doi.org/10.5194/soil-7-145-2021

Original research article 02 Jun 2021

Original research article | 02 Jun 2021

Oxygen isotope exchange between water and carbon dioxide in soils is controlled by pH, nitrate and microbial biomass through links to carbonic anhydrase activity

Sam P. Jones et al.

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Short summary
Understanding how the rate of oxygen isotope exchange between water and CO2 varies in soils is key for using the oxygen isotope composition of atmospheric CO2 as a tracer of biosphere CO2 fluxes at large scales. Across 44 diverse soils the rate of this exchange responded to pH, nitrate and microbial biomass, which are hypothesised to alter activity of the enzyme carbonic anhydrase in soils. Using these three soil traits, it is now possible to predict how this isotopic exchange varies spatially.