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A Method for Estimating the Total Organic Carbon Transport in World Rivers

Author(s): Chuan Liang; Yongming Shen

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Keywords: Total organic carbon; Probability; Estimating method

Abstract: Based on the two-dimensional probability combination theory, an estimation method of hydrology for the total organic carbon transport in world rivers is discussed. For various ecosystems and drainage basins the depth of runoff and the TOC export can be taken as independent and random variables. Applying frequency analysis used commonly in hydrology it is quite feasible to estimate the TOC export by world rivers to the oceans making use of the data at hand. According to this method, global TOC export from forest areas and from total continental area was calculated as 0.37 and 0.57×1015g TOC/a, respectively. These estimates are 40% higher than the results obtained by SCHLESINGER & MELACK (1981), who used a subjective assignment of carbon losses from various ecosystems. These findings illustrate that the choice of the estimation method is an important factor when discussing total TOC export to the oceans.


Year: 2001

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