iForest - Biogeosciences and Forestry


Is methane released from the forest canopy?

TN Mikkelsen   , D Bruhn, P Ambus, KS Larsen, I Ibrom, K Pilegaard

iForest - Biogeosciences and Forestry, Volume 4, Issue 5, Pages 200-204 (2011)
doi: https://doi.org/10.3832/ifor0591-004
Published: Nov 03, 2011 - Copyright © 2011 SISEF

Research Articles

Collection/Special Issue: COST Action FP0903 (2010) - Rome (Italy)
Research, monitoring and modelling in the study of climate change and air pollution impacts on forest ecosystems
Guest Editors: E Paoletti, J-P Tuovinen, N Clarke, G Matteucci, R Matyssek, G Wieser, R Fischer, P Cudlin, N Potocic

Laboratory experiments show that rates of CH4 emission from plant material depend exponentially on temperature and linearly on UV irradiance. The UV irradiance shall be spectrally weighted and shorter wavelengths results in higher CH4 emissions. Global upscaling models for estimating aerobic CH4, based on lab results, have be conducted with varying results, but until now field measurements based on profile and eddy covariance measurements have failed to show CH4 emissions from forest canopies. To detect CH4 production or consumption in the canopy of a beech stand we connected a CH4 analyzer to a canopy air profile system that samples air below and above the canopy from seven different heights. A profile system with many vertical sample points can detect gas concentration gradients with a high sensitivity only under conditions with no or little air movements. Under these conditions we found indications of periodic CH4 emissions in the canopy, but more data need to be analyzed before the magnitude of the canopy source of CH4 can be established.


Methane, CH4 emission, Forest canopy, Fagus sylvatica L.

Authors’ address

TN Mikkelsen
D Bruhn
P Ambus
KS Larsen
I Ibrom
K Pilegaard
Risø National Laboratory for Sustainable Energy, Technical university of Denmark, Biosystems Division, BIO-309, P.O. Box 49, Frederiksborgvej 399, DK-4000 Roskilde (Denmark)

Corresponding author

TN Mikkelsen


Mikkelsen TN, Bruhn D, Ambus P, Larsen KS, Ibrom I, Pilegaard K (2011). Is methane released from the forest canopy?. iForest 4: 200-204. - doi: 10.3832/ifor0591-004

Paper history

Received: Jan 24, 2011
Accepted: Apr 21, 2011

First online: Nov 03, 2011
Publication Date: Nov 03, 2011
Publication Time: 6.53 months

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