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Sea level rise produces abundant organobromines in salt-affected coastal wetlands

Author(s): Joe-Wong, Claresta; Schlesinger, Danielle R; Chow, Alex T; Myneni, Satish CB

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Abstract: Global sea level rise exposes terrestrially derived natural organic matter to elevated salinities, which may alter the complex biogeochemical cycling of halogens in coastal wetland sediments. Here we show that sea level rise increases the natural production of organobromines in submerged soils and wetland sediments. We compared the concentrations and speciation of sedimentary chlorine and bromine along a salinity gradient in low-lying coastal forested wetlands in Winyah Bay (South Carolina, United States). Sorption differences between chloride and bromide were not observed, but up to 80 % of total retained bromine is organically bound, with the highest fraction of organically bound bromine found in formerly freshwater wetlands inundated by seawater. Wet/dry cycling of soils and the abundance of aromatic-rich natural organic matter in these salt-affected dieback forested wetlands promote bromination of organic matter, as demonstrated by laboratory simulations. Bromination of soil organic matter caused by continued sea level rise thus may be a major source of organobromines in coastal environments and possibly volatile halomethanes.
Publication Date: 23-Apr-2019
Citation: Joe-Wong, Claresta, Danielle R. Schlesinger, Alex T. Chow, and Satish CB Myneni. "Sea level rise produces abundant organobromines in salt-affected coastal wetlands." Geochemical Perspectives Letters 10 (2019): 31-35. doi: 10.7185/geochemlet.1911.
DOI: doi: 10.7185/geochemlet.1911
ISSN: 2410-339X
EISSN: 2410-3403
Pages: 31 - 35
Type of Material: Journal Article
Journal/Proceeding Title: Geochemical Perspectives Letters
Version: Final published version. This is an open access article.

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