Northeastern Section - 53rd Annual Meeting - 2018

Paper No. 43-15
Presentation Time: 1:30 PM-5:30 PM


KULESZA, Ashley L., Bates College Geology Department, Bates College, 245 Bates College, Lewiston, ME 04240-6065, JOHNSON, Beverly J., Department of Geology, Bates College, 2 Andrews Rd, Lewiston, ME 04240 and DOSTIE, Philip T., Department of Geology, Environmental Geochemistry Laboratory, Bates College, Lewiston, ME 04240

This project uses geochemical analyses of sediment cores from various sources and GIS to estimate the amount of carbon stored in Maine coast tidal marshes. Sedimentary carbon content values of Maine salt marsh sediments were compiled from dissertations, theses and previously published papers and mapped using GIS. Areas where few previous datasets exist were identified, and targeted for coring and carbon density analysis for this study. The goal was to have carbon density data from three to five sites from each of the four Maine coastal compartments, defined by (Kelley et al,. 1987). Between one and five sediment cores were taken at each targeted marsh site. Cores were subsampled every 10 cm for bulk density and carbon content. The EA-C-IRMS in the Environmental Geochemistry Laboratory at Bates College was used to determine % carbon values. The average preliminary carbon density values for each coastal compartments for the upper 1m are as follows: The Arcuate Embayment 0.0406 +/- 0.01 gC/cm3, the Island-Bay Complex 0.048 +/- 0.01 gC/cm3. The average carbon density values were determined for each coastal compartment and multiplied by the surface area of salt marsh. Comparisons of carbon stocks among the different coastal compartments will be made, as will estimates for total carbon stored in Maine salt marshes.