Greenhouse gas fluxes in forests and agroecosystems

Biosphere–Atmosphere Exchange Processes

My main interest is the quantification of greenhouse gas fluxes of CO2, CH4 and N2O and the surface energy fluxes of diverse land surface types. Both components – greenhouse gases and energy fluxes – may feed back to climate on local, regional and global scales, and hence the quantitiative understanding of these fluxes and of the processes governing these fluxes is important. Of special interests are agroecosystems, forests, grasslands, and tundra. Additional interests are fluxes from aquatic ecosystems, namely from lakes in Switzerland and the Arctic, where I have a close collaboration with colleagues from EAWAG in Switzerland and Toolik Lake LTER in Alaska.

A special topic is my fog research where I am mostly interested in interactions of fog and ecosystems affected by fog. Besides hydrological aspects the nutrient and pollutant inputs to such ecosystems, particularly at the Lägeren mixed forest site in Switzerland and tropical montane cloud forests (TMCF) in Central America are of great interest. I am also involved in using stable isotopes for tracing and understanding fluxes of water and carbon in ecosystems.


Recent Publications

  • Number of growth days and not length of the growth period determines radial stem growth of temperate trees
    Etzold, Sophia; Sterck, Frank; Bose, Arun K.; Braun, Sabine; Buchmann, Nina; Eugster, Werner; Gessler, Arthur; Kahmen, Ansgar; Peters, Richard L.; Vitasse, Yann; Walthert, Lorenz
    Ecology Letters  10.1111/ele.13933  DEC 2021
  • TreeNet – The Biological Drought and Growth Indicator Network
    Zweifel, R; Etzold, S; Basler, D; Bischoff, R; Braun, S; Buchmann, N; Conedera, M; Fonti, P; Gessler, A; Haeni, M; Hoch, G; Kahmen, A; Kochli, R; Maeder, M; Nievergelt, D; Peter, M; Peters, RL; Schaub, M; Trotsiuk, V; Walthert, L; Wilhelm, M; Eugster, W
    Frontiers In Forests And Global Change  10.3389/ffgc.2021.776905  NOV 4 2021
  • Cereal-legume mixtures increase net CO2 uptake in a forage crop system in the Eastern Pyrenees
    Ibanez, Mercedes; Altimir, Nuria; Ribas, Angela; Eugster, Werner; Sebastia, M-Teresa
    Field Crops Research 10.1016/j.fcr.2021.108262  OCT 1 2021
  • Microbial methane oxidation efficiency and robustness during lake overturn
    Zimmermann, M.; Mayr, M. J.; Burgmann, H.; Eugster, W.; Steinsberger, T.; et al.
    Limnology And Oceanography Letters 10.1002/lol2.10209  DEC 2021
  • Tree growth in Switzerland is increasingly constrained by rising evaporative demand
    Trotsiuk, Volodymyr; Babst, Flurin; Grossiord, Charlotte; Gessler, Arthur; Forrester, David I.; Buchmann, Nina; Schaub, Marcus; Eugster, Werner
    Journal Of Ecology 10.1111/1365-2745.13712 AUG 2021
  • Why trees grow at night
    Zweifel, Roman; Sterck, Frank; Braun, Sabine; Buchmann, Nina; Eugster, Werner; et al.
    New Phytologist 10.1111/nph.17552  SEP 2021
  • The role of dew and radiation fog inputs in the local water cycling of a temperate grassland during dry spells in central Europe
    Li, Yafei; Aemisegger, Franziska; Riedl, Andreas; Buchmann, Nina; Eugster, Werner
    Hydrology And Earth System Sciences 10.5194/hess-25-2617-2021  MAY 19 2021
  • Methods of yield stability analysis in long-term field experiments. A review
    Reckling, Moritz; Ahrends, Hella; Chen, Tsu-Wei; Eugster, Werner; Hadasch, Steffen; et al.
    Agronomy For Sustainable Development  10.1007/s13593-021-00681-4 Published: APR 2021
  • Are there memory effects on greenhouse gas emissions (CO2, N2O and CH4) following grassland restoration?
    Merbold, Lutz; Decock, Charlotte; Eugster, Werner; Fuchs, Kathrin; Wolf, Benjamin; Buchmann, Nina; Hortnagl, Lukas
    Biogeosciences, 10.5194/bg-18-1481-2021   MAR 2 2021
  • Nutrient supply affects the yield stability of major European crops-a 50 year study
    Ahrends, Hella Ellen; Siebert, Stefan; Rezaei, Ehsan Eyshi; Seidel, Sabine Julia; Hueging, Hubert; et al.
    Environmental Research Letters,  10.1088/1748-9326/abc849 JAN 2021

Publications 2020

  • Interannual, summer, and diel variability of CH4 and CO2 effluxes from Toolik Lake, Alaska, during the ice-free periods 2010-2015
    Eugster, Werner; DelSontro, Tonya; Shaver, Gaius R.; Kling, George W.
    Environmental Science-processes & Impacts  DOI: 10.1039/d0em00125b NOV 1 2020
  • Physiological response of Swiss ecosystems to 2018 drought across plant types and elevation
    Gharun, Mana; Hoertnagl, Lukas; Paul-Limoges, Eugenie; Ghiasi, Shiva; Feigenwinter, Iris; Burri, Susanne; Marquardt, Kristiina; Etzold, Sophia; Zweifel, Roman; Eugster, Werner; Buchmann, Nina
    Philosophical Transactions Of The Royal Society B-biological Sciences   10.1098/rstb.2019.0521  OCT 26 2020
  • Identifying the key challenges for fog and low stratus forecasting in complex terrain
    Westerhuis, Stephanie; Fuhrer, Oliver; Cermak, Jan; Eugster, Werner
    Quarterly Journal Of The Royal Meteorological Society   DOI: 10.1002/qj.3849  OCT 2020
  • Phenology and plant functional type dominance drive CO(2)exchange in seminatural grasslands in the Pyrenees
    Ibanez, M.; Altimir, N.; Ribas, A.; Eugster, W.; Sebastia, M-T
    Journal Of Agricultural Science  DOI: 10.1017/S0021859620000179  2020
  • Canopy photosynthesis of six major arable crops is enhanced under diffuse light due to canopy architecture
    Emmel, Carmen; D'Odorico, Petra; Revill, Andrew; Hortnagl, Lukas; Ammann, Christof; et al.
    Global Change Biology  DOI: 10.1111/gcb.15226 SEP 2020
  • The FLUXNET2015 dataset and the ONEFlux processing pipeline for eddy covariance data
    Pastorello, Gilberto; Trotta, Carlo; Canfora, Eleonora; Chu, Housen; Christianson, Danielle; et al.
    Scientific Data  DOI: 10.1038/s41597-020-0534-3  JUL 9 2020
  • Eddy covariance flux measurements of gaseous elemental mercury over a grassland
    Osterwalder, Stefan; Eugster, Werner; Feigenwinter, Iris; Jiskra, Martin
    Atmospheric Measurement Techniques  DOI: 10.5194/amt-13-2057-2020 APR 22 2020
  • Long-term reliability of the Figaro TGS 2600 solid-state methane sensor under low-Arctic conditions at Toolik Lake, Alaska
    Eugster, Werner; Laundre, James; Eugster, Jon; Kling, George W.
    Atmospheric Measurement Techniques   DOI: 10.5194/amt-13-2681-2020 Published: MAY 27 2020
  • Carbon-nitrogen interactions in European forests and semi-natural vegetation - Part 2: Untangling climatic, edaphic, management and nitrogen deposition effects on carbon sequestration potentials
    Flechard, Chris R.; van Oijen, Marcel; Cameron, David R.; de Vries, Wim; Ibrom, Andreas; et al.
    Biogeosciences  DOI: 10.5194/bg-17-1621-2020, Published: MAR 26 2020
  • Carbon-nitrogen interactions in European forests and semi-natural vegetation - Part 1: Fluxes and budgets of carbon, nitrogen and greenhouse gases from ecosystem monitoring and modelling
    Flechard, Chris R.; Ibrom, Andreas; Skiba, Ute M.; de Vries, Wim; van Oijen, Marcel; et al.
    Biogeosciences  DOI: 10.5194/bg-17-1583-2020, Published: MAR 26 2020
  • Assessing the response of forest productivity to climate extremes in Switzerland using model-data fusion
    Trotsiuk, Volodymyr; Hartig, Florian; Cailleret, Maxime; Babst, Flurin; Forrester, David I.; Baltensweiler, Andri; Buchmann, Nina; Bugmann, H; Gessler, A; Gharun, M; Minunno, F;  Rigling, A; Rohner, B; Stillhard, J; Thurig, E; Waldner, P; Ferretti, M; Eugster, W; Schaub, M
    Global Change Biology 10.1111/gcb.15011 FEB 2020
Eugster Werner

Prof. Dr. Werner Eugster
ETH Zurich
Institute of Agricultural Sciences
8092 Zurich

Tel: +41 (0)44 632 68 47

Research topics

  • Methane fluxes
  • CO2 exchange
  • Climate feedbacks from land-use changes
  • Mountain ecosystems



  • Link to geographical aspects of scales (ecosystem scale, regional scale)
  • Agronomy (plant production and productivity, emissions from animals)
  • Micrometeorology and ecosystem sciences
  • Involvement in Arctic system science research
  • Limnological effluxes of climate-relevant trace gases