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Vast areas of the soil ecosystem are permanently frozen or are unfrozen for only a few weeks in summer. Permafrost soils are of global interest since a significant increase in temperature is predicted for polar regions.
This volume summarizes recent knowledge on various aspects of permafrost and permafrost-affected soils, including typical properties of these soils, the distribution and biodiversity of permafrost microorganisms, examples for microbial activity in frozen soils, and genomic and proteomic insights into cold adaptation of permafrost bacteria. The impact of global warming on microbial communities, carbon dynamics, geomorphology and frozen-ground engineering are further discussed. Other chapters describe the feasibility and limitations of methods for removing contaminants in frozen ground, and consider terrestrial permafrost as a model for extraterrestrial habitats.
From the reviews: "Permafrost Soils summarizes recent knowledge on a wide variety of aspects concerning permafrost and frozen soils that occupy over 20 percent of the Earth's surface. ! The book consists of 21 short essays by experts in the numerous micro-specializations. ! Summing Up: ! Upper-division undergraduates, graduate students, researchers, and faculty." (J. D. Ives, Choice, Vol. 46 (10), June, 2009)