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Modelling the effect of land management changes on soil organic carbon stocks in a mediterranean cultivated field

AuthorsQuijano Gaudes, Laura ; Van Oost, Kristof; Nadeu, Elisabet ; Gaspar, Leticia; Navas Izquierdo, Ana
Keywordsspatial modelling
soil organic carbon
soil redistribution
land use history
Issue DateFeb-2017
PublisherJohn Wiley & Sons
CitationQuijano L, Van Oost K, Nadeu E, Gaspar L, Navas A. Modelling the effect of land management changes on soil organic carbon stocks in a mediterranean cultivated field. Land Degradation & Development 28 (2): 515–523 (2017)
AbstractLand management in agricultural lands has important effects on soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics. These effects are particularly relevant in the Mediterranean region, where soils are fragile and prone to erosion. Increasing interest of modelling to simulate SOC dynamics and the significance of soil erosion on SOC redistribution have been linked to the development of some recent models. In this study, the SPEROS-C model was implemented in a 1.6-ha cereal field for a 150-year period covering 100 years of minimum tillage by animal traction, 35 years of conventional tillage followed by 15 years of reduced tillage by chisel to evaluate the effects of changes in land management on SOC stocks and lateral carbon fluxes in a Mediterranean agroecosystem. The spatial patterns of measured and simulated SOC stocks were in good agreement, and their spatial variability appeared to be closely linked to soil redistribution. Changes in the magnitude of lateral SOC fluxes differed between land management showing that during the conventional tillage period the carbon losses is slightly higher (0.06 g C m−2 yr−1) compared to the period of reduced till using chisel (0.04 g C m−2 yr−1). Although the results showed that the SPEROS-C model is a potential tool to evaluate erosion induced carbon fluxes and assess the relative contribution of different land management on SOC stocks in Mediterranean agroecosystems, the model was not able to fully represent the observed SOC stocks. Further research (e.g. input parameters) and model development will be needed to achieve more accurate results.
Description28 Pags.- 5 Tabls.- 4 Figs. The definitive version is available at: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1002/(ISSN)1099-145X
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ldr.2637
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