WorldWideScience

Sample records for assess soil quality

  1. Soil structural quality assessment for soil protection regulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johannes, Alice; Boivin, Pascal

    2017-04-01

    Soil quality assessment is rapidly developing worldwide, though mostly focused on the monitoring of arable land and soil fertility. Soil protection regulations assess soil quality differently, focusing on priority pollutants and threshold values. The soil physical properties are weakly considered, due to lack of consensus and experimental difficulties faced with characterization. Non-disputable, easy to perform and inexpensive methods should be available for environmental regulation to be applied, which is unfortunately not the case. As a consequence, quantitative soil physical protection regulation is not applied, and inexpensive soil physical quality indicators for arable soil management are not available. Overcoming these limitations was the objective of a research project funded by the Swiss federal office for environment (FOEN). The main results and the perspectives of application are given in this presentation. A first step of the research was to characterize soils in a good structural state (reference soils) under different land use. The structural quality was assessed with field expertise and Visual Evaluation of the Soil Structure (VESS), and the physical properties were assessed with Shrinkage analysis. The relationships between the physical properties and the soil constituents were linear and highly determined. They represent the reference properties of the corresponding soils. In a second step, the properties of physically degraded soils were analysed and compared to the reference properties. This allowed defining the most discriminant parameters departing the different structure qualities and their threshold limits. Equivalent properties corresponding to these parameters but inexpensive and easy to determine were defined and tested. More than 90% of the samples were correctly classed with this method, which meets, therefore, the requirements for practical application in regulation. Moreover, result-oriented agri-environmental schemes for soil quality

  2. Arbuscular mycorrhiza in soil quality assessment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kling, M.; Jakobsen, I.

    1998-01-01

    aggregates and to the protection of plants against drought and root pathogens. Assessment of soil quality, defined as the capacity of a soil to function within ecosystem boundaries to sustain biological productivity, maintain environmental quality, and promote plant health, should therefore include both......Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi constitute a living bridge for the transport of nutrients from soil to plant roots, and are considered as the group of soil microorganisms that is of most direct importance to nutrient uptake by herbaceous plants. AM fungi also contribute to the formation of soil...... quantitative and qualitative measurements of this important biological resource. Various methods for the assessment of the potential for mycorrhiza formation and function are presented. Examples are given of the application of these methods to assess the impact of pesticides on the mycorrhiza....

  3. The effect of intrinsic soil properties on soil quality assessments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Samuel-Rosa

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The assessment of soil quality is based on indicators and indices derived from soil properties. However, intrinsic soil properties may interfere with other soil properties that vary under different land uses and are used to calculate the indices. The aim of this study was to assess the extent to which intrinsic soil properties (clay and iron oxide contents explain variable soil properties (sum of bases, potential acidity, organic carbon, total porosity, and bulk density under different land uses (native forest, no-tillage and conventional agriculture on small family farms in Southern Brazil. The results showed that the five properties evaluated can be included in soil quality assessments and are not influenced by the clay and iron oxide contents. It was concluded that for little weathered 1:1 and 2:1 phyllosilicate rich-soils, if the difference between the maximum and the minimum clay content under the different land uses is less than about 200 g kg-1 and the iron oxide content less than about 15 g kg-1, the physico-chemical soil properties in the surface layer are determined mostly by the land use.

  4. Comparing farmer and measured assessments of soil quality in Tanzania: Do they align?

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    Allison C. Kelly

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Background: There is a wide gap between actual and potential yields for many crops in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA. Experts identify poor soil quality as a primary constraint to increased agricultural productivity. Therefore, increasing agricultural productivity by improving soil quality is seen as a viable strategy to enhance food security. Yet adoption rates of programs focused on improving soil quality have generally been lower than expected [1], [2]. Results: We explore a seldom considered factor that may limit farmers’ demand for improved soil quality, namely, whether the farmers’ self-assessment of their soil quality match the assessments of soil scientists. In this paper, using data from the Tanzania National Panel Survey (TZNPS, part of the Living Standards Measurement Study – Integrated Surveys on Agriculture (LSMS-ISA, we compare farmers’ own assessments of soil quality with scientific measurements of soil quality from the Harmonized World Soil Database (HWSD. The study found a considerable “mismatch” and most notably, that 11.5 percent of survey households that reported having “good” soil quality are measured by scientific standards to have severely limited nutrient availability. Conclusion: Mismatches between scientific measurements and farmer assessments of soil quality may highlight a potential barrier for programs seeking to encourage farmers to adopt soil quality improvement activities.

  5. Assessment of Soil Environmental Quality in Huangguoshu Waterfalls Scenic Area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Rongbin; Feng, Kaiyu; Gu, Bo; Xu, Chengcheng

    2018-03-01

    This paper concentrates on five major heavy metal pollutants as soil environmental quality evaluation factors, respectively Lead (Pb), Cadmium (Cd), Mercury (Hg), Arsenic (As), Chromium (Cr), based on the National Soil Environmental Quality Standards (GB15618 - 1995), we used single factor index evaluation model of soil environmental quality and comprehensive index evaluation model to analyze surface soil environmental quality in the Huangguoshu Waterfalls scenic area. Based on surface soil analysis, our results showed that the individual contamination index, Pb, Hg, As and Cr in the Huangguoshu Waterfalls scenic area met class I according to requirements of National Soil Environmental Quality Standards, which indicated that Pb, Hg, As and Cr were not main heavy metal pollutants in this area, but the individual contamination index of Cd in soil was seriously exceeded National Soil Environmental Quality Standards’ requirement. Soil environmental quality in Shitouzhai, Luoshitan, Langgong Hongyan Power Plant have exceeded the requirement of National Soil Environmental Quality Standards “0.7soils had been slightly polluted; the classification of soil environmental quality assessment in Longgong downstream area was above “Alert Level”, it indicated that soil in this area was not polluted. Above all, relevant measures for soil remediation are put forward.

  6. Soil quality assessment in rice production systems: establishing a minimum data set.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rodrigues de Lima, A.C.; Hoogmoed, W.B.; Brussaard, L.

    2008-01-01

    Soil quality, as a measure of the soil's capacity to function, can be assessed by indicators based on physical, chemical, and biological properties. Here we report on the assessment of soil quality in 21 rice (Oryza sativa) fields under three rice production systems (semi-direct, pre-germinated, and

  7. [Soil quality assessment of forest stand in different plantation esosystems].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yu; Wang, Silong; Feng, Zongwei; Gao, Hong; Wang, Qingkui; Hu, Yalin; Yan, Shaokui

    2004-12-01

    After a clear-cutting of the first generation Cunninghamia lanceolata plantation in 1982, three plantation ecosystems, pure Michelia macclurei stand (PMS), pure Chinese-fir stand (PCS) and their mixed stand, were established in spring 1983, and their effects on soil characteristics were evaluated by measuring some soil physical, chemical, microbiological and biochemical parameters. After 20 years' plantation, all test indices showed differences among different forest management models. Both PMS and MCM had a favorable effect on soil fertility maintenance. Soil quality assessment showed that some soil functions, e.g., water availability, nutrient availability, root suitability and soil quality index were all in a moderate level under the mixed and pure PMS stands, whereas in a relatively lower level under successive PCS stand. The results also showed that there existed close correlations between soil total organic C (TOC), cation exchange capacity (CEC), microbial biomass-C (Cmic) and other soil physical, chemical and biological indices. Therefore, TOC, CEC and Cmic could be used as the indicators in assessing soil quality in this study area. In addition, there were also positive correlations between soil microbial biomass-C and TOC, soil microbial biomass-N and total N, and soil microbial biomass-P and total P in the present study.

  8. Valuation of Biochemical and Microbiological Indicators in Soil Quality Assessment

    OpenAIRE

    Peruzzi, Elisabetta

    2017-01-01

    This thesis research aimed at valuating the suitability of biochemical and microbiological indicators in soil quality and soil health assessment, applying an interdisciplinary approach by means of different methodologies. As the concept of soil quality encompasses both functionality and biological diversity, two cases of study are proposed and each of them aimed at the description of this two aspects. The first case study examined the degree of interference of high soil copper contamination w...

  9. Field assessment of soil structural quality - a development of the Peerlkamp test

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ball, B C; Batey, T; Munkholm, Lars Juhl

    2007-01-01

    properties (bulk density, penetration resistance and porosity) and crop growth. Indicative thresholds of soil management are suggested. The assessment should be viewed as complementary to conventional laboratory assessments of soil structure. Visual soil structure assessment can indicate to the soil......Increased awareness of the role of soil structure in defining the physical fertility or quality of soil has led to the need for a simple assessment relevant to the environmental and economic sustainability of soil productivity. A test is required that is usable by farmer, consultant and researcher...... alike. Here an assessment of soil structure quality (Sq) is described which is based on a visual key linked to criteria chosen to be as objective as possible. The influences of operator, tillage and crop type on Sq value were tested. The test takes 5-15 min per location and enough replicates were...

  10. The quantitative soil quality assessment tobacco plant in Sindoro mountainous zone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Supriyadi

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The long-term cultivation of tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum plant in the Sindoro mountainous zone of Central Java has resulted in soil quality degradation that could affect economic development in the region if sustainable production practices are not identified. The objective of the study was to identify appropriate indicators for assessing soil quality on tobacco plant. The quantitative soil quality indicators were total organic-C, pH, available P and available K (chemical, soil depth, bulk density, AWC (available water capacity and soil aggregate stability (physical, and qCO2 (soil respiration, MBC (microbial biomass carbon (biological. The decreases in the soil aggregate stability, available water capacity, cation exchange capacity, soil respiration, microbial biomass carbon and total organic-C; or increases in bulk density (compaction, available P, available K and total nitrogen indicated the decrease in soil quality due to long-term tobacco production. The result of this research showed that the change of soil quality had occurred in Sindoro Mountain. The Soil Quality Index (SQI for three land use systems in Sindoro mountain (forest, mixed farm, and tobacco were 0.60, 0.47, and 0.57, respectively. The comparison of these rates with soil quality classes showed that the soil quality presented moderate to good level of quality; class SQI.

  11. Assessing soil quality indicator under different land use and soil erosion using multivariate statistical techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nosrati, Kazem

    2013-04-01

    Soil degradation associated with soil erosion and land use is a critical problem in Iran and there is little or insufficient scientific information in assessing soil quality indicator. In this study, factor analysis (FA) and discriminant analysis (DA) were used to identify the most sensitive indicators of soil quality for evaluating land use and soil erosion within the Hiv catchment in Iran and subsequently compare soil quality assessment using expert opinion based on soil surface factors (SSF) form of Bureau of Land Management (BLM) method. Therefore, 19 soil physical, chemical, and biochemical properties were measured from 56 different sampling sites covering three land use/soil erosion categories (rangeland/surface erosion, orchard/surface erosion, and rangeland/stream bank erosion). FA identified four factors that explained for 82 % of the variation in soil properties. Three factors showed significant differences among the three land use/soil erosion categories. The results indicated that based upon backward-mode DA, dehydrogenase, silt, and manganese allowed more than 80 % of the samples to be correctly assigned to their land use and erosional status. Canonical scores of discriminant functions were significantly correlated to the six soil surface indices derived of BLM method. Stepwise linear regression revealed that soil surface indices: soil movement, surface litter, pedestalling, and sum of SSF were also positively related to the dehydrogenase and silt. This suggests that dehydrogenase and silt are most sensitive to land use and soil erosion.

  12. Assessment of Soil Quality of Croplands in the Corn Belt of Northeast China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoyan Li

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The increasing global demands for land resource with increasing population have resulted in occurrence of soil degradation in many regions of the world. Assessment of soil quality has become the basic work for agricultural sustainable development and selecting regional indicators effectively has become very important since there are no standard evaluation methods and universal indicators. In this study, taking the Corn Belt of Northeast China as the study area, seven indicators—obstacle horizon thickness, cation exchange capacity, pH, soil organic matter, total nitrogen, total potassium, and available Fe—were selected to constitute the minimum data set from sixteen indictors of the total data set to assess the soil quality. The soil quality of the study area was dominated by moderate grade, increasing from west to east. The soil quality of Yushu, Changchun and Shuangyang had higher values, and that of Nongan was the lowest. We found that the distribution of cation exchange capacity has a good consistency with the assessment result of the soil quality. Black soils were distributed in the middle part of the study region from north to south and accounted for a higher quality, exactly where the areas of rapid urbanization are located. An ANOVA analysis showed that soil quality in the Corn Belt of Northeast China was greatly affected by topographic factors and agricultural management and climate was not the principal factor affecting soil quality. Though the minimum data set slightly reduced the evaluation accuracy, a large sampling density in our study was able to improve the precision loss that resulted from reducing the number of indicators to a certain extent.

  13. Assessing and monitoring soil quality at agricultural waste disposal areas-Soil Indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doula, Maria; Kavvadias, Victor; Sarris, Apostolos; Lolos, Polykarpos; Liakopoulou, Nektaria; Hliaoutakis, Aggelos; Kydonakis, Aris

    2014-05-01

    The necessity of elaborating indicators is one of the priorities identified by the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). The establishment of an indicator monitoring system for environmental purposes is dependent on the geographical scale. Some indicators such as rain seasonality or drainage density are useful over large areas, but others such as soil depth, vegetation cover type, and land ownership are only applicable locally. In order to practically enhance the sustainability of land management, research on using indicators for assessing land degradation risk must initially focus at local level because management decisions by individual land users are taken at this level. Soils that accept wastes disposal, apart from progressive degradation, may cause serious problems to the surrounding environment (humans, animals, plants, water systems, etc.), and thus, soil quality should be necessarily monitored. Therefore, quality indicators, representative of the specific waste type, should be established and monitored periodically. Since waste composition is dependent on their origin, specific indicators for each waste type should be established. Considering agricultural wastes, such a specification, however, could be difficult, since almost all agricultural wastes are characterized by increased concentrations of the same elements, namely, phosphorous, nitrogen, potassium, sulfur, etc.; contain large amounts of organic matter; and have very high values of chemical oxygen demand (COD), biochemical oxygen demand (BOD), and electrical conductivity. Two LIFE projects, namely AgroStrat and PROSODOL are focused on the identification of soil indicators for the assessment of soil quality at areas where pistachio wastes and olive mill wastes are disposed, respectively. Many soil samples were collected periodically for 2 years during PROSODOL and one year during AgroStrat (this project is in progress) from waste disposal areas and analyzed for 23 parameters

  14. Soil invertebrates as bioindicators of urban soil quality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Santorufo, Lucia; Van Gestel, Cornelis A.M.; Rocco, Annamaria; Maisto, Giulia

    2012-01-01

    This study aimed at relating the abundance and diversity of invertebrate communities of urban soils to chemical and physical soil characteristics and to identify the taxa most sensitive or tolerant to soil stressors. The invertebrate community of five urban soils in Naples, Italy, was sampled. To assess soil quality invertebrate community indices (Shannon, Simpson, Menhinick and Pielou indices), Acarina/Collembola ratios, and the soil biological quality index (QBS) were calculated. The chemical and physical characteristics of the soils strongly differed. Abundance rather than taxa richness of invertebrates were more affected by soil characteristics. The community was more abundant and diverse in the soils with high organic matter and water content and low metal (Cu, Pb, Zn) concentrations. The taxa more resistant to the urban environment included Acarina, Enchytraeids, Collembola and Nematoda. Collembolans appeared particularly sensitive to changing soil properties. Among the investigated indices, QBS seems most appropriate for soil quality assessment. - Highlights: ► The abundance and diversity of invertebrate communities was related to properties and metal contents of urban soils. ► Several (biodiversity) indices were calculated and compared to evaluate soil quality. ► Metal contamination affected invertebrate density and diversity. ► The taxa more tolerant to metal contamination were Acarina, Enchytraeids, Collembola and Nematoda. ► The soil biological quality index QBS index was most appropriate for soil quality assessment. - Soil metal contamination negatively affected soil invertebrate abundance and diversity.

  15. Cross-cutting activities: Soil quality and soil metagenomics

    OpenAIRE

    Motavalli, Peter P.; Garrett, Karen A.

    2008-01-01

    This presentation reports on the work of the SANREM CRSP cross-cutting activities "Assessing and Managing Soil Quality for Sustainable Agricultural Systems" and "Soil Metagenomics to Construct Indicators of Soil Degradation." The introduction gives an overview of the extensiveness of soil degradation globally and defines soil quality. The objectives of the soil quality cross cutting activity are: CCRA-4 (Soil Metagenomics)

  16. Microbiological methods for assessing soil quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bloem, J.; Hopkins, D.W.; Benedetti, A.

    2006-01-01

    This book provides a selection of microbiological methods that are already applied in regional or national soil quality monitoring programs. It is split into two parts: part one gives an overview of approaches to monitoring, evaluating and managing soil quality. Part two provides a selection of

  17. Assessment of environmental soil quality around Sonepur Bazari mine of Raniganj coalfield, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masto, R. E.; Sheik, S.; Nehru, G.; Selvi, V. A.; George, J.; Ram, L. C.

    2015-07-01

    Assessment of soil quality is one of the key parameters for evaluation of environmental contamination in the mining ecosystem. To investigate the effect of coal mining on soil quality, opencast and underground mining sites were selected in the Raniganj coalfield area, India. The physical, chemical, and biological parameters of the soils, and trace metals and PAHs (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) in the soils were evaluated. Soil dehydrogenase (+79 %) and fluorescein (+32 %) activities were significantly higher in underground mine (UGM) soil, whereas peroxidase activity (+57 %) was higher in opencast mine (OCM) soil. Content of As, Be, Co, Cr, Cu, Mn, Ni, and Pb was significantly higher in OCM soil, whereas Cd was higher in UGM. In general, the PAHs contents were higher in UGM soils, probably due to the natural coal burning at these sites. The observed values for the above properties were converted into a unitless score (0-1.00) and the scores were integrated into an environmental soil quality index (ESQI). In the unscreened index (ESQI-1) all the soil parameters were included and the results showed that the quality of the soil was better for UGM (0.539) than the OCM (0.511) soils. Principal component analysis was employed to derive ESQI-2 and accordingly, total PAHs, loss on ignition, bulk density, Be, Co, Cr, Ni, Pb, and microbial quotient (respiration: microbial biomass ratio) were found to be the most critical properties. The ESQI-2 was also higher for soils near UGM (+10.1 %). The observed indicators and the ESQI results revealed that soil quality assessment for these coal mining soils is largely depended on soil PAHs and potentially toxic trace metals. The proposed ESQI may be further refined by incorporating specific parameters related to human exposure risks and exposure pathways.

  18. Evaluation of soil structure in the framework of an overall soil quality rating

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mueller, L; Shepherd, T G; Schindler, U

    2013-01-01

    Soil structure is an important aspect of agricultural soil quality, and its preservation and improvement are key to sustaining soil functions. Methods of overall soil quality assessment which include visual soil structure information can be useful tools for monitoring and managing the global soil...... resource. The aim of the paper is: (i) to demonstrate the role of visual quantification of soil structure within the procedure of the overall soil quality assessment by the Muencheberg Soil Quality Rating (M-SQR), (ii) to quantify the magnitude and variability of soil structure and overall M......-SQR on a number of agricultural research sites and (iii) to analyse the correlations of soil quality rating results with crop yields. We analysed visual soil structure and overall soil quality on a range of 20 experimental sites in seven countries. To assess visual soil structure we utilised the Visual Soil...

  19. The use of soil quality indicators to assess soil functionality in restored semi-arid ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Erickson, Todd E.; Dixon, Kingsley W.; Merritt, David J.

    2016-04-01

    Keywords: Pilbara, 1-day CO2 test, microbial activity, mine restoration, soil health, ecosystem services. Introduction Semi-arid and arid environments are highly vulnerable to land degradation and their restoration has commonly showed low rates of success (James et al., 2013). A systematic knowledge of soil functionality is critical to successful restoration of degraded ecosystems since approximately 80% of ecosystem services can be connected to soil functions. The assessment of soil functionality generally involves the evaluation of soil properties and processes as they relate to the ability of soil to function effectively as a component of a healthy ecosystem (Costantini et al., 2015) Using soil quality indicators may be a valuable approach to assess functionality of topsoil and novel substrates used in restoration (Muñoz-Rojas et al., 2014; 2015). A key soil chemical indicator is soil organic C, that has been widely used as an attribute of soil quality because of the many functions that it provides and supports (Willaarts et al., 2015). However, microbial indicators can be more sensitive to disturbances and could be a valuable addition in soil assessment studies in restoration programs. Here, we propose a set of soil quality indicators to assess the soil status in restored soils (topsoil and waste material) of semi-arid environments. The study was conducted during March 2015 in the Pilbara biogeographical region (northwestern Australia) at an iron ore mine site rehabilitated in 2011. Methods Soil samples were collected from two sub-areas with different soil materials used as growth media: topsoil retrieved from nearby stockpiles and a lateritic waste material utilised for its erosive stability and physical competence. An undisturbed natural shrub-grassland ecosystem dominated by Triodia spp. and Acacia spp. representative of the restored area was selected as the analogue reference site. Soil physicochemical analysis were undertaken according to standard methods

  20. Assessment of derelict soil quality: Abiotic, biotic and functional approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vincent, Quentin; Auclerc, Apolline; Beguiristain, Thierry; Leyval, Corinne

    2018-02-01

    The intensification and subsequent closing down of industrial activities during the last century has left behind large surfaces of derelict lands. Derelict soils have low fertility, can be contaminated, and many of them remain unused. However, with the increasing demand of soil surfaces, they might be considered as a resource, for example for non-food biomass production. The study of their physico-chemical properties and of their biodiversity and biological activity may provide indications for their potential re-use. The objective of our study was to investigate the quality of six derelict soils, considering abiotic, biotic, and functional parameters. We studied (i) the soil bacteria, fungi, meso- and macro-fauna and plant communities of six different derelict soils (two from coking plants, one from a settling pond, two constructed ones made from different substrates and remediated soil, and an inert waste storage one), and (ii) their decomposition function based on the decomposer trophic network, enzyme activities, mineralization activity, and organic pollutant degradation. Biodiversity levels in these soils were high, but all biotic parameters, except the mycorrhizal colonization level, discriminated them. Multivariate analysis showed that biotic parameters co-varied more with fertility proxies than with soil contamination parameters. Similarly, functional parameters significantly co-varied with abiotic parameters. Among functional parameters, macro-decomposer proportion, enzyme activity, average mineralization capacity, and microbial polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon degraders were useful to discriminate the soils. We assessed their quality by combining abiotic, biotic, and functional parameters: the compost-amended constructed soil displayed the highest quality, while the settling pond soil and the contaminated constructed soil displayed the lowest. Although differences among the soils were highlighted, this study shows that derelict soils may provide a

  1. Soil Quality Evaluation Using the Soil Management Assessment Framework (SMAF in Brazilian Oxisols with Contrasting Texture

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    Maurício Roberto Cherubin

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT The Soil Management Assessment Framework (SMAF was developed in the U.S.A. and has been used as a tool for assessing and quantifying changes in soil quality/health (SQ induced by land uses and agricultural practices in that region and elsewhere throughout the world. An initial study using SMAF in Brazil was recently published, but additional research for a variety of soils and management systems is still needed. Our objective was to use data from five studies in southern Brazil to evaluate the potential of SMAF for assessing diverse land-use and management practices on SQ. The studies examined were: (i horizontal and vertical distribution of soil properties in a long-term orange orchard; (ii impacts of long-term land-use change from native vegetation to agricultural crops on soil properties; (iii effects of short-term tillage on soil properties in a cassava production area; (iv changes in soil properties due to mineral fertilizer and pig slurry application coupled with soil tillage practices; and (v row and inter-row sowing effects on soil properties in a long-term no-tillage area. The soils were classified as Oxisols, with clay content ranging from 180 to 800 g kg-1. Six SQ indicators [pH(H2O, P, K, bulk density, organic C, and microbial biomass] were individually scored using SMAF curves and integrated into an overall Soil Quality Index (SQI focusing on chemical, physical, and biological sectors. The SMAF was sensitive for detecting SQ changes induced by different land uses and management practices within this wide textural range of Brazilian Oxisols. The SMAF scoring curve algorithms properly transformed the indicator values expressed in different units into unitless scores ranging from 0-1, thus enabling the individual indicators to be combined into an overall index for evaluating land-use and management effects on soil functions. Soil sector scores (i.e., chemical, physical, and biological identify the principal soil limitations

  2. Physical soil quality indicators for monitoring British soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corstanje, Ron; Mercer, Theresa G.; Rickson, Jane R.; Deeks, Lynda K.; Newell-Price, Paul; Holman, Ian; Kechavarsi, Cedric; Waine, Toby W.

    2017-09-01

    Soil condition or quality determines its ability to deliver a range of functions that support ecosystem services, human health and wellbeing. The increasing policy imperative to implement successful soil monitoring programmes has resulted in the demand for reliable soil quality indicators (SQIs) for physical, biological and chemical soil properties. The selection of these indicators needs to ensure that they are sensitive and responsive to pressure and change, e.g. they change across space and time in relation to natural perturbations and land management practices. Using a logical sieve approach based on key policy-related soil functions, this research assessed whether physical soil properties can be used to indicate the quality of British soils in terms of their capacity to deliver ecosystem goods and services. The resultant prioritised list of physical SQIs was tested for robustness, spatial and temporal variability, and expected rate of change using statistical analysis and modelling. Seven SQIs were prioritised: soil packing density, soil water retention characteristics, aggregate stability, rate of soil erosion, depth of soil, soil structure (assessed by visual soil evaluation) and soil sealing. These all have direct relevance to current and likely future soil and environmental policy and are appropriate for implementation in soil monitoring programmes.

  3. Physical soil quality indicators for monitoring British soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Corstanje

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Soil condition or quality determines its ability to deliver a range of functions that support ecosystem services, human health and wellbeing. The increasing policy imperative to implement successful soil monitoring programmes has resulted in the demand for reliable soil quality indicators (SQIs for physical, biological and chemical soil properties. The selection of these indicators needs to ensure that they are sensitive and responsive to pressure and change, e.g. they change across space and time in relation to natural perturbations and land management practices. Using a logical sieve approach based on key policy-related soil functions, this research assessed whether physical soil properties can be used to indicate the quality of British soils in terms of their capacity to deliver ecosystem goods and services. The resultant prioritised list of physical SQIs was tested for robustness, spatial and temporal variability, and expected rate of change using statistical analysis and modelling. Seven SQIs were prioritised: soil packing density, soil water retention characteristics, aggregate stability, rate of soil erosion, depth of soil, soil structure (assessed by visual soil evaluation and soil sealing. These all have direct relevance to current and likely future soil and environmental policy and are appropriate for implementation in soil monitoring programmes.

  4. Collembase: a repository for springtail genomics and soil quality assessment

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    Klein-Lankhorst Rene M

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Environmental quality assessment is traditionally based on responses of reproduction and survival of indicator organisms. For soil assessment the springtail Folsomia candida (Collembola is an accepted standard test organism. We argue that environmental quality assessment using gene expression profiles of indicator organisms exposed to test substrates is more sensitive, more toxicant specific and significantly faster than current risk assessment methods. To apply this species as a genomic model for soil quality testing we conducted an EST sequencing project and developed an online database. Description Collembase is a web-accessible database comprising springtail (F. candida genomic data. Presently, the database contains information on 8686 ESTs that are assembled into 5952 unique gene objects. Of those gene objects ~40% showed homology to other protein sequences available in GenBank (blastx analysis; non-redundant (nr database; expect-value -5. Software was applied to infer protein sequences. The putative peptides, which had an average length of 115 amino-acids (ranging between 23 and 440 were annotated with Gene Ontology (GO terms. In total 1025 peptides (~17% of the gene objects were assigned at least one GO term (expect-value -25. Within Collembase searches can be conducted based on BLAST and GO annotation, cluster name or using a BLAST server. The system furthermore enables easy sequence retrieval for functional genomic and Quantitative-PCR experiments. Sequences are submitted to GenBank (Accession numbers: EV473060 – EV481745. Conclusion Collembase http://www.collembase.org is a resource of sequence data on the springtail F. candida. The information within the database will be linked to a custom made microarray, based on the Agilent platform, which can be applied for soil quality testing. In addition, Collembase supplies information that is valuable for related scientific disciplines such as molecular ecology

  5. [Ecological hygienic assessment of soils quality in urban areas].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vodyanova, M A; Kriatov, I A; Donerian, L G; Evseeva, I S; Ushakov, D I; Sbitnev, A V

    Assessment of the soil quality is ofprime importance essential for the characterization of the ecological and hygienic condition of the territory, as the soil is the first link of the food chain, the source of secondary air and water pollution, as well as an integral index of ecological well-being of the environment. Herewith the qualitative analysis of soil complicated by the specifics of the soil genesis in the urban environment, in which an important role is played by manmade land bulk and alluvial soils; the inclusion of construction of material debris and household garbage in upper horizons; the growing up of the profile due to the perpetual introduction of different materials and intensive aeolian deposition. It is advisable to consider the currently neglected question of the study of soil vapor containing volatile chemicals. These pollutants penetrate into the building through cracks in the foundation and openings for utilities. Soil evaporation may accumulate in residential areas or in the soil under the building. Because of this, it is necessary to pay attention to the remediation of areas allocated for the built-up area, possessing a large-scale underground parking. Soil contamination is the result of significant anthropogenic impacts on the environment components. In general, about 89.1 million people (62.6% of the population of the country) live in terms of complex chemical load, determined by contamination offood, drinking water, air and soil. The list of microbiological and sanitary-chemical indices of the assessment of soils of urban areas may vary in dependence on the data obtained in pilot studies due to changes and additions to the assigned tasks. Timely forecast for the possibility of the usage of released lands of urban territories for the construction and the creation of new objects for different purposes should become the prevention of chronic non-infectious diseases in the population residing in urban areas.

  6. Strategies for soil quality assessment using VNIR gyperspectral spectroscopy in a western Kenya Chronosequence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kinoshita, Rintaro; Moebius-Clune, Bianca N.; van Es, Harold M.; Hively, W. Dean; Bilgilis, A. Volkan

    2012-01-01

    Visible and near-infrared reflectance spectroscopy (VNIRS) is a rapid and nondestructive method that can predict multiple soil properties simultaneously, but its application in multidimensional soil quality (SQ) assessment in the tropics still needs to be further assessed. In this study, VNIRS (350–2500 nm) was employed to analyze 227 air-dried soil samples of Ultisols from a soil chronosequence in western Kenya and assess 16 SQ indicators. Partial least squares regression (PLSR) was validated using the full-site cross-validation method by grouping samples from each farm or forest site. Most suitable models successfully predicted SQ indicators (R2 ≥ 0.80; ratio of performance to deviation [RPD] ≥ 2.00) including soil organic matter (OMLOI), active C, Ca, cation exchange capacity (CEC), and clay. Moderately-well predicted indicators (0.50 ≤ R2 pwp), and field capacity (Θfc). Poorly predicted indicators (R2 < 0.50; RPD < 1.40) were EC, S, P, available water capacity (AWC), K, Zn, and penetration resistance. Combining VNIRS with selected field- and laboratory-measured SQ indicator values increased predictability. Furthermore, VNIRS showed moderate to substantial agreement in predicting interpretive SQ scores and a composite soil quality index (CSQI) especially when combined with directly measured SQ indicator values. In conclusion, VNIRS has good potential for low cost, rapid assessment of physical and biological SQ indicators but conventional soil chemical tests may need to be retained to provide comprehensive SQ assessments.

  7. Rapid in situ assessment for predicting soil quality using an algae-soaked disc seeding assay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nam, Sun-Hwa; Moon, Jongmin; Kim, Shin Woong; Kim, Hakyeong; Jeong, Seung-Woo; An, Youn-Joo

    2017-11-16

    The soil quality of remediated land is altered and this land consequently exerts unexpected biological effects on terrestrial organisms. Therefore, field evaluation of such land should be conducted using biological indicators. Algae are a promising new biological indicator since they are a food source for organisms in higher soil trophic levels and easily sampled from the soil. Field evaluation of soil characteristics is preferred to be testing in laboratory conditions because many biological effects cannot be duplicated during laboratory evaluations. Herein, we describe a convenient and rapid algae-soaked disc seeding assay for assessing soil quality in the field based on soil algae. The collection of algae is easy and rapid and the method predicts the short-term quality of contaminated, remediated, and amended farm and paddy soils. The algae-soaked disc seeding assay is yet to be extensively evaluated, and the method cannot be applied to loamy sand soil in in situ evaluations. The algae-soaked disc seeding assay is recommended for prediction of soil quality in in situ evaluations because it reflects all variations in the environment. The algae-soaked disc seeding assay will help to develop management strategies for in situ evaluation.

  8. Determination of Minimum Data Set for Assessment of Soil Quality:A Case Study in Choghakhur Lake Basin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    parvane mohaghegh

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: The mismanagement of natural resources has led to low soil quality and high vulnerability to soil erosion in most parts of Iran. To have a sustainable soil quality, the assessment of effective soil quality indicators are required. The soil quality is defined as the capacity of a soil to function within natural and/or managed ecosystem boundaries. Among approaches which are suggested for soil quality assessment like soil card design, test kits, geostatistical methods and soil quality indices (SQIs, SQIs are formed by combination of soil indicators which resulted from integration evaluation of soil physical, chemical and/or biological properties and processes complement by existing/measureable data, sensitive to land use changes, management practices and human activities and could be applied in different ecosystems. As the measurement and monitoring of all soil quality indicators is laborious and costly, many researchers focused on limited soil quality indicators. There are many methods for identification and determination of minimum data set that influence on soil quality such as linear and multiple regression analysis, pedotransfer functions, scoring functions, principle component analysis and discriminant analysis. Among these methods, principle component analysis is commonly used because it is able to group related soil properties into small set of independent factors and to reduce redundant information in original data set. The objective of this research was to investigate the effects of land use change on soil quality indicators and also the determination of minimum effective soil quality indicators for assessment of soil quality in Choghakhor Lake basin, Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari province, Iran. Materials and Methods: To meet the goal, Latin hypercube sampling method was applied by using slope, land use and geological maps and 125 composite soil samples were collected from soil surface (0-20 cm. After pretreatments, 27

  9. Impacts of agricultural management practices on soil quality in Europe and China - an assessment within the framework of the EU iSQAPER project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alaoui, Abdallah; Schwilch, Gudrun; Barão, Lúcia; Basch, Gottlieb; Sukkel, Wijnand; Lemesle, Julie; Ferreira, Carla; Garcia-Orenes, Fuensanta; Morugan, Alicia; Mataix, Jorge; Kosmas, Costas; Glavan, Matjaž; Tóth, Brigitta; Petrutza Gate, Olga; Lipiec, Jerzy; Reintam, Endla; Xu, Minggang; Di, Jiaying; Fan, Hongzhu; Geissen, Violette

    2017-04-01

    Agricultural soils are under a wide variety of pressures, including from increasing global demand for food associated with population growth, changing diets, land degradation, and associated productivity reductions potentially exacerbated by climate change. To manage the use of agricultural soils well, decision-makers need science-based, easily applicable, and cost-effective tools for assessing soil quality and soil functions. Since a practical assessment of soil quality requires the integrated consideration of key soil properties and their variations in space and time, providing such tools remains a challenging task. This study aims to assess the impact of innovative agricultural management practices on soil quality in 14 study sites across Europe (10) and China (4), covering the major pedo-climatic zones. The study is part of the European H2020 project iSQAPER, which involves 25 partners across Europe and China and is coordinated by Wageningen University, The Netherlands. iSQAPER is aimed at interactive soil quality assessment in Europe and China for agricultural productivity and environmental resilience. The study began with a thorough literature analysis to inform the selection of indicators for the assessment of soil structure and soil functions. A manual was then developed in order to standardize and facilitate the task of inventorying soil quality and management practices at the case study sites. The manual provides clear and precise instructions on how to assess the 11 selected soil quality indicators based on a visual soil assessment methodology. A newly developed infiltrometer was used to easily assess the soil infiltration capacity in the field and investigate hydrodynamic flow processes. Based on consistent calibration, the infiltrometer enables reliable prediction of key soil hydraulic properties. The main aim of this inventory is to link agricultural management practices to the soil quality status at the case study sites, and to identify innovative

  10. Capability and quality assessment of rice growing hydric soils in majuli river island, assam, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bhaskara Phaneendra Bhaskar

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available The  wetland soils in  majuli island is a unique in maintaining rice ecology and geoenvironment in Brahmaputra valley of Assam  due to increasing  rate of  bankline erosion in southern bank  and expansion of channel bars on northern banks. These hydric soils in the subgroups of aquents and aquepts are  saturated throughout year as assessed from depleted matrix with hue 10YR, 2.5Y and 5Y, chroma less than 2, stratified textures, neutral to slightly alkaline reaction, low cation exchange capacity  and poor exchangeable base status. The  assessment of land capability and soil quality  for rice production in   hydric soils  was conducted on twenty four soil mapping units derived from reconnaissance soil survey done on 1:50000 scale.  As per  land capability  assessment, these soils are  good(classII to fairly good(IV for arable use with limitations of low fertility status, moderate to severe wetness and moderate to rapid permeability. The soil quality rating with  multiple variable indicator transform(MVIT technique  of  twenty hydric soil units in active and old floodplains was  medium (35 to 65per cent with six indicators(pH, organic carbon, base saturation, effective rooting depth , structure and texture meeting the thresh hold value  above 65 per cent.  Thirty five  per cent of total area is suitable for rice cultivation as against the current cropped area of 7.2 per cent with potassium and zinc deficiency. The determination of soil quality in relation to land capability was found useful to design best management practices for wetlands in the region that ensure sustainable land use.

  11. Analytical tools for assessing land degradation and its impact on soil quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bindraban, P. S.; Mantel, S.; Bai, Z.; de Jong, R.

    2010-05-01

    Maintaining and enhancing the quality of land is of major importance to sustain future production capacity for food and other agriculture based products like fibers and wood, and for maintaining ecosystems services, including below and above ground biodiversity, provision of soil water and sequestration of carbon. Deterioration of this production base will be detrimental to the provision of the foreseen dramatic increase in human needs for goods and services. For this reason, land degradation, defined as a long-term loss in ecosystem function and productivity, has to be understood properly. Climate, soils, topography and socioeconomic activities are primary factors that can cause, by themselves or in combination, a number of temporary or permanent changes in the landscape, leading to degradation of vegetation and soils. For identifying intervention measures to prevent and revert trends of land deterioration, it is fundamental to know the extent of land degradation and to understand its impact on functional properties of land. To assess the global extent, (Bai et al. 2008) apply a remotely sensed vegetation index that describes the greenness of the vegetation cover as a proxy for biomass. Biomass production has been identified as a strong indicator for soil quality as it is an integral measure for soil, crop and environmental characteristics (Bindraban et al., 2000). Bai and colleagues observed that 24% of the global land has been degrading over the past 26 years - often in very productive areas. The relation with functional properties of land can be made through ecosystem models. Mantel et al. (1999; 2000) applied dynamic crop-soil models to calculate crop productivity at the national level. A baseline scenario that represents the current conditions and a scenario for 20 years of prolonged sheet erosion were modeled to calculate the productivity impact of topsoil erosion for wheat in Uruguay and for maize in Kenya. They concluded that topsoil erosion primarily

  12. Soil Quality Assessment Is a Necessary First Step for Designing Urban Green Infrastructure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montgomery, James A; Klimas, Christie A; Arcus, Joseph; DeKnock, Christian; Rico, Kathryn; Rodriguez, Yarency; Vollrath, Katherine; Webb, Ellen; Williams, Allison

    2016-01-01

    This paper describes the results of a preliminary project conducted by a team of DePaul University undergraduate students and staff from the Gary Comer Youth Center located on Chicago's South Side. The team assessed soil quality on 116 samples collected among four abandoned residential lots adjacent to the Comer Center. Soil quality data will be used in a follow-up study to determine the suitability of each lot for green infrastructure implementation. Green infrastructure may be a useful approach for providing ecosystem services and mitigating food deserts in inner-city communities. Soil quality on all lots was poor. All soils had pH >8.0, low biological activity, and low N mineralization potential. The soils were rich in available P and had mean total Pb concentrations above the USEPA threshold (400 mg kg) for children's playlots. Mean bioavailable Pb on the largest of the four lots was 12% of total Pb, indicating that most of the total Pb is not bioavailable. This result is encouraging because high bioavailable Pb concentrations are linked with negative health effects, particularly in children. All lots had NO-N concentrations below those considered to be appropriate for plant growth. On the other hand, no significant differences in mean concentrations of the other analytes were found. The poor soil quality in the four lots presents an opportunity to use green infrastructure to enhance ecosystem services, improve community and environmental health, and provide more equitable access to green space. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.

  13. Impacts of prescribed fire on soil loss and soil quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Shakesby, Richard A.; Martins Bento, Celia; Ferreira, Carla S.S.; Ferreira, António J.D.; Stoof, C.R.; Urbanek, Emilia; Walsh, Rory P.D.

    2015-01-01

    Prescribed (controlled) fire has recently been adopted as an important wildfire-fighting strategy in the Mediterranean. Relatively little research, however, has assessed its impacts on soil erosion and soil quality. This paper investigates hillslope-scale losses of soil, organic matter and

  14. A Modified Soil Quality Index to Assess the Influence of Soil Degradation Processes on Desertification Risk: The Apulia Case

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valeria Ancona

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Apulia is one of the most prone Italian regions to soil alteration phenomena, due to geographical and climatic conditions and also to human activities’ impact. In this study, in order to investigate regional soil degradation processes, following the “European Directive for Soil Protection”, the ESA’s method has been adopted. It is based on the use of an indicator’s set to assess the desertification risk. This approach simplifies the diagnosis and monitoring of soil degradation processes, defining their status and trend. Special attention has been given to Soil Quality Index (SQI determined by six predisposing indicators (parent material, soil texture, rock fragment, soil depth, drainage and slope grade. The integration in the SQI calculation of two additional soil parameters (organic matter content and soil salinity has been considered particularly significant. In fact, through the evaluation of a so “modified SQI” and the Apulia land use too, it could be possible to assess the role of agriculture management on soil degradation processes, which predisposing regional area to desertification threat. Moreover this approach provides short, but accurate, information thanks to GIS integration, which defines phenomena in detail, offering helpful planning tools.

  15. Soil Quality Indicator: a new concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barão, Lúcia; Basch, Gottlieb

    2017-04-01

    During the last century, cultivated soils have been intensively exploited for food and feed production. This exploitation has compromised the soils' natural functions and many of the soil-mediated ecosystems services, including its production potential for agriculture. Also, soils became increasingly vulnerable and less resilient to a wide range of threats. To overcome this situation, new and better management practices are needed to prevent soil from degradation. However, to adopt the best management practices in a specific location, it is necessary to evaluate the soil quality status first. Different soil quality indicators have been suggested over the last decades in order to evaluate the soil status, and those are often based on the performance of soil chemical, physical and biological properties. However, the direct link between these properties and the associated soil functions or soil vulnerability to threats appears more difficult to be established. This present work is part of the iSQAPER project- Interactive Soil Quality Assessment in Europe and China for Agricultural Productivity and Environmental Resilience, where new soil quality concepts are explored to provide better information regarding the effects of the most promising agricultural management practices on soil quality. We have developed a new conceptual soil quality indicator which determines the soil quality status, regarding its vulnerability towards different threats. First, different indicators were specifically developed for each of the eight threats considered - Erosion, SOM decline, Poor Structure, Poor water holding capacity, Compaction, N-Leaching, Soil-borne pests and diseases and Salinization. As an example for the case of Erosion, the RUSLE equation for the estimate of the soil annual loss was used. Secondly, a reference classification was established for each indicator to integrate all possible results into a Good, Intermediate or Bad classification. Finally, all indicators were

  16. Study of microarthropod communities to assess soil quality in different managed vineyards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gagnarli, Elena; Vignozzi, Nadia; Valboa, Giuseppe; Bouneb, Mabrouk; Corino, Lorenzo; Goggioli, Donatella; Guidi, Silvia; Lottero, Mariarosa; Tarchi, Franca; Simoni, Sauro

    2014-05-01

    Land use type influences the abundance and diversity of soil arthropods. The evaluation of the effects of different crop managements on soil quality is commonly requested; it can be pursued by means of the determination of communities' structure of edaphic fauna. The development and application of biological indices may represent an efficient mean to assess soil quality. We evaluated the effect of crop managements (organic and Integrated Pest Management-IPM) in some vineyards in Piedmont (Italy) on soil biota in relation to some physical and chemical characteristics of the soil. The study was performed in eleven sites, including seven organic and four IPM managed vineyards located in the Costigliole d'Asti area. Samplings were carried out during the winter 2011 and the spring 2012. Soil samples were collected using a cylindrical soil core sampler (3cm diameter x 30cm height): each sample was a cylindrical soil core which was equally subdivided to study arthropod communities at different depth ranges. Additional samples were collected and analyzed for the following soil physical and chemical properties: texture (sedigraph method), pH (1:2.5 soil/water), total organic carbon (TOC), total nitrogen (NT) and calcium carbonate (dry combustion by CN analyzer). The extraction of microarthropods was performed using the selector Berlese-Tullgren. All specimens were counted and determined up to the order level. The influence of soil properties and of agronomic practices on the abundance of mesofauna was evaluated by multivariate analysis (MANOVA). The biological soil quality was also defined through the determination of biotic indices such as the qualitative and quantitative QBSar (Quality Biological Soil - arthropods), and biodiversity indices such as species richness and indices of Shannon-Wiener (H') and Simpson (D). Overall, more than four thousands arthropods were collected and the highest abundance was in biological management with about 2:1 ratio (biological vs

  17. Spectroscopic characteristics of soil organic matter as a tool to assess soil physical quality in Mediterranean ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Recio Vázquez, Lorena; Almendros, Gonzalo; Knicker, Heike; López-Martín, María; Carral, Pilar; Álvarez, Ana

    2014-05-01

    In Mediterranean areas, the loss of soil physical quality is of particular concern due to the vulnerability of these ecosystems in relation to unfavourable climatic conditions, which usually lead to soil degradation processes and severe decline of its functionality. As a result, increasing scientific attention is being paid on the exploration of soil properties which could be readily used as quality indicators, including organic matter which, in fact, represents a key factor in the maintenance of soil physical status. In this line, the present research tackles the assessment of the quality of several soils from central Spain with the purpose of identifying the physical properties most closely correlated with the organic matter, considering not only the quantity but also the quality of the different C-forms. The studied attributes consist of a series of physical properties determined in field and laboratory conditions-total porosity, aggregate stability, available water capacity, air provision, water infiltration rate and soil hydric saturation-.The bulk organic matter was characterised by solid-state 13C NMR spectroscopy and the major organic fractions (lipids, free particulate organic matter, fulvic acids, humic acids and humin) were quantified using standard procedures. The humic acids were also analysed by visible and infrared spectroscopies. The use of multidimensional scaling to classify physical properties in conjunction with molecular descriptors of soil organic matter, suggested significant correlations between the two set of variables, which were confirmed with simple and canonical regression models. The results pointed to two well-defined groups of physical attributes in the studied soils: (i) those associated with organic matter of predominantly aromatic character (water infiltration descriptors), and (ii) soil physical variables related to organic matter with marked aliphatic character, high preservation of the lignin signature and comparatively low

  18. Assessment of soil quality in different ecosystems (with soils of Podolsk and Serpukhov districts of Moscow oblast as examples)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gavrilenko, E. G.; Ananyeva, N. D.; Makarov, O. A.

    2013-12-01

    The values of the soil-ecological index and microbiological parameters (the carbon of microbial biomass Cmic, its ratio to the total organic carbon Cmic/Corg, and basal respiration) were determined for the soddy-podzolic, soddy-gley, bog-podzolic, meadow alluvial, and gray forest soils under different land uses (forest, fallow, cropland, and urban areas) in the Podolsk and Serpukhov districts of Moscow oblast (237 and 45 sampling points, respectively). The soil sampling from the upper 10 cm (without the litter horizon) was performed in September and October. To calculate the soil-ecological index, both soil (physicochemical and agrochemical) and climatic characteristics were taken into account. Its values for fallow, cropland, and urban ecosystems averaged 70.2, 72.8, and 64.2 points ( n = 90, 17, and 24, respectively). For the soils of forest ecosystems, the average value of the soil-ecological index was lower (54.4; n = 151). At the same time, the micro-biological characteristics of the studied forest soils were generally higher than those in the soils of fallow, cropland, and urban ecosystems. In this context, to estimate the soil quality in different ecosystems on the basis of the soil-ecological index, the use of a correction coefficient for the biological properties of the soils (the Cmic content) was suggested. The ecological substantiation of this approach for assessing the quality of soils in different ecosystems is presented in the paper.

  19. The need for attuned soil quality risk assessment for non-Western humans and ecosystems, exemplified by mining areas in South Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eijsackers, H.J.P.; Swartjes, F.A.; Rensburg, van L.; Maboeta, M.S.

    2014-01-01

    Worldwide, soils are under threat of deterioration and contamination due to anthropogenic activities. Whilst risk assessment of soils in Europe has been well studied, the same cannot be said of soils in Southern Africa. Soil screening values exist in SA, which enables soil quality assessment, but

  20. Case study of microarthropod communities to assess soil quality in different managed vineyards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gagnarli, E.; Goggioli, D.; Tarchi, F.; Guidi, S.; Nannelli, R.; Vignozzi, N.; Valboa, G.; Lottero, M. R.; Corino, L.; Simoni, S.

    2015-07-01

    Land use influences the abundance and diversity of soil arthropods. The evaluation of the impact of different management strategies on soil quality is increasingly sought, and the determination of community structures of edaphic fauna can represent an efficient tool. In the area of Langhe (Piedmont, Italy), eight vineyards characterized for physical and chemical properties (soil texture, soil pH, total organic carbon, total nitrogen, calcium carbonate) were selected. We evaluated the effect of two types of crop management, organic and integrated pest management (IPM), on abundance and biodiversity of microarthropods living at the soil surface. Soil sampling was carried out in winter 2011 and spring 2012. All specimens were counted and determined up to the order level. The biodiversity analysis was performed using ecological indexes (taxa richness, dominance, Shannon-Wiener, Buzas and Gibson's evenness, Margalef, equitability, Berger-Parker), and the biological soil quality was assessed with the BSQ-ar index. The mesofauna abundance was affected by both the type of management and sampling time. On the whole, a higher abundance was in organic vineyards (N = 1981) than in IPM ones (N = 1062). The analysis performed by ecological indexes showed quite a high level of biodiversity in this environment, particularly in May 2012. Furthermore, the BSQ-ar values registered were similar to those obtained in preserved soils.

  1. Soil bioassays as tools for sludge compost quality assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Domene, Xavier; Sola, Laura; Ramirez, Wilson; Alcaniz, Josep M.; Andres, Pilar

    2011-01-01

    Composting is a waste management technology that is becoming more widespread as a response to the increasing production of sewage sludge and the pressure for its reuse in soil. In this study, different bioassays (plant germination, earthworm survival, biomass and reproduction, and collembolan survival and reproduction) were assessed for their usefulness in the compost quality assessment. Compost samples, from two different composting plants, were taken along the composting process, which were characterized and submitted to bioassays (plant germination and collembolan and earthworm performance). Results from our study indicate that the noxious effects of some of the compost samples observed in bioassays are related to the low organic matter stability of composts and the enhanced release of decomposition endproducts, with the exception of earthworms, which are favored. Plant germination and collembolan reproduction inhibition was generally associated with uncomposted sludge, while earthworm total biomass and reproduction were enhanced by these materials. On the other hand, earthworm and collembolan survival were unaffected by the degree of composting of the wastes. However, this pattern was clear in one of the composting procedures assessed, but less in the other, where the release of decomposition endproducts was lower due to its higher stability, indicating the sensitivity and usefulness of bioassays for the quality assessment of composts.

  2. Soil quality assessment of rice production systems in South of Brazil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rodrigues de Lima, A.C.; Hoogmoed, W.B.; Brussaard, L.

    2007-01-01

    Soil quality, as a measure of the soil capacity to function, can be quantified by indicators based on physical, chemical and biological properties. Maintaining soil quality at a desirable level in the rice cropping system is a very complex issue due to the nature of the production systems used. In

  3. Accuracy of quantitative visual soil assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Leeuwen, Maricke; Heuvelink, Gerard; Stoorvogel, Jetse; Wallinga, Jakob; de Boer, Imke; van Dam, Jos; van Essen, Everhard; Moolenaar, Simon; Verhoeven, Frank; Stoof, Cathelijne

    2016-04-01

    Visual soil assessment (VSA) is a method to assess soil quality visually, when standing in the field. VSA is increasingly used by farmers, farm organisations and companies, because it is rapid and cost-effective, and because looking at soil provides understanding about soil functioning. Often VSA is regarded as subjective, so there is a need to verify VSA. Also, many VSAs have not been fine-tuned for contrasting soil types. This could lead to wrong interpretation of soil quality and soil functioning when contrasting sites are compared to each other. We wanted to assess accuracy of VSA, while taking into account soil type. The first objective was to test whether quantitative visual field observations, which form the basis in many VSAs, could be validated with standardized field or laboratory measurements. The second objective was to assess whether quantitative visual field observations are reproducible, when used by observers with contrasting backgrounds. For the validation study, we made quantitative visual observations at 26 cattle farms. Farms were located at sand, clay and peat soils in the North Friesian Woodlands, the Netherlands. Quantitative visual observations evaluated were grass cover, number of biopores, number of roots, soil colour, soil structure, number of earthworms, number of gley mottles and soil compaction. Linear regression analysis showed that four out of eight quantitative visual observations could be well validated with standardized field or laboratory measurements. The following quantitative visual observations correlated well with standardized field or laboratory measurements: grass cover with classified images of surface cover; number of roots with root dry weight; amount of large structure elements with mean weight diameter; and soil colour with soil organic matter content. Correlation coefficients were greater than 0.3, from which half of the correlations were significant. For the reproducibility study, a group of 9 soil scientists and 7

  4. Local soil quality assessment of north-central Namibia: integrating farmers' and technical knowledge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Prudat

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Soil degradation is a major threat for farmers of semi-arid north-central Namibia. Soil conservation practices can be promoted by the development of soil quality (SQ evaluation toolboxes that provide ways to evaluate soil degradation. However, such toolboxes must be adapted to local conditions to reach farmers. Based on qualitative (interviews and soil descriptions and quantitative (laboratory analyses data, we developed a set of SQ indicators relevant for our study area that integrates farmers' field experiences (FFEs and technical knowledge. We suggest using participatory mapping to delineate soil units (Oshikwanyama soil units, KwSUs based on FFEs, which highlight mostly soil properties that integrate long-term productivity and soil hydrological characteristics (i.e. internal SQ. The actual SQ evaluation of a location depends on the KwSU described and is thereafter assessed by field soil texture (i.e. chemical fertility potential and by soil colour shade (i.e. SOC status. This three-level information aims to reveal SQ improvement potential by comparing, for any location, (a estimated clay content against median clay content (specific to KwSU and (b soil organic status against calculated optimal values (depends on clay content. The combination of farmers' and technical assessment cumulates advantages of both systems of knowledge, namely the integrated long-term knowledge of the farmers and a short- and medium-term SQ status assessment. The toolbox is a suggestion for evaluating SQ and aims to help farmers, rural development planners and researchers from all fields of studies understanding SQ issues in north-central Namibia. This suggested SQ toolbox is adapted to a restricted area of north-central Namibia, but similar tools could be developed in most areas where small-scale agriculture prevails.

  5. Local soil quality assessment of north-central Namibia: integrating farmers' and technical knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prudat, Brice; Bloemertz, Lena; Kuhn, Nikolaus J.

    2018-02-01

    Soil degradation is a major threat for farmers of semi-arid north-central Namibia. Soil conservation practices can be promoted by the development of soil quality (SQ) evaluation toolboxes that provide ways to evaluate soil degradation. However, such toolboxes must be adapted to local conditions to reach farmers. Based on qualitative (interviews and soil descriptions) and quantitative (laboratory analyses) data, we developed a set of SQ indicators relevant for our study area that integrates farmers' field experiences (FFEs) and technical knowledge. We suggest using participatory mapping to delineate soil units (Oshikwanyama soil units, KwSUs) based on FFEs, which highlight mostly soil properties that integrate long-term productivity and soil hydrological characteristics (i.e. internal SQ). The actual SQ evaluation of a location depends on the KwSU described and is thereafter assessed by field soil texture (i.e. chemical fertility potential) and by soil colour shade (i.e. SOC status). This three-level information aims to reveal SQ improvement potential by comparing, for any location, (a) estimated clay content against median clay content (specific to KwSU) and (b) soil organic status against calculated optimal values (depends on clay content). The combination of farmers' and technical assessment cumulates advantages of both systems of knowledge, namely the integrated long-term knowledge of the farmers and a short- and medium-term SQ status assessment. The toolbox is a suggestion for evaluating SQ and aims to help farmers, rural development planners and researchers from all fields of studies understanding SQ issues in north-central Namibia. This suggested SQ toolbox is adapted to a restricted area of north-central Namibia, but similar tools could be developed in most areas where small-scale agriculture prevails.

  6. Impacts of iron and steelmaking facilities on soil quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strezov, Vladimir; Chaudhary, Chandrakant

    2017-12-01

    Iron and steel are highly important materials used in a wide range of products with important contribution to the economic development. The processes for making iron and steel are energy intensive and known to contribute to local pollution. Deposition of the metals may also have adverse impacts on soil quality, which requires detailed assessment. The aim of this study was to investigate the impacts of iron and steelmaking facilities on the local soil quality. Soil samples were collected in the vicinity of two steelmaking sites in Australia, one based on blast furnace steelmaking operation, while the second site was based on electric arc furnace steel recycling. The soil samples were compared to a background site where no industrial impact is expected. The soil collected near industrial facilities contained larger toxic metal contents, however this concentration for all priority metals was within the Australian National Environmental Protection Measure guidelines for the acceptable recreational soil quality. When compared to the international soil quality guidelines, some of the soils collected near the industrial sites, particularly near the blast furnace operated steelmaking, exceeded the arsenic, iron and manganese (according to United States Environmental Protection Agency guidelines) and chromium, copper and nickel concentrations (according to the Canadian guidelines). The work further provided a novel environmental assessment model taking into consideration the environmental and health impacts of each element. The environmental assessment revealed most significant contribution of manganese, followed by titanium, zinc, chromium and lead. Titanium was the second most important contributor to the soil quality, however this metal is currently not included in any of the international soil quality guidelines. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. New perspectives on the soil erosion-soil quality relationship

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pennock, D.J.

    1998-01-01

    The redistribution of soil has a profound impact on its quality (defined as its ability to function within its ecosystem and within adjacent ecosystems) and ultimately on its productivity for crop growth. The application of 137 Cs-redistribution techniques to the study of erosion has yielded major new insights into the soil erosion-soil quality relationship. In highly mechanized agricultural systems, tillage erosion can be the dominant cause of soil redistribution; in other agroecosystems, wind and water erosion dominate. Each causal factor results in characteristic landscape-scale patterns of redistribution. In landscapes dominated by tillage redistribution, highest losses occur in shoulder positions (those with convex downslope curvatures); in water-erosion-dominated landscapes, highest losses occur where slope gradient and length are at a maximum. Major impacts occur through the loss of organically-enriched surface material and through the incorporation of possibly yield-limiting subsoils into the rooting zone of the soil column. The potential impact of surface soil losses and concomitant subsoil incorporation on productivity may be assessed by examining the pedological nature of the affected soils and their position in the landscape. The development of sound conservation policies requires that the soil erosion-quality relationship be rigorously examined in the full range of pedogenic environments, and future applications of the 137 Cs technique hold considerable promise for providing this comprehensive global database. (author)

  8. Assessment of the quality of the Harran Plain soils under long-term cultivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bilgili, Ali Volkan; Küçük, Çiğdem; Van Es, Harold M

    2017-08-19

    Soil quality refers to the ability of soils to perform their functions well. The soils of the Harran Plain, Turkey, have been put into intensive crop production with the introduction of an irrigation scheme and become increasingly degraded due to unsustainable management and cropping systems that resulted in the loss of production potential. The goal of this study was to quantify the quality of common soil series in the Plain using soil quality indexes (SQI) and to compare SQIs of two long-term crop rotations, cotton and wheat-corn cultivation, and different soil types. Over 400 samples were collected at a 0- to 30-cm depth and analyzed for 31 soil variables. The best representative soil quality variables forming a minimum data set (MDS) were selected using principal component analysis (PCA), and soil quality scores were obtained using both linear and non-linear scoring functions. The MDS included three physical (hydraulic conductivity, bulk density, and plant available water content), two biological (soil organic matter and catalase enzyme activity), and nine chemical soil quality indicators (CEC, pH, plant available Cu and Fe, exchangeable Na and K, soluble Ca, Mg, and Na). Because of the low level of SOM, soil qualities were overall low with indexes obtained using two scoring functions ranging from 38.0/100 to 48.7/100. Correlations between SQI obtained using two approaches (linear vs. non-linear; r > 0.61) and using two data sets (all data vs. MDS; r > 0.79) were high. Non-linear scoring functions were more sensitive to management impacts. ANOVA models testing the individual impacts of soil types and crop management on soil quality were statistically different (p < 0.01), but the models including interactions were not. Overall, the fields under cotton cultivation were generally associated with higher clay contents and had the lowest SQIs as a result of intensive cultivation.

  9. Assessing soil quality and potential productivity - a basic approach to define and assess the marginality of land

    Science.gov (United States)

    Repmann, Frank; Gerwin, Werner; Freese, Dirk

    2017-04-01

    An ever growing demand for energy and the widely proposed switch from fossil fuels to more sustainable energy sources puts the cultivation and use of bioenergy plants into focus. However, bioenergy production on regular and fertile agricultural soils might conflict with the worldwide growing demand for food. To mitigate or omit this potential conflict, the use of low quality or marginal land for cultivation of bioenergy plants becomes favorable. Against this background the definition and assessment of land marginality and, respectively, the evaluation whether and to which extent specific areas are marginal and thus convenient for sustainable bioenergy production, becomes highly relevant. Within the framework of the EU funded Horizon 2020 project SEEMLA, we attempted to asses land marginality of designated test sites in the Ukraine, Greece and Germany by direct field survey. For that purpose, soil and site properties were investigated and evaluated by applying the Muencheberg Soil Quality Rating (SQR) method, developed at the Leibniz Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research (ZALF). The method deploys a comprehensive set of biogeophysical and chemical indicators to describe and finally evaluate the quality of the soil and site by a score ranging from 1 to 100 points. Field survey data were supported by additional laboratory tests on a representative set of soil samples. Practical field work and analysis of field and lab data from the investigated sites proved the applicability of the SQR method within the SEEMLA context. The SQR indices calculated from the field and lab data ranged from 2 to Greece and Germany, which differed considerably in respect to their characteristics. Correlating the site quality index to yield data reflecting yield estimations for common bioenergy plants such as willow (Salix sp.), black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia) and poplar (Populus sp.) cultivated at the respective test sites, revealed that SQR might additionally reflect the potential

  10. Soil quality assessment in rice production systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rodrigues de Lima, A.C.

    2007-01-01

    In the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, rice production is one of the most important regional activities. Farmers are concerned that the land use practices for rice production in the Camaquã region may not be sustainable because of detrimental effects on soil quality. The study presented in this

  11. Soil quality assessment of rice production systems in South of Brazil

    OpenAIRE

    Rodrigues de Lima, A.C.; Hoogmoed, W.B.; Brussaard, L.

    2006-01-01

    Soil quality, as a measure of the soil capacity to function, can be quantified by indicators based on physical, chemical and biological properties. Maintaining soil quality at a desirable level in the rice cropping system is a very complex issue due to the nature of the production systems used. In the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, rice production is one of the most important agricultural activities in the region. The study presented here was conducted with the following objectives: (i) ...

  12. Biological and biochemical soil quality indicators for agricultural management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bongiorno, Giulia

    2017-04-01

    Soil quality is defined as the capacity of a soil to perform multiple functions. Agricultural soils can, in principle, sustain a wide range of functions. However, negative pressure exerted by natural and anthropogenic soil threats such as soil erosion, soil organic matter losses and soil compaction have the potential to permanently damage soil quality. Soil chemical, physical and biological parameters can be used as indicators of soil quality. The specific objective of this study is to assess the suitability of novel soil parameters as soil quality indicators. We focus on biological/biochemical parameters, due to the unique role of soil biota in soil functions and to their high sensitivity to disturbances. The novel indicators are assessed in ten European long-term field experiments (LTEs) with different agricultural land use (arable and permanent crops), management regimes and pedo-climatic characteristics. The contrasts in agricultural management are represented by conventional/reduced tillage, organic/mineral fertilization and organic matter addition/no organic matter addition. We measured two different pools of labile organic carbon (dissolved organic carbon (DOC), and permanganate oxidizable carbon (POXC)), and determined DOC quality through its fractionation in hydrophobic and hydrophilic compounds. In addition, total nematode abundance has been assessed with qPCR. These parameters will be related to soil functions which have been measured with a minimum data set of indicators for soil quality (including TOC, macronutrients, and soil respiration). As a preliminary analysis, the Sensitivity Index (SI) for a given LTE was calculated for DOC and POXC according to Bolinder et al., 1999 as the ratio of the soil attribute under modified practices (e.g. reduced tillage) compared to the conventional practices (e.g. conventional tillage). The overall effect of the sustainable management on the indicators has been derived by calculating an average SI for those LTEs

  13. Overall assessment of soil quality on humid sandy loams: Effects of location, rotation and tillage

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abdollahi, Lotfollah; Hansen, Elly Møller; Rickson, J.M.

    2015-01-01

    .e. visual evaluation of soil structure (VESS), overall visual structure (OVS) and overall soil structure (OSS)) were employed to differentiate the effects of these alternative management practices on soil structural quality and relative crop yield (RY). A Pearson correlation was also employed to find...... the correlation between the soil quality indices and relative crop yield. Relevant soil properties for calculating the soil quality indices were measured or obtained from previous publications. Crop rotation affected the soil structure and RY. The winter-dominated crop rotation (R2) resulted in the poorest soil...... correlations were found in most cases between soil quality indices (including M-SQR) and RY. This highlights the influence of soil quality (as measured by the selected indicators) – and soil structure in particular – on crop yield potential....

  14. Establishing principal soil quality parameters influencing earthworms in urban soils using bioassays

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hankard, Peter K.; Bundy, Jacob G.; Spurgeon, David J.; Weeks, Jason M.; Wright, Julian; Weinberg, Claire; Svendsen, Claus

    2005-01-01

    Potential contamination at ex-industrial sites means that, prior to change of use, it will be necessary to quantify the extent of risks to potential receptors. To assess ecological hazards, it is often suggested to use biological assessment to augment chemical analyses. Here we investigate the potential of a commonly recommended bioassay, the earthworm reproduction test, to assess the status of urban contaminated soils. Sample points at all study sites had contaminant concentrations above the Dutch soil criteria Target Values. In some cases, the relevant Intervention Values were exceeded. Earthworm survival at most points was high, but reproduction differed significantly in soil from separate patches on the same site. When the interrelationships between soil parameters and reproduction were studied, it was not possible to create a good model of site soil toxicity based on single or even multiple chemical measurements of the soils. We thus conclude that chemical analysis alone is not sufficient to characterize soil quality and confirms the value of biological assays for risk assessment of potentially contaminated soils. - Bioassays must be applied for the risk assessment complexly-polluted sites to complement chemical analysis of soils

  15. Determination and validation of soil thresholds for cadmium based on food quality standard and health risk assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Changfeng; Ma, Yibing; Li, Xiaogang; Zhang, Taolin; Wang, Xingxiang

    2018-04-01

    Cadmium (Cd) is an environmental toxicant with high rates of soil-plant transfer. It is essential to establish an accurate soil threshold for the implementation of soil management practices. This study takes root vegetable as an example to derive soil thresholds for Cd based on the food quality standard as well as health risk assessment using species sensitivity distribution (SSD). A soil type-specific bioconcentration factor (BCF, ratio of Cd concentration in plant to that in soil) generated from soil with a proper Cd concentration gradient was calculated and applied in the derivation of soil thresholds instead of a generic BCF value to minimize the uncertainty. The sensitivity variations of twelve root vegetable cultivars for accumulating soil Cd and the empirical soil-plant transfer model were investigated and developed in greenhouse experiments. After normalization, the hazardous concentrations from the fifth percentile of the distribution based on added Cd (HC5 add ) were calculated from the SSD curves fitted by Burr Type III distribution. The derived soil thresholds were presented as continuous or scenario criteria depending on the combination of soil pH and organic carbon content. The soil thresholds based on food quality standard were on average 0.7-fold of those based on health risk assessment, and were further validated to be reliable using independent data from field survey and published articles. The results suggested that deriving soil thresholds for Cd using SSD method is robust and also applicable to other crops as well as other trace elements that have the potential to cause health risk issues. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Assessing different agricultural managements with the use of soil quality indices in a Mediteranean calcareous soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morugán-Coronado, Alicia; García-Orenes, Fuensanta; Mataix-Solera, Jorge; Arcenegui, Vicky; Cerdà, Artemi

    2013-04-01

    Soil erosion is a major problem in the Mediterranean region due to the arid conditions and torrential rainfalls, which contribute to the degradation of agricultural land. New strategies must be developed to reduce soil losses and recover or maintain soil functionality in order to achieve a sustainable agriculture. An experiment was designed to evaluate the effect of different agricultural management on soil properties and soil quality. Ten different treatments (contact herbicide, systemic herbicide, ploughing, Oat mulch non-plough, Oats mulch plough, leguminous plant, straw rice mulch, chipped pruned branches, residual-herbicide and agro geo-textile, and three control plots including no tillage or control and long agricultural abandonment (shrub on marls and shrub on limestone) were established in 'El Teularet experimental station' located in the Sierra de Enguera (Valencia, Spain). The soil is a Typic Xerorthent developed over Cretaceous marls in an old agricultural terrace. The agricultural management can modify the soil equilibrium and affect its quality. In this work two soil quality indices (models) developed by Zornoza et al. (2007) are used to evaluate the effects of the different agricultural management along 4 years. The models were developed studying different soil properties in undisturbed forest soils in SE Spain, and the relationships between soil parameters were established using multiple linear regressions. Model 1, that explained 92% of the variance in soil organic carbon (SOC) showed that the SOC can be calculated by the linear combination of 6 physical, chemical and biochemical properties (acid phosphatase, water holding capacity (WHC), electrical conductivity (EC), available phosphorus (P), cation exchange capacity (CEC) and aggregate stability (AS). Model 2 explains 89% of the SOC variance, which can be calculated by means of 7 chemical and biochemical properties (urease, phosphatase, and ß-glucosidase activities, pH, EC, P and CEC). We use the

  17. International approach to assessing soil quality by ecologically-related biological parameters

    OpenAIRE

    Filip, Z.

    2002-01-01

    Metadata only record Soil quality represents an integral value of the compositional structures and natural functions of soil in relation to soil use and environmental conditions on site. Among the indigenous soil components, different organisms and especially microorganisms play a key role in ecologically important biogeochemical processes. In that way, soil microorganisms contribute to the maintenance of the matter and energy transfer in terrestrial environments. Under stress conditions c...

  18. Study the Soil Quality Changes Indicators Using Nemoro and Integrated Quality Index Models in Some Khuzestan’s Soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Ramezani

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Aspects of the physical, chemical and biological are considered. Land degradation for soil quality, or improve soil quality assessment is important.This study was conducted to evaluate soil quality indicators using quantitative models in some lands of Khuzestan province (Iran.Such studies, which are carried out to create a balance between the biological production and the maintenance and improvement of land resource quality, provide a framework for land degradation control and also for identification of sustainable management. Such studies, which are carried out to create a balance between the biological production and the maintenance and improvement of land resource quality, provide a framework for land degradation control and also for identification of sustainable management. Materials and Methods: In order to evaluate the effect of crop management and cultivation on soil quality, Select several Khuzestan region and Samples were taken from the surrounding cultivated land. Physiochemical characteristics of soil samples from a depth of0-30 cm such as soil texture, bulk density (Db, mean weight diameter of wet aggregates (MWD, relative field capacity (RFC, air capacity (FA,plant available water capacity (AWC, saturated hydraulic conductivity (Ks, organic carbon (OC,electrical conductivity (EC, pH, soluble cations (Mg, Ca, Na,sodium absorption ratio (SAR, exchange sodium percent (ESP and cation exchange capacity were determined (CEC. The soil quality was evaluated by integrated quality index (IQI and Nemero quality index (NQI in two data sets of soil properties including MDS and TDS. In these models, a set of characteristics that affect the quality of the soil in the form of a mathematical model incorporating and to propose a numerical quantity this number serve as general indicator of soil quality, Reflect the characteristics of the target. Results and Discussion: The results showed that there was significant correlation between

  19. Microbial Indicators of Soil Quality under Different Land Use Systems in Subtropical Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maharjan, M.

    2016-12-01

    Land-use change from native forest to intensive agricultural systems can negatively impact numerous soil parameters. Understanding the effects of forest ecosystem transformations on markers of long-term soil health is particularly important in rapidly developing regions such as Nepal, where unprecedented levels of agriculturally-driven deforestation have occurred in recent decades. However, the effects of widespread land use changes on soil quality in this region have yet to be properly characterized. Microbial indicators (soil microbial biomass, metabolic quotient and enzymes activities) are particularly suited to assessing the consequences of such ecosystem disturbances, as microbial communities are especially sensitive to environmental change. Thus, the aim of this study was to assess the effect of land use system; i.e. forest, organic and conventional farming, on soil quality in Chitwan, Nepal using markers of microbial community size and activity. Total organic C and N contents were higher in organic farming compared with conventional farming and forest, suggesting higher nutrient retention and soil preservation with organic farming practices compared to conventional. These differences in soil composition were reflected in the health of the soil microbial communities: Organic farm soil exhibited higher microbial biomass C, elevated β-glucosidase and chitinase activities, and a lower metabolic quotient relative to other soils, indicating a larger, more active, and less stressed microbial community, respectively. These results collectively demonstrate that application of organic fertilizers and organic residues positively influence nutrient availability, with subsequent improvements in soil quality and productivity. Furthermore, the sensitivity of microbial indicators to different management practices demonstrated in this study supports their use as effective markers of ecosystem disturbance in subtropical soils.

  20. Chemical, biochemical and microbiological indicators to assess soil quality in temperate agro-ecosystems

    OpenAIRE

    Giacometti, Caterina

    2013-01-01

    Soil is a critically important component of the earth’s biosphere. Developing agricultural production systems able to conserve soil quality is essential to guarantee the current and future capacity of soil to provide goods and services. This study investigates the potential of microbial and biochemical parameters to be used as early and sensitive soil quality indicators. Their ability to differentiate plots under contrasting fertilization regimes is evaluated based also on their sensitivi...

  1. Study of microarthopod communities to assess soil quality in different managed vineyards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gagnarli, E.; Goggioli, D.; Tarchi, F.; Guidi, S.; Nannelli, R.; Vignozzi, N.; Valboa, G.; Lottero, M. R.; Corino, L.; Simoni, S.

    2015-01-01

    Land use influences the abundance and diversity of soil arthropods. The evaluation of the impact of different management strategies on soil quality is increasingly requested. The determination of communities' structures of edaphic fauna can represent an efficient tool. In this study, in some vineyards in Piedmont (Italy), the effects of two different management systems, organic and integrated pest management (IPM), on soil biota were evaluated. As microarthropods living in soil surface are an important component of soil ecosystem interacting with all the other system components, a multi disciplinary approach was adopted by characterizing also some soil physical and chemical characteristics (soil texture, soil pH, total organic carbon, total nitrogen, calcium carbonate). Soil samplings were carried out on Winter 2011 and Spring 2012. All specimens were counted and determined up to the order level. The biological quality of the soil was defined through the determination of ecological indices, such as QBS-ar, species richness and indices of Shannon-Weaver, Pielou, Margalef and Simpson. The mesofauna abundance was affected by both the type of management and the soil texture. The analysis of microarthropod communities by QBS-ar showed higher values in organic than in IPM managed vineyards; in particular, the values registered in organic vineyards were similar to those characteristic of preserved soils.

  2. Comparing Effects of Forestland conversion to Tea Farming on Soil Quality Indices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gholoubi, A.; Emami, H.; Alizadeh, A.; Jones, S. B.

    2017-12-01

    The effect of land use type on soil function within an ecosystem can be assessed and monitored using soil quality indices. The research examined effects of land use change from natural forest to tea farming (with the same physiography and parent materials) on soil properties in different regions of the Guilan province, northern Iran. Two universally-accepted methods of soil quality evaluation were used to understand soil conditions in these two land uses. Thirty-six soil samples (0 -30 cm) were randomly collected from six sites with 3 replications. The soil quality of forestland and tea farms was determined using the cumulative rating (CR) index and the Cornell Comprehensive Assessment of Soil Health (CASH) scoring functions. Effects of Land use change on soil quality or health were significant (P tea farm soils. forestland use affected most soil properties and thus their scores in both evaluation methods. Soil organic carbon and pH were the most important indicators reduced by land use change at all locations. There were significant correlations between these indicators and other soil chemical, physical and biological factors affected by changing forestland use.

  3. Evaluation of physical quality indices of a soil under a seasonal semideciduous forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thalita Campos Oliveira

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The concept of soil quality is currently the subject of great discussion due to the interaction of soil with the environment (soil-plant-atmosphere and practices of human intervention. However, concepts of soil quality relate quality to agricultural productivity, but assessment of soil quality in an agronomic context may be different from its assessment in natural areas. The aim of this study was to assess physical quality indices, the S index, soil aeration capacity (ACt/Pt, and water storage capacity (FC/Pt of the soil from a permanent plot in the Caetetus Ecological Reserve (Galia, São Paulo, Brazil under a seasonal semideciduous forest and compare them with the reference values for soil physical quality found in the literature. Water retention curves were used for that purpose. The S values found were higher than the proposed limit for soil physical quality (0.035. The A and E horizons showed the highest values because their sandy texture leads to a high slope of the water retention curve. The B horizons showed the lowest S values because their natural density leads to a lower slope of the water retention curve. The values found for ACt/Pt and FC/Pt were higher and lower than the idealized limits. The values obtained from these indices under natural vegetation can provide reference values for soils with similar properties that undergo changes due to anthropic activities. All the indices evaluated were effective in differentiating the effects of soil horizons in the natural hydro-physical functioning of the soils under study.

  4. Soil quality improvement under an ecologically based farming system in northwest Missouri

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecologically based farming conserves and improves the soil resource and protects environmental quality by using organic or natural resources without application of synthetic chemicals. Soil quality assessment indicates the ability of management systems to optimize soil productivity and to maintain i...

  5. Biodiversity and soil quality in agroecosystems: the use of a qualitative multi-attribute model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cortet, J.; Bohanec, M.; Griffiths, B.

    2009-01-01

    In ecological impact assessment, special emphasis is put on soil biology and estimating soil quality from the observed biological parameters. The aim of this study is to propose a tool easy to use for scientists and decision makers for agroecosystems soil quality assessment using these biological...... parameters. This tool was developed as a collaboration between ECOGEN (www.ecogen.dk) soil experts and decision analysts. Methodologically, we have addressed this goal using model-based Decision Support Systems (DSS), taking the approach of qualitative multi-attribute modelling. The approach is based...... on developing various hierarchical multiattribute models that consist of qualitative attributes and utility (aggregation) functions, represented by decision rules. The assessment of soil quality is based on two main indicators: (1) soil diversity (assessed through microfauna, mesofauna and macrofauna richness...

  6. Soil quality parameters for row-crop and grazed pasture systems with agroforestry buffers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Incorporation of trees and establishment of buffers are practices that can improve soil quality. Soil enzyme activities and water stable aggregates are sensitive indices for assessing soil quality by detecting early changes in soil management. However, studies comparing grazed pasture and row crop...

  7. How grazing affects soil quality of soils formed in the glaciated northeastern United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cox, Alissa H; Amador, José A

    2018-02-21

    Historically, much of the New England landscape was converted to pasture for grazing animals and harvesting hay. Both consumer demand for local sustainably produced food, and the number of small farms is increasing in RI, highlighting the importance of characterizing the effects livestock have on the quality of pasture soils. To assess how livestock affect pasture on Charlton and Canton soils series in RI, we examined soil quality in farms raising beef cattle (Bos taurus), sheep (Ovis aries), and horses (Equus ferus caballus), using hayed pastures as a control. We sampled three pastures per livestock type and three control hayed pastures in May, August, and October 2012. Hay fields and pastures grazed by sheep had statistically significant (P soil quality than pastures grazed by beef cattle or horses. This was driven by parameters including penetration resistance, bulk density, aggregate stability, and infiltration rate. Hayfields also showed higher soil quality measures than grazed pastures for organic matter content and active C. In addition, significant differences in nitrate and phosphate concentrations were observed among livestock types. Respiration and infiltration rates, pH, and ammonium concentrations, on the other hand, did not differ significantly among pasture types. When all soil quality indicators in this study were weighed equally, soil quality scores followed the order: hay > sheep > beef cattle > horses. The results of our study provide baseline data on the effect different types of livestock have on pasture soil quality in RI, which may be useful in making sound land use and agricultural management decisions.

  8. Effects of Grazing and Fire Frequency on Floristic Quality and its Relationship to Indicators of Soil Quality in Tallgrass Prairie.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manning, George C; Baer, Sara G; Blair, John M

    2017-12-01

    Fire and grazing are widely used to manage grasslands for conservation purposes, but few studies have evaluated the effects of these drivers on the conservation value of plant communities measured by the floristic quality index (FQI). Further, the influence of fire and grazing on soil properties and functions are difficult for land managers and restoration practitioners to assess. The objectives of this study were to: (1) quantify the independent and interactive effects of grazing and fire frequency on floristic quality in native tallgrass prairie to provide potential benchmarks for community assessment, and (2) to explore whether floristic quality can serve as an indicator of soil structure and function for more holistic ecosystem assessments. A factorial combination of fire frequencies (1-2, 4, and 20 years return intervals) and grazing (by bison or ungrazed) treatments were sampled for plant species composition, and for several indicators of soil quality in lowland tallgrass prairie. Floristic quality, diversity, and richness were higher in grazed than ungrazed prairie over all fire frequencies (P soil bulk density were also higher in grazed prairie soil over all fire frequencies (P soil N were positively correlated with FQI (P soil N pools are more strongly influenced by grazing than fire and that floristic quality can be an indicator of total soil C and N stocks in never cultivated lowland prairie.

  9. Impact of Soil Conservation Measures on Erosion Control and Soil Quality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2011-10-01

    This publication summarises the lessons learnt from a FAO/IAEA coordinated research project on the impact of soil conservation measures on erosion control and soil quality over a five-year period across a wide geographic area and range of environments. It demonstrates the new trends in the use of fallout radionuclide-based techniques as powerful tools to assess the effectiveness of soil conservation measures. As a comprehensive reference material it will support IAEA Member States in the use of these techniques to identify practices that can enhance sustainable agriculture and minimize land degradation.

  10. Effects of Grazing and Fire Frequency on Floristic Quality and its Relationship to Indicators of Soil Quality in Tallgrass Prairie

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manning, George C.; Baer, Sara G.; Blair, John M.

    2017-12-01

    Fire and grazing are widely used to manage grasslands for conservation purposes, but few studies have evaluated the effects of these drivers on the conservation value of plant communities measured by the floristic quality index (FQI). Further, the influence of fire and grazing on soil properties and functions are difficult for land managers and restoration practitioners to assess. The objectives of this study were to: (1) quantify the independent and interactive effects of grazing and fire frequency on floristic quality in native tallgrass prairie to provide potential benchmarks for community assessment, and (2) to explore whether floristic quality can serve as an indicator of soil structure and function for more holistic ecosystem assessments. A factorial combination of fire frequencies (1-2, 4, and 20 years return intervals) and grazing (by bison or ungrazed) treatments were sampled for plant species composition, and for several indicators of soil quality in lowland tallgrass prairie. Floristic quality, diversity, and richness were higher in grazed than ungrazed prairie over all fire frequencies ( P total N, and soil bulk density were also higher in grazed prairie soil over all fire frequencies ( P total organic C, and total soil N were positively correlated with FQI ( P quality and soil N pools are more strongly influenced by grazing than fire and that floristic quality can be an indicator of total soil C and N stocks in never cultivated lowland prairie.

  11. Ecotoxicological assessment of metal-polluted urban soils using bioassays with three soil invertebrates.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Santarufo, L.; van Gestel, C.A.M.; Maisto, G.

    2012-01-01

    This study aimed at assessing the quality of urban soils by integrating chemical and ecotoxicological approaches. Soils from five sites in downtown Naples, Italy, were sampled and characterized for physical-chemical properties and total and water-extractable metal concentrations. Bioassays with

  12. Restoring Soil Quality to Mitigate Soil Degradation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rattan Lal

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Feeding the world population, 7.3 billion in 2015 and projected to increase to 9.5 billion by 2050, necessitates an increase in agricultural production of ~70% between 2005 and 2050. Soil degradation, characterized by decline in quality and decrease in ecosystem goods and services, is a major constraint to achieving the required increase in agricultural production. Soil is a non-renewable resource on human time scales with its vulnerability to degradation depending on complex interactions between processes, factors and causes occurring at a range of spatial and temporal scales. Among the major soil degradation processes are accelerated erosion, depletion of the soil organic carbon (SOC pool and loss in biodiversity, loss of soil fertility and elemental imbalance, acidification and salinization. Soil degradation trends can be reversed by conversion to a restorative land use and adoption of recommended management practices. The strategy is to minimize soil erosion, create positive SOC and N budgets, enhance activity and species diversity of soil biota (micro, meso, and macro, and improve structural stability and pore geometry. Improving soil quality (i.e., increasing SOC pool, improving soil structure, enhancing soil fertility can reduce risks of soil degradation (physical, chemical, biological and ecological while improving the environment. Increasing the SOC pool to above the critical level (10 to 15 g/kg is essential to set-in-motion the restorative trends. Site-specific techniques of restoring soil quality include conservation agriculture, integrated nutrient management, continuous vegetative cover such as residue mulch and cover cropping, and controlled grazing at appropriate stocking rates. The strategy is to produce “more from less” by reducing losses and increasing soil, water, and nutrient use efficiency.

  13. Ethnopedology and soil quality of bamboo (Bambusa sp.) based agroforestry system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arun Jyoti, Nath; Lal, Rattan; Das, Ashesh Kumar

    2015-07-15

    It is widely recognized that farmers' hold important knowledge of folk soil classification for agricultural land for its uses, yet little has been studied for traditional agroforestry systems. This article explores the ethnopedology of bamboo (Bambusa sp.) based agroforestry system in North East India, and establishes the relationship of soil quality index (SQI) with bamboo productivity. The study revealed four basic folk soil (mati) types: kalo (black soil), lal (red soil), pathal (stony soil) and balu (sandy soil). Of these, lal mati soil was the most predominant soil type (~ 40%) in bamboo-based agroforestry system. Soil physio-chemical parameters were studied to validate the farmers' soil hierarchal classification and also to correlate with productivity of the bamboo stand. Farmers' hierarchal folk soil classification was consistent with the laboratory scientific analysis. Culm production (i.e. measure of productivity of bamboo) was the highest (27culmsclump(-1)) in kalo mati (black soil) and the lowest (19culmsclump(-1)) in balu mati (sandy soil). Linear correlation of individual soil quality parameter with bamboo productivity explained 16 to 49% of the variability. A multiple correlation of the best fitted linear soil quality parameter (soil organic carbon or SOC, water holding capacity or WHC, total nitrogen) with productivity improved explanatory power to 53%. Development of SQI from ten relevant soil quality parameters and its correlation with bamboo productivity explained the 64% of the variation and therefore, suggest SQI as the best determinant of bamboo yield. Data presented indicate that the kalo mati (black soil) is sustainable or sustainable with high input. However, the other three folk soil types (red, stony and sandy soil) are also sustainable but for other land uses. Therefore, ethnopedological studies may move beyond routine laboratory analysis and incorporate SQI for assessing the sustainability of land uses managed by the farmers'. Additional

  14. Crop rotation impact on soil quality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aziz, I.; Ashraf, M.; Mahmood, T.; Islam, K.R.

    2011-01-01

    Management systems influence soil quality over time. A study was carried out on Van meter farm of the Ohio State University South Centers at Piketon Ohio, USA to evaluate the impact of crop rotations on soil quality from 2002 to 2007. The crop rotations comprised of continuous corn (CC), corn-soybean (CS) and corn-soybean-wheat-cowpea (CSW). Ten soil cores were collected at 0-7.5, 7.5-15, 15-22.5 and 22.5-30 cm, and sieved. The soils were analyzed for total microbial biomass (C/sub mic/), basal respiration (BR) and specific maintenance respiration (qCO/sub 2/) rates as biological quality indicators; total organic carbon (TC), active carbon (AC) and total nitrogen (TN) as chemical quality indicators; and aggregate stability (AS), particulate organic matter (POM) and total porosity (ft) as physical quality parameters at different depths of soil. The inductive additive approach based on the concept of 'higher value of any soil property except ft, a better indicator of soil quality' was used to calculate the biological (SBQ), chemical (SCQ), physical (SPQ) and composite soil quality (SQI) indices. The results showed that crop rotation had significant impact on C/sub mic/, BR, qCO/sub 2/, TC, AC, TN, AS and POM except ft at different depths of soil. The CSW had higher soil quality values than CC and CS. The values of selected soil quality properties under the given crop rotation significantly decreased except ft with increasing soil depth. The SBQ (23%), SCQ (16%), SPQ (7%) and SQI (15%) improved under CSW over time. The results imply that multiple cropping systems could be more effective for maintaining and enhancing soil quality than sole-cropping systems. (author)

  15. Assessment of Soil Health in Urban Agriculture: Soil Enzymes and Microbial Properties

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Avanthi Deshani Igalavithana

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Urban agriculture has been recently highlighted with the increased importance for recreation in modern society; however, soil quality and public health may not be guaranteed because of continuous exposure to various pollutants. The objective of this study was to evaluate the soil quality of urban agriculture by soil microbial assessments. Two independent variables, organic and inorganic fertilizers, were considered. The activities of soil enzymes including dehydrogenase, β-glucosidase, arylsulfatase, urease, alkaline and acid phosphatases were used as indicators of important microbial mediated functions and the soil chemical properties were measured in the soils applied with organic or inorganic fertilizer for 10 years. Fatty acid methyl ester analysis was applied to determine the soil microbial community composition. Relatively higher microbial community richness and enzyme activities were found in the organic fertilizers applied soils as compared to the inorganic fertilizers applied soils. Principal component analysis explained the positive influence of organic fertilizers on the microbial community. The application of organic fertilizers can be a better alternative compared to inorganic fertilizers for the long-term health and security of urban agriculture.

  16. Ecotoxicological assessment of metal-polluted urban soils using bioassays with three soil invertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santorufo, Lucia; Van Gestel, Cornelis A M; Maisto, Giulia

    2012-07-01

    This study aimed at assessing the quality of urban soils by integrating chemical and ecotoxicological approaches. Soils from five sites in downtown Naples, Italy, were sampled and characterized for physical-chemical properties and total and water-extractable metal concentrations. Bioassays with Eisenia andrei, Enchytraeus crypticus and Folsomia candida were performed to assess toxicity of the soils, using survival, reproduction and growth as the endpoints. Metal bioaccumulation in the animals was also measured. The properties and metal concentrations of the soils strongly differed. Metal bioaccumulation was related with total metal concentrations in soil and was highest in E. crypticus, which was more sensitive than E. andrei and F. candida. Responses of the three species to the investigated soils seemed due to both metal contamination and soil properties. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Assessment of soil contamination--a functional perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Straalen, Nico M

    2002-01-01

    In many industrialized countries the use of land is impeded by soil pollution from a variety of sources. Decisions on clean-up, management or set-aside of contaminated land are based on various considerations, including human health risks, but ecological arguments do not have a strong position in such assessments. This paper analyses why this should be so, and what ecotoxicology and theoretical ecology can improve on the situation. It seems that soil assessment suffers from a fundamental weakness, which relates to the absence of a commonly accepted framework that may act as a reference. Soil contamination can be assessed both from a functional perspective and a structural perspective. The relationship between structure and function in ecosystems is a fundamental question of ecology which receives a lot of attention in recent literature, however, a general concept that may guide ecotoxicological assessments has not yet arisen. On the experimental side, a good deal of progress has been made in the development and standardized use of terrestrial model ecosystems (TME). In such systems, usually consisting of intact soil columns incubated in the laboratory under conditions allowing plant growth and drainage of water, a compromise is sought between field relevance and experimental manageability. A great variety of measurements can be made on such systems, including microbiological processes and activities, but also activities of the decomposer soil fauna. I propose that these TMEs can be useful instruments in ecological soil quality assessments. In addition a "bioinformatics approach" to the analysis of data obtained in TME experiments is proposed. Soil function should be considered as a multidimensional concept and the various measurements can be considered as indicators, whose combined values define the "normal operating range" of the system. Deviations from the normal operating range indicate that the system is in a condition of stress. It is hoped that more work

  18. Assessment of inceptisols soil quality following long-term cropping in a calcareous environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rezapour, Salar; Samadi, A

    2012-03-01

    The combination of morphological, clay mineralogy, physicochemical, and fertilitical properties of inceptisols were compared for monitoring soil quality response following long-term agricultural activities. For this target, fifty-nine paired surface soils belonging to five subgroups of inceptisols from the major sugar beet growing area and the adjoining virgin lands were described, sampled, and analyzed. The soils were alkaline and calcareous as characterized by high pH, ranging from 7.2 to 8, and calcium carbonate equivalent, ranging from 60 to 300 g kg(-1). Following long-term sugar beet cultivation, morphological properties modifications were reflected as weakening of structure, hardening of consistency, and brightening of soil color. Although, the quantity of clay minerals did not significantly change through long-term cropping, some modifications in the XRD pattern of illite and smectite were observed in the cultivated soils compared to the adjoining virgin lands mainly as a result of potassium depletion. Without significant variation, sand content decreased by 4-55% and silt and clay increased by 3-22% and 2-15%, respectively, in the cultivated soils than to that of the virgin lands. Both negative and positive aspects of soil quality were reflected regarding soil chemical and fertilitical properties and the role of negative effects far exceeded the role of positive effects. Typic calcixerepts was known to be more degraded through a significant decrease (P ≤ 0.001) in mean value of soil organic carbon (a drop of 24%), total N (a drop of 23%), available K (a drop of 42%), exchangeable K (a drop of 45%), potassium adsorption ratio and potassium saturation ratio (a drop of 44% and 42%, respectively) and a significant increase (P ≤ 0.001) in EC (a rise of 53%). Soil quality index, calculated based on nine soil properties [coarse fragments, pH, SOC, total N, ESP, exchangeable cations (Ca, Mg, and K), and available phosphorus], indicated that 60% of the all soil

  19. Visual assessment of soil structure quality in an agroextractivist system in Southeastern Amazonia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernanda Simões da Silva, Laura; Stuchi Boschi, Raquel; Ortega Gomes, Matheus; Cooper, Miguel

    2016-04-01

    Soil structure is considered a key factor in the functioning of soil, affecting its ability to support plant and animal life, and moderate environmental quality. Numerous methods are available to evaluate soil structure based on physical, chemical and biological indicators. Among the physical indicators, the attributes most commonly used are soil bulk density, porosity, soil resistance to penetration, tensile strength of aggregates, soil water infiltration, and available water. However, these methods are expensive and generally time costly for sampling and laboratorial procedures. Recently, evaluations using qualitative and semi-quantitative indicators of soil structure quality have gained importance. Among these methods, the method known as Visual Evaluation of Soil Structure (VESS) (Ball et al., 2007; Guimarães et al., 2011) can supply this necessity in temperate and tropical regions. The study area is located in the Piranheira Praialta Agroextrativist Settlement Project in the county of Nova Ipixuna, Pará, Brazil. Two toposequences were chosen, one under native forest and the other under pasture. Pits were opened in different landscape positions (upslope, midslope and downslope) for soil morphological, micromorphological and physical characterization. The use of the soil visual evaluation method (SVE) consisted in collecting an undisturbed soil sample of approximately 25 cm in length, 20 cm in width and 10 cm in depth. 12 soil samples were taken for each land use. The samples were manually fragmented, respecting the fracture planes between the aggregates. The SVE was done comparing the fragmented sample with a visual chart and scores were given to the soil structure. The categories that define the soil structure quality (Qe) vary from 1 to 5. Lower scores mean better soil structure. The final score calculation was done using the classification key of Ball et al. (2007) adapted by Guimarães (2011). A change in soil structure was observed between forest and

  20. Effects of pumice mining on soil quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz-Ruíz, A.; Cruz-Ruíz, E.; Vaca, R.; Del Aguila, P.; Lugo, J.

    2015-04-01

    México is the worl's fourth most important maize producer; hence, there is a need to maintain soil quality for a sustainable production in the upcoming years. Pumice mining, a superficial operation, modifies large areas in Central Mexico. The main aim was to assess the present state of agricultural soils differing in elapsed-time since pumice mining (0-15 years), in a representative area of the Calimaya region in the State of Mexico. The study sites in 0, 1, 4, 10 and 15 year-old reclaimed soils were compared with adjacent undisturbed site. Our results indicate that soil organic carbon, total nitrogen, microbial biomass carbon and microbial quotients were greatly impacted by disturbance. A general trend of recovery towards the undisturbed condition with reclamation age was found after disturbance. Recovery of soil total nitrogen was faster than soil organic carbon. Principal components analysis was applied. The first three components together explain 71.72 % of the total variability. First factor reveals strong associations between total nitrogen, microbial biomass carbon and pH. The second factor reveals high loading of urease and catalase. The obtained results revealed that the most appropriate indicators to diagnose the quality of the soils were: total nitrogen, microbial biomass carbon and soil organic carbon.

  1. Soil quality: key for sustainable production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefano Mocali

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available In the last few years several definitions of “soil quality” have been advanced, but among them the most appreciated is “the ability of soils to interact with the ecosystem in order to maintain the biological productivity, the environmental quality and to promote animal and vegetal health” as defined by Doran and Parkin in 1994. Many researchers place more emphasis on its conceptual meaning for land planning and farm management, while others consider that definition to be worth nothing in order to understand soil properties and the concept of soil quality looks like the concept of “to be suitable for”. For this reason a definition of “soil use” is needed. The food quality is characterized by several properties: the healthiness and the nutritional value, the amount of the production, the typicalness and organoleptic properties, etc.. A lot of these properties depend on environmental quality and, in particular, on soil quality. In fact soil represents the natural substrate for growth and productivity of most of the plants that live on the Hearth because they get all the essential nutritional elements from it for their own development; consequently each nutritional element present into the soil as bioavailable form for the plants is potentially destined to entry in the animal (and human food chain. In the quality process of food productive process it will be important to assure the best soil quality as possible, without any unwanted element (which will not be discussed in this note and with the right amount of fertility elements in order to guarantee the best production. In this paper the relationships between soil quality, soil biodiversity and crop sustainability will be discussed. Finally the concept of soil “biota” as nodal point for the environment regulation and the application of the indicators for soil quality will be discussed.

  2. Soil quality: key for sustainable production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Benedetti

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available In the last few years several definitions of “soil quality” have been advanced, but among them the most appreciated is “the ability of soils to interact with the ecosystem in order to maintain the biological productivity, the environmental quality and to promote animal and vegetal health” as defined by Doran and Parkin in 1994. Many researchers place more emphasis on its conceptual meaning for land planning and farm management, while others consider that definition to be worth nothing in order to understand soil properties and the concept of soil quality looks like the concept of “to be suitable for”. For this reason a definition of “soil use” is needed. The food quality is characterized by several properties: the healthiness and the nutritional value, the amount of the production, the typicalness and organoleptic properties, etc.. A lot of these properties depend on environmental quality and, in particular, on soil quality. In fact soil represents the natural substrate for growth and productivity of most of the plants that live on the Hearth because they get all the essential nutritional elements from it for their own development; consequently each nutritional element present into the soil as bioavailable form for the plants is potentially destined to entry in the animal (and human food chain. In the quality process of food productive process it will be important to assure the best soil quality as possible, without any unwanted element (which will not be discussed in this note and with the right amount of fertility elements in order to guarantee the best production. In this paper the relationships between soil quality, soil biodiversity and crop sustainability will be discussed. Finally the concept of soil “biota” as nodal point for the environment regulation and the application of the indicators for soil quality will be discussed.

  3. Potential soil quality impact of harvesting crop residues for bio fuels

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karlen, D.

    2011-01-01

    We are in one of the greatest technological, environmental and social transitions since the industrial revolution, as we strive to replace fossil energy with renewable biomass resources. My objectives are to (1) briefly review increased public interest in harvesting crop residues as feedstock for bio energy, (2) discuss the work soil scientists must do to address those interests, and (3) examine how soil quality assessment can be used to help quantify soil biological, chemical and physical response to this transition. Rising global energy demand, dependence on unstable imports, volatility in price, and increasing public concern regarding fossil fuel combustion effects on global climate change are among the factors leading to an increased interest in development and use of renewable biomass sources for energy production. Although controlling soil erosion by wind and water is no less important than in the past, it is not the only factor that needs to be considered when evaluating the sustain ability of land management practices including harvest of crop residues as bio energy feedstock. The concept of soil quality assessment is reviewed and the Soil Management Assessment Framework (SMAF) is used to illustrate how such assessments can be used for assessing impacts of harvesting crop residue as feedstock for bio energy production. Preliminary results of the SMAF assessment show that soil organic carbon (SOC) is one of the lower scoring indicators and therefore needs to be monitored closely. Innovative soil and crop management strategies, including a landscape vision are offered as ideas for achieving sustainable food, feed, fiber, and energy production

  4. Main Parameters of Soil Quality and it's Management Under Changing Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    László Phd, M., ,, Dr.

    2009-04-01

    ). Gregorich et al. (1994) state that "soil quality is a composite measure of both a soil's ability to function and how well it functions, relative to a specific use." Increasingly, contemporary discussion of soil quality includes the environmental cost of production and the potential for reclamation of degraded soils (Várallyay, 2005). Reasons for assessing soil quality in an agricultural or managed system may be somewhat different than reasons for assessing soil quality in a natural ecosystem. In an agricultural context, soil quality may be managed, to maximize production without adverse environmental effect, while in a natural ecosystem, soil quality may be observed, as a baseline value or set of values against which future changes in the system may be compared (Várallyay, 1994; Cook and Hendershot, 1996; Németh, 1996; Malcolm, 2000; Márton et al. 2007). Soil quality has historically been equated with agricultural productivity, and thus is not a new idea. Soil conservation practices to maintain soil productivity are as old as agriculture itself, with documentation dating to the Roman Empire (Jenny, 1961). The Storie Index (Storie, 1932) and USDA Land Capability Classification (Klingebiel and Montgomery, 1973) were developed to separate soils into different quality classes. Soil quality is implied in many decisions farmers make about land purchases and management, and in the economic value rural assessors place on agricultural land for purposes of taxation. Beginning in the 1930s, soil productivity ratings were developed in the United States and elsewhere to help farmers select crops and management practices that would maximize production and minimize erosion or other adverse environmental effects (Huddleston, 1984). These rating systems are important predecessors of recent attempts to quantitatively assess soil quality. In the 1970s, attempts were made to identify and protect soils of the highest productive capacity by defining "prime agricultural lands" (Miller, 1979

  5. Effects of mining-associated lead and zinc soil contamination on native floristic quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Struckhoff, Matthew A; Stroh, Esther D; Grabner, Keith W

    2013-04-15

    We assessed the quality of plant communities across a range of lead (Pb) and zinc (Zn) soil concentrations at a variety of sites associated with Pb mining in southeast Missouri, USA. In a novel application, two standard floristic quality measures, Mean Coefficient of Conservatism (Mean C) and Floristic Quality Index (FQI), were examined in relation to concentrations of Pb and Zn, soil nutrients, and other soil characteristics. Nonmetric Multidimensional Scaling and Regression Tree Analyses identified soil Pb and Zn concentrations as primary explanatory variables for plant community composition and indicated negative relationships between soil metals concentrations and both Mean C and FQI. Univariate regression also demonstrated significant negative relationships between metals concentrations and floristic quality. The negative effects of metals in native soils with otherwise relatively undisturbed conditions indicate that elevated soil metals concentrations adversely affect native floristic quality where no other human disturbance is evident. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  6. Development of soil quality metrics using mycorrhizal fungi

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baar, J.

    2010-07-01

    Based on the Treaty on Biological Diversity of Rio de Janeiro in 1992 for maintaining and increasing biodiversity, several countries have started programmes monitoring soil quality and the above- and below ground biodiversity. Within the European Union, policy makers are working on legislation for soil protection and management. Therefore, indicators are needed to monitor the status of the soils and these indicators reflecting the soil quality, can be integrated in working standards or soil quality metrics. Soil micro-organisms, particularly arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF), are indicative of soil changes. These soil fungi live in symbiosis with the great majority of plants and are sensitive to changes in the physico-chemical conditions of the soil. The aim of this study was to investigate whether AMF are reliable and sensitive indicators for disturbances in the soils and can be used for the development of soil quality metrics. Also, it was studied whether soil quality metrics based on AMF meet requirements to applicability by users and policy makers. Ecological criterions were set for the development of soil quality metrics for different soils. Multiple root samples containing AMF from various locations in The Netherlands were analyzed. The results of the analyses were related to the defined criterions. This resulted in two soil quality metrics, one for sandy soils and a second one for clay soils, with six different categories ranging from very bad to very good. These soil quality metrics meet the majority of requirements for applicability and are potentially useful for the development of legislations for the protection of soil quality. (Author) 23 refs.

  7. Utility of pollution indices in assessment of soil quality around ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The quality of soil in the vicinity of Madaka mining sites were investigated in this study using Environmental Pollution Indices. Geological mapping of the study area indicated that the area was dominated by schist and granite. The static water level measurement revealed a westward groundwater flow direction which also ...

  8. Surface water quality assessment using factor analysis

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    2006-01-16

    Jan 16, 2006 ... Surface water, groundwater quality assessment and environ- .... Urbanisation influences the water cycle through changes in flow and water ..... tion of aquatic life, CCME water quality Index 1, 0. User`s ... Water, Air Soil Pollut.

  9. Assessment of soil pollution based on total petroleum hydrocarbons and individual oil substances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinedo, J; Ibáñez, R; Lijzen, J P A; Irabien, Á

    2013-11-30

    Different oil products like gasoline, diesel or heavy oils can cause soil contamination. The assessment of soils exposed to oil products can be conducted through the comparison between a measured concentration and an intervention value (IV). Several national policies include the IV based on the so called total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPH) measure. However, the TPH assessment does not indicate the individual substances that may produce contamination. The soil quality assessment can be improved by including common hazardous compounds as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and aromatic volatile hydrocarbons like benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylenes (BTEX). This study, focused on 62 samples collected from different sites throughout The Netherlands, evaluates TPH, PAH and BTEX concentrations in soils. Several indices of pollution are defined for the assessment of individual variables (TPH, PAH, B, T, E, and X) and multivariables (MV, BTEX), allowing us to group the pollutants and simplify the methodology. TPH and PAH concentrations above the IV are mainly found in medium and heavy oil products such as diesel and heavy oil. On the other hand, unacceptable BTEX concentrations are reached in soils contaminated with gasoline and kerosene. The TPH assessment suggests the need for further action to include lighter products. The application of multivariable indices allows us to include these products in the soil quality assessment without changing the IV for TPH. This work provides useful information about the soil quality assessment methodology of oil products in soils, focussing the analysis into the substances that mainly cause the risk. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Importance of soil-water relation in assessment endpoint in bioremediated soils: Plant growth and soil physical properties

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, X.; Sawatsky, N.

    1995-01-01

    Much effort has been focused on defining the end-point of bioremediated soils by chemical analysis (Alberta Tier 1 or CCME Guideline for Contaminated Soils) or toxicity tests. However, these tests do not completely assess the soil quality, or the capability of soil to support plant growth after bioremediation. This study compared barley (Hordeum vulgare) growth on: (i) non-contaminated, agricultural topsoil, (2) oil-contaminated soil (4% total extractable hydrocarbons, or TEH), and (3) oil-contaminated soil treated by bioremediation (< 2% TEH). Soil physical properties including water retention, water uptake, and water repellence were measured. The results indicated that the growth of barley was significantly reduced by oil-contamination of agricultural topsoil. Furthermore, bioremediation did not improve the barley yield. The lack of effects from bioremediation was attributed to development of water repellence in hydrocarbon contaminated soils. There seemed to be a critical water content around 18% to 20% in contaminated soils. Above this value the water uptake by contaminated soil was near that of the agricultural topsoil. For lower water contents, there was a strong divergence in sorptivity between contaminated and agricultural topsoil. For these soils, water availability was likely the single most important parameter controlling plant growth. This parameter should be considered in assessing endpoint of bioremediation for hydrocarbon contaminated soils

  11. SOIL QUALITY CHANGES FOLLOWING FOREST CLEARANCE IN BENGKULU, SUMATRA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I.P. HANDAYANI

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Intense destruction and degradation of tropical forests is recognized as one of the environmental threats and tragedies. These have increased the need to assess the effects of subsequent land-use following forest extraction on soil quality. Therefore, the objective of this study is to evaluate the impacts of land-use type on soil quality properties in Bengkulu Province, Sumatra. Soil samples were collected from adjacent sites including natural secondary forest, bare land, cultivated land and grassland. The results show that land-use following forest clearance lowered saturated hydraulic conductivity (85%, porosity (10.50%, soil water content at field capacity (34%,C organic (27%, N total (26%, inorganic N (37%, soil microbial biomass C (32%, mineralizable C (22%, and particulate organic matter (50%, but slightly increased water soluble organic C. Specific respiration activi ty rates increased about 14% in cultivated soils compared to natural forest soils, indicating greater C turnover per labile C pool in the form of soil microbial biomass, thus decreased biologically active soil organic matter. Forest conversion tends to reduce the C,ffg/Crer for all deforested sites. All of deforested areas relatively have infertile soil, with the worst case found in cultivated field. The C^g/Crd of cultivated field s was about 24% less than that of remnant fo rest (1.07. Grassland apparently mainta ins only slightly higher soil C levels than the bare land. On average, degradation index of so il following forest clearance was 35% with the highest deterioration occurred in the bare land (38%. Fallowing the fields by naturally growth of Imperata cylindrica for about 15 yr in abandoned land after 3-5 years of cultivation did not improve the soil quality. Moreover, forest clearance has an impact on soil quality as resulted in the loss of a physically protected organic matter and reduction in some labile C pools, thus declined biological activity at disturbed

  12. Assessment of wind erosion threat for soils in cadastral area of Hajske

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muchova, Z.; Stredanska, A.

    2008-01-01

    This contribution illustrates the application of methods of erosion threat assessment in lan adaptation projects. Calculations of the soil erosion index of particular soil blocks are demonstrated for the cadastral area of Hajske. Two methods for assessment of erosion threat have been applied. First the assessment based on the ecological soil-quality units (ESQU) has been performed. Next, the Pasak method for a detailed analysis of the soil erosion threat was applied. Both of the mentioned approaches are recommended for the land adaption projects. Based on the results, the soil blocks have been ranked by their soil erosion threat. (authors)

  13. Monitoring and evaluating soil quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bloem, J.; Schouten, A.J.; Sørensen, S.J.; Rutgers, M.; Werf, van der A.K.; Breure, A.M.

    2006-01-01

    This book provides a selection of microbiological methods that are already applied in regional or national soil quality monitoring programs. It is split into two parts: part one gives an overview of approaches to monitoring, evaluating and managing soil quality. Part two provides a selection of

  14. The effect of different tillage and cover crops on soil quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abdollahi, Lotfollah; Munkholm, Lars Juhl

    This paper examines the effect of different tillage treatments and cover crop on soil physical, chemical and biological properties of a sandy loam soil in a long-term field trial set up in 2007 at Foulum, Denmark. The experimental design is a split plot design with different tillage practices (di...... that P improved soil quality compared to H and D, especially when combined with cover crop. We also conclude that D may benefit from cover crop to yield better soil friability and hence soil quality.......This paper examines the effect of different tillage treatments and cover crop on soil physical, chemical and biological properties of a sandy loam soil in a long-term field trial set up in 2007 at Foulum, Denmark. The experimental design is a split plot design with different tillage practices...... (direct drilling (D), harrowing (H) to a depth of 8 cm and ploughing to a depth of 20 cm (P)) as main plot. The soil was cropped with cover crop (+CC) or left without cover crop (-CC) as split plot treatments in the main plots with different tillage treatments. We assessed topsoil structural quality...

  15. Physicochemical and biological quality of soil in hexavalent chromium-contaminated soils as affected by chemical and microbial remediation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liao, Yingping; Min, Xiaobo; Yang, Zhihui; Chai, Liyuan; Zhang, Shujuan; Wang, Yangyang

    2014-01-01

    Chemical and microbial methods are the main remediation technologies for chromium-contaminated soil. These technologies have progressed rapidly in recent years; however, there is still a lack of methods for evaluating the chemical and biological quality of soil after different remediation technologies have been applied. In this paper, microbial remediation with indigenous bacteria and chemical remediation with ferrous sulphate were used for the remediation of soils contaminated with Cr(VI) at two levels (80 and 1,276 mg kg(-1)) through a column leaching experiment. After microbial remediation with indigenous bacteria, the average concentration of water-soluble Cr(VI) in the soils was reduced to less than 5.0 mg kg(-1). Soil quality was evaluated based on 11 soil properties and the fuzzy comprehensive assessment method, including fuzzy mathematics and correlative analysis. The chemical fertility quality index was improved by one grade using microbial remediation with indigenous bacteria, and the biological fertility quality index increased by at least a factor of 6. Chemical remediation with ferrous sulphate, however, resulted in lower levels of available phosphorus, dehydrogenase, catalase and polyphenol oxidase. The result showed that microbial remediation with indigenous bacteria was more effective for remedying Cr(VI)-contaminated soils with high pH value than chemical remediation with ferrous sulphate. In addition, the fuzzy comprehensive evaluation method was proven to be a useful tool for monitoring the quality change in chromium-contaminated soils.

  16. The role of soil quality maps in the reuse of lightly contaminated soil

    OpenAIRE

    Lamé, F.P.J.; Leenaers, H.; Zegwaard, J.

    2000-01-01

    In 1999 the Dutch government agreed on a new policy regarding the reuse of lightly contaminated soil. From now on, lightly contaminated soil may be reused under conditions of soil-quality management. The municipal authorities supervise the reuse under this new regime. Two basic criteria need to be met before reuse of lightly contaminated soil is allowed. Firstly, the quality of the soil has to be characterised on a soil quality map. Secondly, the soil that will be reused has to be of the same...

  17. Assessment of groundwater and soil quality for agricultural purposes in Kopruoren basin, Kutahya, Turkey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arslan, Sebnem

    2017-07-01

    This research evaluated the irrigation water and agricultural soil quality in the Kopruoren Basin by using hierarchical cluster analysis. Physico-chemical properties and major ion chemistry of 19 groundwater samples were used to determine the irrigation water quality indices. The results revealed out that the groundwaters are in general suitable for irrigation and have low sodium hazard, although they are very hard in nature due to the dominant presence of Ca+2, Mg+2 and HCO3- ions. Water samples contain arsenic in concentrations below the recommended guidelines for irrigation (59.7 ± 14.7 μg/l), however, arsenic concentrations in 89% of the 9 soil samples exceed the maximum allowable concentrations set for agricultural soils (81 ± 24.3 mg/kg). Nickel element, albeit not present in high concentrations in water samples, is enriched in all of the agricultural soil samples (390 ± 118.2 mg/kg). Hierarchical cluster analysis studies conducted to identify the sources of chemical constituents in water and soil samples elicited that the chemistry of the soils in the study area are highly impacted by the soil parent material and both geogenic and anthropogenic pollution sources are responsible for the metal contents of the soil samples. On the other hand, water chemistry in the area is affected by water-rock interactions, anthropogenic and agricultural pollution.

  18. Toxicity assessment for petroleum-contaminated soil using terrestrial invertebrates and plant bioassays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hentati, Olfa; Lachhab, Radhia; Ayadi, Mariem; Ksibi, Mohamed

    2013-04-01

    The assessment of soil quality after a chemical or oil spill and/or remediation effort may be measured by evaluating the toxicity of soil organisms. To enhance our understanding of the soil quality resulting from laboratory and oil field spill remediation, we assessed toxicity levels by using earthworms and springtails testing and plant growth experiments. Total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPH)-contaminated soil samples were collected from an oilfield in Sfax, Tunisia. Two types of bioassays were performed. The first assessed the toxicity of spiked crude oil (API gravity 32) in Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development artificial soil. The second evaluated the habitat function through the avoidance responses of earthworms and springtails and the ability of Avena sativa to grow in TPH-contaminated soils diluted with farmland soil. The EC50 of petroleum-contaminated soil for earthworms was 644 mg of TPH/kg of soil at 14 days, with 67 % of the earthworms dying after 14 days when the TPH content reached 1,000 mg/kg. The average germination rate, calculated 8 days after sowing, varied between 64 and 74 % in low contaminated soils and less than 50 % in highly contaminated soils.

  19. Risk assessment of soil contamination criteria

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    King, C.M.; Marter, W.L.; Montaque, D.F.; Holton, G.A.

    1987-06-01

    Criteria have been developed to select radioactive and nonradioactive contaminants at waste sites detailed analysis and risk assessment. These criteria were based on soil and water quality guidelines developed by various government agencies to determine if the criteria were appropriate. We performed a risk assessment of a hypothetical site which contained radioactive and nonradioactive contaminants at levels equal to the criteria values. Risks to the public from atmospheric, surface water, and groundwater exposure pathways were examined. Health risks to the public from atmospheric releases of radioactive and nonradioactive materials from a waste at soil criteria contamination levels are low. Health risks to the maximally exposed individual to chemical carcinogens are considerably below traditional EPA action levels. And health risks to the maximally exposed individual to atmospherically released radioactive contaminants is 1.88 x 10 -7 , more than a factor of 5 less than 10 -6 . Based on our atmospheric exposure pathways analysis and risk assessment, the applied soil criteria are appropriate for screening out unimportant risk contributors to human health from atmospheric exposure pathways. 13 refs., 3 figs., 7 tabs

  20. Community-Based Soil Quality Assessment As a Tool for Designing an Urban Green Infrastructure Network to Manage Runoff.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klimas, C.; Montgomery, J.

    2014-12-01

    Green infrastructure (GI) may be the most practical approach for reducing contaminated runoff, providing ecosystem services, mitigating food deserts and creating community open spaces in urban areas. This project was funded by the USEPA's People-Prosperity-Planet (P3) program and was a partnership between a team of DePaul University undergraduates (the P3 team) and high school interns (Green Teens) and staff from the Gary Comer Youth Center (GCYC). GCYC is located in a low-income African-American community on Chicago's south side characterized by high crime, abandoned buildings, lack of green space and a food desert. The overaching project goal was to develop a network of Green Teens qualified to conduct soil quality assessment using USDA-NRCS protocols in order to let them develop GI plans to minimize storm water runoff and contaminant loadings, improve community and environmental health, and provide more equitable access to green space. Working with a USDA-ARS soil scientist from Washington State University, the P3 team conducted soil quality assessment on 116 soil samples collected among four abandoned residential lots owned by GCYC. Analytes included infiltration, bulk density, texture, pH, conductivity, aggregate stability, available nutrients, and total and bioavailable (PBET) lead. Soil pH on all lots is greater than 8.0, are low in organic matter, have little microbial respiration activity, are enriched in available phosphorus, and have average total lead values ranging from 24-2,700 mg/kg. PBET lead was less than 40% on most lots. Regardless, these soils will need to be remediated by adding carbon-rich materials such as biosolids prior to GI installation. Students enrolled in a landscape design course at DePaul developed 3-D models representing potential GI designs for one of the vacant lots that include strategies for immobilizing heavy metals, reducing runoff, and which are tied into an educational module for neighborhood school children.

  1. Soil quality evaluation following the implementation of permanent cover crops in semi-arid vineyards. Organic matter, physical and biological soil properties

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Virto, I.; Imaz, M. J.; Fernandez-Ugalde, O.; Urrutia, I.; Enrique, A.; Bescansa, P.

    2012-07-01

    Changing from conventional vineyard soil management, which includes keeping bare soil through intense tilling and herbicides, to permanent grass cover (PGC) is controversial in semi-arid land because it has agronomic and environmental advantages but it can also induce negative changes in the soil physical status. The objectives of this work were (i) gaining knowledge on the effect of PGC on the soil physical and biological quality, and (ii) identifying the most suitable soil quality indicators for vineyard calcareous soils in semi-arid land. Key soil physical, organic and biological characteristics were determined in a Cambic Calcisol with different time under PGC (1 and 5 years), and in a conventionally managed control. Correlation analysis showed a direct positive relationship between greater aggregate stability (WSA), soil-available water capacity (AWC), microbial biomass and enzymatic activity in the topsoil under PGC. Total and labile organic C concentrations (SOC and POM-C) were also correlated to microbial parameters. Factor analysis of the studied soil attributes using principal component analysis (PCA) was done to identify the most sensitive soil quality indicators. Earthworm activity, AWC, WSA, SOC and POM-C were the soil attributes with greater loadings in the two factors determined by PCA, which means that these properties can be considered adequate soil quality indicators in this agrosystem. These results indicate that both soil physical and biological attributes are different under PGC than in conventionally-managed soils, and need therefore to be evaluated when assessing the consequences of PGC on vineyard soil quality. (Author) 65 refs.

  2. Using the soil and water assessment tool to estimate achievable water quality targets through implementation of beneficial management practices in an agricultural watershed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Qi; Benoy, Glenn A; Chow, Thien Lien; Daigle, Jean-Louis; Bourque, Charles P-A; Meng, Fan-Rui

    2012-01-01

    Runoff from crop production in agricultural watersheds can cause widespread soil loss and degradation of surface water quality. Beneficial management practices (BMPs) for soil conservation are often implemented as remedial measures because BMPs can reduce soil erosion and improve water quality. However, the efficacy of BMPs may be unknown because it can be affected by many factors, such as farming practices, land-use, soil type, topography, and climatic conditions. As such, it is difficult to estimate the impacts of BMPs on water quality through field experiments alone. In this research, the Soil and Water Assessment Tool was used to estimate achievable performance targets of water quality indicators (sediment and soluble P loadings) after implementation of combinations of selected BMPs in the Black Brook Watershed in northwestern New Brunswick, Canada. Four commonly used BMPs (flow diversion terraces [FDTs], fertilizer reductions, tillage methods, and crop rotations), were considered individually and in different combinations. At the watershed level, the best achievable sediment loading was 1.9 t ha(-1) yr(-1) (89% reduction compared with default scenario), with a BMP combination of crop rotation, FDT, and no-till. The best achievable soluble P loading was 0.5 kg ha(-1) yr(-1) (62% reduction), with a BMP combination of crop rotation and FDT and fertilizer reduction. Targets estimated through nonpoint source water quality modeling can be used to evaluate BMP implementation initiatives and provide milestones for the rehabilitation of streams and rivers in agricultural regions. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.

  3. Soil Physical Characteristics and Biological Indicators of Soil Quality Under Different Biodegradable Mulches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaeffer, S. M.; Flury, M.; Sintim, H.; Bandopadhyay, S.; Ghimire, S.; Bary, A.; DeBruyn, J.

    2015-12-01

    Application of conventional polyethylene (PE) mulch in crop production offers benefits of increased water use efficiency, weed control, management of certain plant diseases, and maintenance of a micro-climate conducive for plant growth. These factors improve crop yield and quality, but PE must be retrieved and safely disposed of after usage. Substituting PE with biodegradable plastic mulches (BDM) would alleviate disposal needs, and is potentially a more sustainable practice. However, knowledge of potential impacts of BDMs on agricultural soil ecosystems is needed to evaluate sustainability. We (a) monitored soil moisture and temperature dynamics, and (b) assessed soil quality upon usage of different mulches, with pie pumpkin (Cucurbita pepo) as the test crop. Experimental field trials are ongoing at two sites, one at Northwestern Washington Research and Extension Center, Mount Vernon, WA, and the other at East Tennessee Research and Education Center, Knoxville, TN. The treatments constitute four different commercial BDM products, one experimental BDM; no mulch and PE served as the controls. Soil quality parameters being examined include: organic matter content, aggregate stability, water infiltration rate, CO2 flux, pH, and extracellular enzyme activity. In addition, lysimeters were installed to examine the soil water and heat flow dynamics. We present baseline and the first field season results from this study. Mulch cover appeared to moderate soil temperatures, but biodegradable mulches also appeared to lose water more quickly than PE. All mulch types, with the exception of cellulose, reduced the diurnal fluctuations in soil temperature at 10cm depth from 1 to 4ºC. However, volumetric water content ranged from 0.10 to 0.22 m3 m-3 under the five biodegradable mulches compared to 0.22 to 0.28 m3 m-3 under conventional PE. Results from the study will be useful for management practices by providing knowledge on how different mulches impact soil physical and

  4. Impacts of crop growth dynamics on soil quality at the regional scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gobin, Anne

    2014-05-01

    Agricultural land use and in particular crop growth dynamics can greatly affect soil quality. Both the amount of soil lost from erosion by water and soil organic matter are key indicators for soil quality. The aim was to develop a modelling framework for quantifying the impacts of crop growth dynamics on soil quality at the regional scale with test case Flanders. A framework for modelling the impacts of crop growth on soil erosion and soil organic matter was developed by coupling the dynamic crop cover model REGCROP (Gobin, 2010) to the PESERA soil erosion model (Kirkby et al., 2009) and to the RothC carbon model (Coleman and Jenkinson, 1999). All three models are process-based, spatially distributed and intended as a regional diagnostic tool. A geo-database was constructed covering 10 years of crop rotation in Flanders using the IACS parcel registration (Integrated Administration and Control System). Crop allometric models were developed from variety trials to calculate crop residues for common crops in Flanders and subsequently derive stable organic matter fluxes to the soil. Results indicate that crop growth dynamics and crop rotations influence soil quality for a very large percentage. soil erosion mainly occurs in the southern part of Flanders, where silty to loamy soils and a hilly topography are responsible for soil loss rates of up to 40 t/ha. Parcels under maize, sugar beet and potatoes are most vulnerable to soil erosion. Crop residues of grain maize and winter wheat followed by catch crops contribute most to the total carbon sequestered in agricultural soils. For the same rotations carbon sequestration is highest on clay soils and lowest on sandy soils. This implies that agricultural policies that impact on agricultural land management influence soil quality for a large percentage. The coupled REGCROP-PESERA-ROTHC model allows for quantifying the impact of seasonal and year-to-year crop growth dynamics on soil quality. When coupled to a multi-annual crop

  5. Importance of Soil Quality in Environment Protection

    OpenAIRE

    Márta Birkás; Tibor Kalmár; László Bottlik; Tamás Takács

    2007-01-01

    Soil quality can be characterised by the harmony between it’s physical and biological state and the fertility. From the practical crop production viewpoint, some important contrasting factors of soil quality are: (1) soil looseness – compaction; (2) aggregation – clod and dust formation; friable structure – smeared or cracked structure; (3) organic material: conservation – decrease; (4) soil moisture: conservation – loss; water transmission – water-logging; (5) at least soil condition as a re...

  6. Soil quality assessment using GIS-based chemometric approach and pollution indices: Nakhlak mining district, Central Iran.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Farid; Sheykhi, Vahideh; Salari, Mohammad; Bagheri, Adel

    2016-04-01

    This paper is a comprehensive assessment of the quality of soil in the Nakhlak mining district in Central Iran with special reference to potentially toxic metals. In this regard, an integrated approach involving geostatistical, correlation matrix, pollution indices, and chemical fractionation measurement is used to evaluate selected potentially toxic metals in soil samples. The fractionation of metals indicated a relatively high variability. Some metals (Mo, Ag, and Pb) showed important enrichment in the bioavailable fractions (i.e., exchangeable and carbonate), whereas the residual fraction mostly comprised Sb and Cr. The Cd, Zn, Co, Ni, Mo, Cu, and As were retained in Fe-Mn oxide and oxidizable fractions, suggesting that they may be released to the environment by changes in physicochemical conditions. The spatial variability patterns of 11 soil heavy metals (Ag, As, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Mo, Ni, Pb, Sb, and Zn) were identified and mapped. The results demonstrated that Ag, As, Cd, Mo, Cu, Pb, Sb, and Zn pollution are associated with mineralized veins and mining operations in this area. Further environmental monitoring and remedial actions are required for management of soil heavy metals in the study area. The present study not only enhanced our knowledge regarding soil pollution in the study area but also introduced a better technique to analyze pollution indices by multivariate geostatistical methods.

  7. Negative effects of excessive soil phosphorus on floristic quality in Ohio wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stapanian, Martin A; Schumacher, William; Gara, Brian; Monteith, Steven E

    2016-05-01

    Excessive soil nutrients, often from agricultural runoff, have been shown to negatively impact some aspects of wetland plant communities. We measured plant-available phosphorus (Mehlich-3: MeP) in soil samples, and assessed the vascular plant community and habitat degradation at 27 emergent and 13 forested wetlands in Ohio, USA. We tested two hypotheses: (1) that an index of vegetation biological integrity based on floristic quality was lower in wetlands with higher concentrations of MeP in the soil, and (2) that higher concentrations of MeP occurred in wetlands with more habitat degradation (i.e., lower quality), as estimated by a rapid assessment method. Hypothesis (1) was supported for emergent, but not for forested wetlands. Hypothesis (2) was marginally supported (P=0.09) for emergent, but not supported for forested wetlands. The results indicate that the effect of concentration of phosphorus in wetland soils and the quality of plant species assemblages in wetlands is more complex than shown in site-specific studies and may depend in part on degree of disturbance in the surrounding watershed and dominant wetland vegetation type. Woody plants in forested wetlands are typically longer lived than herbaceous species in the understory and emergent wetlands, and may persist despite high inputs of phosphorus. Further, the forested wetlands were typically surrounded by a wide band of forest vegetation, which may provide a barrier against sedimentation and the associated phosphorus inputs to the wetland interior. Our results indicate that inferences about soil nutrient conditions made from rapid assessment methods for assessing wetland habitat condition may not be reliable. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  8. Soil quality indicators in a rhodic kandiudult under different uses in northern Parana, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Biana Harumi Kuwano

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Sustainable use of soil, maintaining or improving its quality, is one of the goals of diversification in farmlands. From this point of view, bioindicators associated with C, N and P cycling can be used in assessments of land-use effects on soil quality. The aim of this study was to investigate chemical, microbiological and biochemical properties of soil associated with C, N and P under different land uses in a farm property with diversified activity in northern Parana, Brazil. Seven areas under different land uses were assessed: fragment of native Atlantic Forest; growing of peach-palm (Bactrys gasipaes; sugarcane ratoon (Saccharum officinarum recently harvested, under renewal; growing of coffee (Coffea arabica intercropped with tree species; recent reforestation (1 year with native tree species, previously under annual crops; annual crops under no-tillage, rye (Cecale cereale; secondary forest, regenerated after abandonment (for 20 years of an avocado (Persea americana orchard. The soil under coffee, recent reforestation and secondary forest showed higher concentrations of organic carbon, but microbial biomass and enzyme activities were higher in soils under native forest and secondary forest, which also showed the lowest metabolic coefficient, followed by the peach-palm area. The lowest content of water-dispersible clay was found in the soil under native forest, differing from soils under sugarcane and secondary forest. Soil cover and soil use affected total organic C contents and soil enzyme and microbial activities, such that more intensive agricultural uses had deeper impacts on the indicators assessed. Calculation of the mean soil quality index showed that the secondary forest was closest to the fragment of native forest, followed by the peach-palm area, coffee-growing area, annual crop area, the area of recent reforestation and the sugarcane ratoon area.

  9. Land use impact on soil quality in eastern Himalayan region of India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, A K; Bordoloi, L J; Kumar, Manoj; Hazarika, S; Parmar, Brajendra

    2014-04-01

    Quantitative assessment of soil quality is required to determine the sustainability of land uses in terms of environmental quality and plant productivity. Our objective was to identify the most appropriate soil quality indicators and to evaluate the impact of six most prevalent land use types (natural forestland, cultivated lowland, cultivated upland terrace, shifting cultivation, plantation land, and grassland) on soil quality in eastern Himalayan region of India. We collected 120 soil samples (20 cm depth) and analyzed them for 29 physical, chemical, and biological soil attributes. For selection of soil quality indicators, principal component analysis (PCA) was performed on the measured attributes, which provided four principal components (PC) with eigenvalues >1 and explaining at least 5% of the variance in dataset. The four PCs together explained 92.6% of the total variance. Based on rotated factor loadings of soil attributes, selected indicators were: soil organic carbon (SOC) from PC-1, exchangeable Al from PC-2, silt content from PC-3, and available P and Mn from PC-4. Indicators were transformed into scores (linear scoring method) and soil quality index (SQI) was determined, on a scale of 0-1, using the weighting factors obtained from PCA. SQI rating was the highest for the least-disturbed sites, i.e., natural forestland (0.93) and grassland (0.87), and the lowest for the most intensively cultivated site, i.e., cultivated upland terrace (0.44). Ratings for the other land uses were shifting cultivation (0.60) > cultivated low land (0.57) > plantation land (0.54). Overall contribution (in percent) of the indicators in determination of SQI was in the order: SOC (58%) > exch. Al (17.1%) > available P (8.9%) > available Mn (8.2%) > silt content (7.8%). Results of this study suggest SOC and exch. Al as the two most powerful indicators of soil quality in study area. Thus, organic C and soil acidity management holds the key to improve soil

  10. Método de avaliação visual da qualidade da estrutura aplicado a Latossolo Vermelho Distroférrico sob diferentes sistemas de uso e manejo Visual assessment soil quality structure methodology applied to Oxisol under different soil use and management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neyde Fabíola Balarezo Giarola

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available O aumento da demanda pela avaliação da qualidade da estrutura do solo para o adequado crescimento de plantas tem motivado pesquisadores a desenvolverem técnicas visuais de avaliação, a campo, simples e confiáveis para esse fim. No Brasil, um número reduzido de estudos foi realizado empregando métodos visuais de diagnóstico do estado estrutural de solos no campo. Esse trabalho testou a hipótese de que o método de Avaliação Visual da Qualidade da Estrutura do Solo desenvolvido por BALL et al. (2007 para solos de clima temperado pode ser aplicado na identificação de campo da qualidade estrutural de um Latossolo Vermelho Distroférrico sob diferentes sistemas de uso e manejo. Para isso, foram avaliadas amostras indeformadas coletadas de mata preservada (M, sistema de integração lavoura-pecuária (ILP e sistema plantio direto (SPD. A avaliação da estrutura apoiou-se na aparência, na resistência e nas características das unidades estruturais de blocos de solo e foi definida por cinco escores visuais de classificação de qualidade. O método empregado permitiu distinguir a qualidade do solo de diferentes sistemas de uso e manejo a partir da avaliação da estrutura da camada estudada.The increasing demand for assessing soil structure for crop growth has motivated researchers to develop simple and reliable visual indicators to assess soil structure at the field. There are a few records in Brazil indicating the use of visual techniques for assessing soil physical quality. This paper tested the hypothesis that the Visual Soil Structure Quality Assessment methodology developed by BALL et al. (2007 is reliable for identifying the structural quality of tropical and subtropical soils under different soil management systems. Therefore, the overall objective of this paper was to visually identify the structural quality of an Oxisol under forest, crop-livestock rotation and no-till system. The structure evaluation was based on appearance

  11. [Prediction of regional soil quality based on mutual information theory integrated with decision tree algorithm].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Fen-Fang; Wang, Ke; Yang, Ning; Yan, Shi-Guang; Zheng, Xin-Yu

    2012-02-01

    In this paper, some main factors such as soil type, land use pattern, lithology type, topography, road, and industry type that affect soil quality were used to precisely obtain the spatial distribution characteristics of regional soil quality, mutual information theory was adopted to select the main environmental factors, and decision tree algorithm See 5.0 was applied to predict the grade of regional soil quality. The main factors affecting regional soil quality were soil type, land use, lithology type, distance to town, distance to water area, altitude, distance to road, and distance to industrial land. The prediction accuracy of the decision tree model with the variables selected by mutual information was obviously higher than that of the model with all variables, and, for the former model, whether of decision tree or of decision rule, its prediction accuracy was all higher than 80%. Based on the continuous and categorical data, the method of mutual information theory integrated with decision tree could not only reduce the number of input parameters for decision tree algorithm, but also predict and assess regional soil quality effectively.

  12. Determine metrics and set targets for soil quality on agriculture residue and energy crop pathways

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ian Bonner; David Muth

    2013-09-01

    There are three objectives for this project: 1) support OBP in meeting MYPP stated performance goals for the Sustainability Platform, 2) develop integrated feedstock production system designs that increase total productivity of the land, decrease delivered feedstock cost to the conversion facilities, and increase environmental performance of the production system, and 3) deliver to the bioenergy community robust datasets and flexible analysis tools for establishing sustainable and viable use of agricultural residues and dedicated energy crops. The key project outcome to date has been the development and deployment of a sustainable agricultural residue removal decision support framework. The modeling framework has been used to produce a revised national assessment of sustainable residue removal potential. The national assessment datasets are being used to update national resource assessment supply curves using POLYSIS. The residue removal modeling framework has also been enhanced to support high fidelity sub-field scale sustainable removal analyses. The framework has been deployed through a web application and a mobile application. The mobile application is being used extensively in the field with industry, research, and USDA NRCS partners to support and validate sustainable residue removal decisions. The results detailed in this report have set targets for increasing soil sustainability by focusing on primary soil quality indicators (total organic carbon and erosion) in two agricultural residue management pathways and a dedicated energy crop pathway. The two residue pathway targets were set to, 1) increase residue removal by 50% while maintaining soil quality, and 2) increase soil quality by 5% as measured by Soil Management Assessment Framework indicators. The energy crop pathway was set to increase soil quality by 10% using these same indicators. To demonstrate the feasibility and impact of each of these targets, seven case studies spanning the US are presented

  13. [Soil quality assessment under different cropping system and straw management in farmland of arid oasis region].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Peng Peng; Pu, Xiao Zhen; Zhang, Wang Feng

    2018-03-01

    To reveal the regulatory mechanism of agricultural management practices on soil quality, an experiment was carried out to study the different cropping system and straw management on soil organic carbon and fractions and soil enzyme activity in farmland of arid oasis region, which would provide a scientific basic for enhancing agricultural resources utilization and sustainable development. In crop planting planning area, we took the mainly crop (cotton, wheat, maize) as research objects and designed long-term continues cropping and crop rotation experiments. The results showed that the soil organic carbon (SOC), soil microbial biomass C, labile C, water-soluble organic C, and hot-water-soluble organic C content were increased by 3.6%-9.9%, 41.8%-98.9%, 3.3%-17.0%, 11.1%-32.4%, 4.6%-27.5% by crop rotation compared to continues cropping, and 12%-35.9%, 22.4%-49.7%, 30.7%-51.0%, 10.6%-31.9%, 41.0%-96.4% by straw incorporated compared to straw removed, respectively. The soil catalase, dehydrogenase, β-glucosidase, invertase glucose, cellulase glucose activity were increased by 6.4%-10.9%, 6.6%-18.8%, 5.9%-15.3%, 10.0%-27.4%, 28.1%-37.5% by crop rotation compared to continues cropping, and 31.4%-47.5%, 19.9%-46.6%, 13.8%-20.7%, 19.8%-55.6%, 54.1%-70.9% by straw incorporated compared to straw removed, respectively. There were significant positive linear correlations among SOC, labile SOC fractions and soil enzyme. Therefore, we concluded that labile SOC fractions and soil enzyme were effective index for evaluating the change of SOC and soil quality. Based on factor analysis, in arid region, developing agricultural production using cropland management measures, such as straw-incorporated and combined short-term continues cotton and crop rotation, could enhance SOC and labile SOC fractions contents and soil enzyme activity, which could improve soil quality and be conducive to agricultural sustainable development.

  14. The dissolved organic matter as a potential soil quality indicator in arable soils of Hungary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filep, Tibor; Draskovits, Eszter; Szabó, József; Koós, Sándor; László, Péter; Szalai, Zoltán

    2015-07-01

    Although several authors have suggested that the labile fraction of soils could be a potential soil quality indicator, the possibilities and limitations of using the dissolved organic matter (DOM) fraction for this purpose have not yet been investigated. The objective of this study was to evaluate the hypothesis that DOM is an adequate indicator of soil quality. To test this, the soil quality indices (SQI) of 190 arable soils from a Hungarian dataset were estimated, and these values were compared to DOM parameters (DOC and SUVA254). A clear difference in soil quality was found between the soil types, with low soil quality for arenosols (average SQI 0.5) and significantly higher values for gleysols, vertisols, regosols, solonetzes and chernozems. The SQI-DOC relationship could be described by non-linear regression, while a linear connection was observed between SQI and SUVA. The regression equations obtained for the dataset showed only one relatively weak significant correlation between the variables, for DOC (R (2) = 0.157(***); n = 190), while non-significant relationships were found for the DOC and SUVA254 values. However, an envelope curve operated with the datasets showed the robust potential of DOC to indicate soil quality changes, with a high R (2) value for the envelope curve regression equation. The limitations to using the DOM fraction of soils as a quality indicator are due to the contradictory processes which take place in soils in many cases.

  15. Land agroecological quality assessment in conditions of high spatial soil cover variability at the Pereslavskoye Opolye.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morev, Dmitriy; Vasenev, Ivan

    2015-04-01

    The essential spatial variability is mutual feature for most natural and man-changed soils at the Central region of European territory of Russia. The original spatial heterogeneity of forest soils has been further complicated by a specific land-use history and human impacts. For demand-driven land-use planning and decision making the quantitative analysis and agroecological interpretation of representative soil cover spatial variability is an important and challenging task that receives increasing attention from private companies, governmental and environmental bodies. Pereslavskoye Opolye is traditionally actively used in agriculture due to dominated high-quality cultivated soddy-podzoluvisols which are relatively reached in organic matter (especially for conditions of the North part at the European territory of Russia). However, the soil cover patterns are often very complicated even within the field that significantly influences on crop yield variability and have to be considered in farming system development and land agroecological quality evaluation. The detailed investigations of soil regimes and mapping of the winter rye yield have been carried in conditions of two representative fields with slopes sharply contrasted both in aspects and degrees. Rye biological productivity and weed infestation have been measured in elementary plots of 0.25 m2 with the following analysis the quality of the yield. In the same plot soil temperature and moisture have been measured by portable devices. Soil sampling was provided from three upper layers by drilling. The results of ray yield detailed mapping shown high differences both in average values and within-field variability on different slopes. In case of low-gradient slope (field 1) there is variability of ray yield from 39.4 to 44.8 dt/ha. In case of expressed slope (field 2) the same species of winter rye grown with the same technology has essentially lower yield and within-field variability from 20 to 29.6 dt/ha. The

  16. Field Scale Studies on the Spatial Variability of Soil Quality Indicators in Washington State, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey L. Smith

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Arable lands are needed for sustainable agricultural systems to support an ever-growing human population. Soil quality needs to be defined to assure that new land brought into crop production is sustainable. To evaluate soil quality, a number of soil attributes will need to be measured, evaluated, and integrated into a soil-quality index using the multivariable indicator kriging (MVIK procedure. This study was conducted to determine the spatial variability and correlation of indicator parameters on a field scale with respect to soil quality and suitability for use with MVIK. The variability of the biological parameters decreased in the order of respiration > enzyme assays and qCO2 > microbial biomass C. The distribution frequency of all parameters except respiration were normal although the spatial distribution across the landscape was highly variable. The biological parameters showed little correlation with each other when all data points were considered; however, when grouped in smaller sections, the correlations were more consistent with observed patterns across the field. To accurately assess soil quality, and arable land use, consideration of spatial and temporal variability, soil conditions, and other controlling factors must be taken into account.

  17. Importance and utility of microbial elements in evaluating soil quality: case studies in silvopastoral systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victoria Eugenia Vallejo Quintero

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Environmental sustainability is achieved by main-taining and improving soil quality. This quality is defined as “the ability of soil to function” and is evaluated through measuring a minimum set of data corresponding to different soil properties (physical, chemical and biological. However, assessment of these properties does not meet all the conditions necessary to be ideal indicators such as: clearly discriminating between the systems use and / or management evaluation, sensitivity to stress conditions associated with anthropogenic actions, easy measurement, accessibility to many users and short response time. Because loss in quality is associated with the alteration of many processes performed by soil microorganisms they meet the above conditions and have been proposed as valid indicators for diagnosing the impact of changes in land-use and ecosystem restoration. Thus, through the evaluation of the density, activity and /or structure-composition of microorganisms we can determine whether current management systems maintain, improve or degrade the soil. In this article we review the main concepts related to soil quality and its indicators. We discuss the effect of the implementation of silvopastoral systems on soil quality, with an emphasis on the use of microbial indicators.

  18. County-Scale Spatial Distribution of Soil Enzyme Activities and Enzyme Activity Indices in Agricultural Land: Implications for Soil Quality Assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiangping Tan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Here the spatial distribution of soil enzymatic properties in agricultural land was evaluated on a county-wide (567 km2 scale in Changwu, Shaanxi Province, China. The spatial variations in activities of five hydrolytic enzymes were examined using geostatistical methods. The relationships between soil enzyme activities and other soil properties were evaluated using both an integrated total enzyme activity index (TEI and the geometric mean of enzyme activities (GME. At the county scale, soil invertase, phosphatase, and catalase activities were moderately spatially correlated, whereas urease and dehydrogenase activities were weakly spatially correlated. Correlation analysis showed that both TEI and GME were better correlated with selected soil physicochemical properties than single enzyme activities. Multivariate regression analysis showed that soil OM content had the strongest positive effect while soil pH had a negative effect on the two enzyme activity indices. In addition, total phosphorous content had a positive effect on TEI and GME in orchard soils, whereas alkali-hydrolyzable nitrogen and available potassium contents, respectively, had negative and positive effects on these two enzyme indices in cropland soils. The results indicate that land use changes strongly affect soil enzyme activities in agricultural land, where TEI provides a sensitive biological indicator for soil quality.

  19. Spatial variability of soil erosion and soil quality on hillslopes in the Chinese loess plateau

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, Y.; Lindstrom, M.J.; Zhang, J.; Yang, J.

    2000-01-01

    Soil erosion rates and soil quality indicators were measured along two hillslope transects in the Loess Plateau near Yan'an, China. The objectives were to: (a) quantify spatial patterns and controlling processes of soil redistribution due to water and tillage erosion, and (b) correlate soil quality parameters with soil redistribution along the hillslope transects for different land use management systems. Water erosion data were derived from 137 Cs measurements and tillage erosion from the simulation of a Mass Balance Model along the hillslope transects. Soil quality measurements, i.e. soil organic matter, bulk density and available nutrients were made at the same sampling locations as the 137 Cs measurements. Results were compared at the individual site locations and along the hillslope transect through statistical and applied time series analysis. The results showed that soil loss due to water erosion and soil deposition from tillage are the dominant soil redistribution processes in range of 23-40 m, and soil deposition by water erosion and soil loss by tillage are dominant processes occurring in range of more than 80 m within the cultivated landscape. However, land use change associated with vegetation cover can significantly change both the magnitudes and scale of these spatial patterns within the hillslope landscapes. There is a strong interaction between the spatial patterns of soil erosion processes and soil quality. It was concluded that soil loss by water erosion and deposition by tillage are the main cause for the occurrence of significant scale dependency of spatial variability of soil quality along hillslope transects. (author)

  20. Impacts of soil moisture content on visual soil evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emmet-Booth, Jeremy; Forristal, Dermot; Fenton, Owen; Bondi, Giulia; Creamer, Rachel; Holden, Nick

    2017-04-01

    Visual Soil Examination and Evaluation (VSE) techniques offer tools for soil quality assessment. They involve the visual and tactile assessment of soil properties such as aggregate size and shape, porosity, redox morphology, soil colour and smell. An increasing body of research has demonstrated the reliability and utility of VSE techniques. However a number of limitations have been identified, including the potential impact of soil moisture variation during sampling. As part of a national survey of grassland soil quality in Ireland, an evaluation of the impact of soil moisture on two widely used VSE techniques was conducted. The techniques were Visual Evaluation of Soil Structure (VESS) (Guimarães et al., 2011) and Visual Soil Assessment (VSA) (Shepherd, 2009). Both generate summarising numeric scores that indicate soil structural quality, though employ different scoring mechanisms. The former requires the assessment of properties concurrently and the latter separately. Both methods were deployed on 20 sites across Ireland representing a range of soils. Additional samples were taken for soil volumetric water (θ) determination at 5-10 and 10-20 cm depth. No significant correlation was observed between θ 5-10 cm and either VSE technique. However, VESS scores were significantly related to θ 10-20 cm (rs = 0.40, sig = 0.02) while VSA scores were not (rs = -0.33, sig = 0.06). VESS and VSA scores can be grouped into quality classifications (good, moderate and poor). No significant mean difference was observed between θ 5-10 cm or θ 10-20 cm according to quality classification by either method. It was concluded that VESS scores may be affected by soil moisture variation while VSA appear unaffected. The different scoring mechanisms, where the separate assessment and scoring of individual properties employed by VSA, may limit soil moisture effects. However, moisture content appears not to affect overall structural quality classification by either method. References

  1. Indices of soil contamination by heavy metals - methodology of calculation for pollution assessment (minireview).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weissmannová, Helena Doležalová; Pavlovský, Jiří

    2017-11-07

    This article provides the assessment of heavy metal soil pollution with using the calculation of various pollution indices and contains also summarization of the sources of heavy metal soil pollution. Twenty described indices of the assessment of soil pollution consist of two groups: single indices and total complex indices of pollution or contamination with relevant classes of pollution. This minireview provides also the classification of pollution indices in terms of the complex assessment of soil quality. In addition, based on the comparison of metal concentrations in soil-selected sites of the world and used indices of pollution or contamination in soils, the concentration of heavy metal in contaminated soils varied widely, and pollution indices confirmed the significant contribution of soil pollution from anthropogenic activities mainly in urban and industrial areas.

  2. Factors Affecting Soil Quality Maintenance In Northern Katsina State

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    programs or scientifically based soil management strategies. Soil quality ... envelopment analysis techniques in the reconciliation of two ..... integrated plant production and environmental quality. In ..... Handbook of Soil Science. (Ed). Sumner ...

  3. Using Agricultural Residue Biochar to Improve Soil Quality of Desert Soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yunhe Zhang

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available A laboratory study was conducted to test the effects of biochars made from different feedstocks on soil quality indicators of arid soils. Biochars were produced from four locally-available agricultural residues: pecan shells, pecan orchard prunings, cotton gin trash, and yard waste, using a lab-scale pyrolyzer operated at 450 °C under a nitrogen environment and slow pyrolysis conditions. Two local arid soils used for crop production, a sandy loam and a clay loam, were amended with these biochars at a rate of 45 Mg·ha−1 and incubated for three weeks in a growth chamber. The soils were analyzed for multiple soil quality indicators including soil organic matter content, pH, electrical conductivity (EC, and available nutrients. Results showed that amendment with cotton gin trash biochar has the greatest impact on both soils, significantly increasing SOM and plant nutrient (P, K, Ca, Mn contents, as well as increasing the electrical conductivity, which creates concerns about soil salinity. Other biochar treatments significantly elevated soil salinity in clay loam soil, except for pecan shell biochar amended soil, which was not statistically different in EC from the control treatment. Generally, the effects of the biochar amendments were minimal for many soil measurements and varied with soil texture. Effects of biochars on soil salinity and pH/nutrient availability will be important considerations for research on biochar application to arid soils.

  4. Visual soil evaluation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Visual Soil Evaluation (VSE) provides land users and environmental authorities with the tools to assess soil quality for crop performance. This book describes the assessment of the various structural conditions of soil, especially after quality degradation such as compaction, erosion or organic...... and nutrient leaching, and for diagnosing and rectifying erosion and compaction in soils....

  5. Climate and litter quality differently modulate the effects of soil fauna on litter decomposition across biomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Palacios, Pablo; Maestre, Fernando T; Kattge, Jens; Wall, Diana H

    2013-08-01

    Climate and litter quality have been identified as major drivers of litter decomposition at large spatial scales. However, the role played by soil fauna remains largely unknown, despite its importance for litter fragmentation and microbial activity. We synthesised litterbag studies to quantify the effect sizes of soil fauna on litter decomposition rates at the global and biome scales, and to assess how climate, litter quality and soil fauna interact to determine such rates. Soil fauna consistently enhanced litter decomposition at both global and biome scales (average increment ~ 37%). [corrected]. However, climate and litter quality differently modulated the effects of soil fauna on decomposition rates between biomes, from climate-driven biomes to those where climate effects were mediated by changes in litter quality. Our results advocate for the inclusion of biome-specific soil fauna effects on litter decomposition as a mean to reduce the unexplained variation in large-scale decomposition models. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  6. Embedding soil quality in land-use planning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wezel AP van; Weijden AGG van der; Wijnen HJ van; Mulder Ch; Wijnen HJ van; MNP; LER; LDL

    2006-01-01

    Changes in land use in the Netherlands are anticipated on a large scale. Soil quality, however, hardly plays a role in spatial planning, which was reason enough to analyse the relationship between land use and soil quality on a national scale using ecological data. Despite major changes in land

  7. Soil indicators to assess the effectiveness of restoration strategies in dryland ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costantini, Edoardo; Branquinho, Cristina; Nunes, Alice; Schwilch, Gudrun; Stavi, Ilan; Valdecantos, Alejandro; Zucca, Claudio

    2016-04-01

    Soil indicators may be used for assessing both land suitability for restoration and the effectiveness of restoration strategies in restoring ecosystem functioning and services. In this review paper, several soil indicators, which can be used to assess the effectiveness of restoration strategies in dryland ecosystems at different spatial and temporal scales, are discussed. The selected indicators represent the different viewpoints of pedology, ecology, hydrology, and land management. The recovery of soil capacity to provide ecosystem services is primarily obtained by increasing soil rooting depth and volume, and augmenting water accessibility for vegetation. Soil characteristics can be used either as indicators of suitability, that is, inherently slow-changing soil qualities, or as indicators for modifications, namely dynamic, thus "manageable" soil qualities. Soil organic matter forms, as well as biochemistry, micro- and meso-biology, are among the most utilized dynamic indicators. On broader territorial scales, the Landscape Function Analysis uses a functional approach, where the effectiveness of restoration strategies is assessed by combining the analysis of spatial pattern of vegetation with qualitative soil indicators. For more holistic and comprehensive projects, effective strategies to combat desertification should integrate soil indicators with biophysical and socio-economic evaluation and include participatory approaches. The integrated assessment protocol of Sustainable Land Management developed by the World Overview of Conservation Approaches and Technologies network is thoroughly discussed. Two overall outcomes stem from the review: i) the success of restoration projects relies on a proper understanding of their ecology, namely the relationships between soil, plants, hydrology, climate, and land management at different scales, which is particularly complex due to the heterogeneous pattern of ecosystems functioning in drylands, and ii) the selection of

  8. The effect of soil on cork quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pestana, Miguel N; Gomes, Alberto A

    2014-01-01

    The present work aimed to contribute for a better knowledge regarding soil features as cork quality indicators for stoppers. Cork sampling was made in eight Cork oak stands (montados de sobreiro) located in the Plio-Plistocene sedimentary formations of Península de Setúbal in southern Tagus River region. The samples used to classify the cork as stopper for wine bottles were obtained in eight cork oak stands, covering soils of different types of sandstones of the Plio-plistocene. In each stand, we randomly chose five circular plots with 30 m radius and five trees per plot with same stripping conditions determined by: dendrometric features (HD- height stipping, PBH- perimeter at breaster height), trees vegetative condition (defoliation degree); stand features (density, percentage canopy cover); site conditions (soil type and orientation). In the center of each plot a pit was open to characterize the soil profile and to classify the soil. Cork quality for stoppers was evaluated according to porosity, pores/per cm(2) and cork boards thickness. The soil was characterized according to morphological soil profile features (lithology, soil profound, and soil horizons) and chemical soil surface horizon features (organic matter, pH, macro, and micronutrients availability). Based on the variables studied and using the numerical taxonomy, we settled relationships between the cork quality and some soil features. The results indicate: (1) high correlation between the cork caliber and boron, cation exchange capacity, total nitrogen, exchange acidity, and exchangeable magnesium, potassium, calcium, and sodium in soils of theirs cork oaks; (2) the cork porosity is correlated with the number of pores/cm(2) and magnesium soil content; (3) the other soil features have a lower correlation with the caliber, porosity, and the number of pores per cm(2).

  9. Soil quality: Some basic considerations and case studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale W. Johnson

    2010-01-01

    Some fundamental properties of soils that pertain to the concept of soil quality are discussed including a discussion of what can and cannot be changed with management.Case studies showing the effects of N-fixing vegetation and N-enrichment effects on invasive species are provided to illustrate the complications that may arise from applying one soil quality standard to...

  10. Assessment of groundwater and soil quality degradation using multivariate and geostatistical analyses, Dakhla Oasis, Egypt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masoud, Alaa A.; El-Horiny, Mohamed M.; Atwia, Mohamed G.; Gemail, Khaled S.; Koike, Katsuaki

    2018-06-01

    Salinization of groundwater and soil resources has long been a serious environmental hazard in arid regions. This study was conducted to investigate and document the factors controlling such salinization and their inter-relationships in the Dakhla Oasis (Egypt). To accomplish this, 60 groundwater samples and 31 soil samples were collected in February 2014. Factor analysis (FA) and hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA) were integrated with geostatistical analyses to characterize the chemical properties of groundwater and soil and their spatial patterns, identify the factors controlling the pattern variability, and clarify the salinization mechanism. Groundwater quality standards revealed emergence of salinization (av. 885.8 mg/L) and extreme occurrences of Fe2+ (av. 17.22 mg/L) and Mn2+ (av. 2.38 mg/L). Soils were highly salt-affected (av. 15.2 dS m-1) and slightly alkaline (av. pH = 7.7). Evaporation and ion-exchange processes governed the evolution of two main water types: Na-Cl (52%) and Ca-Mg-Cl (47%), respectively. Salinization leads the chemical variability of both resources. Distinctive patterns of slight salinization marked the northern part and intense salinization marked the middle and southern parts. Congruence in the resources clusters confirmed common geology, soil types, and urban and agricultural practices. Minimizing the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of the resources salinization urges the need for better understanding of the hydrochemical characteristics and prediction of quality changes.

  11. Three Soil Quality Demonstrations for Educating Extension Clientele

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoorman, James J.

    2014-01-01

    There is a renewed interest in educating youth, Master Gardeners, and agricultural producers about soil quality. Three soil demonstrations show how soil organic matter increases water holding capacity, improves soil structure, and increases nutrient retention. Exercise one uses clay bricks and sponges to represent mineral soils and soil organic…

  12. Consequences of using different soil texture determination methodologies for soil physical quality and unsaturated zone time lag estimates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fenton, O; Vero, S; Ibrahim, T G; Murphy, P N C; Sherriff, S C; Ó hUallacháin, D

    2015-11-01

    Elucidation of when the loss of pollutants, below the rooting zone in agricultural landscapes, affects water quality is important when assessing the efficacy of mitigation measures. Investigation of this inherent time lag (t(T)) is divided into unsaturated (t(u)) and saturated (t(s)) components. The duration of these components relative to each other differs depending on soil characteristics and the landscape position. The present field study focuses on tu estimation in a scenario where the saturated zone is likely to constitute a higher proportion of t(T). In such instances, or where only initial breakthrough (IBT) or centre of mass (COM) is of interest, utilisation of site and depth specific "simple" textural class or actual sand-silt-clay percentages to generate soil water characteristic curves with associated soil hydraulic parameters is acceptable. With the same data it is also possible to estimate a soil physical quality (S) parameter for each soil layer which can be used to infer many other physical, chemical and biological quality indicators. In this study, hand texturing in the field was used to determine textural classes of a soil profile. Laboratory methods, including hydrometer, pipette and laser diffraction methods were used to determine actual sand-silt-clay percentages of sections of the same soil profile. Results showed that in terms of S, hand texturing resulted in a lower index value (inferring a degraded soil) than that of pipette, hydrometer and laser equivalents. There was no difference between S index values determined using the pipette, hydrometer and laser diffraction methods. The difference between the three laboratory methods on both the IBT and COM stages of t(u) were negligible, and in this instance were unlikely to affect either groundwater monitoring decisions, or to be of consequence from a policy perspective. When t(u) estimates are made over the full depth of the vadose zone, which may extend to several metres, errors resulting from

  13. Consequences of using different soil texture determination methodologies for soil physical quality and unsaturated zone time lag estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fenton, O.; Vero, S.; Ibrahim, T. G.; Murphy, P. N. C.; Sherriff, S. C.; Ó hUallacháin, D.

    2015-11-01

    Elucidation of when the loss of pollutants, below the rooting zone in agricultural landscapes, affects water quality is important when assessing the efficacy of mitigation measures. Investigation of this inherent time lag (tT) is divided into unsaturated (tu) and saturated (ts) components. The duration of these components relative to each other differs depending on soil characteristics and the landscape position. The present field study focuses on tu estimation in a scenario where the saturated zone is likely to constitute a higher proportion of tT. In such instances, or where only initial breakthrough (IBT) or centre of mass (COM) is of interest, utilisation of site and depth specific "simple" textural class or actual sand-silt-clay percentages to generate soil water characteristic curves with associated soil hydraulic parameters is acceptable. With the same data it is also possible to estimate a soil physical quality (S) parameter for each soil layer which can be used to infer many other physical, chemical and biological quality indicators. In this study, hand texturing in the field was used to determine textural classes of a soil profile. Laboratory methods, including hydrometer, pipette and laser diffraction methods were used to determine actual sand-silt-clay percentages of sections of the same soil profile. Results showed that in terms of S, hand texturing resulted in a lower index value (inferring a degraded soil) than that of pipette, hydrometer and laser equivalents. There was no difference between S index values determined using the pipette, hydrometer and laser diffraction methods. The difference between the three laboratory methods on both the IBT and COM stages of tu were negligible, and in this instance were unlikely to affect either groundwater monitoring decisions, or to be of consequence from a policy perspective. When tu estimates are made over the full depth of the vadose zone, which may extend to several metres, errors resulting from the use of

  14. Soil fauna as an indicator of soil quality in forest stands, pasture and secondary forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felipe Vieira da Cunha Neto

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The interactions between soil invertebrates and environmental variations are relatively unknown in the assessment of soil quality. The objective of this study was to evaluate soil quality in areas with different soil management systems, based on soil fauna as indicator, in Além Paraíba, Minas Gerais, Brazil. The soil invertebrate community was sampled using pitfall traps, in the dry and rainy seasons, from areas with five vegetation types (acacia, mimosa, eucalyptus, pasture, and secondary forest. The abundance of organisms and the total and average richness, Shannon's diversity index, the Pielou uniformity index, and change index V were determined. The fauna was most abundant in the areas of secondary forest and mimosa plantations in the dry season (111.3 and 31.7 individuals per trap per day, respectively. In the rainy season, the abundance of organisms in the three vegetation types did not differ. The highest values of average and total richness were recorded in the secondary forest in the dry season and in the mimosa stand in the rainy season. Shannon's index ranged from 1.57 in areas with acacia and eucalyptus in the rainy season to 3.19 in the eucalyptus area in the dry season. The uniformity index was highest in forest stands (eucalyptus, acacia and mimosa in the dry season, but higher in the rainy season in the pasture and secondary forest than in the forest stands. The change index V indicated that the percentage of extremely inhibited groups was lowest in the area with mimosa, both in the dry and rainy season (36 and 23 %, respectively. Of all forest stands, the mimosa area had the most abundant soil fauna.

  15. Gasification biochar as soil amendment for carbon sequestration and soil quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Veronika

    2014-01-01

    Thermal gasification of biomass is an efficient and flexible way to generate energy. Besides the energy, avaluable by-product, biochar, is produced. Biochar contains a considerable amount of recalcitrant carbon thathas potential for soil carbon sequestration and soil quality improvement if recycled...... back to agriculture soils. To determine the effect of gasification biochar on soil processes and crop yield, a short-term incubation study was conducted and a field trial has been established....

  16. Soil Quality of Bauxite Mining Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terezinha Gonçalves Bizuti, Denise; Dinarowski, Marcela; Casagrande, José Carlos; Silva, Luiz Gabriel; Soares, Marcio Roberto; Henrique Santin Brancalion, Pedro

    2015-04-01

    The study on soil quality index (SQI) aims to assess the current state of the soil after use and estimating its recovery through sustainable management practices This type of study is being used in this work in order to check the efficiency of forest recovery techniques in areas that have been deeply degraded by bauxite mining process, and compare them with the area of native forest, through the determination of SQI. Treatments were newly mined areas, areas undergoing restoration (topsoil use with planting of native forest species), areas in rehabilitation (employment of the green carpet with topsoil and planting of native forest species) and areas of native forests, with six repetitions, in areas of ALCOA, in the municipality of Poços de Caldas/MG. To this end, we used the additive pondered model, establishing three functions: Fertility, water movement and root development, based on chemical parameters (organic matter, base saturation, aluminum saturation and calcium content); physical (macroporosity, soil density and clay content); and microbiological testing (basal respiration by the emission of CO2 ). The SQIs obtained for each treatment was 41%, 56%, 63% and 71% for newly mined areas, native forest, areas in restoration and rehabilitation, respectively. The recovering technique that most approximates the degraded soil to the soil of reference is the restoration, where there was no statistically significant difference of areas restored with native forest. It was found that for the comparison of the studied areas must take into account the nutrient cycling, that disappear with plant removal in mining areas, once the soil of native forest features low fertility and high saturation by aluminum, also taking in account recovering time.

  17. Soil quality improvement through conversion to sprinkler irrigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conversion from furrow to sprinkler irrigation is a recommended conservation practice for improved water use efficiency (and/or erosion control), but effects on soil quality indicators were unknown. Several soil quality indicators were therefore quantified within a northwestern U.S. Conservation Eff...

  18. The Effect of Gasification Biochar on Soil Carbon Sequestration, Soil Quality and Crop Growth

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Veronika

    and pot and field experiments was used to study the effect of straw and wood biochar on carbon sequestration, soil quality and crop growth. Overall, the biochar amendment improved soil chemical and physical properties and plant growth and showed a potential for soil carbon sequestration without having any......New synergies between agriculture and the energy sector making use of agricultural residues for bioenergy production and recycling recalcitrant residuals to soil may offer climate change mitigation potential through the substitution of fossil fuels and soil carbon sequestration. However, concerns...... have been raised about the potential negative impacts of incorporating bioenergy residuals (biochar) in soil and increasing the removal of crop residues such as straw, possibly reducing important soil functions and services for maintaining soil quality. Therefore, a combination of incubation studies...

  19. Gap assessment in current soil monitoring networks across Europe for measuring soil functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Leeuwen, J. P.; Saby, N. P. A.; Jones, A.; Louwagie, G.; Micheli, E.; Rutgers, M.; Schulte, R. P. O.; Spiegel, H.; Toth, G.; Creamer, R. E.

    2017-12-01

    Soil is the most important natural resource for life on Earth after water. Given its fundamental role in sustaining the human population, both the availability and quality of soil must be managed sustainably and protected. To ensure sustainable management we need to understand the intrinsic functional capacity of different soils across Europe and how it changes over time. Soil monitoring is needed to support evidence-based policies to incentivise sustainable soil management. To this aim, we assessed which soil attributes can be used as potential indicators of five soil functions; (1) primary production, (2) water purification and regulation, (3) carbon sequestration and climate regulation, (4) soil biodiversity and habitat provisioning and (5) recycling of nutrients. We compared this list of attributes to existing national (regional) and EU-wide soil monitoring networks. The overall picture highlighted a clearly unbalanced dataset, in which predominantly chemical soil parameters were included, and soil biological and physical attributes were severely under represented. Methods applied across countries for indicators also varied. At a European scale, the LUCAS-soil survey was evaluated and again confirmed a lack of important soil biological parameters, such as C mineralisation rate, microbial biomass and earthworm community, and soil physical measures such as bulk density. In summary, no current national or European monitoring system exists which has the capacity to quantify the five soil functions and therefore evaluate multi-functional capacity of a soil and in many countries no data exists at all. This paper calls for the addition of soil biological and some physical parameters within the LUCAS-soil survey at European scale and for further development of national soil monitoring schemes.

  20. IT-based soil quality evaluation for agroecologically smart land-use planning in RF conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasenev, Ivan

    2016-04-01

    Activated in the first decades of XXI century global climate, economy and farming changes sharply actualized novel IT-based approaches in soil quality evaluation to address modern agricultural issues with agroecologically smart land-use planning. Despite global projected climate changes will affect a general decline of crop yields (IPCC 2014), RF boreal and subboreal regions will benefit from predicted and already particularly verified temperature warming and increased precipitation (Valentini, Vasenev, 2015) due to essential increasing of growing season length and mild climate conditions favorable for most prospective crops and best available agrotechnologies. However, the essential spatial heterogeneity is mutual feature for most natural and man-changed soils at the Central European region of Russia which is one of the biggest «food baskets» in RF. In these conditions potentially favorable climate circumstances will increase not only soil fertility and workability features but also their dynamics and spatial variability that determine crucial issues of IT-based soil quality evaluation systems development and agroecologically smart farming planning. Developed and verified within the LAMP project (RF Governmental projects #11.G34.31.0079 and #14.120.14.4266) regionally adapted DSS (ACORD-R - RF #2012612944) gives effective informational and methodological support for smart farming agroecological optimization in global climate and farming changes challenges. Information basis for agroecologically smart land-use planning consists of crops and agrotechnologies requirements, regional and local systems of agroecological zoning, local landscape and soil cover patterns, land quality and degradation risk assessments, current and previous farming practices results, agroclimatic predictions and production agroecological models, environmental limitations and planned profitability, fertilizing efficiency DSS ACORD-R. Smart land-use practice refers to sustainable balance

  1. Integrating biological indicators in a Soil Monitoring Network (SMN to improve soil quality diagnosis - a case study in Southern Belgium (Wallonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Krüger, I.

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Description of the subject. Soil organisms and their activities are essential for soil ecosystem functioning and they can thus be used as pertinent indicators of soil quality. Recent efforts have been undertaken to include biological indicators of soil quality into regional/national monitoring networks. Objectives. The aim of this study was to provide a first dataset of six biological indicators and two eco-physiological quotients for two landscape units in Wallonia. These spatial units are characterized by homogeneous climate conditions, soil type, land-use and management (here, grasslands in the Ardennes, and croplands in the Loam Region. Method. Respiration potential, microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen, net nitrogen mineralization, metabolic potential of soil bacteria and earthworm abundance were measured at a total of 60 sites in two different landscape units (LSU. Variability within each LSU was studied. Data was synthesized through calculation of a comprehensive score and presentation as radar plots. Results. All selected biological indicators were significantly higher under grassland than under cropland soils, highlighting the biological indicators' power of discrimination between main land use types. Variability within LSU depended on the biological indicator and was generally higher in grassland than in cropland soils. Each site could unambiguously be assigned to its landscape unit based on its calculated comprehensive score. Radar plots allowed an assessment of the distribution of values within a landscape unit at a glance. Conclusions. The pilot-study defined the first baseline values for agricultural soils in Wallonia and laid the foundation for a monitoring network of biological soil quality.

  2. The effect of soil on cork quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pestana, Miguel; Gomes, Alberto

    2014-10-01

    The present work aimed to contribute for a better knowledge regarding soil features as cork quality indicators for stoppers. Cork sampling was made in eight Cork oak stands (montados de sobreiro) located in different Plio-Plistocene sedimentary formations of Península de Setúbal and Carbonic shistes from paleozoic periods in Saw Grândola, both in southern Tagus River region The samples used to classify the cork as stopper for wine bottles were obtained in eight cork oak stands located in “Península de Setúbal”, south of the River Tagus, covering soils of different types of sandstones of the Plio-plistocene In each stand, we randomly chose five circular plots with 30 m radius. Five trees with same stripping conditions determined by the dendrometric features: HD (height stipping, PBH (perimeter at breaster height), and percentage canopy cover, trees vegetative condition (defoliation degree) stand features (density), and site conditions (soil type and orientation). In the center of each plot a pit was open to characterize the soil profile and to classify the soil of each plot sampling. Cork quality for stoppers was evaluated according to porosity, pores/per cm 2 and thickness. The soil was characterized according to morphological soil profile features (lithology, soil profound and soil horizons) and chemical soil surface horizon features (organic matter, pH, macro and micronutrients availability). Based on the variables studied and using the numerical taxonomy, we settled relationships between the cork quality and some soil features. The results indicate: (1) high correlation between the cork caliber and boron, caption exchange capacity, total nitrogen, exchange acidity and exchangeable magnesium, potassium, calcium and sodium in soils of theirs cork oaks; (2) the cork porosity is correlated with the number of pores/cm2 and magnesium; (3) the other soil features have a lower correlation with the caliber, porosity and the number of pores per cm2.

  3. The effect of soil on cork quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel Nugent Pestana

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The present work aimed to contribute for a better knowledge regarding soil features as cork quality indicators for stoppers.Cork sampling was made in eight Cork oak stands (montados de sobreiro located in different Plio-Plistocene sedimentary formations of Península de Setúbal and Carbonic shistes from paleozoic periods in Saw Grândola, both in southern Tagus River regionThe samples used to classify the cork as stopper for wine bottles were obtained in eight cork oak stands located in Península de Setúbal, south of the River Tagus, covering soils of different types of sandstones of the Plio-plistoceneIn each stand, we randomly chose five circular plots with 30 m radius. Five trees with same stripping conditions determined by the dendrometric features: HD (height stipping, PBH (perimeter at breaster height, and percentage canopy cover, trees vegetative condition (defoliation degree stand features (density, and site conditions (soil type and orientation. In the center of each plot a pit was open to characterize the soil profile and to classify the soil of each plot sampling.Cork quality for stoppers was evaluated according to porosity, pores/per cm 2 and thickness. The soil was characterized according to morphological soil profile features (lithology, soil profound and soil horizons and chemical soil surface horizon features (organic matter, pH, macro and micronutrients availability.Based on the variables studied and using the numerical taxonomy, we settled relationships between the cork quality and some soil features. The results indicate: (1 high correlation between the cork caliber and boron, caption exchange capacity, total nitrogen, exchange acidity and exchangeable magnesium, potassium, calcium and sodium in soils of theirs cork oaks; (2 the cork porosity is correlated with the number of pores/cm2 and magnesium; (3 the other soil features have a lower correlation with the caliber, porosity and the number of pores per cm2.

  4. Towards Integrating Soil Quality Monitoring Targets as Measures of Soil Natural Capital Stocks with the Provision of Ecosystem Services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, M. D.; Mackay, A. D.; Dominati, E.; Hill, R. B.

    2012-04-01

    This paper presents the process used to review soil quality monitoring in New Zealand to better align indicators and indicator target ranges with critical values of change in soil function. Since its inception in New Zealand 15 year ago, soil quality monitoring has become an important state of the environment reporting tool for Regional Councils. This tool assists councils to track the condition of soils resources, assess the impact of different land management practices, and provide timely warning of emerging issues to allow early intervention and avoid irreversible loss of natural capital stocks. Critical to the effectiveness of soil quality monitoring is setting relevant, validated thresholds or target ranges. Provisional Target Ranges were set in 2003 using expert knowledge available and data on production responses. Little information was available at that time for setting targets for soil natural capital stocks other than those for food production. The intention was to revise these provisional ranges as further information became available and extend target ranges to cover the regulating and cultural services provided by soils. A recently developed ecosystems service framework was used to explore the feasibility of linking soil natural capital stocks measured by the current suite of soil quality indicators to the provision of ecosystem services by soils. Importantly the new approach builds on and utilises the time series data sets collected by current suite of soil quality indicators, adding value to the current effort, and has the potential to set targets ranges based on the economic and environmental outcomes required for a given farm, catchment or region. It is now timely to develop a further group of environmental indicators for measuring specific soil issues. As with the soil quality indicators, these environmental indicators would be aligned with the provision of ecosystem services. The toolbox envisaged is a set of indicators for specific soil issues

  5. Changes of Organic Carbon Quantity and Quality in Temperate Forest Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kühnel, Anna; Satwika Lestari, Annisa; Schubert, Alfred; Wiesmeier, Martin; Spörlein, Peter; Schilling, Bernd; Kögel-Knabner, Ingrid

    2017-04-01

    Climate change will have profound impacts on organic matter stocks and thus on the functionality of soils. Soil organic carbon (SOC) content in soil is mainly regulated by the fluxes of organic matter which are highly associated with the aboveground and root litter production and their decompositions into CO2 by soil microorganism. The predicted rising temperatures in Bavaria might lead to an increased decomposition and release of soil carbon into the atmosphere, which would deteriorate a number of important soil functions. Here, we present an assessment of SOC stocks in three temperate forest sites over the last 30 years. Soil to a depth of 30 cm was analysed with density fractionation to evaluate SOC stocks and distribution in different pools. Additionally, tree-aboveground organic carbon (OC) stocks were measured to assess their influence on SOC. SOC stocks decreased between 1988 and 2004 and increased between 2004 and 2016. OC changes of litter + O layer and mineral soil differed. Highest changes of SOC occurred in the light fractions, followed by the mineral fractions. Tree-aboveground biomass, stand composition, and changing climate had an influence on SOC stocks. Precipitation change was correlated with the litter + O layer OC stocks. Further studies on the changes of each SOC fraction and the influence of other edaphic factors are needed to better understand the changes in SOC stocks and quality.

  6. Soil management effect on soil quality indicators in vineyards of the Appellation of Origin "Montilla-Moriles" in southern Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guzmán, Gema; Cabezas, José Manuel; Bauer, Thomas; Strauss, Peter; Winter, Silvia; Zaller, Johann; Gómez, José Alfonso

    2017-04-01

    The effect soil management on several indicators frequently used in the assessment of soil quality it is not always reflected unambiguously when measured at the field although it is normally assumed that this relation is straightforward. Within the European project VineDivers (www.vinedivers.eu), sixteen commercial vineyards belonging to the Appellation of Origin "Montilla-Moriles" (Córdoba) and covering a wide range of textural classes were selected. These farms were classified 'a priori' under two soil management categories: temporal cover crop and bare soil during the whole year. In each of the vineyards one representative inter-row was selected in order to characterise different physical, chemical and biological parameters to evaluate some aspects related to soil quality. Results indicate that the studied indicators respond clearly to soil textural class and vegetation cover biomass. However, there was no clear difference in above-ground biomass of the two management categories (Guzmán et al., 2016). These results suggest that the interpretation and extrapolation of the indicators evaluated should incorporate complementary information to characterise small variations of soil management intensity among vineyards that are apparently managed under the same management category. The communication presents this analysis based on the number and type of soil disturbance events of all vineyards. The high variability found among vineyards under the same management highlights the relevance of measuring these soil parameters used as quality indicators, instead of extrapolating from other vineyards or agricultural systems, and interpreting them according to baseline levels. References: Guzmán G., Cabezas J.M., Gómez J.A. 2016. Evaluación preliminar del efecto del manejo del suelo en indicadores que determinan su calidad en viñedos de la Denominación de Origen Montilla Moriles. II Jornadas de Viticultura SECH. Madrid.

  7. Fallout radionuclide-based techniques for assessing the impact of soil conservation measures on erosion control and soil quality: an overview of the main lessons learnt under an FAO/IAEA Coordinated Research Project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dercon, G; Mabit, L; Hancock, G; Nguyen, M L; Dornhofer, P; Bacchi, O O S; Benmansour, M; Bernard, C; Froehlich, W; Golosov, V N; Haciyakupoglu, S; Hai, P S; Klik, A; Li, Y; Lobb, D A; Onda, Y; Popa, N; Rafiq, M; Ritchie, J C; Schuller, P; Shakhashiro, A; Wallbrink, P; Walling, D E; Zapata, F; Zhang, X

    2012-05-01

    This paper summarizes key findings and identifies the main lessons learnt from a 5-year (2002-2008) coordinated research project (CRP) on "Assessing the effectiveness of soil conservation measures for sustainable watershed management and crop production using fallout radionuclides" (D1.50.08), organized and funded by the International Atomic Energy Agency through the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture. The project brought together nineteen participants, from Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Japan, Morocco, Pakistan, Poland, Romania, Russian Federation, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States of America and Vietnam, involved in the use of nuclear techniques and, more particularly, fallout radionuclides (FRN) to assess the relative impacts of different soil conservation measures on soil erosion and land productivity. The overall objective of the CRP was to develop improved land use and management strategies for sustainable watershed management through effective soil erosion control practices, by the use of ¹³⁷Cs (half-life of 30.2 years), ²¹⁰Pb(ex) (half-life of 22.3 years) and ⁷Be (half-life of 53.4 days) for measuring soil erosion over several spatial and temporal scales. The environmental conditions under which the different research teams applied the tools based on the use of fallout radionuclides varied considerably--a variety of climates, soils, topographies and land uses. Nevertheless, the achievements of the CRP, as reflected in this overview paper, demonstrate that fallout radionuclide-based techniques are powerful tools to assess soil erosion/deposition at several spatial and temporal scales in a wide range of environments, and offer potential to monitor soil quality. The success of the CRP has stimulated an interest in many IAEA Member States in the use of these methodologies to identify factors and practices that can enhance sustainable agriculture and minimize land degradation. Copyright

  8. Fallout radionuclide-based techniques for assessing the impact of soil conservation measures on erosion control and soil quality: an overview of the main lessons learnt under an FAO/IAEA Coordinated Research Project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dercon, G.; Mabit, L.; Nguyen, M.L.

    2012-01-01

    This paper summarizes key findings and identifies the main lessons learnt from a 5-year (2002-2008) coordinated research project (CRP) on Assessing the effectiveness of soil conservation measures for sustainable watershed management and crop production using fallout radionuclides (D1.50.08), organized and funded by the International Atomic Energy Agency through the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture. The project brought together nineteen participants, from Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Japan, Morocco, Pakistan, Poland, Romania, Russian Federation, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States of America and Vietnam, involved in the use of nuclear techniques and, more particularly, fallout radionuclides (FRN) to assess the relative impacts of the different soil conservation measure on soil erosion and land productivity. The overall objective of the CRP was to develop improved land use and management strategies for sustainable watershed management through effective soil erosion control practices, by the use of 137 Cs (half-life of 30.2 years), 210 Pb ex (half-life of 22.3 years) and 7 Be (half-life of 53.4 days) for measuring soil erosion over several spatial and temporal scales. The environmental conditions under which the different research teams applied the tools based on the use of fallout radionuclides varied considerably - a variety of climates, soils, topographies and land uses. Nevertheless, the achievements of the CRP, as reflected in this overview paper, demonstrate that fallout radionuclide-based techniques are powerful tools to assess soil erosion/deposition at several spatial and temporal scales in a wide range of environments, and offer potential to monitor soil quality. The success of the CRP has stimulated an interest in many IAEA Member States in the use of these methodologies to identify factors and practices that can enhance sustainable agriculture and minimize land degradation. (author)

  9. Changes in Soil Quality and Hydrological Connectivity Caused by the Abandonment of Terraces in a Mediterranean Burned Catchment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aleix Calsamiglia

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Wildfires and agricultural activities are relevant factors affecting soil quality, hydrological cycle and sedimentary dynamics. Land abandonment leads to afforestation, which increases fire risk and land degradation. However, no studies have yet evaluated the effect of combining the two factors, which occur frequently in Mediterranean ecosystems. This study assessed the changes in soil quality caused by the abandonment of terraces in two microcatchments (<2.5 ha affected distinctly by wildfires (once and twice burned and in an unburned control microcatchment by analyzing soil quality parameters, biochemical indices and spatial patterns of hydrological and sediment connectivity. Soil samples were collected in thirty-six plots (25 m2 representing terraced and non-terraced areas within these microcatchments. Unburned non-terraced plots had higher organic matter content and higher microbiological and enzymatic activities than other plots. Plots in abandoned terraces had lower soil quality indices, regardless of the fire effect. Land abandonment induced changes in the spatial patterns of hydrological connectivity, leading to concentrated runoff, enhanced erosion and soil degradation. Fire also negatively affected soil quality in both terraced and non-terraced plots. However, microbiological communities had different positive post-fire recovery strategies (growth and activity, depending on the previous soil conditions and land uses, which is indicative of the resilience of Mediterranean soil ecosystems.

  10. Threatened southern African soils: A need for appropriate ecotoxicological risk assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Eijsackers, Herman [Unit for Environmental Sciences and Management, North-West University, Private Bag X6001, Potchefstroom 2520 (South Africa); Reinecke, Adriaan; Reinecke, Sophie [Department of Botany & Zoology, Stellenbosch University, Private Bag X1, Matieland 7602 (South Africa); Maboeta, Mark, E-mail: mark.maboeta@nwu.ac.za [Unit for Environmental Sciences and Management, North-West University, Private Bag X6001, Potchefstroom 2520 (South Africa)

    2017-03-15

    In southern Africa arable soils are limited due to low rainfall and are threatened by anthropogenic activities like agriculture and mining making it susceptible to degradation. The aim of this study is to review the existing information available with regards to soil contamination and its possible threats towards biodiversity and quality of southern African soils. Some of the issues being addressed in this paper include the focus areas of ecotoxicological research in southern African countries, levels of contaminants in soils, the impacts of climate on soil animals and the representativity of standardised test species. In order to address this, we report on a literature search, which was done to determine the main focus areas of soil ecotoxicological research, highlighting strengths and research needs in comparison to approaches elsewhere in the world. Further, to address if the risk assessment approaches of Europe and the USA are valid for southern African environmental conditions; this in the light of differences in temperature, rainfall and fauna. It is concluded that risk assessment procedures for Europe and the USA were based on non-southern African conditions making it necessary to rethink risk assessment studies; although limited, in southern Africa. We recommend future research that has to be undertaken to address these issues. This research should include investigating species sensitivities in responses to contamination and including insects likes ants and termites in ecological risk assessment studies.

  11. Threatened southern African soils: A need for appropriate ecotoxicological risk assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eijsackers, Herman; Reinecke, Adriaan; Reinecke, Sophie; Maboeta, Mark

    2017-01-01

    In southern Africa arable soils are limited due to low rainfall and are threatened by anthropogenic activities like agriculture and mining making it susceptible to degradation. The aim of this study is to review the existing information available with regards to soil contamination and its possible threats towards biodiversity and quality of southern African soils. Some of the issues being addressed in this paper include the focus areas of ecotoxicological research in southern African countries, levels of contaminants in soils, the impacts of climate on soil animals and the representativity of standardised test species. In order to address this, we report on a literature search, which was done to determine the main focus areas of soil ecotoxicological research, highlighting strengths and research needs in comparison to approaches elsewhere in the world. Further, to address if the risk assessment approaches of Europe and the USA are valid for southern African environmental conditions; this in the light of differences in temperature, rainfall and fauna. It is concluded that risk assessment procedures for Europe and the USA were based on non-southern African conditions making it necessary to rethink risk assessment studies; although limited, in southern Africa. We recommend future research that has to be undertaken to address these issues. This research should include investigating species sensitivities in responses to contamination and including insects likes ants and termites in ecological risk assessment studies.

  12. Assessment of soil hydrology variability of a new weighing lysimeter facility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, S. E.; Wagner-Riddle, C.; Berg, A. A.

    2017-12-01

    Diversifying annual crop rotations is a strategy that mimics natural ecosystems and is postulated to increase agricultural resilience to climate change, soil quality and provision of soil ecosystem services. However, diverse cropping systems could increase soil mineral N levels and lead to greater leaching and/or N2O emissions; which raises the questions: (i) are diverse cropping systems actually beneficial for air and water quality? (ii) what are the trade-offs between soil, water, and air quality upon implementing a diverse cropping rotation? It can be difficult to fully evaluate the interactions between the two N-pollution pathways simultaneously in traditional field studies as drainage is largely unconstrained. Weighing lysimeters solve this issue by providing a closed system to measure N outputs via drainage and soil gas fluxes. A set of 18 weighting lysimeters were installed in Elora, Ontario, Canada in May 2016, to establish a long-term study of N-leaching and greenhouse gas emission from traditional and diverse cropping rotations for two different soil types. Each lysimeter is equipped with an automated chamber for continuous measurement of soil N2O and CO2 fluxes. A full characterization of variations of physical properties that may affect GHG emissions and N-leaching (e.g., soil temperature, moisture, drainage and evapotranspiration rates) amongst the lysimeters is required prior to application and assessment of the management treatments. Novel techniques such as wavelet analysis is required as standard statistical analyses are not applicable to the time series data. A full description of the lysimeters will be presented along with results of the characterization.

  13. Digital soil mapping in assessment of land suitability for organic farming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghambashidze, Giorgi; Kentchiashvili, Naira; Tarkhnishvili, Maia; Jolokhava, Tamar; Meskhi, Tea

    2017-04-01

    Digital soil mapping (DSM) is a fast-developing sub discipline of soil science which gets more importance along with increased availability of spatial data. DSM is based on three main components: the input in the form of field and laboratory observational methods, the process used in terms of spatial and non-spatial soil inference systems, and the output in the form of spatial soil information systems, which includes outputs in the form of rasters of prediction along with the uncertainty of prediction. Georgia is one of the countries who are under the way of spatial data infrastructure development, which includes soil related spatial data also. Therefore, it is important to demonstrate the capacity of DSM technics for planning and decision making process, in which assessment of land suitability is a major interest for those willing to grow agricultural crops. In that term land suitability assessment for establishing organic farms is in high demand as market for organically produced commodities is still increasing. It is the first attempt in Georgia to use DSM to predict areas with potential for organic farming development. Current approach is based on risk assessment of soil pollution with toxic elements (As, Hg, Pb, Cd, Cr) and prediction of bio-availability of those elements to plants on example of the region of Western Georgia, where detailed soil survey was conducted and spatial database of soil was created. The results of the study show the advantages of DSM at early stage assessment and depending on availability and quality of the input data, it can achieve acceptable accuracy.

  14. Spatial Variability of Physical Soil Quality Index of an Agricultural Field

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheikh M. Fazle Rabbi

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available A field investigation was carried out to evaluate the spatial variability of physical indicators of soil quality of an agricultural field and to construct a physical soil quality index (SQIP map. Surface soil samples were collected using 10  m×10 m grid from an Inceptisol on Ganges Tidal Floodplain of Bangladesh. Five physical soil quality indicators, soil texture, bulk density, porosity, saturated hydraulic conductivity (KS, and aggregate stability (measured as mean weight diameter, MWD were determined. The spatial structures of sand, clay, and KS were moderate but the structure was strong for silt, bulk density, porosity, and MWD. Each of the physical soil quality indicators was transformed into 0 and 1 using threshold criteria which are required for crop production. The transformed indicators were the combined into SQIP. The kriged SQIP map showed that the agricultural field studied could be divided into two parts having “good physical quality” and “poor physical soil quality.”

  15. Environmental quality of agricultural soils within the Jaguari River Basin - Sao Paulo

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ruby, Elaine Cristina

    2009-01-01

    Environmental impacts have occurred in various forms and intensities on soil, water and air media. Consequently, several countries have used legal criteria for soil protection, either by means of generic guiding values or through case-by-case risk assessment. The Sao Paulo Environmental Agency (CETESB) pioneered the publication of guiding values for soils and groundwater in 2001. The aim of this study was to evaluate the environmental quality of agricultural soils in comparison to pristine soils (control areas) within the Jaguari river basin, Sao Paulo. The evaluation was carried out through multielement determination by Neutron Activation Analysis Instrumental (INAA) technique. The analyses were also complemented by Optical Emission Spectrometry Coupled Plasma (ICP OES), Atomic Absorption Spectrometry and Graphite Furnace (GFAAS) techniques. The results obtained in the analyzed soil samples were compared to the guiding values established by the Sao Paulo State environmental legislation and revealed that there were no median concentrations above the prevention values. The median concentrations for the elements Sb, As, Cd, Pb, Co, Cu, Cr, Ni, V and Zn were below the reference values, except for Pb. Taking into account the 34 elements determined, there were statistically significant differences (p <0.05) between agricultural and pristine soils only for the elements Ba, As, U and V. Among these elements, Ba presented the highest concentrations in pristine soils. It was concluded, that the environmental quality of agricultural soils within the Jaguari river basin - SP was slightly changed for the given parameters. The results also pointed out for the utilization of U and As as indicators of potential contamination in soils. (author)

  16. The role of soil quality maps in the reuse of lightly contaminated soil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lamé, F.P.J.; Leenaers, H.; Zegwaard, J.

    2000-01-01

    In 1999 the Dutch government agreed on a new policy regarding the reuse of lightly contaminated soil. From now on, lightly contaminated soil may be reused under conditions of soil-quality management. The municipal authorities supervise the reuse under this new regime. Two basic criteria need to be

  17. Fallout radionuclide-based techniques for assessing the impact of soil conservation measures on erosion control and soil quality: an overview of the main lessons learnt under an FAO/IAEA Coordinated Research Project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dercon, G.; Mabit, L.; Hancock, G.; Nguyen, M.L.; Dornhofer, P.; Bacchi, O.O.S.; Benmansour, M.; Bernard, C.; Froehlich, W.; Golosov, V.N.; Haciyakupoglu, S.; Hai, P.S.; Klik, A.

    2012-01-01

    This paper summarizes key findings and identifies the main lessons learnt from a 5-year (2002–2008) coordinated research project (CRP) on “Assessing the effectiveness of soil conservation measures for sustainable watershed management and crop production using fallout radionuclides” (D1.50.08), organized and funded by the International Atomic Energy Agency through the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture. The project brought together nineteen participants, from Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Japan, Morocco, Pakistan, Poland, Romania, Russian Federation, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States of America and Vietnam, involved in the use of nuclear techniques and, more particularly, fallout radionuclides (FRN) to assess the relative impacts of different soil conservation measures on soil erosion and land productivity. The overall objective of the CRP was to develop improved land use and management strategies for sustainable watershed management through effective soil erosion control practices, by the use of 137 Cs (half-life of 30.2 years), 210 Pb ex (half-life of 22.3 years) and 7 Be (half-life of 53.4 days) for measuring soil erosion over several spatial and temporal scales. The environmental conditions under which the different research teams applied the tools based on the use of fallout radionuclides varied considerably – a variety of climates, soils, topographies and land uses. Nevertheless, the achievements of the CRP, as reflected in this overview paper, demonstrate that fallout radionuclide-based techniques are powerful tools to assess soil erosion/deposition at several spatial and temporal scales in a wide range of environments, and offer potential to monitor soil quality. The success of the CRP has stimulated an interest in many IAEA Member States in the use of these methodologies to identify factors and practices that can enhance sustainable agriculture and minimize land degradation. - Highlights:

  18. Effects of inorganic and organic amendment on soil chemical properties, enzyme activities, microbial community and soil quality in yellow clayey soil.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhanjun Liu

    Full Text Available Understanding the effects of external organic and inorganic components on soil fertility and quality is essential for improving low-yielding soils. We conducted a field study over two consecutive rice growing seasons to investigate the effect of applying chemical fertilizer (NPK, NPK plus green manure (NPKG, NPK plus pig manure (NPKM, and NPK plus straw (NPKS on the soil nutrient status, enzyme activities involved in C, N, P, and S cycling, microbial community and rice yields of yellow clayey soil. Results showed that the fertilized treatments significantly improved rice yields over the first three experimental seasons. Compared with the NPK treatment, organic amendments produced more favorable effects on soil productivity. Notably, the NPKM treatment exhibited the highest levels of nutrient availability, microbial biomass carbon (MBC, activities of most enzymes and the microbial community. This resulted in the highest soil quality index (SQI and rice yield, indicating better soil fertility and quality. Significant differences in enzyme activities and the microbial community were observed among the treatments, and redundancy analysis showed that MBC and available N were the key determinants affecting the soil enzyme activities and microbial community. The SQI score of the non-fertilized control (0.72 was comparable to that of the NPK (0.77, NPKG (0.81 and NPKS (0.79 treatments but significantly lower compared with NPKM (0.85. The significant correlation between rice yield and SQI suggests that SQI can be a useful to quantify soil quality changes caused by different agricultural management practices. The results indicate that application of NPK plus pig manure is the preferred option to enhance SOC accumulation, improve soil fertility and quality, and increase rice yield in yellow clayey soil.

  19. Assessing floodplain restoration success using soil morphology indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guenat, Claire; Fournier, Bertrand; Bullinger-Weber, Géraldine; Grin, Karin; Pfund, Simona; Mitchell, Edward

    2010-05-01

    Floodplains are complex ecological systems that fulfil different ecological, economic and social functions related to physical, chemical, and biological processes. The fluvial dynamics of most rivers in industrialized countries have been altered to such an extent that floodplains are now one of the most threatened ecosystems worldwide. This adverse impact has been widely recognized and, nowadays, extensive attempts are underway to return rivers to more natural conditions and restore their ecological quality and essential ecosystem functions. As a consequence, the number of restoration projects worldwide is rapidly increasing. However, despite an estimated global cost of more than 1 billion dollars annually, there is a crucial lack of monitoring and quantitative evaluations. Indeed, most projects are never monitored post-restoration (NRC 1992). In Switzerland, only 35% of the projects include a monitoring program mainly based on flora and fauna (BAFU). The design, selection and optimization of indicators for project monitoring are of major importance for sustainable management of riverine ecosystems. However, despite the growing body of literature on potential indicators and criteria for assessing the success of restoration projects no standardised or generally applicable method exists. Furthermore, soils are rarely considered among the possible indicators despite their crucial roles in ecosystems such as decomposition, supplying resources (habitats, gene pool, biomass, and raw materials), and environmental interactions (storage, filtering, transformation). We therefore hypothesized that soils may constitute an appropriate synthetic and functional indicator for the evaluation of river restoration success, especially in the framework of river widening aiming to increase the terrestrial biodiversity. In agreement with the current concepts of river restoration, we propose an assessment tool for floodplain restoration based on three soil morphology criteria (soil

  20. Terrestrial avoidance behaviour tests as screening tool to assess soil contamination

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Loureiro, Susana; Soares, Amadeu M.V.M.; Nogueira, Antonio J.A.

    2005-01-01

    To assess soil quality and risk assessment, bioassays can be useful tools to gauge the potential toxicity of contaminants focusing on their bioavailable fraction. A rapid and sublethal avoidance behaviour test was used as a screening tool with the earthworm Eisenia andrei and the isopod Porcellionides pruinosus, where organisms were exposed during 48 h to several chemicals (lindane, dimethoate and copper sulphate, for isopods and carbendazim, benomyl, dimethoate and copper sulphate for earthworms). Both species were also exposed to soils from an abandoned mine. For all bioassays a statistical approach was used to derive EC 50 values. Isopods and earthworms were able to perceive the presence of toxic compounds and escaping from contaminated to clean soil. Furthermore the behaviour parameter was equally or more sensitive then other sublethal parameters (e.g. reproduction or growth), expressing the advantages of Avoidance Behaviour Tests as screening tools in ERA. - Avoidance Behaviour Tests with earthworms and isopods can be used as screening tools in the evaluation of soil contamination

  1. Soil Quality in Mining Areas Undergoing Ecological Restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dinarowski, Marcela; Casagrande, José Carlos; Bizuti, Denise T. G.; Silva, Luiz Gabriel; Soares, Marcio Roberto; Brancalion, Pedro H. S.

    2014-05-01

    Mining is one of the anthropogenic activities most impactful to natural resources, and can profoundly affect the resilience of ecosystems depending on the level of soil degradation. Ecological restoration has generated promising results even in situations of degradation as intense as those of mining. The aim of this study was to evaluate the quality of the soil in areas explored by the bauxite extraction undergoing restoration: recently mined, seven years, 20 years and native forest. The studied areas are located in the municipality of Poços de Caldas-MG, belonging to ALCOA Alumínio. The mined-out areas for seven and twenty years were uncompressed and received topsoil, liming and fertilization with nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Samples for chemical analyses of soil fertility were carried out at depths of 0-5, 5-10, 10-20, 20-40 and 40-60 cm. Soil quality was evaluated by pondered additive model. The parameters were considered organic matter (0.6) and bases saturation (0.4) for soil fertility function (0.6) and calcium (0.5) and aluminum saturation (0.5) for the function root development (0.4) - (the numbers in parentheses represent the weights attributed). Despite the high content, only the organic matter was not a parameter enough to classify the soil quality, once the native forest has very low base saturation (7%). The soil quality index(SQI) obtained allowed to classify the areas, being the first restored 20 years ago with SQI equal to 0.7 followed of the restored 7 years ago, native forest and newly mined with SQIs equal to 0.6, 04 and 0.3, respectively. The native tropical forests have low soil fertility, keeping by the cycling of nutrients. This demonstrates the need for the degraded areas, especially the mined, are uncompressed to allow storage of water and root development, in addition to the replacement of nutrients and soil acidity correction, especially high levels of aluminum saturation (66%) and low calcium (3 mmolcdm-3).

  2. Pesticides Usage in the Soil Quality Degradation Potential in Wanasari Subdistrict, Brebes, Indonesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tri Joko

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Uncontrolled application of pesticides can contaminate soil and may kill other nontarget organisms. This study aims to determine the usage pattern of pesticides by farmers in Wanasari Subdistrict and study the soil quality degradation potential. This study was a quantitative and qualitative research. Sources of data were collected from observation, questionnaire, and in-depth interview methods. The respondents were shallot farmers who planted shallot during 2013–2016 (n=60. In-depth interview was done with three respondents from the local agricultural extension center (BPP. This study found that there were some different types of insecticides and fungicides that were used in every planting season. The farmers applied pesticides in large amount once every three or four days. They mixed minimally three insecticides and fungicides types about 30–40 ml for each type. Organophosphate residues that were found in soil samples were methidathion residue about 0.014 mg/kg, malathion residue ranging around 0.1370–0.3630 mg/kg, and chlorpyrifos residue in the range of 0.0110–0.0630 mg/kg. The excessive application of pesticides showed the land degradation potential. Soil quality laboratory testing is recommended to ensure the agricultural land condition. Routine assessment of soil quality and pesticide usage control is recommended to keep sustainable ecosystem.

  3. Methodology to assess the radiological sensitivity of soils: Application to Spanish soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Trueba Alonso, C.

    2005-01-01

    A methodology, based on standard physical and chemical soil properties, has been developed to estimate the radiological sensitivity of soils to a 137 C s and 90 S r contamination. In this framework, the soil radiological sensitivity is defined as the soil capability to mobilise or to retain these radionuclides. The purpose of this methodology is to assess, in terms of radiological sensitivity indexes, the behaviour of 137 C s and 90 S r in soils and their fluxes to man, considering two exposure pathways, the external irradiation exposure and the internal exposure from ingestion. The methodology is applied to the great variety of soil types found in Spain, where the soil profile is the reference unit for the assessment. The results for these soil types show, that their basic soil properties are the key to categorise the radiological sensitivity according to the risks considered. The final categorisation allows to identify soils specially sensible and improves the radiological impact assessment predictions. (Author)

  4. Genetic and functional diversity of soil microbial communities associated to grapevine plants and wine quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mocali, Stefano; Fabiani, Arturo; Kuramae, Eiko; de Hollander, Mattias; Kowalchuk, George A.; Vignozzi, Nadia; Valboa, Giuseppe; Costantini, Edoardo

    2013-04-01

    soils. The structure of soil microbial communities was assessed using 16S and 18S rRNA genes pyrosequencing and the determination of some soil microbial properties such as microbial respiration, microbial C-biomass were also determined. The role of both genetic and functional diversity of soil bacterial community on grape physiology and wine quality will be discussed.

  5. Compost improves urban soil and water quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Construction in urban zones compacts the soil, which hinders root growth and infiltration and may increase erosion, which may degrade water quality. The purpose of our study was to determine the whether planting prairie grasses and adding compost to urban soils can mitigate these concerns. We simula...

  6. Multivariate analysis and visualization of soil quality data for no-till systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villamil, M B; Miguez, F E; Bollero, G A

    2008-01-01

    To evidence the multidimensionality of the soil quality concept, we propose the use of data visualization as a tool for exploratory data analyses, model building, and diagnostics. Our objective was to establish the best edaphic indicators for assessing soil quality in four no-till systems with regard to functioning as a medium for crop production and nutrient cycling across two Illinois locations. The compared situations were no-till corn-soybean rotations including either winter fallowing (C/S) or cover crops of rye (Secale cereale; C-R/S-R), hairy vetch (Vicia villosa; C-R/S-V), or their mixture (C-R/S-VR). The dataset included the variables bulk density (BD), penetration resistance (PR), water aggregate stability (WAS), soil reaction (pH), and the contents of soil organic matter (SOM), total nitrogen (TN), soil nitrates (NO(3)-N), and available phosphorus (P). Interactive data visualization along with canonical discriminant analysis (CDA) allowed us to show that WAS, BD, and the contents of P, TN, and SOM have the greatest potential as soil quality indicators in no-till systems in Illinois. It was more difficult to discriminate among WCC rotations than to separate these from C/S, considerably inflating the error rate associated with CDA. We predict that observations of no-till C/S will be classified correctly 51% of the time, while observations of no-till WCC rotations will be classified correctly 74% of the time. High error rates in CDA underscore the complexity of no-till systems and the need in this area for more long-term studies with larger datasets to increase accuracy to acceptable levels.

  7. Linkages between forest soils and water quality and quantity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniel G. Neary; George G. Ice; C. Rhett Jackson

    2009-01-01

    The most sustainable and best quality fresh water sources in the world originate in forest ecosystems. The biological, chemical, and physical characteristics of forest soils are particularly well suited to delivering high quality water to streams, moderating stream hydrology, and providing diverse aquatic habitat. Forest soils feature litter layers and...

  8. Automated Quality Control of in Situ Soil Moisture from the North American Soil Moisture Database Using NLDAS-2 Products

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ek, M. B.; Xia, Y.; Ford, T.; Wu, Y.; Quiring, S. M.

    2015-12-01

    The North American Soil Moisture Database (NASMD) was initiated in 2011 to provide support for developing climate forecasting tools, calibrating land surface models and validating satellite-derived soil moisture algorithms. The NASMD has collected data from over 30 soil moisture observation networks providing millions of in situ soil moisture observations in all 50 states as well as Canada and Mexico. It is recognized that the quality of measured soil moisture in NASMD is highly variable due to the diversity of climatological conditions, land cover, soil texture, and topographies of the stations and differences in measurement devices (e.g., sensors) and installation. It is also recognized that error, inaccuracy and imprecision in the data set can have significant impacts on practical operations and scientific studies. Therefore, developing an appropriate quality control procedure is essential to ensure the data is of the best quality. In this study, an automated quality control approach is developed using the North American Land Data Assimilation System phase 2 (NLDAS-2) Noah soil porosity, soil temperature, and fraction of liquid and total soil moisture to flag erroneous and/or spurious measurements. Overall results show that this approach is able to flag unreasonable values when the soil is partially frozen. A validation example using NLDAS-2 multiple model soil moisture products at the 20 cm soil layer showed that the quality control procedure had a significant positive impact in Alabama, North Carolina, and West Texas. It had a greater impact in colder regions, particularly during spring and autumn. Over 433 NASMD stations have been quality controlled using the methodology proposed in this study, and the algorithm will be implemented to control data quality from the other ~1,200 NASMD stations in the near future.

  9. An assessment of the toxicity of crude oils in soils using earthworms, Microtox reg-sign Solid-Phase and early plant growth methods

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vipond, T.E.; Dorn, P.B.; Salanitro, J.P.; Huesemann, M.H.; Wisniewski, H.L.; Moore, K.O.

    1993-01-01

    The qualitative assessment of soil quality resulting from a chemical or oil spill and/or remediation effort may be obtained by evaluating the toxicity to soil organisms. To enhance the authors understanding of the soil quality resulting from oil spill remediation, they have begun a program to assess three soil toxicity test methods. A heavy, medium and light crude oil were spiked into a sandy soil and a topsoil in the laboratory. The earthworm (Eisenia foetida) 14-d lethality assay, the modified Microbics Microtox Solid-Phase method, and the 14-d agricultural plant seed germination rate and plant growth assay were exposed to combinations of crude oils and soils. Earthworms were 1.4 to 14 times more sensitive than the Microtox and 1.3 to >77 times more sensitive than the plants to the oily soils. Light crude oil in sandy soil was the most toxic to the earthworms. Six percent heavy crude oil in topsoil showed little effect on the three organisms with LC50's ranging from 6.7--7.3 for earthworms to no effects on plants. These bioassay techniques are shown to be sensitive indicators of soil quality and may be used to evaluate the soil quality of remediated oil soils

  10. Amending a loamy sand with three compost types: impact on soil quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Arthur, Emmanuel; Cornelis, W.M.; Vermang, J.

    2011-01-01

    indicators of soil physical quality. Soil samples were taken from a field with annual compost applications of 30 m3/ha for 10 yr and various physico-chemical analyses were undertaken. Results show a significant increase in soil organic carbon (21%) with the VFYW and GW compost types. With SM, soil organic...... carbon increased by 16%. Increased soil macroporosity and water content at saturation with a corresponding decrease in bulk density were observed for all compost types. However, quantification of these improvements using existing soil physical quality indicators such as the ‘S-index’, soil air capacity...... are a viable disposal option for these composts, but new indices of quality are needed for the proper characterization of sandy soils....

  11. Soil Quality Index Determination Models for Restinga Forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonilha, R. M.; Casagrande, J. C.; Soares, R. M.

    2012-04-01

    The Restinga Forest is a set of plant communities in mosaic, determined by the characteristics of their substrates as a result of depositional processes and ages. In this complex mosaic are the physiognomies of restinga forests of high-stage regeneration (high restinga) and middle stage of regeneration (low restinga), each with its plant characteristics that differentiate them. Located on the coastal plains of the Brazilian coast, suffering internal influences both the continental slopes, as well as from the sea. Its soils come from the Quaternary and are subject to constant deposition of sediments. The climate in the coastal type is tropical (Köppen). This work was conducted in four locations: (1) Anchieta Island, Ubatuba, (2) Juréia-Itatins Ecological Station, Iguape, (3) Vila das Pedrinhas, Comprida Island; and (4) Cardoso Island, Cananeia. The soil samples were collect at a depths of 0 to 5, 0-10, 0-20, 20-40 and 40 to 60cm for the chemical and physical analysis. Were studied the additive and pondering additive models to evaluate soil quality. It was concluded: a) the comparative additive model produces quantitative results and the pondering additive model quantitative results; b) as the pondering additive model, the values of Soil Quality Index (SQI) for soils under forest of restinga are low and realistic, demonstrating the small plant biomass production potential of these soils, as well as their low resilience; c) the values of SQI similar to areas with and without restinga forest give quantitative demonstration of the restinga be considered as soil phase; d) restinga forest, probably, is maintained solely by the cycling of nutrients in a closed nutrient cycling; e) for the determination of IQS for soils under restinga vegetation the use of routine chemical analysis is adequate. Keywords: Model, restinga forest, Soil Quality Index (SQI).

  12. Integrated use of biochar: a tool for improving soil and wheat quality of degraded soil under wheat-maize cropping pattern

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ali, K.; Arif, M.; Jan, M.T.

    2015-01-01

    Wheat quality, nutrient uptake and nutrient use efficiency are significantly influenced by nutrient sources and application rate. To investigate the integrative effect of biochar, farmyard manure (FYM) and nitrogen (organic and inorganic soil amendments) in a wheat-maize cropping system, a two year study was designed to assess the interactive outcome of biochar, FYM and nitrogenous fertilizer on wheat nitrogen (N) parameters and associated soil quality parameters. Three levels of biochar (0, 25 and 50 t ha-1), two levels of FYM (5 and 10 t ha-1) and two levels of nitrogen fertilizer (60 and 120 kg ha-1) were used in the study. Biochar application displayed a significantly increased in wheat leaf, stem, straw and grain N content; grain and total N-uptake and grain protein content by 24, 20, 24, 56, 50, 17 and 20% respectively. Similarly, biochar application significantly increased soil total N (TN) and soil mineral N (SMN) by 63 and 40% respectively in second year. FYM application increased grain, leaf and straw N content by 20, 19.5 and 18% respectively, and increased total N-uptake and grain protein content by 49 and 19% respectively. FYM increased soil TN and SMN by 63 and 32% in both the years of the experiment. Mineral N application increased soil TN by over a half and SMN by a third, and grain protein content increased 16%. In contrast, nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) decreased for all amendments relative to the control. However, biochar treated plots improved NUE by 38% compared to plots without biochar. In conclusion, this field experiment has illustrated the potential of biochar to bring about short-term benefits in wheat and soil quality parameters in wheat-maize cropping systems. However, the long-term benefits remain to be quantified. (author)

  13. Biological indices of soil quality: an ecosystem case study of their use

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennifer D. Knoepp; David C. Coleman; D.A. Crossley; James S. Clark

    2000-01-01

    Soil quality indices can help ensure that site productivity and soil function are maintained. Biological indices yield evidence of how a soil functions and interacts with the plants, animals, and climate that comprise an ecosystem. Soil scientists can identify and quantify both chemical and biological soil-quality indicators for ecosystems with a single main function,...

  14. Using soil organic matter fractions as indicators of soil physical quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pulido Moncada, Mansonia A.; Lozano, Z; Delgado, M

    2018-01-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the use of chemical and physical fractions of soil organic matter (SOM), rather than SOM per se, as indicators of soil physical quality (SPQ) based on their effect on aggregate stability (AS). Chemically extracted humic and fulvic acids (HA and FA) were...... used as chemical fractions, and heavy and light fractions (HF and LF) obtained by density separation as physical fractions. The analyses were conducted on medium-textured soils from tropical and temperate regions under cropland and pasture. Results show that soil organic carbon (SOC), SOM fractions...... and AS appear to be affected by land use regardless of the origin of the soils. A general separation of structurally stable and unstable soils between samples of large and small SOC content, respectively, was observed. SOM fractions did not show a better relationship with AS than SOC per se. In both...

  15. Soil quality in the Lomellina area using in vitro models and ecotoxicological assays

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baderna, Diego, E-mail: diego.baderna@marionegri.it [Laboratory of Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology, IRCCS—Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche Mario Negri, Via Giuseppe La Masa 19, 20156 Milan (Italy); Colombo, Andrea [Laboratory of Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology, IRCCS—Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche Mario Negri, Via Giuseppe La Masa 19, 20156 Milan (Italy); Romeo, Margherita [Department of Molecular Biochemistry and Pharmacology, IRCCS—Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche Mario Negri, Via Giuseppe La Masa 19, 20156 Milan (Italy); Cambria, Felice; Teoldi, Federico; Lodi, Marco [Laboratory of Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology, IRCCS—Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche Mario Negri, Via Giuseppe La Masa 19, 20156 Milan (Italy); Diomede, Luisa [Department of Molecular Biochemistry and Pharmacology, IRCCS—Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche Mario Negri, Via Giuseppe La Masa 19, 20156 Milan (Italy); Benfenati, Emilio [Laboratory of Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology, IRCCS—Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche Mario Negri, Via Giuseppe La Masa 19, 20156 Milan (Italy)

    2014-08-15

    Soil quality is traditionally evaluated by chemical characterization to determine levels of pollutants. Biological tools are now employed for soil monitoring since they can take account of the global biological effects induced by all xenobiotics. A combined monitoring of soils based on chemical analyses, human-related in vitro models and ecotoxicological assay was applied in the Lomellina, a semirural area of northern Italy. Chemical characterization indicated overall good quality of the soils, with low levels of toxic and carcinogenic pollutants such as heavy metals, PAHs, PCDD/Fs and PCBs. HepG2 cells were used as a model for the human liver and BALB/c 3T3 cells to evaluate carcinogenic potential. Cells were treated with soil extractable organic matter (EOM) and the MTS assay, DNA release and morphological transformation were selected as endpoints for toxicity and carcinogenicity. Soil EOMs induced dose-dependent inhibition of cell growth at low doses and cytotoxicity only at doses of 500 and 1000 mg soil equivalents/ml. Potential issues for human health can be hypothesized after ingestion of soil samples from some sites. No statistically significant inductions of foci were recorded after exposure to EOMs, indicating that the levels of the soil-extracted organic pollutants were too low to induce carcinogenesis in our experimental conditions. An acute phytotoxicity test and studies on Caenorhabditis elegans were used as ecotoxicological assays for plants and small invertebrates. No significant alerts for ecotoxicity were found. In this proposed case study, HepG2 cells detected differences in the toxicity of soil EOMs, indicating that this cell line could be appropriate to assess the potential harm caused by the ingestion of contaminated soil. Additional information on the carcinogenic potential of mixtures was provided by the cell transformation assay, strengthening the combined approach. - Highlights: • A combined approach for evaluation of soil quality is

  16. Biochar in vineyards: impact on soil quality and crop yield four years after the application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira, Carla; Verheijen, Frank; Puga, João; Keizer, Jacob; Ferreira, António

    2017-04-01

    Biochar is a recalcitrant organic carbon compound, created by biomass heating at high temperatures (300-1000°C) under low oxygen concentrations. Biochar application to agricultural soils has received increasing attention over the last years, due to its climate change mitigation and adaptation potential and reported improved soil properties and functions relevant to agronomic and environmental performance. Reported impacts are linked with increased cation exchange capacity, enhanced nutrient and water retention, and positive influences on soil microbial communities, which influence crop yields. Nevertheless, few studies have focused on mid-to-long term impacts of biochar application. This study investigated the impact of biochar on soil quality and crop yield four years after biochar application in a vineyard in North-Central Portugal. The site has a Mediterranean climate with a strong Atlantic Ocean influence, with mean annual rainfall and temperature of 1100 mm and 15°C, respectively. The soil is a relatively deep ( 80cm) sandy loam Cambisol, with gentle slopes (3°). The experimental design included three treatments: (i) control, without biochar; (ii) high biochar application rate (40 ton/ha); and (iii) biochar compost (40 ton/ha, 10% biochar). Three plots per treatment (2m×3m) were installed in March 2012, using a mini-rotavator (0-15cm depth). In May 2016, soil quality was also assessed through soil surveys and sampling. Penetration resistance was performed at the soil surface with a pocket penetrometer, and soil surface sampling rings were used for bulk density analyses (100 cm3). Bulked soil samples (0-30 cm) were collected in each plot for aggregate stability, microbial biomass (by chloroform fumigation extraction) and net mineralization rate (through photometric determination of non-incubated and incubated samples). Decomposition rate and litter stabilisation was assessed over a 3-month period through the Tea Bag Index (Keuskamp et al., 2013). The number

  17. Effects of Soil Quality Enhancement on Pollinator-Plant Interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yasmin J. Cardoza

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Both biotic and abiotic factors can affect soil quality, which can significantly impact plant growth, productivity, and resistance to pests. However, the effects of soil quality on the interactions of plants with beneficial arthropods, such as pollinators, have not been extensively examined. We studied the effects of vermicompost (earthworm compost, VC soil amendment on behavioral and physiological responses of pollinators to flowers and floral resources, using cucumbers, Cucumis sativus, as our model system. Results from experiments conducted over three field seasons demonstrated that, in at least two out of three years, VC amendment significantly increased visit length, while reducing the time to first discovery. Bumblebee (Bombus impatiens workers that fed on flowers from VC-amended plants had significantly larger and more active ovaries, a measure of nutritional quality. Pollen fractions of flowers from VC-grown plants had higher protein compared to those of plants grown in chemically fertilized potting soil. Nectar sugar content also tended to be higher in flowers from VC-grown plants, but differences were not statistically significant. In conclusion, soil quality enhancement, as achieved with VC amendment in this study, can significantly affect plant-pollinator interactions and directly influences pollinator nutrition and overall performance.

  18. Litter quality impacts short- but not long-term soil carbon dynamics in soil aggregate fractions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gentile, Roberta; Vanlauwe, Bernard; Six, Johan

    2011-04-01

    Complex molecules are presumed to be preferentially stabilized as soil organic carbon (SOC) based on the generally accepted concept that the chemical composition of litter is a major factor in its rate of decomposition. Hence, a direct link between litter quality and SOC quantity has been assumed, accepted, and ultimately incorporated in SOC models. Here, however, we present data from an incubation and field experiment that refutes the influence of litter quality on the quantity of stabilized SOC. Three different qualities of litter (Tithonia diversifolia, Calliandra calothyrsus, and Zea mays stover; 4 Mg C x ha(-1) yr(-1)) with and without the addition of mineral N fertilizer (0 or 120 kg N x ha(-1)season(-1) were added to a red clay Humic Nitisol in a 3-yr field trial and a 1.5-yr incubation experiment. The litters differed in their concentrations of N, lignin, and polyphenols with the ratio of (lignin + polyphenols): N ranging from 3.5 to 9.8 for the field trial and from 2.3 to 4.0 for the incubation experiment in the order of T. diversifolia stabilized after three annual additions in the field trial. Even within the most sensitive soil aggregate fractions, SOC contents and C:N ratios did not differ with litter quality, indicating that litter quality did not influence the mechanisms by which SOC was stabilized. While increasing litter quality displayed faster decomposition and incorporation of C into soil aggregates after 0.25 yr in the incubation study, all litters resulted in equivalent amounts of C stabilized in the soil after 1.5 yr, further corroborating the results of the field trial. The addition of N fertilizer did not affect SOC stabilization in either the field or the incubation trial. Thus, we conclude that, while litter quality controls shorter-term dynamics of C decomposition and accumulation in the soil, longer-term SOC patterns cannot be predicted based on initial litter quality effects. Hence, the formation and stabilization of SOC is more

  19. Assessing the effects of soil liming with dolomitic limestone and sugar foam on soil acidity, leaf nutrient contents, grape yield and must quality in a Mediterranean vineyard

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Olego, M.A.; Visconti, F.; Quiroga, M.J.; Paz, J.M. De; Garzón-Jimeno, E.

    2016-11-01

    Aluminium toxicity has been recognized as one of the most common causes of reduced grape yields in vineyard acid soils. The main aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of two liming materials, i.e. dolomitic lime and sugar foam, on a vineyard cultivated in an acid soil. The effects were studied in two soil layers (0-30 and 30-60 cm), as well as on leaf nutrient contents, must quality properties and grape yield, in an agricultural soil dedicated to Vitis vinifera L. cv. ‘Mencía’ cultivation. Data management and analysis were performed using analysis of variance (ANOVA). As liming material, sugar foam was more efficient than dolomitic limestone because sugar foam promoted the highest decrease in soil acidity properties at the same calcium carbonate equivalent dose. However, potassium contents in vines organs, including leaves and berries, seemed to decrease as a consequence of liming, with a concomitant increase in must total acidity. Soil available phosphorus also decreased as a consequence of liming, especially with sugar foam, though no effects were observed in plants. For these reasons fertilization of this soil with K and P is recommended along with liming. Grape yields in limed soils increased, although non-significantly, by 30%. This research has therefore provided an important opportunity to advance in our understanding of the effects of liming on grape quality and production in acid soils. (Author)

  20. ASSESSMENT OF LAND QUALITY USING ECOPEDOLOGICAL INDICATORS - JEBEL AREA, TIMIŞ COUNTY, ROMANIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Costina Roxana URUIOC

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The studied area is placed in North-East Jebel locality. Based on the physical and chemical characteristics and soil morphology profile, the following types of soil were identified: typical preluvosol, typical and gleyic eutricambosols, luvic solonet, gleysol, gleyic vertisol and gleyic-stagnic vertisol. The assessment of land quality (fertility was determined by bonitation. For the notes of bonitation calculation, the following ecopedological indicatories have been used: annual medium temperature, annual medium precipitations, depth of the underground water, texture in Ap horizon, gleization, pseudogleization, salinization, edafic volume, porosity, soil reaction (pH, humus reserve and content of CaCO3. The way that these indicators influence the notes of bonitation is different from a type of soil to another and the use of land. Thus, for grassland, typical preluvosol, the note of bonitate is 81 and it’s included in class II of quality (favorability, luvic solonet with 63 points in class IV of quality, typical eutricambosols with 58 points and vertisol with 57 points, in class V of quality, gleysol with 32 points and gleyic eutricambosol with 36 points, in class VII of quality. In case of using the land for growing maize, we have the following: typical preluvosol with 90 points which is in class II of quality, typical eutricambosol with 54 points and gleyic vertisol with 60 points, in class V of quality, luvic solonet with 49 points in class VI of quality, gleyic-stagnic vertisol with 35 points, in class VII of quality, gleysol with 24 points and gleyic eutricambosol with 29 points, in class VIII of quality. The notes of bonitation calculation, including them in the favorability classes, showed up that lands from Jebel area are good and very good quality, exception those that develop on gleysol and gleyic eutricambosols soils.

  1. Soil Security Assessment of Tasmania

    Science.gov (United States)

    Field, Damien; Kidd, Darren; McBratney, Alex

    2017-04-01

    The concept of soil security aligns well with the aspirational and marketing policies of the Tasmanian Government, where increased agricultural expansion through new irrigation schemes and multiple-use State managed production forests co-exists beside pristine World Heritage conservation land, a major drawcard of the economically important tourism industry . Regarding the Sustainable Development Gaols (SDG's) this could be seen as a exemplar of the emerging tool for quantification of spatial soil security to effectively protect our soil resource in terms of food (SDG 2.4, 3.9) and water security (SDG 6.4, 6.6), biodiversity maintenance and safeguarding fragile ecosystems (SDG 15.3, 15.9). The recent development and application of Digital Soil Mapping and Assessment capacities in Tasmania to stimulate agricultural production and better target appropriate soil resources has formed the foundational systems that can enable the first efforts in quantifying and mapping Tasmanian Soil Security, in particular the five Soil Security dimensions (Capability, Condition, Capital, Codification and Connectivity). However, to provide a measure of overall soil security, it was necessary to separately assess the State's three major soil uses; Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry. These products will provide an indication of where different activities are sustainable or at risk, where more soil data is needed, and provide a tool to better plan for a State requiring optimal food and fibre production, without depleting its natural soil resources and impacting on the fragile ecosystems supporting environmental benefits and the tourism industry.

  2. Soil Quality Indexing Strategies for Evaluating Sugarcane Expansion in Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cherubin, Maurício R; Karlen, Douglas L; Cerri, Carlos E P; Franco, André L C; Tormena, Cássio A; Davies, Christian A; Cerri, Carlos C

    2016-01-01

    Increasing demand for biofuel has intensified land-use change (LUC) for sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum) expansion in Brazil. Assessments of soil quality (SQ) response to this LUC are essential for quantifying and monitoring sustainability of sugarcane production over time. Since there is not a universal methodology for assessing SQ, we conducted a field-study at three sites within the largest sugarcane-producing region of Brazil to develop a SQ index (SQI). The most common LUC scenario (i.e., native vegetation to pasture to sugarcane) was evaluated using six SQI strategies with varying complexities. Thirty eight soil indicators were included in the total dataset. Two minimum datasets were selected: one using principal component analysis (7 indicators) and the other based on expert opinion (5 indicators). Non-linear scoring curves were used to interpret the indicator values. Weighted and non-weighted additive methods were used to combine individual indicator scores into an overall SQI. Long-term conversion from native vegetation to extensive pasture significantly decreased overall SQ. In contrast, conversion from pasture to sugarcane had no significant impact on overall SQ at the regional scale, but site-specific responses were found. In general, sugarcane production improved chemical attributes (i.e., higher macronutrient levels and lower soil acidity); however it has negative effects on physical and biological attributes (i.e., higher soil compaction and structural degradation as well as lower soil organic carbon (SOC), abundance and diversity of macrofauna and microbial activity). Overall, we found that simple, user-friendly strategies were as effective as more complex ones for identifying SQ changes. Therefore, as a protocol for SQ assessments in Brazilian sugarcane areas, we recommend using a small number of indicators (e.g., pH, P, K, Visual Evaluation of Soil Structure -VESS scores and SOC concentration) and proportional weighting to reflect chemical

  3. Soil Quality Indexing Strategies for Evaluating Sugarcane Expansion in Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cherubin, Maurício R.; Karlen, Douglas L.; Cerri, Carlos E. P.; Franco, André L. C.; Tormena, Cássio A.; Davies, Christian A.; Cerri, Carlos C.

    2016-01-01

    Increasing demand for biofuel has intensified land-use change (LUC) for sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum) expansion in Brazil. Assessments of soil quality (SQ) response to this LUC are essential for quantifying and monitoring sustainability of sugarcane production over time. Since there is not a universal methodology for assessing SQ, we conducted a field-study at three sites within the largest sugarcane-producing region of Brazil to develop a SQ index (SQI). The most common LUC scenario (i.e., native vegetation to pasture to sugarcane) was evaluated using six SQI strategies with varying complexities. Thirty eight soil indicators were included in the total dataset. Two minimum datasets were selected: one using principal component analysis (7 indicators) and the other based on expert opinion (5 indicators). Non-linear scoring curves were used to interpret the indicator values. Weighted and non-weighted additive methods were used to combine individual indicator scores into an overall SQI. Long-term conversion from native vegetation to extensive pasture significantly decreased overall SQ. In contrast, conversion from pasture to sugarcane had no significant impact on overall SQ at the regional scale, but site-specific responses were found. In general, sugarcane production improved chemical attributes (i.e., higher macronutrient levels and lower soil acidity); however it has negative effects on physical and biological attributes (i.e., higher soil compaction and structural degradation as well as lower soil organic carbon (SOC), abundance and diversity of macrofauna and microbial activity). Overall, we found that simple, user-friendly strategies were as effective as more complex ones for identifying SQ changes. Therefore, as a protocol for SQ assessments in Brazilian sugarcane areas, we recommend using a small number of indicators (e.g., pH, P, K, Visual Evaluation of Soil Structure -VESS scores and SOC concentration) and proportional weighting to reflect chemical

  4. Soil Quality Indexing Strategies for Evaluating Sugarcane Expansion in Brazil.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maurício R Cherubin

    Full Text Available Increasing demand for biofuel has intensified land-use change (LUC for sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum expansion in Brazil. Assessments of soil quality (SQ response to this LUC are essential for quantifying and monitoring sustainability of sugarcane production over time. Since there is not a universal methodology for assessing SQ, we conducted a field-study at three sites within the largest sugarcane-producing region of Brazil to develop a SQ index (SQI. The most common LUC scenario (i.e., native vegetation to pasture to sugarcane was evaluated using six SQI strategies with varying complexities. Thirty eight soil indicators were included in the total dataset. Two minimum datasets were selected: one using principal component analysis (7 indicators and the other based on expert opinion (5 indicators. Non-linear scoring curves were used to interpret the indicator values. Weighted and non-weighted additive methods were used to combine individual indicator scores into an overall SQI. Long-term conversion from native vegetation to extensive pasture significantly decreased overall SQ. In contrast, conversion from pasture to sugarcane had no significant impact on overall SQ at the regional scale, but site-specific responses were found. In general, sugarcane production improved chemical attributes (i.e., higher macronutrient levels and lower soil acidity; however it has negative effects on physical and biological attributes (i.e., higher soil compaction and structural degradation as well as lower soil organic carbon (SOC, abundance and diversity of macrofauna and microbial activity. Overall, we found that simple, user-friendly strategies were as effective as more complex ones for identifying SQ changes. Therefore, as a protocol for SQ assessments in Brazilian sugarcane areas, we recommend using a small number of indicators (e.g., pH, P, K, Visual Evaluation of Soil Structure -VESS scores and SOC concentration and proportional weighting to reflect

  5. Assessment of Soil Organic Carbon Stock of Temperate Coniferous Forests in Northern Kashmir

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Davood A. Dar

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available  Soil organic carbon (SOC estimation in temperate forests of the Himalaya is important to estimate their contribution to regional, national and global carbon stocks. Physico chemical properties of soil were quantified to assess soil organic carbon density (SOC and SOC CO2 mitigation density at two soil depths (0-10 and 10-20 cms under temperate forest in the Northern region of Kashmir Himalayas India. The results indicate that conductance, moisture content, organic carbon and organic matter were significantly higher while as pH and bulk density were lower at Gulmarg forest site. SOC % was ranging from 2.31± 0.96 at Gulmarg meadow site to 2.31 ± 0.26 in Gulmarg forest site. SOC stocks in these temperate forests were from 36.39 ±15.40 to 50.09 ± 15.51 Mg C ha-1. The present study reveals that natural vegetation is the main contributor of soil quality as it maintained the soil organic carbon stock. In addition, organic matter is an important indicator of soil quality and environmental parameters such as soil moisture and soil biological activity change soil carbon sequestration potential in temperate forest ecosystems.DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3126/ije.v4i1.12186International Journal of Environment Volume-4, Issue-1, Dec-Feb 2014/15; page: 161-178

  6. Effects of 22 years of re-vegetation on soil quality in the semi-arid ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    STORAGESEVER

    2009-12-15

    Dec 15, 2009 ... Key words: Re-vegetation, soil properties, soil quality index, the Loess Plateau. INTRODUCTION. Soil quality is defined as the capacity of a soil to sustain biological ...... 27: 1673-1683. Famiglietti JS, Rudnicki JW, Rodell M (1998). Variability ... Soil quality: A concept, definition, and framework for evaluation.

  7. Plutonium as a tracer for soil erosion assessment in northeast China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Yihong; Qiao, Jixin; Pan, Shaoming; Hou, Xiaolin; Roos, Per; Cao, Liguo

    2015-04-01

    Soil erosion is one of the most serious environmental and agricultural problems faced by human society. Assessing intensity is an important issue for controlling soil erosion and improving eco-environmental quality. The suitability of the application of plutonium (Pu) as a tracer for soil erosion assessment in northeast China was investigated by comparing with that of 137Cs. Here we build on preliminary work, in which we investigated the potential of Pu as a soil erosion tracer by sampling additional reference sites and potential erosive sites, along the Liaodong Bay region in northeast China, for Pu isotopes and 137Cs. 240Pu/239Pu atomic ratios in all samples were approximately 0.18, which indicated that the dominant source of Pu was the global fallout. Pu showed very similar distribution patterns to those of 137Cs at both uncultivated and cultivated sites. 239+240Pu concentrations in all uncultivated soil cores followed an exponential decline with soil depth, whereas at cultivated sites, Pu was homogenously distributed in plow horizons. Factors such as planted crop types, as well as methods and frequencies of irrigation and tillage were suggested to influence the distribution of radionuclides in cultivated land. The baseline inventories of 239+240Pu and 137Cs were 88.4 and 1688 Bq m(-2) respectively. Soil erosion rates estimated by 239+240Pu tracing method were consistent with those obtained by the 137Cs method, confirming that Pu is an effective tracer with a similar tracing behavior to that of 137Cs for soil erosion assessment. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. An ecosystem approach to assess soil quality in organically and conventionally managed farms in Iceland and Austria

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Leeuwen, J. P.; Lehtinen, T.; Lair, G. J.; Bloem, J.; Hemerik, L.; Ragnarsdóttir, K. V.; Gísladóttir, G.; Newton, J. S.; de Ruiter, P. C.

    2015-01-01

    Intensive agricultural production can be an important driver for the loss of long-term soil quality. For this reason, the European Critical Zone Observatory (CZO) network adopted four pairs of agricultural CZO sites that differ in their management: conventional or organic. The CZO sites include two pairs of grassland farms in Iceland and two pairs of arable farms in Austria. Conventional fields differed from the organic fields in the use of artificial fertilisers and pesticides. Soils of these eight farms were analysed in terms of their physical, chemical, and biological properties, including soil aggregate size distribution, soil organic matter contents, abundance of soil microbes and soil fauna, and taxonomic diversity of soil microarthropods. In Icelandic grasslands, organically farmed soils had larger mean weight diameters of soil aggregates than the conventional farms, while there were no differences on the Austrian farms. Organic farming did not systematically influence organic matter contents or composition, nor soil carbon and nitrogen contents. Also, soil food web structures, in terms of presence of trophic groups of soil organisms, were highly similar among all farms, indicating a low sensitivity of trophic structure to land use or climate. However, soil organism biomass, especially of bacteria and nematodes, was consistently higher on organic farms than on conventional farms. Within the microarthropods, taxonomic diversity was systematically higher in the organic farms compared to the conventional farms. This difference was found across countries and farm, crop, and soil types. The results do not show systematic differences in physical and chemical properties between organic and conventional farms, but confirm that organic farming can enhance soil biomass and that microarthropod diversity is a sensitive and consistent indicator for land management.

  9. Plutonium as a tracer for soil erosion assessment in northeast China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xu, Yihong [School of Geographic and Oceanographic Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210023 (China); Qiao, Jixin [Center for Nuclear Technologies, Technical University of Denmark, Risø Campus, DK-4000 Roskilde (Denmark); Pan, Shaoming, E-mail: span@nju.edu.cn [School of Geographic and Oceanographic Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210023 (China); Hou, Xiaolin, E-mail: xiho@dtu.dk [Center for Nuclear Technologies, Technical University of Denmark, Risø Campus, DK-4000 Roskilde (Denmark); Xi' an AMS Center, SKLLQG, Institute of Earth Environment, CAS, Xi' an 710075 (China); Roos, Per [Center for Nuclear Technologies, Technical University of Denmark, Risø Campus, DK-4000 Roskilde (Denmark); Cao, Liguo [School of Geographic and Oceanographic Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210023 (China)

    2015-04-01

    Soil erosion is one of the most serious environmental and agricultural problems faced by human society. Assessing intensity is an important issue for controlling soil erosion and improving eco-environmental quality. The suitability of the application of plutonium (Pu) as a tracer for soil erosion assessment in northeast China was investigated by comparing with that of {sup 137}Cs. Here we build on preliminary work, in which we investigated the potential of Pu as a soil erosion tracer by sampling additional reference sites and potential erosive sites, along the Liaodong Bay region in northeast China, for Pu isotopes and {sup 137}Cs. {sup 240}Pu/{sup 239}Pu atomic ratios in all samples were approximately 0.18, which indicated that the dominant source of Pu was the global fallout. Pu showed very similar distribution patterns to those of {sup 137}Cs at both uncultivated and cultivated sites. {sup 239+240}Pu concentrations in all uncultivated soil cores followed an exponential decline with soil depth, whereas at cultivated sites, Pu was homogenously distributed in plow horizons. Factors such as planted crop types, as well as methods and frequencies of irrigation and tillage were suggested to influence the distribution of radionuclides in cultivated land. The baseline inventories of {sup 239+240}Pu and {sup 137}Cs were 88.4 and 1688 Bq m{sup −2} respectively. Soil erosion rates estimated by {sup 239+240}Pu tracing method were consistent with those obtained by the {sup 137}Cs method, confirming that Pu is an effective tracer with a similar tracing behavior to that of {sup 137}Cs for soil erosion assessment. - Highlights: • The potential for the use of Pu as a soil erosion tracer was investigated. • Pu would be a good tracer given its long half-life. • Depth profiles of Pu in soils were systematically studied and compared to {sup 137}Cs. • Pu is an effective soil erosion tracer with behavior similar to that of {sup 137}Cs. • Thus, Pu provides a means of

  10. Innovative Soil Management Practices (SMP) Assessment in Europe and China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barão, Lúcia

    2017-04-01

    The growing world population poses a major challenge to global agricultural food and feed production through the pressure to increase agricultural outputs either by increasing the land area dedicated to agriculture or by productivity increases. Whether in developed or developing regions, agricultural intensification based on conventional approaches has resulted in severe environmental impacts and innovative soil management practices are needed to halter ongoing soil degradation and promote sustainable land management capable to produce more from less. The iSQAPER project - Interactive Soil Quality Assessment in Europe and China for Agricultural Productivity and Environmental Resilience - aims to develop a Soil Quality app (SQAPP) linking soil and agricultural management practices to soil quality indicators. This easy friendly tool will provide a direct and convenient way to advise farmers and other suitable actors in this area, regarding the best management practices to be adopted in very specific and local conditions. In this particular study from iSQAPER, we aimed to identify the most promising innovative soil management practices (SMP) currently used and its geographical distribution along different pedo-climatic regions in Europe (Boreal, Atlantic, Mediterranean Temperate, Mediterranean Semi-Arid, Southern Sub-Continental and Northern Sub-Continental) and China (Middle Temperate, Warm temperate and Central Asia Tropical). So far we have identified 155 farms where innovative SMP's are used, distributed along 4 study site regions located in China (Qiyang, Suining, Zhifanggou and Gongzhuling) and 10 study site regions located in Europe (The Netherlands, France, Portugal, Spain, Greece, Slovenia, Hungary, Romania, Poland and Estonia) and covering the major pedo-climatic regions. From this identification we concluded that the most used innovative SMP's in the study site regions in Europe are Manuring & Composting (14%), Min-till (14%), Crop rotation (12

  11. 137Cs applicability to soil erosion assessment: theoretical and empirical model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Andrello, Avacir Casanova

    2004-02-01

    The soil erosion processes acceleration and the increase of soil erosion rates due to anthropogenic perturbation in soil-weather-vegetation equilibrium has influenced in the soil quality and environment. So, the possibility to assess the amplitude and severity of soil erosion impact on the productivity and quality of soil is important so local scale as regional and global scale. Several models have been developed to assess the soil erosion so qualitative as quantitatively. 137 Cs, an anthropogenic radionuclide, have been very used to assess the superficial soil erosion process Empirical and theoretical models were developed on the basis of 137 Cs redistribution as indicative of soil movement by erosive process These models incorporate many parameters that can influence in the soil erosion rates quantification by 137 Cs redistribution. Statistical analysis was realized on the models recommended by IAEA to determinate the influence that each parameter generates in results of the soil redistribution. It was verified that the most important parameter is the 137 Cs redistribution, indicating the necessity of a good determination in the 137 Cs inventory values with a minimum deviation associated with these values. After this, it was associated a 10% deviation in the reference value of 137 Cs inventory and the 5% in the 137 Cs inventory of the sample and was determinate the deviation in results of the soil redistribution calculated by models. The results of soil redistribution was compared to verify if there was difference between the models, but there was not difference in the results determinate by models, unless above 70% of 137 Cs loss. Analyzing three native forests and an area of the undisturbed pasture in the Londrina region, can be verified that the 137 Cs spatial variability in local scale was 15%. Comparing the 137 Cs inventory values determinate in the three native forest with the 137 Cs inventory value determinate in the area of undisturbed pasture in the

  12. Soil Phosphorus Storage Capacity for Environmental Risk Assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vimala D. Nair

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Reliable techniques must be developed to predict phosphorus (P storage and release from soils of uplands, ditches, streams, and wetlands in order to better understand the natural, anthropogenic, and legacy sources of P and their impact on water quality at a field/plot as well as larger scales. A concept called the “safe” soil phosphorus storage capacity (SPSC that is based on a threshold phosphorus saturation ratio (PSR has been developed; the PSR is the molar ratio of P to Fe and Al, and SPSC is a PSR-based calculation of the remaining soil P storage capacity that captures risks arising from previous loading as well as inherently low P sorption capacity of a soil. Zero SPSC amounts to a threshold value below which P runoff or leaching risk increases precipitously. In addition to the use of the PSR/SPSC concept for P risk assessment and management, and its ability to predict isotherm parameters such as the Langmuir strength of bonding, KL, and the equilibrium P concentration, EPC0, this simple, cost-effective, and quantitative approach has the potential to be used as an agronomic tool for more precise application of P for plant uptake.

  13. Incorporating biomarkers in ecological risk assessment of chemical contaminants of soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. J. Reinecke

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Soil is an important but complex natural resource which is increasingly used as sink for chemicals. The monitoring of soil quality and the assessment of risks posed by contaminants have become crucial. This study deals with the potential use of biomarkers in the monitoring of soils and the assessment of risk resulting from contamination. Apart from an overview of the existing literature on biomarkers, the results of various of our field experiments in South African soils are discussed. Biomarkers may have potential in the assessment of risk because they can indicate at an early stage that exposure has taken place and that a toxic response has been initiated. It is therefore expected that early biomarkers will play an increasing role as diagnostic tools for determining exposure to chemicals and the resulting effects. They may have predictive value that can assist in the prevention or minimising of risks. The aim of this study was to investigate the possibilities of using our results on biomarker responses of soil dwelling organisms to predict changes at higher organisational levels (which may have ecological implications. Our recent experimental results on the evaluation of various biomarkers in both the laboratory and the field are interpreted and placed in perspective within the broader framework of response biology. The aim was further to contribute to the development and application of biomarkers in regulatory risk assessment schemes of soils. This critical review of our own and recent literature on biomarkers in ecotoxicology leads to the conclusion that biomarkers can, under certain conditions, be useful tools in risk assessment. Clear relationships between contamination loads in soil organisms and certain biomarker responses were determined in woodlice, earthworms and terrestrial snails. Clear correlations were also established in field experiments between biomarker responses and changes at the population level. This indicated that, in

  14. Soil quality indicator responses to row crop, grazed pasture, and agroforestry buffer management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Incorporation of trees and establishment of grass buffers within agroecosystems are management practices shown to enhance soil quality. Soil enzyme activities and water stable aggregates (WSA) have been identified as sensitive soil quality indicators to evaluate early responses to soil management. ...

  15. Exploring differences of soil quality as related to management in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    soil, vegetation and biodiversity) and productivity. Vegetation condition in contrasting land-use management systems is well documented in semiarid rangelands, but relatively little information is available on soil quality. This study explores soil ...

  16. Assessment of Soil Nutrient Status of Identified Soil Units in Selected ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Journal of Technology and Education in Nigeria ... Assessment of Soil Nutrient Status of Identified Soil Units in Selected Communities in Three Local Government Areas ... Available phosphorus content in the soils is generally high with values ...

  17. Spiked natural matrix materials as quality assessment samples

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feiner, M.S.; Sanderson, C.G.

    1988-01-01

    The Environmental Measurements Laboratory has conducted the Quality Assessment Program since 1976 to evaluate the quality of the environmental radioactivity data, which is reported to the Department of Energy by as many as 42 commercial contractors involved in nuclear work. In this program, matrix materials of known radionuclide concentrations are distributed routinely to the contractors and the reported results are compared. The five matrices used are: soil, vegetation, animal tissue, water and filter paper. Environmental soil, vegetation and animal tissue are used, but the water and filter paper samples are prepared by spiking with known amounts of standard solutions traceable to the National Bureau of Standards. A summary of results is given to illustrate the successful operation of the program. Because of the difficulty and high cost of collecting large samples of natural matrix material and to increase the versatility of the program, an attempt was recently made to prepare the soil, vegetation and animal tissue samples with spiked solutions. A description of the preparation of these reference samples and the results of analyses are presented along with a discussion of the pitfalls and advantages of this approach. 19 refs.; 6 tabs

  18. Effects of hand-hoe tilled conservation farming on soil quality and carbon stocks under on-farm conditions in Zambia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Martinsen, V; Shitumbanuma, V; Mulder, J

    2017-01-01

    Conservation farming (CF) has been promoted in Zambia since the 1980s. Despite long-term practice of CF in Zambia, its effect on soil fertility, including the storage of soil organic matter (SOM), on smallholder farms are inconclusive. Here, we assess the effect of CF as compared to conventional....... Overall, our results show small differences in the soil quality parameters between the CF and conventional practices at smallholder farms after maximum 12 years since adoption of CF....... tillage on soil quality parameters on smallholder farms in the Eastern province (EP, 20 sites, two to six years of CF) and Central province (CP, 20 sites, four to twelve years of CF) in Zambia. Soils under CF (minimum tillage hoe basins, crop rotation and residue retention) were compared with adjacent...

  19. Assessment of integrated watershed health based on the natural environment, hydrology, water quality, and aquatic ecology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. R. Ahn

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Watershed health, including the natural environment, hydrology, water quality, and aquatic ecology, is assessed for the Han River basin (34 148 km2 in South Korea by using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT. The evaluation procedures follow those of the Healthy Watersheds Assessment by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA. Six components of the watershed landscape are examined to evaluate the watershed health (basin natural capacity: stream geomorphology, hydrology, water quality, aquatic habitat condition, and biological condition. In particular, the SWAT is applied to the study basin for the hydrology and water-quality components, including 237 sub-watersheds (within a standard watershed on the Korea Hydrologic Unit Map along with three multipurpose dams, one hydroelectric dam, and three multifunction weirs. The SWAT is calibrated (2005–2009 and validated (2010–2014 by using each dam and weir operation, the flux-tower evapotranspiration, the time-domain reflectometry (TDR soil moisture, and groundwater-level data for the hydrology assessment, and by using sediment, total phosphorus, and total nitrogen data for the water-quality assessment. The water balance, which considers the surface–groundwater interactions and variations in the stream-water quality, is quantified according to the sub-watershed-scale relationship between the watershed hydrologic cycle and stream-water quality. We assess the integrated watershed health according to the U.S. EPA evaluation process based on the vulnerability levels of the natural environment, water resources, water quality, and ecosystem components. The results indicate that the watershed's health declined during the most recent 10-year period of 2005–2014, as indicated by the worse results for the surface process metric and soil water dynamics compared to those of the 1995–2004 period. The integrated watershed health tended to decrease farther downstream within the watershed.

  20. Enchytraeids as indicator of soil quality in temporary organic grass-clover leys under contrasting management

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maraldo, Kristine; Schmelz, Rüdiger; Larsen, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    One objective in organic farming is to sustain the quality of the soil resource. Because enchytraeids are an important soil faunal component, they stand as bioindicators of soil quality. We tested this candidature in a field experiment on loamy sand soil with 1- and 4-year old grass-clover leys...... interactions among soil physical, chemical and biological properties suggest that enchytraeid abundance is not a feasible stand-alone indicator of management impacts on soil quality in temporary grass-clover leys but may candidate as one of several biological key parameters in more comprehensive soil quality...

  1. Comment on “Modeling Miscanthus in the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) to Simulate Its Water Quality Effects As a Bioenergy Crop”

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang, Xuesong; Izaurralde, Roberto C.; Arnold, J. G.; Sammons, N. B.; Manowitz, David H.; Thomson, Allison M.; Williams, J.R.

    2011-07-01

    In this paper, the authors comment on several mistakes made in a journal paper "Modeling Miscanthus in the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) to Simulate Its Water Quality Effects As a Bioenergy Crop" published on Environmental Scienece & Technology, based on field measurements from Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center, Carbon Sequestration in Terrestrial Ecosystems, and published literature. Our comment has led to the development of another version of SWAT to include better process based description of radiation use efficiency and root-shoot growth.

  2. Assessing the ecological long-term impact of wastewater irrigation on soil and water based on bioassays and chemical analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richter, Elisabeth; Hecht, Fabian; Schnellbacher, Nadine; Ternes, Thomas A; Wick, Arne; Wode, Florian; Coors, Anja

    2015-11-01

    The reuse of treated wastewater for irrigation and groundwater recharge can counteract water scarcity and reduce pollution of surface waters, but assessing its environmental risk should likewise consider effects associated to the soil. The present study therefore aimed at determining the impact of wastewater irrigation on the habitat quality of water after soil passage and of soil after percolation by applying bioassays and chemical analysis. Lab-scale columns of four different soils encompassing standard European soil and three field soils of varying characteristics and pre-contamination were continuously percolated with treated wastewater to simulate long-term irrigation. Wastewater and its percolates were tested for immobilization of Daphnia magna and growth inhibition of green algae (Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata) and water lentils (Lemna minor). The observed phytotoxicity of the treated wastewater was mostly reduced by soil passage, but in some percolates also increased for green algae. Chemical analysis covering an extensive set of wastewater-born organic pollutants demonstrated that many of them were considerably reduced by soil passage, particularly through peaty soils. Taken together, these results indicated that wastewater-born phytotoxic substances may be removed by soil passage, while existing soil pollutants (e.g. metals) may leach and impair percolate quality. Soils with and without wastewater irrigation were tested for growth of plants (Avena sativa, Brassica napus) and soil bacteria (Arthrobacter globiformis) and reproduction of collembolans (Folsomia candida) and oligochaetes (Enchytraeus crypticus, Eisenia fetida). The habitat quality of the standard and two field soils appeared to be deteriorated by wastewater percolation for at least one organism (enchytraeids, plants or bacteria), while for two pre-contaminated field soils it also was improved (for plants and/or enchytraeids). Wastewater percolation did not seem to raise soil concentrations

  3. The effect of soil biodiversity on soil quality after agricultural reclamation at the eastern coast of China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiaohan; Yang, Jianghua; Pu, Lijie; Chen, Xinjian

    2017-04-01

    Large area of tidal flats in Chinese coast has been reclaimed to support agriculture and urban development because of rapid population and economic growth. Knowledge of soil development mechanisms is essential for efficient management of land resources in coastal zone. So far, most studies have focused on consequences of soil physico-chemical properties on soil quality evolution after tideland reclamation for cultivation; yet a large part of soil bioprocess drives many soil processes. The effect of organism composition on the performance of soil development remains unclear. The purpose of our work was to reveal the organism composition change and its influence on soil quality impotent. In this study, we choose seven reclamation districts along a chronosequence in eastern coast of China, which were respectively reclaimed in 1956, 1971, 1980, 1997, 2009, 2013 and unenclosed tidal flat. The latest districts reclaimed in 2013 were left to succession fallow which were covered with halophytic vegetation and the rest districts were agriculturally managed. Soil samples at 0-20 cm were collected in each district. Soil physical, chemical and biological properties and wheat yields were measured. The result showed after the transformation from tidal flat to cropland, longer tillage time (>5 year) lead to higher soil clay and silt, SOC contents and lower bulk density, while soil clay and C contents declined within the first 5 years after reclamation. Agricultural reclamation significantly improved SOC contents of 0-20 cm depth form 0.11±0.05% to 0.77±0.10%. It needs about 35 years to achieve stable yield level after reclamation. Meanwhile, the soil community composition changed strongly over time. More significant relationships were found among soil physicochemical properties and bacteria community. And the variation trend of soil community richness (chao1) is similar to soil C contents, dropped at first 5 years and then significantly increased. Our results indicate that the

  4. Comprehensive assessment of regional selenium resources in soils based on the analytic hierarchy process: Assessment system construction and case demonstration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Ruoyu; Song, Shuai; Shi, Yajing; Shi, Yajuan; Lu, Yonglong; Zheng, Xiaoqi; Xu, Xiangbo; Wang, Yurong; Han, Xuesong

    2017-12-15

    The redundancy or deficiency of selenium in soils can cause adverse effects on crops and even threaten human health. It was necessary to assess selenium resources with a rigorous scientific appraisal. Previous studies of selenium resource assessment were usually carried out using a single index evaluation. A multi-index evaluation method (analytic hierarchy process) was used in this study to establish a comprehensive assessment system based on consideration of selenium content, soil nutrients and soil environmental quality. The criteria for the comprehensive assessment system were classified by summing critical values in the standards with weights and a Geographical Information System was used to reflect the regional distribution of the assessment results. Boshan, a representative region for developing selenium-rich agriculture, was taken as a case area and classified into Zone I-V, which suggested priority areas for developing selenium-rich agriculture. Most parts of the North and Midlands of Boshan were relatively suitable for development of selenium-rich agriculture. Soils in south fractions were contaminated by Cd, PAHs, HCHs and DDTs, in which it was forbidden to farm. This study was expected to provide the basis for developing selenium-rich agriculture and an example for comprehensive evaluation of relevant resources in a region. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Acid sulfate soils and human health--a Millennium Ecosystem Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ljung, Karin; Maley, Fiona; Cook, Angus; Weinstein, Philip

    2009-11-01

    Acid sulfate soils have been described as the "nastiest soils on earth" because of their strong acidity, increased mobility of potentially toxic elements and limited bioavailability of nutrients. They only cover a small area of the world's total problem soils, but often have significant adverse effects on agriculture, aquaculture and the environment on a local scale. Their location often coincides with high population density areas along the coasts of many developing countries. As a result, their negative impacts on ecosystems can have serious implications to those least equipped for coping with the low crop yields and reduced water quality that can result from acid sulfate soil disturbance. The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment called on by the United Nations in 2000 emphasised the importance of ecosystems for human health and well-being. These include the service they provide as sources of food and water, through the control of pollution and disease, as well as for the cultural services ecosystems provide. While the problems related to agriculture, aquaculture and the environment have been the focus of many acid sulfate soil management efforts, the connection to human health has largely been ignored. This paper presents the potential health issues of acid sulfate soils, in relation to the ecosystem services identified in the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. It is recognised that significant implications on food security and livelihood can result, as well as on community cohesiveness and the spread of vector-borne disease. However, the connection between these outcomes and acid sulfate soils is often not obvious and it is therefore argued that the impact of such soils on human well-being needs to be recognised in order to raise awareness among the public and decision makers, to in turn facilitate proper management and avoid potential human ill-health.

  6. Assessing water quality trends in catchments with contrasting hydrological regimes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherriff, Sophie C.; Shore, Mairead; Mellander, Per-Erik

    2016-04-01

    Environmental resources are under increasing pressure to simultaneously achieve social, economic and ecological aims. Increasing demand for food production, for example, has expanded and intensified agricultural systems globally. In turn, greater risks of diffuse pollutant delivery (suspended sediment (SS) and Phosphorus (P)) from land to water due to higher stocking densities, fertilisation rates and soil erodibility has been attributed to deterioration of chemical and ecological quality of aquatic ecosystems. Development of sustainable and resilient management strategies for agro-ecosystems must detect and consider the impact of land use disturbance on water quality over time. However, assessment of multiple monitoring sites over a region is challenged by hydro-climatic fluctuations and the propagation of events through catchments with contrasting hydrological regimes. Simple water quality metrics, for example, flow-weighted pollutant exports have potential to normalise the impact of catchment hydrology and better identify water quality fluctuations due to land use and short-term climate fluctuations. This paper assesses the utility of flow-weighted water quality metrics to evaluate periods and causes of critical pollutant transfer. Sub-hourly water quality (SS and P) and discharge data were collected from hydrometric monitoring stations at the outlets of five small (~10 km2) agricultural catchments in Ireland. Catchments possess contrasting land uses (predominantly grassland or arable) and soil drainage (poorly, moderately or well drained) characteristics. Flow-weighted water quality metrics were calculated and evaluated according to fluctuations in source pressure and rainfall. Flow-weighted water quality metrics successfully identified fluctuations in pollutant export which could be attributed to land use changes through the agricultural calendar, i.e., groundcover fluctuations. In particular, catchments with predominantly poor or moderate soil drainage

  7. Impact of model uncertainty on soil quality standards for cadmium in rice paddy fields

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roemkens, P.F.A.M.; Brus, D.J.; Guo, H.Y.; Chu, C.L.; Chiang, C.M.; Koopmans, G.F.

    2011-01-01

    At present, soil quality standards used for agriculture do not consider the influence of pH and CEC on the uptake of pollutants by crops. A database with 750 selected paired samples of cadmium (Cd) in soil and paddy rice was used to calibrate soil to plant transfer models using the soil metal content, pH, and CEC or soil Cd and Zn extracted by 0.01 M CaCl 2 as explanatory variables. The models were validated against a set of 2300 data points not used in the calibration. These models were then used inversely to derive soil quality standards for Japonica and Indica rice cultivars based on the food quality standards for rice. To account for model uncertainty, strict soil quality standards were derived considering a maximum probability that rice exceeds the food quality standard equal to 10 or 5%. Model derived soil standards based on Aqua Regia ranged from less than 0.3 mg kg -1 for Indica at pH 4.5 to more than 6 mg kg -1 for Japonica-type cultivars in clay soils at pH 7. Based on the CaCl 2 extract, standards ranged from 0.03 mg kg -1 Cd for Indica cultivars to 0.1 mg kg -1 Cd for Japonica cultivars. For both Japonica and Indica-type cultivars, the soil quality standards must be reduced by a factor of 2 to 3 to obtain the strict standards. The strong impact of pH and CEC on soil quality standards implies that it is essential to correct for soil type when deriving national or local standards. Validation on the remaining 2300 samples indicated that both types of models were able to accurately predict (> 92%) whether rice grown on a specific soil will meet the food quality standard used in Taiwan. - Research highlights: → Cadmium uptake by Japonica and Indica rice varieties depends on soil pH and CEC. → Food safety based soil standards range from 0.3 (Indica) to 6 mg kg -1 (Japonica). → Model uncertainty leads to strict soil standards of less than 0.1 mg kg -1 for Indica. → Soil pH and CEC should be considered to obtain meaningful standards for agriculture.

  8. Study on a pattern classification method of soil quality based on simplified learning sample dataset

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jiahua; Liu, S.; Hu, Y.; Tian, Y.

    2011-01-01

    Based on the massive soil information in current soil quality grade evaluation, this paper constructed an intelligent classification approach of soil quality grade depending on classical sampling techniques and disordered multiclassification Logistic regression model. As a case study to determine the learning sample capacity under certain confidence level and estimation accuracy, and use c-means algorithm to automatically extract the simplified learning sample dataset from the cultivated soil quality grade evaluation database for the study area, Long chuan county in Guangdong province, a disordered Logistic classifier model was then built and the calculation analysis steps of soil quality grade intelligent classification were given. The result indicated that the soil quality grade can be effectively learned and predicted by the extracted simplified dataset through this method, which changed the traditional method for soil quality grade evaluation. ?? 2011 IEEE.

  9. Quality Improvement of the Satellite Soil Moisture Products by Fusing In Situ and GNSS-R Observation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Q.; Xu, H.; Li, T.; Shen, H.; Zhang, L.

    2017-12-01

    model fitted ubRMSE decrease to 0.068 for SMOS and 0.071 for SMAP, respectively. The assessment of the model indicates that the approach used in this study has the capacity to provide reasonable information for improving the quality of the satellite-derived soil moisture products in western continental U.S.

  10. Soil quality in a cropland soil treated with wood ash containing charcoal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omil, Beatriz; Balboa, Miguel A.; Fonturbel, M. Teresa; Gartzia-Bengoetxea, Nahia; Arias-González, Ander; Vega, Jose A.; Merino, Agustin

    2014-05-01

    The strategy of the European Union "Europe 2020" states that by 2020, 20% of final energy consumption must come from renewables. In this scenario, there is an increasing use of biomass utilization for energy production. Indeed, it is expected that the production of wood-ash will increase in coming years. Wood ash, a mixture of ash and charcoal, generated as a by-product of biomass combustion in power plants, can be applied to soil to improve the soil quality and crop production. Since the residue contains significant content of charcoal, the application of mixed wood ash may also improve the SOM content and soil quality in the long term, in soils degraded as a consequence of intensive management. The objective of this study was asses the changes in SOM quality and soil properties in a degraded soils treated with wood ash containing charcoal. The study was carried out in a field devoted to cereal crops during the last decades. The soil was acidic (pH 4.5) with a low SOC content (3 %) and fine texture. The experiment was based on a randomised block design with four replicates. Each block included the following four treatments: Control, 16 Mg fly wood ash ha-1, 16 Mg mixed wood ash ha-1 (16 Mg) and 32 Mg mixed wood ash ha-1 (32 Mg). The application was carried out once. The ash used in the study was obtained from a thermal power plant and was mainly derived from the combustion of Pinus radiata bark and branches. The wood ash is highly alkaline (pH= 10), contains 10 % of highly condensed black carbon (atomic H/C ratio solid state 13C CPMAS NMR and Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC). These techniques were applied in bulk samples and aggregates of different sizes. The changes in microbial activity were studied by analysis of microbial biomass C and basal respiration. The soil bacterial community was studied by the Biolog method. Several physical properties, such soil aggregate distribution, hydraulic conductivity and available water contente were also determined

  11. Assessment of trace element accumulation by earthworms in an orchard soil remediation study using soil amendments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Centofantia, Tiziana; Chaney, Rufus L.; Beyer, W. Nelson; McConnell, Laura L.; Davis, A. P.; Jackson, Dana

    2016-01-01

    This study assessed potential bioaccumulation of various trace elements in grasses and earthworms as a consequence of soil incorporation of organic amendments for in situ remediation of an orchard field soil contaminated with organochlorine and Pb pesticide residues. In this experiment, four organic amendments of differing total organic carbon content and quality (two types of composted manure, composted biosolids, and biochar) were added to a contaminated orchard field soil, planted with two types of grasses, and tested for their ability to reduce bioaccumulation of organochlorine pesticides and metals in earthworms. The experiment was carried out in 4-L soil microcosms in a controlled environment for 90 days. After 45 days of orchardgrass or perennial ryegrass growth, Lumbricus terrestris L. were introduced to the microcosms and exposed to the experimental soils for 45 days before the experiment was ended. Total trace element concentrations in the added organic amendments were below recommended safe levels and their phytoavailablity and earthworm availability remained low during a 90-day bioremediation study. At the end of the experiment, total tissue concentrations of Cu, Cd, Mn, Pb, and Zn in earthworms and grasses were below recommended safe levels. Total concentrations of Pb in test soil were similar to maximum background levels of Pb recorded in soils in the Eastern USA (100 mg kg−1 d.w.) because of previous application of orchard pesticides. Addition of aged dairy manure compost and presence of grasses was effective in reducing the accumulation of soil-derived Pb in earthworms, thus reducing the risk of soil Pb entry into wildlife food chains.

  12. Modeled Impacts of Cover Crops and Vegetative Barriers on Corn Stover Availability and Soil Quality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ian J. Bonner; David J. Muth Jr.; Joshua B. Koch; Douglas L. Karlen

    2014-06-01

    Environmentally benign, economically viable, and socially acceptable agronomic strategies are needed to launch a sustainable lignocellulosic biofuel industry. Our objective was to demonstrate a landscape planning process that can ensure adequate supplies of corn (Zea mays L.) stover feedstock while protecting and improving soil quality. The Landscape Environmental Assessment Framework (LEAF) was used to develop land use strategies that were then scaled up for five U.S. Corn Belt states (Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, and Minnesota) to illustrate the impact that could be achieved. Our results show an annual sustainable stover supply of 194 million Mg without exceeding soil erosion T values or depleting soil organic carbon [i.e., soil conditioning index (SCI)?>?0] when no-till, winter cover crop, and vegetative barriers were incorporated into the landscape. A second, more rigorous conservation target was set to enhance soil quality while sustainably harvesting stover. By requiring erosion to be <1/2 T and the SCI-organic matter (OM) subfactor to be >?0, the annual sustainable quantity of harvestable stover dropped to148 million Mg. Examining removal rates by state and soil resource showed that soil capability class and slope generally determined the effectiveness of the three conservation practices and the resulting sustainable harvest rate. This emphasizes that sustainable biomass harvest must be based on subfield management decisions to ensure soil resources are conserved or enhanced, while providing sufficient biomass feedstock to support the economic growth of bioenergy enterprises.

  13. The soil and air quality connection: abstracts of the 36. Alberta soil science workshop

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1999-07-01

    The workshop has the following general categories of papers (with abstracts only): plenary session, volunteer session I; volunteer session II; technical session I - soil reclamation, and soil fertility; technical session II - soil conservation, and soil information; and poster presentations. Twelve individual papers are abstracted/indexed as follows: (1) greenhouse gas emissions from Canadian prairie agriculture; (2) acid deposition, critical loads, soil sensitivity, and environmental responses; (3) the downwind health risks of intensive livestock production; (4) nitrous oxide emission as affected by tillage practices and fertilizer association; (5) a conceptual system for assigning sensitivities to potentially acidifying inputs to soils in the oil sands regions of Alberta; (6) a particle tracer method for soil aggregation and translocation studies; (7) DNA adduct quantification in Eisenia fetida after subchronic exposures to creosote contaminated soils; (8) the physical distribution of anthropogenic mercury in nine contaminated soils; (9) bioremediation of hydrocarbon-contaminated soils: are treatability and ecotoxicity endpoints related?; (10) land reclamation using oil sand processing tailings: a field study; (11) assessment of toxicity based criteria for disposal of drilling waste in oil and gas exploration; and (12) toxicity assessment of approved drilling mud additives in the oil and gas sector.

  14. Influence Of Soil Type On Yield And Quality Of Different Apple Cultivars

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alina Viorica ILIE

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to determine influence of different soil type on apple yield and quality. To investigate the variation in fruit quality, apples were harvested at commercial maturity on two different soil type. The investigations was conducted in experimental apple orchards located in Focsani region on two different soil type: luvic  brown typical and  luvic brown pseudogleizate. Fruits of Jonathan and Golden Delicios cultivars were tested for color, soluble solids content, total acidity, ascorbic acid, anthocyanins content and chlorophyls content with specific analytrical methods. At harvest yield, dry matter, soluble solids content, ascorbic acid and acidity were affected by soil type. In this study, no significant soil effect was found on color, anthocyanins and chlorophyll fruit content. The results obtained in this study suggest that luvic brown pseudogleizate soil leading to increased yields and enhanced fruit quality.

  15. Integrating plant litter quality, soil organic matter stabilization, and the carbon saturation concept.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castellano, Michael J; Mueller, Kevin E; Olk, Daniel C; Sawyer, John E; Six, Johan

    2015-09-01

    Labile, 'high-quality', plant litters are hypothesized to promote soil organic matter (SOM) stabilization in mineral soil fractions that are physicochemically protected from rapid mineralization. However, the effect of litter quality on SOM stabilization is inconsistent. High-quality litters, characterized by high N concentrations, low C/N ratios, and low phenol/lignin concentrations, are not consistently stabilized in SOM with greater efficiency than 'low-quality' litters characterized by low N concentrations, high C/N ratios, and high phenol/lignin concentrations. Here, we attempt to resolve these inconsistent results by developing a new conceptual model that links litter quality to the soil C saturation concept. Our model builds on the Microbial Efficiency-Matrix Stabilization framework (Cotrufo et al., 2013) by suggesting the effect of litter quality on SOM stabilization is modulated by the extent of soil C saturation such that high-quality litters are not always stabilized in SOM with greater efficiency than low-quality litters. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Managing cultivated pastures for improving soil quality in South ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    There are concerns that soils under pastures in certain regions of South Africa are degrading as a result of mismanagement, which include practising continuous tillage, improper grazing management, injudicious application of fertilisers and poor irrigation management. Soil quality indicators, which include physical, ...

  17. Cover crops and crop residue management under no-till systems improve soils and environmental quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Sandeep; Wegner, Brianna; Vahyala, Ibrahim; Osborne, Shannon; Schumacher, Thomas; Lehman, Michael

    2015-04-01

    Crop residue harvest is a common practice in the Midwestern USA for the ethanol production. However, excessive removal of crop residues from the soil surface contributes to the degradation of important soil quality indicators such as soil organic carbon (SOC). Addition of a cover crop may help to mitigate these negative effects. The present study was set up to assess the impacts of corn (Zea mays L.) residue removal and cover crops on various soil quality indicators and surface greenhouse gas (GHG) fluxes. The study was being conducted on plots located at the North Central Agricultural Research Laboratory (NCARL) in Brookings, South Dakota, USA. Three plots of a corn and soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merr.) rotation under a no-till (NT) system are being monitored for soils and surface gas fluxes. Each plot has three residue removal (high residue removal, HRR; medium residue removal, MRR; and low residue removal, LRR) treatments and two cover crops (cover crops and no cover crops) treatments. Both corn and soybean are represented every year. Gas flux measurements were taken weekly using a closed static chamber method. Data show that residue removal significantly impacted soil quality indicators while more time was needed for an affect from cover crop treatments to be noticed. The LRR treatment resulted in higher SOC concentrations, increased aggregate stability, and increased microbial activity. The LRR treatment also increased soil organic matter (SOM) and particulate organic matter (POM) concentrations. Cover crops used in HRR (high corn residue removal) improved SOC (27 g kg-1) by 6% compared to that without cover crops (25.4 g kg-1). Cover crops significantly impacted POM concentration directly after the residue removal treatments were applied in 2012. CO2 fluxes were observed to increase as temperature increased, while N2O fluxes increased as soil moisture increased. CH4 fluxes were responsive to both increases in temperature and moisture. On average, soils under

  18. Metal assessment in urban park soils in Sao Paulo. 3. Aclimacao Park

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pavese, Arthur C.; Figueiredo, Ana Maria G.; Camargo, Sonia P.; Gumiero, Felipe C.; Enzweiler, Jacinta

    2007-01-01

    As part of a project which aims metal assessment in urban park soils from Sao Paulo, in the present paper the concentration of the elements As, Ba, Zn, Sb, Se, Co, Cr, Cu and Pb were determined in surface soil samples (0-5 cm and 0-20 cm) from Aclimacao park of Sao Paulo. Urban soils play an important role in maintaining the environmental quality as they can act as both source and sink for pollutants that can affect human health. Parks and playgrounds are where urban children spend most of their time outdoors and are also where children most frequently come in contact with soil. Aclimacao park is located at the central region of the city, in a residential area. Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis (INAA) and X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF) were used for metal analysis. The results obtained for Zn were higher than the values considered as reference values for soils in Sao Paulo, according to the Environmental Protection Agency of the State of Sao Paulo (CETESB), but lower than the Prevention values. For Ba, Cr, and Sb, the results obtained showed concentration levels higher than Prevention value reported by CETESB. According to CETESB, metal concentration levels above the Prevention value can cause prejudicial alterations in soil and subterranean water quality. For As, in the 0-5 cm samples, the concentration levels were near or above the Intervention value for agricultural area reported by CETESB. (author)

  19. Physical Quality Indicators and Mechanical Behavior of Agricultural Soils of Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imhoff, Silvia; da Silva, Alvaro Pires; Ghiberto, Pablo J; Tormena, Cássio A; Pilatti, Miguel A; Libardi, Paulo L

    2016-01-01

    Mollisols of Santa Fe have different tilth and load support capacity. Despite the importance of these attributes to achieve a sustainable crop production, few information is available. The objectives of this study are i) to assess soil physical indicators related to plant growth and to soil mechanical behavior; and ii) to establish relationships to estimate the impact of soil loading on the soil quality to plant growth. The study was carried out on Argiudolls and Hapludolls of Santa Fe. Soil samples were collected to determine texture, organic matter content, bulk density, water retention curve, soil resistance to penetration, least limiting water range, critical bulk density for plant growth, compression index, pre-consolidation pressure and soil compressibility. Water retention curve and soil resistance to penetration were linearly and significantly related to clay and organic matter (R2 = 0.91 and R2 = 0.84). The pedotransfer functions of water retention curve and soil resistance to penetration allowed the estimation of the least limiting water range and critical bulk density for plant growth. A significant nonlinear relationship was found between critical bulk density for plant growth and clay content (R2 = 0.98). Compression index was significantly related to bulk density, water content, organic matter and clay plus silt content (R2 = 0.77). Pre-consolidation pressure was significantly related to organic matter, clay and water content (R2 = 0.77). Soil compressibility was significantly related to initial soil bulk density, clay and water content. A nonlinear and significantly pedotransfer function (R2 = 0.88) was developed to predict the maximum acceptable pressure to be applied during tillage operations by introducing critical bulk density for plant growth in the compression model. The developed pedotransfer function provides a useful tool to link the mechanical behavior and tilth of the soils studied.

  20. Understanding the Role of Microorganisms in Soil Quality and Fertility under changing Climatic Conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dercon, Gerd; Adu-Gyamfi, Joseph; Heiling, Maria; Aigner, Martina; Nguyen, Minh-Long [Soil and Water Management and Crop Nutrition Laboratory, Joint FAO/IAEA Division for Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture, Seibersdorf (Austria); Schwartz, Egbert [Department of Biological Sciences, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, (United States); Dexin, Lin [Soil and Water Management and Crop Nutrition Laboratory, Joint FAO/IAEA Division for Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture, Seibersdorf, (Austria); Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, Fujian (China)

    2013-01-15

    oxygen-18 probing are scarce. Nevertheless, the use of nitrogen-15 SIP is proving to be useful for assessing functional soil microbial activity that is linked with N substrates and for labelling soil DNA with H{sub 2}{sup 18}O, to identify newly grown cells for better understanding of the role of soil microbial dynamics in soil quality and fertility. (author)

  1. Impact of model uncertainty on soil quality standards for cadmium in rice paddy fields

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Roemkens, P.F.A.M., E-mail: paul.romkens@wur.nl [Soil Science Center, Alterra, WageningenUR. P.O. Box 47, 6700AA Wageningen (Netherlands); Brus, D.J. [Soil Science Center, Alterra, WageningenUR. P.O. Box 47, 6700AA Wageningen (Netherlands); Guo, H.Y.; Chu, C.L.; Chiang, C.M. [Taiwan Agricultural Research Institute (TARI), Wufong, Taiwan (China); Koopmans, G.F. [Soil Science Center, Alterra, WageningenUR. P.O. Box 47, 6700AA Wageningen (Netherlands); Department of Soil Quality, Wageningen University, WageningenUR. P.O. Box 47, 6700AA, Wageningen (Netherlands)

    2011-08-01

    At present, soil quality standards used for agriculture do not consider the influence of pH and CEC on the uptake of pollutants by crops. A database with 750 selected paired samples of cadmium (Cd) in soil and paddy rice was used to calibrate soil to plant transfer models using the soil metal content, pH, and CEC or soil Cd and Zn extracted by 0.01 M CaCl{sub 2} as explanatory variables. The models were validated against a set of 2300 data points not used in the calibration. These models were then used inversely to derive soil quality standards for Japonica and Indica rice cultivars based on the food quality standards for rice. To account for model uncertainty, strict soil quality standards were derived considering a maximum probability that rice exceeds the food quality standard equal to 10 or 5%. Model derived soil standards based on Aqua Regia ranged from less than 0.3 mg kg{sup -1} for Indica at pH 4.5 to more than 6 mg kg{sup -1} for Japonica-type cultivars in clay soils at pH 7. Based on the CaCl{sub 2} extract, standards ranged from 0.03 mg kg{sup -1} Cd for Indica cultivars to 0.1 mg kg{sup -1} Cd for Japonica cultivars. For both Japonica and Indica-type cultivars, the soil quality standards must be reduced by a factor of 2 to 3 to obtain the strict standards. The strong impact of pH and CEC on soil quality standards implies that it is essential to correct for soil type when deriving national or local standards. Validation on the remaining 2300 samples indicated that both types of models were able to accurately predict (> 92%) whether rice grown on a specific soil will meet the food quality standard used in Taiwan. - Research highlights: {yields} Cadmium uptake by Japonica and Indica rice varieties depends on soil pH and CEC. {yields} Food safety based soil standards range from 0.3 (Indica) to 6 mg kg{sup -1} (Japonica). {yields} Model uncertainty leads to strict soil standards of less than 0.1 mg kg{sup -1} for Indica. {yields} Soil pH and CEC should be

  2. Applying soil property information for watershed assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archer, V.; Mayn, C.; Brown, S. R.

    2017-12-01

    The Forest Service uses a priority watershed scheme to guide where to direct watershed restoration work. Initial assessment was done across the nation following the watershed condition framework process. This assessment method uses soils information for a three step ranking across each 12 code hydrologic unit; however, the soil information used in the assessment may not provide adequate detail to guide work on the ground. Modern remote sensing information and terrain derivatives that model the environmental gradients hold promise of showing the influence of soil forming factors on watershed processes. These small scale data products enable the disaggregation of coarse scale soils mapping to show continuous soil property information across a watershed. When this information is coupled with the geomorphic and geologic information, watershed specialists can more aptly understand the controlling influences of drainage within watersheds and focus on where watershed restoration projects can have the most success. A case study on the application of this work shows where road restoration may be most effective.

  3. Soil Quality after Six Years of Paper Mill Industrial Wastewater Application

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan Carlos Carreiro Almeida

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT The application of wastewater to irrigate soils may be an attractive option for paper mills, especially when the effluents can also provide nutrients to plants. Since there could be negative environmental effects, such activity must be preceded by a thorough evaluation of the consequences. The changes in soil quality of a Neossolo Flúvico Distrófico (Typic Udifluvent were evaluated over a period of six years of irrigation with treated effluent from a wood pulp company. Although effluent application for six years did not affect soil resistance to penetration and soil hydraulic conductivity, it promoted a decrease in the mean size of aggregates and an increase in clay dispersion. Effluent application increased soil pH but did not change exchangeable Ca and Mg contents and organic carbon. After a full rotation of eucalyptus cultivation common in Brazil (six years, no negative effects in tree growth were found due to effluent irrigation. However, effluent addition caused higher values of Na adsorption ratio and intermediate electrical conductivity in the soil, which indicates a possible negative effect on soil quality if the application continues over a longer period. Therefore, a monitoring program should be carried out during subsequent crop rotations, and alternatives must be studied to obtain better effluent quality, such as adding Ca and Mg to the wastewater and using gypsum in the soil.

  4. Initial contents of residue quality parameters predict effects of larger soil fauna on decomposition of contrasting quality residues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ratikorn Sanghaw

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available A 52-week decomposition study employing the soil larger fauna exclusion technique through litter bags of two mesh sizes (20 and 0.135 mm was conducted in a long-term (18 yr field experiment. Organic residues of contrasting quality of N, lignin (L, polyphenols (PP and cellulose (CL all in grams per kilogram: rice straw (RS: 4.5N, 22.2L, 3.9PP, 449CL, groundnut stover (GN: 21.2N, 71.4L, 8.1PP, 361CL, dipterocarp leaf litter (DP: 5.1N, 303L, 68.9PP, 271CL and tamarind leaf litter (TM: 11.6N, 190L, 27.7PP, 212CL were applied to soil annually to assess and predict soil larger fauna effects (LFE on decomposition based on the initial contents of the residue chemical constituents. Mass losses in all residues were not different under soil fauna inclusion and exclusion treatments during the early stage (up to week 4 after residue incorporation but became significantly higher under the inclusion than the exclusion treatments during the later stage (week 8 onwards. LFE were highest (2–51% under the resistant DP at most decomposition stages. During the early stage (weeks 1–4, both the initial contents of labile (N and CL and recalcitrant C, and recalcitrant C interaction with labile constituents of residues showed significant correlations (r = 0.64–0.90 with LFE. In the middle stage (week 16, LFE under resistant DP and TM had significant positive correlations with L, L + PP and L/CL. They were also affected by these quality parameters as shown by the multiple regression analysis. In the later stages (weeks 26–52, the L/CL ratio was the most prominent quality parameter affecting LFE. Keywords: Mesofauna and macrofauna, Microorganisms, Recalcitrant and labile compounds, Residue chemical composition, Tropical sandy soil

  5. Gap assessment in current soil monitoring networks across Europe for measuring soil functions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leeuwen, Van J.P.; Saby, N.P.A.; Jones, A.; Louwagie, G.; Micheli, E.; Rutgers, M.; Schulte, R.P.O.; Spiegel, H.; Toth, G.; Creamer, R.E.

    2017-01-01

    Soil is the most important natural resource for life on Earth after water. Given its fundamental role in sustaining the human population, both the availability and quality of soil must be managed sustainably and protected. To ensure sustainable management we need to understand the intrinsic

  6. Assessment of Efficacy and Quality of Two Albendazole Brands Commonly Used against Soil-Transmitted Helminth Infections in School Children in Jimma Town, Ethiopia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sileshi Belew

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available There is a worldwide upscale in mass drug administration (MDA programs to control the morbidity caused by soil-transmitted helminths (STHs: Ascaris lumbricoides, Trichuris trichiura and hookworm. Although anthelminthic drugs which are used for MDA are supplied by two pharmaceutical companies through donation, there is a wide range of brands available on local markets for which the efficacy against STHs and quality remain poorly explored. In the present study, we evaluated the drug efficacy and quality of two albendazole brands (Bendex and Ovis available on the local market in Ethiopia.A randomized clinical trial was conducted according to the World Health Organization (WHO guidelines to assess drug efficacy, by means of egg reduction rate (ERR, of Bendex and Ovis against STH infections in school children in Jimma, Ethiopia. In addition, the chemical and physicochemical quality of the drugs was assessed according to the United States and European Pharmacopoeia, encompassing mass uniformity of the tablets, amount of active compound and dissolution profile. Both drugs were highly efficacious against A. lumbricoides (>97%, but showed poor efficacy against T. trichiura (~20%. For hookworms, Ovis was significantly (p < 0.05 more efficacious compared to Bendex (98.1% vs. 88.7%. Assessment of the physicochemical quality of the drugs revealed a significant difference in dissolution profile, with Bendex having a slower dissolution than Ovis.The study revealed that differences in efficacy between the two brands of albendazole (ABZ tablets against hookworm are linked to the differences in the in-vitro drug release profile. Differences in uptake and metabolism of this benzimidazole drug among different helminth species may explain that this efficacy difference was only observed in hookworms and not in the two other species. The results of the present study underscore the importance of assessing the chemical and physicochemical quality of drugs before

  7. Testing the validity of a Cd soil quality standard in representative Mediterranean agricultural soils under an accumulator crop

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Recatala, L.; Sanchez, J.; Arbelo, C.; Sacristan, D.

    2010-01-01

    The validity of a quality standard for cadmium (Cd) in representative agricultural Mediterranean soils under an accumulator crop (Lactuca sativa L.) is evaluated in this work considering both its effect on the crop growth (biomass production) and the metal accumulation in the edible part of the plant. Four soils with different properties relevant to regulate the behaviour of heavy metals were selected from the Valencian Region, a representative area of the European Mediterranean Region. For all soils, the effective concentration of added Cd causing 50% inhibition (EC 50 ) on the biomass production was much higher than the minimum legal concentration used to declare soils as contaminated by cadmium, i.e. 100 times the baseline value for Cd, in Spain (Spanish Royal Decree 9/2005). As expected, Cd toxicity in the crop was higher in the soils having less carbonate content. On the other hand, for all soils, from the second dose on, which represents 10-times the baseline value for Cd, the metal content in crops exceeded the maximum level established for leaf crops by the European legislation (Regulation EC no. 466/2001). Soil salinity and coarse textures make the accumulation of Cd in the edible part of the plant easier. Therefore, the legal baseline soil cadmium content established by the Spanish legislation seems not valid neither from the point of view of the effect on the crop growth nor from the point of view of the metal accumulation in the edible part of the plant. In order to realistically declare contaminated soils by heavy metals, soil quality standards should be proposed taking into account the soil properties. Further research in other agricultural areas of the region would improve the basis for proposing adequate soil quality standards for heavy metals as highlighted by the European Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection.

  8. Testing the validity of a Cd soil quality standard in representative Mediterranean agricultural soils under an accumulator crop

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Recatala, L., E-mail: luis.recatala@uv.es [Departamento de Planificacion Territorial, Centro de Investigaciones sobre Desertificacion-CIDE (CSIC-Universitat de Valencia-Generalitat Valenciana), Cami de la Marjal S/N, 46470 Albal (Valencia) (Spain); Sanchez, J. [Departamento de Planificacion Territorial, Centro de Investigaciones sobre Desertificacion-CIDE (CSIC-Universitat de Valencia-Generalitat Valenciana), Cami de la Marjal S/N, 46470 Albal (Valencia) (Spain); Arbelo, C. [Departamento de Edafologia y Geologia, Facultad de Biologia, Universidad de La Laguna, 38206 La Laguna (Tenerife), Islas Canarias (Spain); Sacristan, D. [Departamento de Planificacion Territorial, Centro de Investigaciones sobre Desertificacion-CIDE (CSIC-Universitat de Valencia-Generalitat Valenciana), Cami de la Marjal S/N, 46470 Albal (Valencia) (Spain)

    2010-12-01

    The validity of a quality standard for cadmium (Cd) in representative agricultural Mediterranean soils under an accumulator crop (Lactuca sativa L.) is evaluated in this work considering both its effect on the crop growth (biomass production) and the metal accumulation in the edible part of the plant. Four soils with different properties relevant to regulate the behaviour of heavy metals were selected from the Valencian Region, a representative area of the European Mediterranean Region. For all soils, the effective concentration of added Cd causing 50% inhibition (EC{sub 50}) on the biomass production was much higher than the minimum legal concentration used to declare soils as contaminated by cadmium, i.e. 100 times the baseline value for Cd, in Spain (Spanish Royal Decree 9/2005). As expected, Cd toxicity in the crop was higher in the soils having less carbonate content. On the other hand, for all soils, from the second dose on, which represents 10-times the baseline value for Cd, the metal content in crops exceeded the maximum level established for leaf crops by the European legislation (Regulation EC no. 466/2001). Soil salinity and coarse textures make the accumulation of Cd in the edible part of the plant easier. Therefore, the legal baseline soil cadmium content established by the Spanish legislation seems not valid neither from the point of view of the effect on the crop growth nor from the point of view of the metal accumulation in the edible part of the plant. In order to realistically declare contaminated soils by heavy metals, soil quality standards should be proposed taking into account the soil properties. Further research in other agricultural areas of the region would improve the basis for proposing adequate soil quality standards for heavy metals as highlighted by the European Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection.

  9. Soil environmental quality in greenhouse vegetable production systems in eastern China: Current status and management strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Wenyou; Zhang, Yanxia; Huang, Biao; Teng, Ying

    2017-03-01

    Greenhouse vegetable production (GVP) has become an important source of public vegetable consumption and farmers' income in China. However, various pollutants can be accumulated in GVP soils due to the high cropping index, large agricultural input, and closed environment. Ecological toxicity caused by excessive pollutants' accumulation can then lead to serious health risks. This paper was aimed to systematically review the current status of soil environmental quality, analyze their impact factors, and consequently to propose integrated management strategies for GVP systems. Results indicated a decrease in soil pH, soil salinization, and nutrients imbalance in GVP soils. Fungicides, remaining nutrients, antibiotics, heavy metals, and phthalate esters were main pollutants accumulating in GVP soils comparing to surrounding open field soils. Degradation of soil ecological function, accumulation of major pollutants in vegetables, deterioration of neighboring water bodies, and potential human health risks has occurred due to the changes of soil properties and accumulation of pollutants such as heavy metals and fungicides in soils. Four dominant factors were identified leading to the above-mentioned issues including heavy application of agricultural inputs, outmoded planting styles with poor environmental protection awareness, old-fashion regulations, unreasonable standards, and ineffective supervisory management. To guarantee a sustainable GVP development, several strategies were suggested to protect and improve soil environmental quality. Implementation of various strategies not only requires the concerted efforts among different stakeholders, but also the whole lifecycle assessment throughout the GVP processes as well as effective enforcement of policies, laws, and regulations. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Stabilization of Pb and Cd contaminated soils and soil quality improvements using waste oyster shells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ok, Yong Sik; Lim, Jung Eun; Moon, Deok Hyun

    2011-02-01

    Large amounts of oyster shells are produced as a by-product of shellfish farming in coastal regions without beneficial use options. Accordingly, this study was conducted to evaluate the potential for the use of waste oyster shells (WOS) containing a high amount of CaCO₃ to improve soil quality and to stabilize heavy metals in soil. To accomplish this, an incubation experiment was conducted to evaluate the ability of the addition of 1-5 wt% WOS to stabilize the Pb (total 1,246 mg/kg) and Cd (total 17 mg/kg) in a contaminated soil. The effectiveness of the WOS treatments was evaluated using various single extraction techniques. Soil amended with WOS was cured for 30 days complied with the Korean Standard Test method (0.1 M·HCl extraction). The Pb and Cd concentrations were less than the Korean warning and countermeasure standards following treatment with 5 wt% WOS. Moreover, the concentrations of Cd were greatly reduced in response to WOS treatment following extraction using 0.01 M·CaCl₂, which is strongly associated with phytoavailability. Furthermore, the soil pH and exchangeable Ca increased significantly in response to WOS treatment. Taken together, the results of this study indicated that WOS amendments improved soil quality and stabilized Pb and Cd in contaminated soil. However, extraction with 0.43 M·CH₃ COOH revealed that remobilization of heavy metals can occur when the soil reaches an acidic condition.

  11. From the study of fire effects on individual soil properties to the development of soil quality indices. 1. The pioneer research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mataix-Solera, Jorge; Zornoza, Raúl

    2013-04-01

    Although forest fires must be considered as a natural factor in Mediterranean ecosystems, the modification of its natural regime during last five decades has thansformed them in an environmental problem. In the Valencia region (E Spain) 1994 was the worst year in the history affecting more than 120,000 hectares. I started my Ph.D that year by studying the effects of fires in soil properties. The availability to be able to analyse a great set of different types of soil properties in the laboratories of University of Alicante allowed me to explore how fires could affect physical, chemical and micobiological soil properties. After years studying different soil properties, finding that several factors are involved, including: fire intensity and severity, vegetation, soil type, climate conditions, etc. (Mataix-Solera and Doerr, 2004; Mataix-Solera et al., 2008, 2011) my research as Ph-D supervisor has been focussed to investigate more in depth some selected properties, such as aggregate stability and water repellency (Arcenegui et al., 2007, 2008). But one of the main problems in the studies conducted with samples affected by wildfires is that for the evaluation of the fire impact in the soil it is necessary to have control (unburned) soil samples from a similar non-affected near area. The existing spatial variability under field conditions does not allow having comparable samples in some acses to develop a correct assessment. With this idea in mind one of my Ph.D researcher (R. Zornoza) dedicated his thesis to develope soil quality indices capable to assess the impact of soil perturbations without comparing groups of samples, but evaluating the equilibrium among different soil properties within each soil sample (Zornoza et al., 2007, 2008). Key words: wildfire, Mediterranean soils, soil degradation, wàter repellency, aggregate stability References: Arcenegui, V., Mataix-Solera, J., Guerrero, C., Zornoza, R., Mayoral, A.M., Morales, J., 2007. Factors controlling the

  12. Microbiological parameters as indicators of soil quality under various soil management and crop rotation systems in southern Brazil.

    OpenAIRE

    FRANCHINI, J. C.; CRISPINO, C. C.; SOUZA, R. A.; TORRES, E.; HUNGRIA, M.

    2006-01-01

    Metadata only record This article attempts to recognize soil parameters that can be used to monitor soil quality under different crop and soil management systems. The rates of CO2 emissions (soil respiration) were affected by variations in the sampling period, as well as in soil management and crop rotation. Considering all samples, CO2 emissions were 21% greater in conventional tillage. Soil microbial biomass was also influenced by sampling period and soil management, but not by crop rota...

  13. Soil organic carbon changes in the cultivation of energy crops: Implications for GHG balances and soil quality for use in LCA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brandao, Miguel; Mila i Canals, Llorenc; Clift, Roland

    2011-01-01

    The environmental impact of different land-use systems for energy, up to the farm or forest 'gate', has been quantified with Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). Four representative crops are considered: OilSeed Rape (OSR), Miscanthus, Short-Rotation Coppice (SRC) willow and forest residues. The focus of the LCA is on changes in Soil Organic Carbon (SOC) but energy use, emissions of GreenHouse Gases (GHGs), acidification and eutrophication are also considered. In addition to providing an indicator of soil quality, changes in SOC are shown to have a dominant effect on total GHG emissions. Miscanthus is the best land-use option for GHG emissions and soil quality as it sequesters C at a higher rate than the other crops, but this has to be weighed against other environmental impacts where Miscanthus performs worse, such as acidification and eutrophication. OSR shows the worst performance across all categories. Because forest residues are treated as a by-product, their environmental impacts are small in all categories. The analysis highlights the need for detailed site-specific modelling of SOC changes, and for consequential LCAs of the whole fuel cycle including transport and use.

  14. Assessment of Efficacy and Quality of Two Albendazole Brands Commonly Used against Soil-Transmitted Helminth Infections in School Children in Jimma Town, Ethiopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belew, Sileshi; Getachew, Mestawet; Suleman, Sultan; Mohammed, Tesfaye; Deti, Habetewold; D'Hondt, Matthias; Wynendaele, Evelien; Mekonnen, Zeleke; Vercruysse, Jozef; Duchateau, Luc; De Spiegeleer, Bart; Levecke, Bruno

    2015-09-01

    There is a worldwide upscale in mass drug administration (MDA) programs to control the morbidity caused by soil-transmitted helminths (STHs): Ascaris lumbricoides, Trichuris trichiura and hookworm. Although anthelminthic drugs which are used for MDA are supplied by two pharmaceutical companies through donation, there is a wide range of brands available on local markets for which the efficacy against STHs and quality remain poorly explored. In the present study, we evaluated the drug efficacy and quality of two albendazole brands (Bendex and Ovis) available on the local market in Ethiopia. A randomized clinical trial was conducted according to the World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines to assess drug efficacy, by means of egg reduction rate (ERR), of Bendex and Ovis against STH infections in school children in Jimma, Ethiopia. In addition, the chemical and physicochemical quality of the drugs was assessed according to the United States and European Pharmacopoeia, encompassing mass uniformity of the tablets, amount of active compound and dissolution profile. Both drugs were highly efficacious against A. lumbricoides (>97%), but showed poor efficacy against T. trichiura (~20%). For hookworms, Ovis was significantly (p Ovis. The study revealed that differences in efficacy between the two brands of albendazole (ABZ) tablets against hookworm are linked to the differences in the in-vitro drug release profile. Differences in uptake and metabolism of this benzimidazole drug among different helminth species may explain that this efficacy difference was only observed in hookworms and not in the two other species. The results of the present study underscore the importance of assessing the chemical and physicochemical quality of drugs before conducting efficacy assessment in any clinical trials to ensure appropriate therapeutic efficacy and to exclude poor drug quality as a factor of reduced drug efficacy other than anthelminthic resistance. Overall, this paper demonstrates

  15. Multi-criteria indexes to evaluate the effects of repeated organic amendment applications on soil quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obriot, Fiona; Stauffer, Marie; Goubard, Yolaine; Vieuble-Gonod, Laure; Revallier, Agathe; Houot, Sabine

    2015-04-01

    , productivity and pollution index need more time to be explained. Conclusion The use of SQI allows the aggregation of different indicators to evaluate specific ecosystem services (soil fertility, soil biodiversity, vegetal productivity…) and disservices (heavy metal contamination) of the introduction of OWP in soil. Separate indices made possible to assess different aspects of soil quality separately. Other field results on the effect of OWP application would make possible to relate more precisely the observed effects to the SQIs. References [a] Velasquez, Elena, Patrick Lavelle, et Mercedes Andrade. « GISQ, a Multifunctional Indicator of Soil Quality ». Soil Biology & Biochemistry 39, no 12 (décembre 2007): 3066 80. doi:10.1016/j.soilbio.2007.06.013.

  16. Assessment of the SMAP Passive Soil Moisture Product

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Steven K.; Bindlish, Rajat; O'Neill, Peggy E.; Njoku, Eni; Jackson, Tom; Colliander, Andreas; Chen, Fan; Burgin, Mariko; Dunbar, Scott; Piepmeier, Jeffrey; hide

    2016-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) satellite mission was launched on January 31, 2015. The observatory was developed to provide global mapping of high-resolution soil moisture and freeze-thaw state every two to three days using an L-band (active) radar and an L-band (passive) radiometer. After an irrecoverable hardware failure of the radar on July 7, 2015, the radiometer-only soil moisture product became the only operational Level 2 soil moisture product for SMAP. The product provides soil moisture estimates posted on a 36 kilometer Earth-fixed grid produced using brightness temperature observations from descending passes. Within months after the commissioning of the SMAP radiometer, the product was assessed to have attained preliminary (beta) science quality, and data were released to the public for evaluation in September 2015. The product is available from the NASA Distributed Active Archive Center at the National Snow and Ice Data Center. This paper provides a summary of the Level 2 Passive Soil Moisture Product (L2_SM_P) and its validation against in situ ground measurements collected from different data sources. Initial in situ comparisons conducted between March 31, 2015 and October 26, 2015, at a limited number of core validation sites (CVSs) and several hundred sparse network points, indicate that the V-pol Single Channel Algorithm (SCA-V) currently delivers the best performance among algorithms considered for L2_SM_P, based on several metrics. The accuracy of the soil moisture retrievals averaged over the CVSs was 0.038 cubic meter per cubic meter unbiased root-mean-square difference (ubRMSD), which approaches the SMAP mission requirement of 0.040 cubic meter per cubic meter.

  17. Evaluation of Soil Quality Using Labile Organic Carbon and Carbon Management Indices in Agricultural Lands of Neyriz, Fars Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anahid Salmanpour

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Soil organic matter is considered as an indicator of soil quality, because of its role on the stability of soil structure, water holding capacity, microbial activity, storage and release of nutrients. Although changes and trends of organic matter are assessed on the basis of organic carbon, it responds slowly to changes of soil management. Therefore, identifying sensitive components of organic carbon such as carbon labile lead to better understanding of the effect of land use change and soil management on soil quality. The main components of sustainable agriculture in arid and semi-arid regions are the amount of water; and soil and water salinity. Water deficit and irrigation with saline water are important limiting factors for cropping and result in adverse effects on soil properties and soil quality. Soil carbon changes is a function of addition of plant debris and removal of it from soil by its decomposition. If the amount of organic carbon significantly reduced due to the degradation of the soil physical and chemical properties and soil quality, agricultural production will face serious problems. To this end, this study was done to evaluate soil quality using soil labile carbon and soil carbon management indices in some agricultural lands of Neyriz area, Fars province, Iran. Materials and Methods: Five fields were selected in two regions, Dehfazel and Tal-e-mahtabi, consisted of irrigated wheat and barley with different amount of irrigation water and water salinity levels. Three farms were located in Dehfazel and two farms in Tal-e-Mahtabi region. In each farm, three points were randomly selected and soil samples were collected from 0-40 cm of the surface layer. Plant samples were taken from a 1x1 square meter and grain crop yield was calculated per hectare. Water samples were obtained in each region from the wells at the last irrigation. Physical and chemical characteristics of the soil and water samples were determined. Soil

  18. Trace elements assessment in agricultural and desert soils of Aswan area, south Egypt: Geochemical characteristics and environmental impacts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darwish, Mohamed Abdallah Gad; Pöllmann, Hebert

    2015-12-01

    Determination of chemical elements, Al, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn, Mo, Ni, P, Pb, Sc, Sr, Ti, Y, and Zn have been performed in agricultural and desert soils and alfalfa (Medicago sativa) at Aswan area. Consequently, the pollution indices, univariate and multivariate statistical methods have been applied, in order to assess the geochemical characteristics of these elements and their impact on soil environmental quality and plant, and to reach for their potential input sources. The investigation revealed that the mean and range values of all element concentrations in agricultural soil are higher than those in desert soil. Furthermore, the agricultural soil displayed various degrees of enrichment and pollution of Cd, Zn, Mo, Co, P, Ti, Pb. The geochemical pattern of integrated pollution indices gave a clear image of extreme and strong pollution in the agricultural soil stations, their poor quality with high risk to human health and considered as a tocsin for an alert. In contrast, the desert soil is the good environmental quality and safe for plant, animal and human health. Alfalfa is tolerant plant and considered as a biomarker for P and Mo in polluted agricultural soil. Four geochemical associations of analyzing elements in agricultural soil and three ones in desert soil have been generated, and their enhancements were essentially caused by various anthropogenic activities and geogenic sources. The investigation also revealed that the broad extended desert soil is fruitful and promising as cultivable lands for agricultural processes in the futures.

  19. Cropping system impact on soil quality determinants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. VESTBERG

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Worldwide interest in soil quality evaluation has increased rapidly throughout the past decade, prompting us to evaluate the long-term impact of four cropping systems on several biological, chemical and physical determinants of soil quality. We hypothesized that after 17 years several of the determinants would show significant differences between conventional cereal and low input/organic rotations. Four crop rotations were imposed on a silt soil from 1982 through 1999. Rotation A was a conventionally managed cereal rotation that received 100% of the recommended mineral fertilizer each year. Rotation B was also managed conventionally from 1982 until 1993, although it received only 50% of the recommended mineral fertilizer. From 1994 through 1999, rotation B was managed as an organic rotation. Rotations C and D were low-input rotations with plant residues returned either untreated (Cor composted (Dfrom 1982 until 1994.From 1994 through 1999,they were also anaged organically. Significant decreases in extractable phosphorus (Pand potassium were observed in rotations C and D compared with rotation A, presumably because their yearly nutrient inputs were somewhat lower. The amount of soil organic carbon (Corg, soil water holding capacity, the numbers and biomass of earthworms and the microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen were or tended to be higher in low input/organic than in conventionally managed plots. These effects may be in connection with the slightly increased levels of Corg in soil of the organic rotations. Activities of twelve enzymes were strongly affected by sampling time (early-versus late-summer, but much less by long-term management. Litter decomposition, numbers of soil nematodes, arbuscular mycorrhizal (AMfungal diversity,AM spore density and AM functioning were little affected by rotation. However,AM spore density correlated positively with the high amounts of extractable calcium and P which were a result from excessive liming applied

  20. Evaluating the soil physical quality under long-term field experiments in Southern Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castellini, Mirko; Stellacci, Anna Maria; Iovino, Massimo; Rinaldi, Michele; Ventrella, Domenico

    2017-04-01

    Long-term field experiments performed in experimental farms are important research tools to assess the soil physical quality (SPQ) given that relatively stable conditions can be expected in these soils. However, different SPQ indicators may sometimes provide redundant or conflicting results, making difficult an SPQ evaluation (Castellini et al., 2014). As a consequence, it is necessary to apply appropriate statistical procedures to obtain a minimum set of key indicators. The study was carried out at the Experimental Farm of CREA-SCA (Foggia) in two long-term field experiments performed on durum wheat. The first long-term experiment is aiming at evaluating the effects of two residue management systems (burning, B or soil incorporation of crop residues, I) while the second at comparing the effect of tillage (conventional tillage, CT) and sod-seeding (direct drilling, DD). In order to take into account both optimal and non-optimal soil conditions, five SPQ indicators were monitored at 5-6 sampling dates during the crop season (i.e., between November and June): soil bulk density (BD), macroporosity (PMAC), air capacity (AC), plant available water capacity (PAWC) and relative field capacity (RFC). Two additional data sets, collected on DD plot in different cropping seasons and in Sicilian soils differing for texture, depth and land use (N=140), were also used with the aim to check the correlation among indicators. Impact of soil management was assessed by comparing SPQ evaluated under different management systems with optimal reference values reported in literature. Two techniques of multivariate analysis (principal component analysis, PCA and stepwise discriminant analysis, SDA) were applied to select the most suitable indicator to facilitate the judgment on SPQ. Regardless of the considered management system, sampling date or auxiliary data set, correlation matrices always showed significant negative relationships between RFC and AC. Decreasing RFC at increasing AC is

  1. Soil-to-Plant Concentration Ratios for Assessing Food Chain Pathways in Biosphere Models

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Napier, Bruce A.; Fellows, Robert J.; Krupka, Kenneth M.

    2007-10-01

    This report describes work performed for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s project Assessment of Food Chain Pathway Parameters in Biosphere Models, which was established to assess and evaluate a number of key parameters used in the food-chain models used in performance assessments of radioactive waste disposal facilities. Section 2 of this report summarizes characteristics of samples of soils and groundwater from three geographical regions of the United States, the Southeast, Northwest, and Southwest, and analyses performed to characterize their physical and chemical properties. Because the uptake and behavior of radionuclides in plant roots, plant leaves, and animal products depends on the chemistry of the water and soil coming in contact with plants and animals, water and soil samples collected from these regions of the United States were used in experiments at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to determine radionuclide soil-to-plant concentration ratios. Crops and forage used in the experiments were grown in the soils, and long-lived radionuclides introduced into the groundwater provide the contaminated water used to water the grown plants. The radionuclides evaluated include 99Tc, 238Pu, and 241Am. Plant varieties include alfalfa, corn, onion, and potato. The radionuclide uptake results from this research study show how regional variations in water quality and soil chemistry affect radionuclide uptake. Section 3 summarizes the procedures and results of the uptake experiments, and relates the soil-to-plant uptake factors derived. In Section 4, the results found in this study are compared with similar values found in the biosphere modeling literature; the study’s results are generally in line with current literature, but soil- and plant-specific differences are noticeable. This food-chain pathway data may be used by the NRC staff to assess dose to persons in the reference biosphere (e.g., persons who live and work in an area potentially affected by

  2. Critical Analysis of Forest Degradation in the Southern Eastern Ghats of India: Comparison of Satellite Imagery and Soil Quality Index

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramachandran, Andimuthu; Radhapriya, Parthasarathy; Jayakumar, Shanmuganathan; Dhanya, Praveen; Geetha, Rajadurai

    2016-01-01

    India has one of the largest assemblages of tropical biodiversity, with its unique floristic composition of endemic species. However, current forest cover assessment is performed via satellite-based forest surveys, which have many limitations. The present study, which was performed in the Eastern Ghats, analysed the satellite-based inventory provided by forest surveys and inferred from the results that this process no longer provides adequate information for quantifying forest degradation in an empirical manner. The study analysed 21 soil properties and generated a forest soil quality index of the Eastern Ghats, using principal component analysis. Using matrix modules and geospatial technology, we compared the forest degradation status calculated from satellite-based forest surveys with the degradation status calculated from the forest soil quality index. The Forest Survey of India classified about 1.8% of the Eastern Ghats’ total area as degraded forests and the remainder (98.2%) as open, dense, and very dense forests, whereas the soil quality index results found that about 42.4% of the total area is degraded, with the remainder (57.6%) being non-degraded. Our ground truth verification analyses indicate that the forest soil quality index along with the forest cover density data from the Forest Survey of India are ideal tools for evaluating forest degradation. PMID:26812397

  3. Critical Analysis of Forest Degradation in the Southern Eastern Ghats of India: Comparison of Satellite Imagery and Soil Quality Index.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramachandran, Andimuthu; Radhapriya, Parthasarathy; Jayakumar, Shanmuganathan; Dhanya, Praveen; Geetha, Rajadurai

    2016-01-01

    India has one of the largest assemblages of tropical biodiversity, with its unique floristic composition of endemic species. However, current forest cover assessment is performed via satellite-based forest surveys, which have many limitations. The present study, which was performed in the Eastern Ghats, analysed the satellite-based inventory provided by forest surveys and inferred from the results that this process no longer provides adequate information for quantifying forest degradation in an empirical manner. The study analysed 21 soil properties and generated a forest soil quality index of the Eastern Ghats, using principal component analysis. Using matrix modules and geospatial technology, we compared the forest degradation status calculated from satellite-based forest surveys with the degradation status calculated from the forest soil quality index. The Forest Survey of India classified about 1.8% of the Eastern Ghats' total area as degraded forests and the remainder (98.2%) as open, dense, and very dense forests, whereas the soil quality index results found that about 42.4% of the total area is degraded, with the remainder (57.6%) being non-degraded. Our ground truth verification analyses indicate that the forest soil quality index along with the forest cover density data from the Forest Survey of India are ideal tools for evaluating forest degradation.

  4. Activation Assessment of the Soil Around the ESS Accelerator Tunnel

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rakhno, I. L. [Fermilab; Mokhov, N. V. [Fermilab; Tropin, I. S. [Fermilab; Ene, D. [ESS, Lund

    2017-01-01

    Activation of the soil surrounding the ESS accelerator tunnel calculated by the MARS15 code is presented. A detailed composition of the soil, that comprises about 30 different chemical elements, is considered. Spatial distributions of the produced activity are provided in both transverse and longitudinal direction. A realistic irradiation profile for the entire planned lifetime of the facility is used. The nuclear transmutation and decay of the produced radionuclides is calculated with the DeTra code which is a built-in tool for the MARS15 code. Radionuclide production by low-energy neutrons is calculated using the ENDF/B-VII evaluated nuclear data library. In order to estimate quality of this activation assessment, a comparison between calculated and measured activation of various foils in a similar radiation environment is presented.

  5. Assessment of soil sample quality used for density evaluations through computed tomography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pires, Luiz F.; Arthur, Robson C.J.; Bacchi, Osny O.S.

    2005-01-01

    There are several methods to measure soil bulk density (ρ s ) like the paraffin sealed clod (PS), the volumetric ring (VR), the computed tomography (CT), and the neutron-gamma surface gauge (SG). In order to evaluate by a non-destructive way the possible modifications in soil structure caused by sampling for the PS and VR methods of ρ s evaluation we proposed to use the gamma ray CT method. A first generation tomograph was used having a 241 Am source and a 3 in x 3 in NaI(Tl) scintillation crystal detector coupled to a photomultiplier tube. Results confirm the effect of soil sampler devices on the structure of soil samples, and that the compaction caused during sampling causes significant alterations of soil bulk density. Through the use of CT it was possible to determine the level of compaction and to make a detailed analysis of the soil bulk density distribution within the soil sample. (author)

  6. Soil degradation effect on biological activity in Mediterranean calcareous soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roca-Pérez, L.; Alcover-Sáez, S.; Mormeneo, S.; Boluda, R.

    2009-04-01

    Soil degradation processes include erosion, organic matter decline, compaction, salinization, landslides, contamination, sealing and biodiversity decline. In the Mediterranean region the climatological and lithological conditions, together with relief on the landscape and anthropological activity are responsible for increasing desertification process. It is therefore considered to be extreme importance to be able to measure soil degradation quantitatively. We studied soil characteristics, microbiological and biochemical parameters in different calcareous soil sequences from Valencia Community (Easter Spain), in an attempt to assess the suitability of the parameters measured to reflect the state of soil degradation and the possibility of using the parameters to assess microbiological decline and soil quality. For this purpose, forest, scrubland and agricultural soil in three soil sequences were sampled in different areas. Several sensors of the soil biochemistry and microbiology related with total organic carbon, microbial biomass carbon, soil respiration, microorganism number and enzyme activities were determined. The results show that, except microorganism number, these parameters are good indicators of a soil biological activity and soil quality. The best enzymatic activities to use like indicators were phosphatases, esterases, amino-peptidases. Thus, the enzymes test can be used as indicators of soil degradation when this degradation is related with organic matter losses. There was a statistically significant difference in cumulative O2 uptake and extracellular enzymes among the soils with different degree of degradation. We would like to thank Spanish government-MICINN for funding and support (MICINN, project CGL2006-09776).

  7. Urban cultivation in allotments maintains soil qualities adversely affected by conventional agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edmondson, Jill L; Davies, Zoe G; Gaston, Kevin J; Leake, Jonathan R

    2014-08-01

    Modern agriculture, in seeking to maximize yields to meet growing global food demand, has caused loss of soil organic carbon (SOC) and compaction, impairing critical regulating and supporting ecosystem services upon which humans also depend. Own-growing makes an important contribution to food security in urban areas globally, but its effects on soil qualities that underpin ecosystem service provision are currently unknown. We compared the main indicators of soil quality; SOC storage, total nitrogen (TN), C : N ratio and bulk density (BD) in urban allotments to soils from the surrounding agricultural region, and between the allotments and other urban greenspaces in a typical UK city. A questionnaire was used to investigate allotment management practices that influence soil properties. Allotment soils had 32% higher SOC concentrations and 36% higher C : N ratios than pastures and arable fields and 25% higher TN and 10% lower BD than arable soils. There was no significant difference between SOC concentration in allotments and urban non-domestic greenspaces, but it was higher in domestic gardens beneath woody vegetation. Allotment soil C : N ratio exceeded that in non-domestic greenspaces, but was lower than that in garden soil. Three-quarters of surveyed allotment plot holders added manure, 95% composted biomass on-site, and many added organic-based fertilizers and commercial composts. This may explain the maintenance of SOC, C : N ratios, TN and low BD, which are positively associated with soil functioning. Synthesis and applications . Maintenance and protection of the quality of our soil resource is essential for sustainable food production and for regulating and supporting ecosystem services upon which we depend. Our study establishes, for the first time, that small-scale urban food production can occur without the penalty of soil degradation seen in conventional agriculture, and maintains the high soil quality seen in urban greenspaces. Given the

  8. Effects of wastewater irrigation on soil sodicity and nutrient leaching in calcareous soils

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jalali, M.; Merikhpour, H.; Kaledhonkar, M.J.; Zee, van der S.E.A.T.M.

    2008-01-01

    Soil column studies were conducted with two soils to assess the effects of irrigation with wastewater on soil and groundwater quality. Upon the application of wastewater, exchange occurred between solution sodium (Na+) and exchangeable cations (Ca2+, Mg2+, K+), whereby these cations were released

  9. Do agricultural terraces and forest fires recurrence in Mediterranean afforested micro-catchments alter soil quality and soil nutrient content?

    Science.gov (United States)

    E Lucas-Borja, Manuel; Calsamiglia, Aleix; Fortesa, Josep; García-Comendador, Julián; Gago, Jorge; Estrany, Joan

    2017-04-01

    Bioclimatic characteristics and intense human pressure promote Mediterranean ecosystems to be fire-prone. Afforestation processes resulting from the progressive land abandonment during the last decades led to greater biomass availability increasing the risk of large forest fires. Likewise, the abandonment and lack of maintenance in the terraced lands constitute a risk of land degradation in terms of soil quantity and quality. Despite the effects of fire and the abandonment of terraced lands on soil loss and physico-chemical properties are identified, it is not clearly understood how wildfires and abandonment of terraces affect soil quality and nutrients content. Microbiological soil parameters and soil enzymes activities are biomarkers of the soil microbial communitýs functional ability, which potentially enables them as indicators of change, disturbance or stress within the soil community. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of terracing (abandoned and non-abandoned) on the soil enzyme activities, microbiological soil parameters and soil nutrients dynamics in three Mediterranean afforested micro-catchments (i.e., fire recurrence in the last 20 years; i.e., unburned areas, burned once and burned twice. The combination of the presence of terraces and the recurrence of forest fire, thirty-six plots of 25 m2 were sampled along the these three micro-catchments collecting four replicas at the corners of each plot. The results elucidated how non-terraced and unburned plots presented the highest values of soil respiration rate and extracellular soil enzymes. Differences between experimental plots with different forest fire recurrence or comparing terraced and unburned plots with burned plots were weaker in relation to biochemical and microbiological parameters. Soil nutrient content showed an opposite trend with higher values in terraced plots, although differences were weaker. We conclude that terraced landscapes present poorer soil quality

  10. Distribution, relationship, and risk assessment of toxic heavy metals in walnuts and growth soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Yongxiang; Ni, Zhanglin; Li, Shiliang; Qu, Minghua; Tang, Fubin; Mo, Runhong; Ye, Caifen; Liu, Yihua

    2018-04-14

    Walnut is one of the most popular nuts worldwide and contains various mineral nutrients. Little is known, however, about the relationship between toxic heavy metals in walnuts and growth soil. In this study, we investigated the distribution, relationship, and risk assessment of five toxic heavy metals-lead (Pb), arsenic (As), chromium (Cr), cadmium (Cd), and mercury (Hg)-in walnuts and growth soil in the main production areas of China. The results showed that the main heavy metal pollution in walnut and soil was Pb and Cd. Regionally, positive relationships existed between heavy metals and the pH and organic matter of soil. In addition, we observed a notable uptake effect between walnut and growth soil. In this study, we found a significant correlation (r = 0.786, P toxic heavy metal pollution in walnuts and growth soil could be helpful to screen suitable planting sites to prevent and control heavy metal pollution and improve the quality and safety of walnut.

  11. Viewpoints on impacts of climate change on soil quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dilly, Oliver; Pfeiffer, Eva-Maria; Trasar-Cepeda, Carmen; Nannipieri, Paolo

    2010-05-01

    soil quality in ecosystems based on modern respiratory approaches. In: Cenci R., Sena F. (eds.) Biodiversity-bioindication to evaluate soil health. European Commission EUR 22245EN, p. 59-64 Dilly O., Blume H.-P., Munch J.C., 2003. Soil microbial activities in Luvisols and Anthrosols during 9 years of region-typical tillage and fertilisation practices in northern Germany. Biogeochemistry 65, 319-339 IPPC 2007. The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (eds Solomon, S. et al.) (Cambridge University Press, 2007). Kirschbaum, M.U.F., 1995. The temperature dependence of soil organic matter decomposition, and the effect of global warming on soil organic C storage. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 27, 753-760 Knorr W., Prentice I.C., House J.I., Holland E.A. 2005. Long-term sensitivity of soil carbon to warming. Nature 433, 298-301 Mamilov, A. Sh., Dilly, O., 2002. Soil microbial eco-physiology as affected by short-term variations in environmental conditions. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 34, 1283-1290

  12. Soil quality attributes induced by land use changes in the Fincha'a ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Soil quality attributes induced by land use changes in the Fincha'a ... from the upstream to the downstream irrigated land by water soil erosion. ... The main degradation process overcome the study area was waterlogging and soil compaction.

  13. Assessing soil fertility decline in the tropics using soil chemical data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hartemink, A.E.

    2006-01-01

    Soil fertility decline is perceived to be widespread in the upland soils of the tropics, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. Most studies have used nutrient balances to assess the degree and extent of nutrient depletion; these have created awareness but suffer methodological problems as several of

  14. Effect of soil moisture management on the quality of wax apple | Lin ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Wax apple (Syzygium samarngense Merr.et Perry) was one of the economically planted fruits in Taiwan. This research was conducted to evaluate the effects of different soil moisture management on increasing wax apple quality. It was preceded at two different soil properties (shallow soil and alluvial soil) in Pingtung, ...

  15. Qualidade do solo avaliada pelo "Soil Quality Kit Test" em dois experimentos de longa duração no Rio Grande do Sul Soil Quality Evaluated by "Soil Quality Kit" in two long-term soil management experiments in Rio Grande do Sul State, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Telmo Jorge Carneiro Amado

    2007-02-01

    agregados, N-NO3- + N-NO2- e respiração do solo foram os mais eficientes em discriminar a QS. O KQS foi eficiente em avaliar a QS dos tratamentos nas duas áreas experimentais. Os níveis mais elevados de QS foram alcançados nos tratamentos com plantio direto e consórcio de gramíneas e leguminosas tropicais, devido à cobertura do solo e às elevadas adições de C e N via resíduos culturais.The soil quality (SQ evaluation is an important part of agricultural planning. It allows the identification and improvement of high-yielding management systems with characteristics of environment preservation. This study was carried out in two long-term soil management experiments (10 and 15 years in Rio Grande do Sul State, Brazil. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the Soil Quality Kit (SQK developed by the Soil Quality Institute - ARS - USDA, compared to traditional soil science methods. Twelve treatments of cropping and tillage systems in a range of different tillage intensities, biomass input amounts and urea-N fertilization (0 to 144 kg ha-1 were evaluated. A native vegetation field close to each experimental area was sampled as reference treatment. The following SQ indicators: water infiltration, soil respiration, soil density, N-NO3- + N-NO2-, water aggregate stability and pH were evaluated. The correlation between the SQK and soil science methods was generally high. The highest correlation was observed with pH (r = 0.98 and the lowest for infiltration (r = 0.42. The soil management treatments were theoretically classified by crescent SQ order. The carbon pool index (CPI was obtained dividing soil organic carbon stock of each treatment by native vegetation soil organic carbon 0 to 5 cm deep. The CPI reproduces the SQ classification efficiently. Aggregate stability, soil respiration and N-NO3- + N-NO2- were the most efficient indicators at discriminating SQ. The Soil Quality Test Kit was an efficient tool to evaluate the soil quality in

  16. Developing an integration tool for soil contamination assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anaya-Romero, Maria; Zingg, Felix; Pérez-Álvarez, José Miguel; Madejón, Paula; Kotb Abd-Elmabod, Sameh

    2015-04-01

    In the last decades, huge soil areas have been negatively influenced or altered in multiples forms. Soils and, consequently, underground water, have been contaminated by accumulation of contaminants from agricultural activities (fertilizers and pesticides) industrial activities (harmful material dumping, sludge, flying ashes) and urban activities (hydrocarbon, metals from vehicle traffic, urban waste dumping). In the framework of the RECARE project, local partners across Europe are focusing on a wide range of soil threats, as soil contamination, and aiming to develop effective prevention, remediation and restoration measures by designing and applying targeted land management strategies (van Lynden et al., 2013). In this context, the Guadiamar Green Corridor (Southern Spain) was used as a case study, aiming to obtain soil data and new information in order to assess soil contamination. The main threat in the Guadiamar valley is soil contamination after a mine spill occurred on April 1998. About four hm3 of acid waters and two hm3 of mud, rich in heavy metals, were released into the Agrio and Guadiamar rivers affecting more than 4,600 ha of agricultural and pasture land. Main trace elements contaminating soil and water were As, Cd, Cu, Pb, Tl and Zn. The objective of the present research is to develop informatics tools that integrate soil database, models and interactive platforms for soil contamination assessment. Preliminary results were obtained related to the compilation of harmonized databases including geographical, hydro-meteorological, soil and socio-economic variables based on spatial analysis and stakeholder's consultation. Further research will be modellization and upscaling at the European level, in order to obtain a scientifically-technical predictive tool for the assessment of soil contamination.

  17. Tillage System and Cover Crop Effects on Soil Quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abdollahi, Lotfollah; Munkholm, Lars Juhl

    2014-01-01

    ), and moldboard plowing (MP) with and without a cover crop were evaluated in a long-term experiment on a sandy loam soil in Denmark. Chemical, physical, and biological soil properties were measured in the spring of 2012. The field measurements included mean weight diameter (MWD) after the drop-shatter test......, penetration resistance, and visual evaluation of soil structure (VESS). In the laboratory, aggregate strength, water-stable aggregates (WSA), and clay dispersibility were measured. The analyzed chemical and biological properties included soil organic C (SOC), total N, microbial biomass C, labile P and K......Optimal use of management systems including tillage and winter cover crops is recommended to improve soil quality and sustain agricultural production. The effects on soil properties of three tillage systems (as main plot) including direct drilling (D), harrowing to a depth of 8 to 10 cm (H...

  18. Application of Dexter’s soil physical quality index: an Irish case study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fenton O.

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Historically, due to a lack of measured soil physical data, the quality of Irish soils was relatively unknown. Herein, we investigate the physical quality of the national representative profiles of Co. Waterford. To do this, the soil physical quality (SPQ S-Index, as described by Dexter (2004a,b,c using the S-theory (which seeks the inflection point of a soil water retention curve [SWRC], is used. This can be determined using simple (S-Indirect or complex (S-Direct soil physical data streams. Both are achievable using existing data for the County Waterford profiles, but until now, the suitability of this S-Index for Irish soils has never been tested. Indirect-S provides a generic characterisation of SPQ for a particular soil horizon, using simplified and modelled information (e.g. texture and SWRC derived from pedo-transfer functions, whereas Direct-S provides more complex site-specific information (e.g. texture and SWRC measured in the laboratory, which relates to properties measured for that exact soil horizon. Results showed a significant correlation between S-Indirect (Si and S-Direct (Sd. Therefore, the S-Index can be used in Irish soils and presents opportunities for the use of Si at the national scale. Outlier horizons contained >6% organic carbon (OC and bulk density (Bd values <1 g/cm3 and were not suitable for Si estimation. In addition, the S-Index did not perform well on excessively drained soils. Overall correlations of Si. with Bd and of Si. with OC% for the dataset were detected. Future work should extend this approach to the national scale dataset in the Irish Soil Information System.

  19. Soil Productive Lifespans: Rethinking Soil Sustainability for the 21st Century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Daniel

    2017-04-01

    The ability for humans to sustainably manage the natural resources on which they depend has been one of the existential challenges facing mankind since the dawn of civilisation. Given the demands from this century's unprecedented global population and the unremitting course of climatic change, that challenge has soared in intensity. Sustainability, in this context, refers to agricultural practices which meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Ensuring sustainability is arguably of greatest importance when resources, such as soil, are non-renewable. However, there is as yet no tool to evaluate how sustainable conservation strategies are in the long-term. Up to now, many pedologists have assessed sustainability in binary terms, questioning whether management is sustainable or not. In truth, one can never determine whether a practice is ultimately sustainable because of the indefinite nature implied by "future generations". We suggest that a more useful assessment of sustainability for the 21st century should avoid binary questions and instead ask: how sustainable are soils? Indeed, how many future generations can soils provide for? Although the use of modelling is by no means a novelty for the discipline, there are very few holistic models that encompass the fluxes and dynamic relationships between both mass and quality concomitantly. We therefore propose a new conceptual framework - the Soil Productive Lifespan (SPL) - that employs empirically derived residence times of both soil mass and quality, together with pathways of environmental change, to forecast the length of time a soil profile can provide the critical functions. Although mass and quality are considered synergistically, the SPL model allows one to assess whether mass or quality alone presents the greatest limiting factor in the productive lifespans of soils. As a result, more targeted conservation strategies can be designed. Ultimately

  20. Influence of lokpa cattle market wastes on agricultural soil quality ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Influence of lokpa cattle market wastes on agricultural soil quality. ... African Journal of Environmental Science and Technology ... Soil samples were collected from the Central, 3 and 6 m Northwards, Southwards, Eastwards and Westwards of Lokpa cattle market, Umuneochi Local Government Area of Abia State, Nigeria at ...

  1. Impact of repeated single-metal and multi-metal pollution events on soil quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burges, Aritz; Epelde, Lur; Garbisu, Carlos

    2015-02-01

    Most frequently, soil metal pollution results from the occurrence of repeated single-metal and, above all, multi-metal pollution events, with concomitant adverse consequences for soil quality. Therefore, in this study, we evaluated the impact of repeated single-metal and multi-metal (Cd, Pb, Cu, Zn) pollution events on soil quality, as reflected by the values of a variety of soil microbial parameters with potential as bioindicators of soil functioning. Specifically, parameters of microbial activity (potentially mineralizable nitrogen, β-glucosidase and acid phosphatase activity) and biomass (fungal and bacterial gene abundance by RT-qPCR) were determined, in the artificially metal-polluted soil samples, at regular intervals over a period of 26 weeks. Similarly, we studied the evolution over time of CaCl2-extractable metal fractions, in order to estimate metal bioavailability in soil. Different metals showed different values of bioavailability and relative bioavailability ([metal]bio/[metal]tot) in soil throughout the experiment, under both repeated single-metal and multi-metal pollution events. Both repeated Zn-pollution and multi-metal pollution events led to a significant reduction in the values of acid phosphatase activity, and bacterial and fungal gene abundance, reflecting the negative impact of these repeated events on soil microbial activity and biomass, and, hence, soil quality. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Effect of organic amendments on quality indexes in an italian agricultural soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scotti, R.; Rao, M. A.; D'Ascoli, R.; Scelza, R.; Marzaioli, R.; Rutigliano, F. A.; Gianfreda, L.

    2009-04-01

    Intensive agricultural practices can determine a decline in soil fertility which represents the main constraint to agricultural productivity. In particular, the progressive reduction in soil organic matter, without an adequate restoration, may threaten soil fertility and agriculture sustainability. Some soil management practices can improve soil quality by adding organic amendments as alternative to the sole use of mineral fertilizers for increasing plant quality and growth. A large number of soil properties can be used to define changes in soil quality. In particular, although more emphasis has been given in literature to physical and chemical properties, biological properties, strictly linked to soil fertility, can be valid even more sensitive indicators. Among these, soil enzyme activities and microbial biomass may provide an "early warning" of soil quality and health changes. The aim of this work was to study the effect of preventive sterilization treatment and organic fertilization on enzymatic activities (dehydrogenase, arylsulphatase, beta-glucosidase, phosphatase, urease) and microbial biomass C in an agricultural soil under crop rotation. The study was carried out on an agricultural soil sited in Campania region (South Italy). At the beginning of experiment sterilizing treatments to control soilborne pathogens and weeds were performed by solarization and calcium cyanamide addition to soil. Organic fertilization was carried out by adding compost from vegetable residues, ricin seed exhaust (Rigen) and straw, singly or in association. Three samplings were performed at three different stages of crop rotation: I) September 2005, immediately after the treatments; II) December 2005, after a lettuce cycle; III) January 2007, after peppers and lettuce cycles. The soil sampling followed a W scheme, with five sub-samples for each plot. Soils were sieved at 2 mm mesh and air dried to determine physical and chemical properties; in addition a suitable amount of soils

  3. Concept for quality management to secure benefits of compost use for soil and plants

    OpenAIRE

    Fuchs, J.G.; Berner, A.; Mayer, J.; Schleiss, K.

    2014-01-01

    Use of quality compost can have an important positive impact on soil fertility and plant growth and health. For example, it increases soil humus and improves soil structure and suppressivity towards plant diseases. To obtain these positive results, it is important that the compost quality is appropriate for each use. If used inadequately, the impact of compost can also be negative. The compost producer should be responsible for the quality of his products, and has to communicate the propertie...

  4. Estimating the Pollution Risk of Cadmium in Soil Using a Composite Soil Environmental Quality Standard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Biao; Zhao, Yongcun

    2014-01-01

    Estimating standard-exceeding probabilities of toxic metals in soil is crucial for environmental evaluation. Because soil pH and land use types have strong effects on the bioavailability of trace metals in soil, they were taken into account by some environmental protection agencies in making composite soil environmental quality standards (SEQSs) that contain multiple metal thresholds under different pH and land use conditions. This study proposed a method for estimating the standard-exceeding probability map of soil cadmium using a composite SEQS. The spatial variability and uncertainty of soil pH and site-specific land use type were incorporated through simulated realizations by sequential Gaussian simulation. A case study was conducted using a sample data set from a 150 km2 area in Wuhan City and the composite SEQS for cadmium, recently set by the State Environmental Protection Administration of China. The method may be useful for evaluating the pollution risks of trace metals in soil with composite SEQSs. PMID:24672364

  5. Exploring the potential offered by legacy soil databases for ecosystem services mapping of Central African soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verdoodt, Ann; Baert, Geert; Van Ranst, Eric

    2014-05-01

    Central African soil resources are characterised by a large variability, ranging from stony, shallow or sandy soils with poor life-sustaining capabilities to highly weathered soils that recycle and support large amounts of biomass. Socio-economic drivers within this largely rural region foster inappropriate land use and management, threaten soil quality and finally culminate into a declining soil productivity and increasing food insecurity. For the development of sustainable land use strategies targeting development planning and natural hazard mitigation, decision makers often rely on legacy soil maps and soil profile databases. Recent development cooperation financed projects led to the design of soil information systems for Rwanda, D.R. Congo, and (ongoing) Burundi. A major challenge is to exploit these existing soil databases and convert them into soil inference systems through an optimal combination of digital soil mapping techniques, land evaluation tools, and biogeochemical models. This presentation aims at (1) highlighting some key characteristics of typical Central African soils, (2) assessing the positional, geographic and semantic quality of the soil information systems, and (3) revealing its potential impacts on the use of these datasets for thematic mapping of soil ecosystem services (e.g. organic carbon storage, pH buffering capacity). Soil map quality is assessed considering positional and semantic quality, as well as geographic completeness. Descriptive statistics, decision tree classification and linear regression techniques are used to mine the soil profile databases. Geo-matching as well as class-matching approaches are considered when developing thematic maps. Variability in inherent as well as dynamic soil properties within the soil taxonomic units is highlighted. It is hypothesized that within-unit variation in soil properties highly affects the use and interpretation of thematic maps for ecosystem services mapping. Results will mainly be based

  6. Assessing the environmental impacts of soil compaction in Life Cycle Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoessel, Franziska; Sonderegger, Thomas; Bayer, Peter; Hellweg, Stefanie

    2018-07-15

    Maintaining biotic capacity is of key importance with regard to global food and biomass provision. One reason for productivity loss is soil compaction. In this paper, we use a statistical empirical model to assess long-term yield losses through soil compaction in a regionalized manner, with global coverage and for different agricultural production systems. To facilitate the application of the model, we provide an extensive dataset including crop production data (with 81 crops and corresponding production systems), related machinery application, as well as regionalized soil texture and soil moisture data. Yield loss is modeled for different levels of soil depth (0-25cm, 25-40cm and >40cm depth). This is of particular relevance since compaction in topsoil is classified as reversible in the short term (approximately four years), while recovery of subsoil layers takes much longer. We derive characterization factors quantifying the future average annual yield loss as a fraction of the current yield for 100years and applicable in Life Cycle Assessment studies of agricultural production. The results show that crops requiring enhanced machinery inputs, such as potatoes, have a major influence on soil compaction and yield losses, while differences between mechanized production systems (organic and integrated production) are small. The spatial variations of soil moisture and clay content are reflected in the results showing global hotspot regions especially susceptible to soil compaction, e.g. the South of Brazil, the Caribbean Islands, Central Africa, and the Maharashtra district of India. The impacts of soil compaction can be substantial, with highest annual yield losses in the range of 0.5% (95% percentile) due to one year of potato production (cumulated over 100y this corresponds to a one-time loss of 50% of the present yield). These modeling results demonstrate the necessity for including soil compaction effects in Life Cycle Impact Assessment. Copyright © 2018

  7. Effect of land use and soil organic matter quality on the structure and function of microbial communities in pastoral soils: Implications for disease suppression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dignam, Bryony E A; O'Callaghan, Maureen; Condron, Leo M; Kowalchuk, George A; Van Nostrand, Joy D; Zhou, Jizhong; Wakelin, Steven A

    2018-01-01

    Cropping soils vary in extent of natural suppression of soil-borne plant diseases. However, it is unknown whether similar variation occurs across pastoral agricultural systems. We examined soil microbial community properties known to be associated with disease suppression across 50 pastoral fields varying in management intensity. The composition and abundance of the disease-suppressive community were assessed from both taxonomic and functional perspectives. Pseudomonas bacteria were selected as a general taxonomic indicator of disease suppressive potential, while genes associated with the biosynthesis of a suite of secondary metabolites provided functional markers (GeoChip 5.0 microarray analysis). The composition of both the Pseudomonas communities and disease suppressive functional genes were responsive to land use. Underlying soil properties explained 37% of the variation in Pseudomonas community structure and up to 61% of the variation in the abundance of disease suppressive functional genes. Notably, measures of soil organic matter quality, C:P ratio, and aromaticity of the dissolved organic matter content (carbon recalcitrance), influenced both the taxonomic and functional disease suppressive potential of the pasture soils. Our results suggest that key components of the soil microbial community may be managed on-farm to enhance disease suppression and plant productivity.

  8. Quality and land use for a sustainable development: bio markers for the soil microbial activity; Calidad y uso del suelo para un desarrollo sostenible: importancia de biomarcadores de la actividad microbiana del suelo

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Garcia Izquierdo, C.

    1996-12-01

    Nowadays, to define and assess criteria of soil quality is acquiring an increasingly interest since it will allow to know th influence of different land uses on soil quality. It is so necessary to establish a minimum set of parameters, related with physical, chemical, biological and biochemical properties of soils, which measurement allows us to know the level of quality of a soil. Among the different soil parameters liable to be measured, those which are bio markers of soil microbial activity are, due to their sensitivity, the most useful to know in a quick and effective way the changes brought about in soil quality by soil management. This will help to take decisions on the most sustainable land uses in order to maintain a soil sustainable productivity. (Author) 11 refs.

  9. Tillage effects on topsoil structural quality assessed using X-ray CT, soil cores and visual soil evaluation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Garbout, Amin; Munkholm, Lars Juhl; Hansen, Søren Baarsgaard

    2013-01-01

    stratification of the 0–20 cm topsoil layer for both tillage treatments. The stratification of the direct drilled soil was in accordance with our expectations whereas it was surprising for the ploughed soil. The dense lower topsoil layer for the ploughed soil was probably caused by compaction during secondary...

  10. Is the soil quality monitoring an effective tool in consumers' protection of agricultural crops from cadmium soil contamination?-a case of the Silesia region (Poland).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piekut, Agata; Baranowska, Renata; Marchwińska-Wyrwał, Ewa; Ćwieląg-Drabek, Małgorzata; Hajok, Ilona; Dziubanek, Grzegorz; Grochowska-Niedworok, Elżbieta

    2017-12-16

    The monitoring of soil quality should be a control tool used to reduce the adverse health effects arising from exposure to toxic chemicals in soil through cultivated crop absorption. The aim of the study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the monitoring and control system of soil quality in Poland, in terms of consumer safety, for agricultural plants cultivated in areas with known serious cadmium contamination, such as Silesia Province. To achieve the objective, the contents of cadmium in soils and vegetables in the Silesia administrative area were examined. The obtained results were compared with the results of soil contamination from the quality monitoring of arable soil in Poland. The studies show a significant exceedance of the permissible values of cadmium in soil samples and the vegetables cultivated on that soil. The threat to consumer health is a valid concern, although this threat was not indicated by the results of the national monitoring of soil quality. The results indicated an unequal distribution of risk to consumers resulting from contaminated soil. Moreover, the monitoring systems should be designed at the local or regional scale to guarantee the safety of consumers of edible plants cultivated in the areas contaminated with cadmium.

  11. Assessment of Metalloid and Metal Contamination in Soils from Hainan, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiangjun Liao

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The characterization of the concentrations and sources of metals and metalloids in soils is necessary to establish quality standards on a regional level and to assess the potential threat of metals to food safety and human health. A total of 8713 soil samples throughout Hainan Island, China were collected at a density of one sample per 4 km2, and concentrations of As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb, Se, and Zn were analyzed. The geometric mean values of the elements were 2.17, 0.60, 26.5, 9.43, 0.033, 8.74, 22.2, 0.26, and 39.6 mg·· kg−1 for As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb, Se, and Zn, respectively, significantly lower than the background values of Chinese soils with the exception of Se. Principal component analysis (PCA suggested that multiple anthropogenic sources regulated the elemental compositions of the Hainan environment. Coal combustion and mining are important anthropogenic sources of metals for Hainan. The geochemical maps of elements in Hainan soils were produced using the Geographic Information System (GIS method, and several hot-spot areas were identified. The ecological impact of As, Cd, Cu, Cr, Hg, Pb, Ni, and Zn pollution to the soils was extremely “low”.

  12. Soil quality effects on regeneration of annual Medicago pastures in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Annual medic (Medicago spp.) pastures are widely used as the forage component of crop rotation systems in the Mediterranean region of South Africa. Reliable establishment of medics can be challenging. This may be related to poor soil quality, an inherent problem of soils in the region often aggravated by poor ...

  13. Changes in soil quality following poplar short-rotation forestry under different cutting cycles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Di Bene

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available In the last decade, the change of energy concept induced by global warming and fossil fuel depletion together with the advances in agriculture towards a multifunctional and a more sustainable use of rural areas promoted the development of biomass crops. In this regard, Populus is largely utilised in short-rotation forestry (SRF, as it is known to be a fast-growing tree, producing large yields and having a high energy potential. Most studies focused on economic-productive and energetic aspects of Populus plantations, whereas their impact on soil quality and health have been poorly investigated. In this study, the main soil chemical parameters, microbial biomass and activity were assessed aiming at evaluating the impact of Populus SRF under one, two and three-year cutting cycles (T1, T2 and T3 in comparison with an intensive food cropping system (wheat-soybean rotation, WS. In addition, arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM fungal inoculum potential was measured using root colonisation (RC and number of entry points (EP. In the 0-10 cm soil depth, pH, phosphorus (P, total nitrogen (N and soil organic carbon (SOC were significantly affected by the management. In comparison with WS, Populus SRF treatments produced significant pH decreases together with N and SOC increases, these last ones ranging from 11 to 34% and from 21 to 57%, respectively. Under T3 soil pH decreased of 0.25 units, while P, N and SOC increased of 10, 34 and 57%, respectively, in comparison with WS. Microbial biomass and soil respiration under SRF showed also mean increases of 71 and 17%, respectively. Under SRF treatments, Lolium perenne, commonly observed in all field plots, was more than twofold colonised by AM fungi in comparison with WS, while the number of EP, observed on Lactuca sativa used as a test plant, showed values ranging from 8 to 21 times higher. The present study shows the potential of a Populus SRF to improve soil chemical, biochemical and biological quality parameters in

  14. Improvements of soil quality for increased food production in Norway

    Science.gov (United States)

    Øygarden, Lillian; Klakegg, Ove; Børresen, Trond; Krogstad, Tore; Kjersti Uhlen, Anne

    2016-04-01

    Since the 1990ties, agricultural land in use in Norway has diminished and yields per hectare for cereals and forages have stagnated. An expert panel appointed to advice on how to increase Norwegian grain production emphasizes low profitability and poor soil quality as limiting factors. A White Paper from the Norwegian Government, Report No.9 (2011-2012), stated that the main goal for the agricultural sector is to increase food production proportional to the expected increase in population (20 % by 2030) in order to maintain self-sufficiency at the present level. This is the background for the interdisciplinary project AGROPRO "Agronomy for increased food production - Challenges and solutions" (2013 - 2017)" financed by the Norwegian research council. A mail goal is seeking possibilities for improvements in agronomic practices for increased and sustainable food production and to identify drivers and challenges for their implementation. Are the key to higher yields hidden in the soil? The paper present an overview of the research activities in the project and some results of the improvements of soil quality to minimize yield gap in cereal and forage production. Detailed new soil maps provide soil information on field scale of soil quality and the suitability for growing different crops like cereal production or vegetables. The detailed soil information is also beeing used for development and adaptation of the planning tool «Terranimo» to reduce risk of soil compaction.The farmer get available soil information for each field, provide information about the maschinery in use- tractors and equipment, tyres, pressure. The decision tool evaluate when the soil is suitable for tillage, calculate the risk of compaction for dry, moist and wet soil. New research data for compaction on Norwegian clay and silt soil are included. Climate change with wetter conditions gives challenges for growing cereals. The project is testing genetic variation in cereals for tolerance to water

  15. (AJST) AN ASSESSMENT OF THE SOIL-CONDITIONING ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ABSTRACT:- This study assesses the soil conditioning capacity of tree gums based on the level of resistance to ... enable their destruction by microorganism and (2) minimize soil loss .... and moulded into a cylindrical core using a small plastic.

  16. Soil erosion assessment - Mind the gap

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jongho; Ivanov, Valeriy Y.; Fatichi, Simone

    2016-12-01

    Accurate assessment of erosion rates remains an elusive problem because soil loss is strongly nonunique with respect to the main drivers. In addressing the mechanistic causes of erosion responses, we discriminate between macroscale effects of external factors - long studied and referred to as "geomorphic external variability", and microscale effects, introduced as "geomorphic internal variability." The latter source of erosion variations represents the knowledge gap, an overlooked but vital element of geomorphic response, significantly impacting the low predictability skill of deterministic models at field-catchment scales. This is corroborated with experiments using a comprehensive physical model that dynamically updates the soil mass and particle composition. As complete knowledge of microscale conditions for arbitrary location and time is infeasible, we propose that new predictive frameworks of soil erosion should embed stochastic components in deterministic assessments of external and internal types of geomorphic variability.

  17. Canadian soil quality guidelines for the protection of environmental and human health : benzene

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Potter, K.

    2005-07-01

    This report presented soil quality guidelines for benzene to protect humans and ecological receptors in 4 types of land uses: agricultural; residential and parklands; commercial and industrial. The chemical and physical properties of benzene were reviewed, as well as the sources and emissions of benzene in Canada. The distribution and behaviour of benzene in the environment was examined, and the toxicological effects of benzene on microbial processes, plants, animals and humans were reviewed. It was noted that the background information and rationale for the derivation of Canadian Soil Quality Guidelines for this substance were originally published in 1999 by the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment (CCME) in Canadian Environmental Quality Guidelines. These guidelines have since been revised to reflect new data and lessons learned during the development of the Canada-wide Standard for Petroleum Hydrocarbons in Soil (CCME 2000). Modifications in this report included the derivation of guidelines for different soil textures and depths. Behaviour and effects in biota were reviewed, including soil microbial processes; terrestrial plants; terrestrial invertebrates; livestock and wildlife; and bioaccumulation. Behaviour and effects in humans and mammalian species were examined. The derivation of environmental soil quality guidelines was outlined. Recommendations for Canadian soil quality guidelines were presented. It was concluded that there is a lack of studies on the toxic effects of benzene on livestock, mammalian wildlife and birds and that studies on the metabolism of benzene in mammals and birds as well as invertebrates are needed. In addition, research is needed on the effects of benzene on nitrogen fixation, nitrification, nitrogen mineralization, decomposition and respiration. 118 refs., 3 tabs., 2 figs.

  18. Analysis of soil quality in some areas of Jharia coal field

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tripathy, D.P.; Singh, Gurdeep; Panigrahi, D.C.

    1998-01-01

    This paper presents the results of the studies carried out on soil quality parameters in seven mining sites divided in to three zones viz. non-fire, intermediate fire and fire zones, located in the eastern part of Jharia coalfield. It has been observed that the soil quality in fire areas have relatively low pH, low moisture content, low organic carbon, high conductivity and low levels of macro-nutrients than those of non-fire and intermediate fire zones. (author)

  19. Amending greenroof soil with biochar to affect runoff water quantity and quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beck, Deborah A; Johnson, Gwynn R; Spolek, Graig A

    2011-01-01

    Numbers of greenroofs in urban areas continue to grow internationally; so designing greenroof soil to reduce the amount of nutrients in the stormwater runoff from these roofs is becoming essential. This study evaluated changes in extensive greenroof water discharge quality and quantity after adding biochar, a soil amendment promoted for its ability to retain nutrients in soils and increase soil fertility. Prototype greenroof trays with and without biochar were planted with sedum or ryegrass, with barren soil trays used as controls. The greenroof trays were subjected to two sequential 7.4cm/h rainfall events using a rain simulator. Runoff from the rain events was collected and evaluated. Trays containing 7% biochar showed increased water retention and significant decreases in discharge of total nitrogen, total phosphorus, nitrate, phosphate, and organic carbon. The addition of biochar to greenroof soil improves both runoff water quality and retention. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. SOIL QUALITY AND YIELD OF PINUS TAEDA IN THE PLANALTO CATARINENSE REGION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cedinara Arruda Santana Morales

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available In forest areas, the continual use of the soil alters its physical attributes and deteriorates its quality, in consequence of the traffic of machines used in forest operations, resulting in lower yields of crops. The relationship between soil quality at different sites and the production of Pinus taeda was evaluated in soils of the Planalto Catarinense region. Four farms were used, with two sites on each farm, chosen for the soil type and yield of the forest. The soil morphology was described and samples were collected in each pedogenetic horizon for physical and chemical analyses. Great variation exists in the physical attributes of the profiles, especially in the sequence and thickness of the horizons. Compaction was verified in the surface layer of the shallow profiles, evidenced by the higher bulk density and, or, soil resistance to penetration. In these profiles, the yield was reduced by between 14 and 36%, compared to the deeper profiles with a smaller degree of compaction.

  1. Soil Extracellular Enzymes from Brazilian Cerrado as Quality Bioindicators in Agricultural Areas in Goiás, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leciana de Menezes Sousa Zago

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The conversion of native Cerrado areas for the implementation of crops alters the physicochemical properties and biochemistry of soil. In this study we sought to understand the effect of seasonality and management used for planting sugarcane on the activity of hydrolases and oxidoreductases. Cerrado native soil samples and soil converted to sugarcane crops under different management underwent physical-chemical assessment, biological and biochemistry. The implementation of monocultures in Brazilian Cerrado caused reductions in the amount of organic matter and organic carbon in relation to the native vegetation, which in turn reflected in decreased biological activity in the soil. Thus, it was found that hydrolases and oxidoreductases are sensitive to the caused variations in drought and rain events, and in the vegetation cover and management used for the implementation of sugarcane. Therefore soil hydrolases and oxidoreductases can be used as quality bioindicators in the Cerrado soils of Goiás.

  2. Spectral Assessment of Soil Properties: Standoff Quantification of Soil Organic Matter Content in Surface Mineral Soils and Alaskan Peat

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-08-01

    Soil Properties Standoff Quantification of Soil Organic Matter Content in Surface Mineral Soils and Alaskan Peat En gi ne er R es ea rc h an d D...ERDC 6.2 GRE ARTEMIS STO-R DRTSPORE ERDC TR-17-9 August 2017 Spectral Assessment of Soil Properties Standoff Quantification of Soil Organic...Matter Content in Surface Mineral Soils and Alaskan Peat Stacey L. Jarvis, Karen L. Foley, Robert M. Jones, Stephen D. Newman, and Robyn A. Barbato

  3. Environmental risk assessment of the use of different organic wastes as soil amendments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarenga, Paula; Palma, Patrícia; Mourinha, Clarisse; Farto, Márcia; Cunha-Queda, Ana Cristina; Natal-da-Luz, Tiago; Sousa, José Paulo

    2013-04-01

    The use of organic wastes in agriculture is considered a way of maintaining or restoring the quality of soils, enlarging the slow cycling soil organic carbon pool. However, a wide variety of undesired substances, such as potentially trace elements and organic contaminants, can have adverse effects on the environment. That fact was highlighted by the Proposal for a Soil Framework Directive, which recognized that "soil degradation or soil improvements have a major impact on other areas, (…) such as surface waters and groundwater, human health, climate change, protection of nature and biodiversity, and food safety". Taking that into account, the research project "ResOrgRisk" aims to assess the environmental risk involved in the use of different organic wastes as soil amendments, evidencing their benefits and constraints, and defining the most suitable tests to reach such assessment. The organic wastes selected for this purpose were: sewage sludge, limed, not limed, and co-composted with agricultural wastes, agro-industrial sludge, mixed municipal solid waste compost, compost produced from organic farming residues, and pig slurry digestate. Whereas threshold values for heavy metals in sludge used for agriculture have been set by the European Commission, actually there is no definitive European legislation for organic contaminants. Guide values for some organic contaminants (e.g. polychlorinated biphenyls - PCBs, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons - PAHs) have been adopted at national level by many European countries, such as Portugal. These values should be taken into account when assessing the risk involved in the use of organic wastes as soil amendments. However, chemical analysis of organic waste often gives scarce information because it does not include possible interactions between chemicals. Furthermore, an exhaustive identification and quantification of all substances is impractical. In this study, ecotoxicological tests (comprising solid and aquatic phases

  4. Effects of biomass chains on land use and soil quality in the Netherlands. Development and application of a framework for testing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hanegraaf, M.C.; Moolenaar, S.W.; Elbersen, H.W.; Annevelink, E.

    2007-03-01

    The production of bioenergy in the Netherlands is stimulated by policies at both the national and European levels. But energy from biomass is not by definition sustainable. And despite serious global consequences for food production and biodiversity, for example, continuing growth in world bio-energy demand is inevitable. Amid fears that rising demand for biomass will put soils under increasing pressure and cause further degradation of poorly managed land, the Technical committee on soil protection (TCB) commissioned a research study into the potential positive and negative effects of bioenergy on land use and soil quality in the Netherlands. The production of energy from biomass can follow a number of possible routes (electricity, heat and transport fuel) and use various organic feedstocks (energy crops, by-products and imported biomass). Study of the development of these supply chains and their biomass demands reveals that they largely reflect the technological potential and supply of biomass. The bioenergy sector is currently debating sustainability issues, but this includes little consideration of the soil. An assessment framework has been drawn up to appraise the effects of bioenergy on land use and soil quality in the Netherlands. It is based on a conceptual model of the 'sustainability of bioenergy' and a review of soil quality indicators (such as land use/landscape, biodiversity, organic matter, nutrient supply, mineral surpluses, soil structure, bioremediation and soil pollution). The illustration depicts the research questions as interpreted in this study. A subsequent appraisal focused on the organic matter balance at the field and regional levels. Use of the assessment framework is illustrated for the 'green electricity' and 'transport biofuels' chains, with a qualitative evaluation for the indicators organic matter, minerals and land use. From the first appraisal made using the assessment framework we conclude that bioenergy offers opportunities for

  5. Quantifying soil burn severity for hydrologic modeling to assess post-fire effects on sediment delivery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobre, Mariana; Brooks, Erin; Lew, Roger; Kolden, Crystal; Quinn, Dylan; Elliot, William; Robichaud, Pete

    2017-04-01

    Soil erosion is a secondary fire effect with great implications for many ecosystem resources. Depending on the burn severity, topography, and the weather immediately after the fire, soil erosion can impact municipal water supplies, degrade water quality, and reduce reservoirs' storage capacity. Scientists and managers use field and remotely sensed data to quickly assess post-fire burn severity in ecologically-sensitive areas. From these assessments, mitigation activities are implemented to minimize post-fire flood and soil erosion and to facilitate post-fire vegetation recovery. Alternatively, land managers can use fire behavior and spread models (e.g. FlamMap, FARSITE, FOFEM, or CONSUME) to identify sensitive areas a priori, and apply strategies such as fuel reduction treatments to proactively minimize the risk of wildfire spread and increased burn severity. There is a growing interest in linking fire behavior and spread models with hydrology-based soil erosion models to provide site-specific assessment of mitigation treatments on post-fire runoff and erosion. The challenge remains, however, that many burn severity mapping and modeling products quantify vegetation loss rather than measuring soil burn severity. Wildfire burn severity is spatially heterogeneous and depends on the pre-fire vegetation cover, fuel load, topography, and weather. Severities also differ depending on the variable of interest (e.g. soil, vegetation). In the United States, Burned Area Reflectance Classification (BARC) maps, derived from Landsat satellite images, are used as an initial burn severity assessment. BARC maps are classified from either a Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR) or differenced Normalized Burned Ratio (dNBR) scene into four classes (Unburned, Low, Moderate, and High severity). The development of soil burn severity maps requires further manual field validation efforts to transform the BARC maps into a product more applicable for post-fire soil rehabilitation activities

  6. Use of portable X-ray fluorescence spectrometry for environmental quality assessment of peri-urban agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weindorf, David C; Zhu, Yuanda; Chakraborty, Somsubhra; Bakr, Noura; Huang, Biao

    2012-01-01

    Urban expansion into traditional agricultural lands has augmented the potential for heavy metal contamination of soils. This study examined the utility of field portable X-ray fluorescence (PXRF) spectrometry for evaluating the environmental quality of sugarcane fields near two industrial complexes in Louisiana, USA. Results indicated that PXRF provided quality results of heavy metal levels comparable to traditional laboratory analysis. When coupled with global positioning system technology, the use of PXRF allows for on-site interpolation of heavy metal levels in a matter of minutes. Field portable XRF was shown to be an effective tool for rapid assessment of heavy metals in soils of peri-urban agricultural areas.

  7. Soil quality differences in a mature alley cropping system in temperate North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alley cropping in agroforestry practices has been shown to improve soil quality, however information on long-term effects (>10 years) of alley cropping on soils in the temperate zone is very limited. The objective of this study was to examine effects of management, landscape, and soil depth on soil...

  8. Improved or Unimproved Urban Areas Effect on Soil and Water Quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sally D. Logsdon

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Construction in urban areas usually results in compacted soil, which restricts plant growth and infiltration. Nutrients may be lost in storm runoff water and sediment. The purpose of this study was to determine if existing lawns benefit from aeration and surface compost additions without the negative impact of nutrient loss in runoff. Four sets of lawns were compared, with or without compost plus aeration, as a paired comparison. Surface bulk density was significantly reduced in the treated lawns (1.32 versus 1.42 Mg·m−3. Visual evaluation of soil structure showed improvement in the treated lawns. Of fifteen measurement dates over four years, four dates showed significantly higher surface soil water contents in the treated lawns compared with the untreated lawns. When compared over time, three of the four treated lawns had significantly higher soil water content than the untreated lawns. Nutrient concentrations in rainfall simulator runoff were not significantly different between treated and control lawns, which showed that compost did not negatively impact water quality. Compost and aeration helped restore soil quality for urban soils of recent construction.

  9. Effect of soil compactness on the growth and quality of carrot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liisa Pietola

    1995-05-01

    the O2 content to 10% when the subsoil had high wetness. In other soils, the lowest soil oxygen contents of 16-18% were recorded in early summer (compacted clay and during periods of vigorous plant growth (fine sand when soil water contents were high. Even though the highest degree of soil compactness (D in a plough layer approached 93 (gravimetric in all soils, only clay soil was compacted to a soil macro-porosity below 10% (pore diameter > 30 μm. Soil compaction promoted crop establishment and early growth as compared with loose soil beds. Optimum soil compactness for carrot yield (D = 82 was observed only in clay field where excess loosening or compaction affected yield quantity adversely at different stages of growth. During biomass accumulation, excessive penetrometer resistances limited tap root growth in compacted fine sand without irrigation. Water applications promoted shoot growth, but did not affect final shoot and tap root yield. Among the three soil types tested in this study, compaction of mull soil had the least effect on carrot growth and external quality. This paper presents evidence that the internal quality of carrots is only slightly affected by changes in soil physical properties, while the adverse effects of soil compaction on carrot external quality (short, deformed and conical tap roots with greater maximum diameters are clear. Even though compacted clay soil greatly limited the biomass accumulations in the tap root, which had a high crude fibre content, the carotene (10 mg/100 g carrots and sugar contents (5% reached acceptable levels. The lowest carotene contents (4 mg/100 g carrots were observed in loose mull, following a cool late summer in 1990. The effect of irrigation on carotene content varied from one year to another. High sugar and carotene contents appeared to respond to the high below-ground absorption surface. The fibrous root system of carrots, consisting of mostly very fine roots (diameter 0.15 mm, had total lengths of 150 m in

  10. Soil erosion risk assessment using interviews, empirical soil erosion modeling (RUSLE) and fallout radionuclides in a volcanic crater lake watershed subjected to land use change, western Uganda

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Crop, Wannes; Ryken, Nick; Tomma Okuonzia, Judith; Van Ranst, Eric; Baert, Geert; Boeckx, Pascal; Verschuren, Dirk; Verdoodt, Ann

    2017-04-01

    Population pressure results in conversion of natural vegetation to cropland within the western Ugandan crater lake watersheds. These watersheds however are particularly prone to soil degradation and erosion because of the high rainfall intensity and steep topography. Increased soil erosion losses expose the aquatic ecosystems to excessive nutrient loading. In this study, the Katinda crater lake watershed, which is already heavily impacted by agricultural land use, was selected for an explorative study on its (top)soil characteristics - given the general lack of data on soils within these watersheds - as well as an assessment of soil erosion risks. Using group discussions and structured interviews, the local land users' perceptions on land use, soil quality, soil erosion and lake ecology were compiled. Datasets on rainfall, topsoil characteristics, slope gradient and length, and land use were collected. Subsequently a RUSLE erosion model was run. Results from this empirical erosion modeling approach were validated against soil erosion estimates based on 137Cs measurements.

  11. Application of an in-situ soil sampler for assessing subsurface biogeochemical dynamics in a diesel-contaminated coastal site during soil flushing operations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwon, Man Jae; O'Loughlin, Edward J; Ham, Baknoon; Hwang, Yunho; Shim, Moojoon; Lee, Soonjae

    2018-01-15

    Subsurface biogeochemistry and contaminant dynamics during the remediation of diesel-contamination by in-situ soil flushing were investigated at a site located in a coastal region. An in-situ sampler containing diesel-contaminated soils separated into two size fractions (fraction were much higher than those in the fraction. Increases in soil TPH in DH1 were consistent with the expected outcomes following well pumping and surfactant injection used to enhance TPH extraction. However, the number of diesel-degrading microorganisms decreased after surfactant injection. 16S-rRNA gene-based analysis also showed that the community composition and diversity depended on both particle size and diesel contamination. The multidisciplinary approach to the contaminated site assessments showed that soil flushing with surfactant enhanced diesel extraction, but negatively impacted in-situ diesel biodegradation as well as groundwater quality. The results also suggest that the in-situ sampler can be an effective monitoring tool for subsurface biogeochemistry as well as contaminant dynamics. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Amending greenroof soil with biochar to affect runoff water quantity and quality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beck, Deborah A.; Johnson, Gwynn R. [Portland State University, Mechanical and Materials Engineering, POB 751, Portland, OR 97207 (United States); Spolek, Graig A., E-mail: graig@cecs.pdx.edu [Portland State University, Mechanical and Materials Engineering, POB 751, Portland, OR 97207 (United States)

    2011-08-15

    Numbers of greenroofs in urban areas continue to grow internationally; so designing greenroof soil to reduce the amount of nutrients in the stormwater runoff from these roofs is becoming essential. This study evaluated changes in extensive greenroof water discharge quality and quantity after adding biochar, a soil amendment promoted for its ability to retain nutrients in soils and increase soil fertility. Prototype greenroof trays with and without biochar were planted with sedum or ryegrass, with barren soil trays used as controls. The greenroof trays were subjected to two sequential 7.4 cm/h rainfall events using a rain simulator. Runoff from the rain events was collected and evaluated. Trays containing 7% biochar showed increased water retention and significant decreases in discharge of total nitrogen, total phosphorus, nitrate, phosphate, and organic carbon. The addition of biochar to greenroof soil improves both runoff water quality and retention. - Highlights: > Biochar in green roof soil reduces nitrogen and phosphorus in the runoff. > Addition of biochar reduces turbidity of runoff. > Addition of biochar reduces total organic carbon content in runoff by 67-72%. > Biochar improves water retention of saturated soil. - In this controlled laboratory experiment, greenroof soil was amended by the addition of biochar, which reduced the water runoff concentration of nitrogen, phosphorus, and organic carbon.

  13. Amending greenroof soil with biochar to affect runoff water quantity and quality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Beck, Deborah A.; Johnson, Gwynn R.; Spolek, Graig A.

    2011-01-01

    Numbers of greenroofs in urban areas continue to grow internationally; so designing greenroof soil to reduce the amount of nutrients in the stormwater runoff from these roofs is becoming essential. This study evaluated changes in extensive greenroof water discharge quality and quantity after adding biochar, a soil amendment promoted for its ability to retain nutrients in soils and increase soil fertility. Prototype greenroof trays with and without biochar were planted with sedum or ryegrass, with barren soil trays used as controls. The greenroof trays were subjected to two sequential 7.4 cm/h rainfall events using a rain simulator. Runoff from the rain events was collected and evaluated. Trays containing 7% biochar showed increased water retention and significant decreases in discharge of total nitrogen, total phosphorus, nitrate, phosphate, and organic carbon. The addition of biochar to greenroof soil improves both runoff water quality and retention. - Highlights: → Biochar in green roof soil reduces nitrogen and phosphorus in the runoff. → Addition of biochar reduces turbidity of runoff. → Addition of biochar reduces total organic carbon content in runoff by 67-72%. → Biochar improves water retention of saturated soil. - In this controlled laboratory experiment, greenroof soil was amended by the addition of biochar, which reduced the water runoff concentration of nitrogen, phosphorus, and organic carbon.

  14. Enzyme activities by indicator of quality in organic soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raigon Jiménez, Mo; Fita, Ana Delores; Rodriguez Burruezo, Adrián

    2016-04-01

    The analytical determination of biochemical parameters, as soil enzyme activities and those related to the microbial biomass is growing importance by biological indicator in soil science studies. The metabolic activity in soil is responsible of important processes such as mineralization and humification of organic matter. These biological reactions will affect other key processes involved with elements like carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus , and all transformations related in soil microbial biomass. The determination of biochemical parameters is useful in studies carried out on organic soil where microbial processes that are key to their conservation can be analyzed through parameters of the metabolic activity of these soils. The main objective of this work is to apply analytical methodologies of enzyme activities in soil collections of different physicochemical characteristics. There have been selective sampling of natural soils, organic farming soils, conventional farming soils and urban soils. The soils have been properly identified conserved at 4 ° C until analysis. The enzyme activities determinations have been: catalase, urease, cellulase, dehydrogenase and alkaline phosphatase, which bring together a representative group of biological transformations that occur in the soil environment. The results indicate that for natural and agronomic soil collections, the values of the enzymatic activities are within the ranges established for forestry and agricultural soils. Organic soils are generally higher level of enzymatic, regardless activity of the enzyme involved. Soil near an urban area, levels of activities have been significantly reduced. The vegetation cover applied to organic soils, results in greater enzymatic activity. So the quality of these soils, defined as the ability to maintain their biological productivity is increased with the use of cover crops, whether or spontaneous species. The practice of cover based on legumes could be used as an ideal choice

  15. Assessing soil quality: practicable standards for sustainable forest productivity in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert F. Powers; Allan E. Tiarks; James R. Boyle

    1998-01-01

    Productive soils form the foundation for productive forests. But unfortunately, the significance of soil seems lost to modem society. Most of us are too far removed from the natural factors of production to appreciate the multiple roles of soil. Nor is its worth recognized well by many forest managers who too often see soil only in its capacity for logging roads and...

  16. Litter quality mediated nitrogen effect on plant litter decomposition regardless of soil fauna presence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Weidong; Chao, Lin; Yang, Qingpeng; Wang, Qingkui; Fang, Yunting; Wang, Silong

    2016-10-01

    Nitrogen addition has been shown to affect plant litter decomposition in terrestrial ecosystems. The way that nitrogen deposition impacts the relationship between plant litter decomposition and altered soil nitrogen availability is unclear, however. This study examined 18 co-occurring litter types in a subtropical forest in China in terms of their decomposition (1 yr of exposure in the field) with nitrogen addition treatment (0, 0.4, 1.6, and 4.0 mol·N·m -2 ·yr -1 ) and soil fauna exclusion (litter bags with 0.1 and 2 cm mesh size). Results showed that the plant litter decomposition rate is significantly reduced because of nitrogen addition; the strength of the nitrogen addition effect is closely related to the nitrogen addition levels. Plant litters with diverse quality responded to nitrogen addition differently. When soil fauna was present, the nitrogen addition effect on medium-quality or high-quality plant litter decomposition rate was -26% ± 5% and -29% ± 4%, respectively; these values are significantly higher than that of low-quality plant litter decomposition. The pattern is similar when soil fauna is absent. In general, the plant litter decomposition rate is decreased by soil fauna exclusion; an average inhibition of -17% ± 1.5% was exhibited across nitrogen addition treatment and litter quality groups. However, this effect is weakly related to nitrogen addition treatment and plant litter quality. We conclude that the variations in plant litter quality, nitrogen deposition, and soil fauna are important factors of decomposition and nutrient cycling in a subtropical forest ecosystem. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.

  17. Assessment of soil ecosystem in degraded areas of vineyards after organic treatments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landi, Silvia; D'Errico, Giada; Gagnarli, Elena; Simoni, Sauro; Goggioli, Donatella; Guidi, Silvia; D'Avino, Lorenzo; Lagomarsino, Alessandra; Valboa, Giuseppe; Castaldini, Maurizio; Elio Agnelli, Alessandro; Fantappiè, Maria; Lorenzetti, Romina; Priori, Simone; Costantini, Edoardo A. C.

    2017-04-01

    In Italian vineyards, it is quite common to have areas characterized by problems in vine health, grape production and quality, often caused by improper land preparation before vine plantation and/or management. Causes for soil malfunctioning can include reduced contribution of the soil fauna to the ecosystem services such as nutrient cycles and organic matter turnover. ReSolVe is a transnational and interdisciplinary project, supported by Core-Organic+ program, aimed at testing the effects of selective agronomic strategies for restoring optimal soil functionality in degraded areas within organic vineyard. For this purpose, the evaluation and biomonitoring of the abundance of soil mesofauna, nematodes and microarthropods, represents an efficient tool to characterize the effects of crop management on soil quality. Assessing enzyme activities involved in the main biogeochemical cycling of C, N, P and S can also provide indication of soil functions and health status. Italian experimental plots are situated in two commercial farms in Tuscany: i) Fontodi, Panzano in Chianti (FI), which has been managed organically for more than 20 years and ii) San Disdagio, Roccastrada (GR), under organic farming since 2014. In each farm, three plots (250 m2 each) in the degraded areas and three relative control plots in the non-degraded areas were selected. The different restoring strategies implemented in each area were: i) compost, produced on farm by manure + pruning residue + grass, ii) faba bean and winter barley green manure, iii) dry mulching after sowing with Trifolium squarrosum L. Each treated and control plot has been studied for soil nematodes, microarthropods, enzymatic activity, and organic matter turnover using tea-bag index, as well as total organic carbon (TOC) and total nitrogen (TN). Soil sampling was carried out to 0-30 cm depth for TOC, TN, enzymes and nematodes and to 10 cm for microarthropods. Tea-bag index was determined following the Keuskamp et al. method

  18. Influence of agricultural management on chemical quality of a clay soil of semi-arid Morocco

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibno Namr, Khalid; Mrabet, Rachid

    2004-06-01

    Morocco's semi-arid lands are characterized by unique challenges. The most important obstacles to the development of durable agriculture are (1) limited and unpredictable supply of soil moisture and (2) low soil quality. Intensive use of soil throughout history has led to depletion in soil quality, leading in return to reduced yields because of the consequent reduced organic matter. Recognizing the need to recover soil quality and production decline, INRA scientists began, in the early 1980s, research on the effects of crop rotations, tillage and residue management on the productivity and quality of cropped soils. The present study concerns the short-term effect of rotation, tillage and residue management on selected quality indices of a calcixeroll (organic matter, nitrogen, particulate organic carbon (Cpom), particulate organic nitrogen (Npom) and pH). Hence, three rotations (wheat-wheat, WW; fallow-wheat, FW; and fallow-wheat-barley, FWB), two tillage systems (conventional offset disking, CT and no-tillage, NT), and three levels of residue in the NT system (NT 0 = no-residue cover, NT 50 = half surface residue cover, NT 100 = full surface residue cover) were selected. Three surface horizons were sampled (0-2.5, 2.5-7 and 7-20 cm). The study results showed an improvement of measured soil chemical properties under NT compared to CT, at the surface layer. No-tillage system helped sequestration of carbon and nitrogen, build-up of particulate organic carbon and nitrogen and sensible reduction of pH only at the surface layer. Continuous wheat permitted a slight improvement of soil quality, mainly at the 0-2.5 cm depth. Effects of rotation, tillage and residue level were reduced with depth of measurements.

  19. Soil Health Assessment Approaches and the Cornell Framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Es, Harold

    2016-04-01

    Soil health constraints beyond nutrient limitations and excesses currently limit agroecosystem productivity and sustainability, resilience to drought and extreme rainfall, and progress in soil and water conservation. With mounting pressure to produce food, feed, fiber, and even fuel for an increasing population, the concept of soil health is gaining national and international attention. Multiple regional, national, and global efforts are now leveraging that work to reach new stakeholder audiences, so that soil health management is expanding into mainstream agriculture. Each grower is generally faced with a unique situation in the choice of management options to address soil health constraints and each system affords its own set of opportunities or limitations to soil management. A more comprehensive understanding of soil health status can better guide farmers' management decisions. Until recently, there has not been a formalized decision making process for implementing a soil health management system that alleviates field-specific constrains identified through standard measurements and then maintains improved soil health. This presentation will discuss current US-based efforts related to soil health assessment, including efforts to build national consensus on appropriate methods for simple (inexpensive) and comprehensive tests. This includes the Cornell Soil Health Management Planning and Implementation Framework. The most relevant components of the framework are 1) measurement of indicators that represent critical soil processes, 2) scoring of measured values that allows for interpretation, and 3) linkage of identified constraints with management practices. Land managers can monitor changes over time through further assessment, and adapt management practices to achieve chosen goals. We will discuss the full tests and approaches for simplification.

  20. Participation of ARN-Argentina in the quality assessment program, EML-USDOE since 200-2001

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Equillor, Hugo E.; Serdeiro, Nelida H.; Fernandez, Jorge A.; Gavini, Ricardo M.; Grinman, Ana D.R.; Lewis, Esther C.; Medici, Marcela A.; Palacios, Miguel A.; Diodati, Jorge M.

    2002-01-01

    The Nuclear Regulatory Authority (ARN) participates every six months in the Quality Assessment Program (QAP), carried out by the Environmental Measurements Laboratory - United States Department Of Energy (EML-USDOE). The aim of this participation is to assess the quality of the radiochemical determinations and alpha, beta, gamma measurements, that ARN realises routinely. The analysed matrix are: water, filter, soil and vegetable. In the present work, the results of the ARN participation in the last four intercomparisons, period 2000-2001, are detailed and analysed statistically. The results are compared with obtained ones by all the laboratories. (author)

  1. Soil quality standards and guidelines for forest sustainability in northwestern North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deborah Page-Dumroese; Martin Jurgensen; William Elliot; Thomas Rice; John Nesser; Thomas Collins; Robert. Meurisse

    2000-01-01

    Soil quality standards and guidelines of the USDA Forest Service were some of the first in the world to be developed to evaluate changes in forest soil productivity and sustainability after harvesting and site preparation. International and national development of criteria and indicators for maintenance of soil productivity make it imperative to have adequate threshold...

  2. A Software for soil quality conservation at organic waste disposal areas: The case of olive mill and pistachio wastes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doula, Maria; Sarris, Apostolos; Papadopoulos, Nikos; Hliaoutakis, Aggelos; Kydonakis, Aris; Argyriou, Lemonia; Theocharopoulos, Sid; Kolovos, Chronis

    2016-04-01

    For the sustainable reuse of organic wastes at agricultural areas, apart from extensive evaluation of waste properties and characteristics, it is of significant importance, in order to protect soil quality, to evaluate land suitability and estimate the correct application doses prior waste landspreading. In the light of this precondition, a software was developed that integrates GIS maps of land suitability for waste reuse (wastewater and solid waste) and an algorithm for waste doses estimation in relation to soil analysis, and in case of reuse for fertilization with soil analysis, irrigation water quality and plant needs. EU and legislation frameworks of European Member States are also considered for the assessment of waste suitability for landspreading and for the estimation of the correct doses that will not cause adverse effects on soil and also to underground water (e.g. Nitrate Directive). Two examples of software functionality are presented in this study using data collected during two LIFE projects, i.e. Prosodol for landspreading of olive mill wastes and AgroStrat for pistachio wastes.

  3. Analysis of Best Management Practices Implementation on Water Quality Using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason Motsinger

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The formation of hypoxic zone in the Gulf of Mexico can be traced to agricultural watersheds in the Midwestern United States that are artificially drained in order to make the land suitable for agriculture. A number of best management practices (BMPs have been introduced to improve the water quality in the region but their relative effectivenss of these BMPs in reducing nutrient load has not been properly quantified. In order to determine the BMPs useful for reducing nutrient discharge from a tile drained watershed, a Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT model was calibrated and validated for water flow and nitrate load using experimental data from the Little Vermillion River (LVR watershed in east-central Illinois. Then, the performance of four common BMPs (reduced tillage, cover crop, filter strip and wetlands were evaluated. For BMPs, the usage of rye as cover crop performed the best in reducing nitrate discharge from the watershed as a single BMP, with an average annual nitrate load reduction of 54.5%. Combining no tillage and rye cover crops had varying results over the period simulated, but the average nitrate reduction was better than using rye cover crops with conventional tillage, with the average annual nitrate discharge decreased by 60.5% (an improvement of 13% over rye only.

  4. Concepts of soil mapping as a basis for the assessment of soil functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumgarten, Andreas

    2014-05-01

    Soil mapping systems in Europe have been designed mainly as a tool for the description of soil characteristics from a morphogenetic viewpoint. Contrasting to the American or FAO system, the soil development has been in the main focus of European systems. Nevertheless , recent developments in soil science stress the importance of the functions of soils with respect to the ecosystems. As soil mapping systems usually offer a sound and extensive database, the deduction of soil functions from "classic" mapping parameters can be used for local and regional assessments. According to the used pedo-transfer functions and mapping systems, tailored approaches can be chosen for different applications. In Austria, a system mainly for spatial planning purposes has been developed that will be presented and illustrated by means of best practice examples.

  5. Indicators of soil quality in the implantation of no-till system with winter crops.

    OpenAIRE

    NOGUEIRA, M. A.; TELLES, T. S.; FAGOTTI, D. dos S. L.; BRITO, O. R.; PRETE, C. E. C.; GUIMARÃES, M. de F.

    2014-01-01

    We assessed the effect of different winter crops on indicators of soil quality related to C and N cycling and C fractions in a Rhodic Kandiudult under no-till system at implantation, during two growing seasons, in Londrina PR Brazil. The experimental design was randomized blocks with split-plot in time arrangement, with four replications. The parcels were the winter crops: multicropping of cover crops with black oat (Avena strigosa), hairy vetch (Vicia villosa) and fodder radish (Raphanus sat...

  6. Effect of leaf litter quantity and type on forest soil fauna and biological quality

    OpenAIRE

    Zhizhong Yuan; Yang Cui; Shaokui Yan

    2013-01-01

    It is important to assess forest litter management. Here we examined the effects of leaf litter addition on the soil faunal community in Huitong subtropical forest region in Hunan Province, China. The microcosm experiment involving leaf-litter manipulation using a block and nested experimental design, respectively, was established in May, 2011. In the block design, the effects of litter quantity and its control were examined, while in the nested design a comparison was made of litter quality ...

  7. The impact of agriculture management on soil quality in citrus orchards in Eastern Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hondebrink, Merel; Cerdà, Artemi; Cammeraat, Erik

    2015-04-01

    Currently, the agricultural management of citrus orchard in the Valencia region in E Spain, is changing from traditionally irrigated and managed orchards to drip irrigated organic managed orchards. It is not known what is the effect of such changes on soil quality and hope to shed some light with this study on this transition. It is known that the drip-irrigated orchards built in sloping terrain increase soil erosion (Cerdà et al., 2009; Li et al., 2014) and that agricultural management such as catch crops and mulches reduce sediment yield and surface runoff (Xu et al., 2012; ), as in other orchards around the world (Wang et al., 2010; Wanshnong et al., 2013; Li et al., 2014; Hazarika et al., 2014): We hypothesize that these changes have an important impact on the soil chemical and physical properties. Therefor we studied the soil quality of 12 citrus orchards, which had different land and irrigation management techniques. We compared organic (OR) and conventional (CO) land management with either drip irrigation (DRP) or flood irrigation (FLD). Soil samples at two depths, 0-1 cm and 5-10 cm, were taken for studying soil quality parameters under the different treatments. These parameters included soil chemical parameters, bulk density, texture, soil surface shear strength and soil aggregation. Half of the studied orchards were organically managed and the other 6 were conventionally managed, and for each of these 6 study sites three fields were flood irrigated plots (FLD) and the other three drip irrigated systems (DRP) In total 108 soil samples were taken as well additional irrigation water samples. We will present the results of this study with regard to the impact of the studied irrigation systems and land management systems with regard to soil quality. This knowledge might help in improving citrus orchard management with respect to maintaining or improving soil quality to ensure sustainable agricultural practices. References Cerdà, A., Giménez-Morera, A. and

  8. An approach to determine multiple enzyme activities in the same soil sample for soil health-biogeochemical indexes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enzyme activities (EAs) are soil health indicators of changes in decomposition processes due to management and the crop(s) affecting the quantity and quality of plant residues and nutrients entering the soil. More commonly assessed soil EAs can provide information of reactions where plant available ...

  9. Changes in the persistence of two phenylurea herbicides in two Mediterranean soils under irrigation with low- and high-quality water: A laboratory approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    ElGouzi, Siham; Draoui, Khalid; Chtoun, E H; Dolores Mingorance, M; Peña, Aránzazu

    2015-12-15

    The disappearance of two phenylurea herbicides, chlorotoluron (CHL) and isoproturon (IPU), in two Mediterranean soils, an agricultural calcareous soil (S5) and an organic forest soil (S2), was assessed under irrigation with high- and low-quality water. Irrigation with wastewater, as opposed to irrigation with high-quality water, increased the degradation rate of both herbicides in both soils. For each soil, the decay rate of IPU was always higher than that of CHL, and both pesticides disappeared more rapidly from S5 with lower clay and organic carbon content than from S2. The degradation rate was inversely related with pesticide sorption on soil, because increased sorption would reduce pesticide bioavailability for decomposition. In most cases the residual concentration in soil of both phenylurea herbicides was better fitted to a bi-exponential decay model than to first-order or first-order with plateau models. Dehydrogenase activity, used as an indication of microbial activity, was very high in S2 in comparison with S5, but was not related to pesticide disappearance. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Soil quality improvement for crop production in semi-arid West Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Ouédraogo, E.

    2004-01-01

    Soil quality maintenance and crop production improvement in semi-arid West Africa require appropriate cropping technologies, which are ecologically sound and economically viable. Thus, on-farm and on-station experiments have been carried out on the central plateau and in the south of Burkina Faso The results show that adoption of improved soil fertility technologies such as composting by farmers is determined by soil fertility status, access to the market and social reasons. Organic amendment...

  11. Exploring the potential of the permanganate oxidation method as a tool to monitor soil quality in agricultural upland systems of Southeast Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hepp, Catherine M.; Bruun, Thilde Bech; de Neergaard, Andreas

    2014-05-01

    The transition to more intensified upland systems is having an impact on the soil quality, defined as the ability of a soil to both provide and maintain essential services to an ecosystem. As many tropical upland soils are inherently low in quality, it is essential that impacts be monitored. Soil quality is assessed by using a combination of parameters that serve as indicators and cover the soil chemical, biological and physical properties. An ideal indicator should be sensitive to changes in the environment and management practices and should be widely accessible, meaning low resource requirement (i.e. time and equipment). Total organic carbon (TOC) content is a commonly used indicator of soil quality as it is linked to many soil functions and processes; however analysis is costly and requires access to advanced instrumental facilities, rendering it unsuited for many developing countries. An alternative indicator is the soil fraction dominated by easily decomposable carbon; this may be measured by treating soil samples with 0.2M potassium permanganate (KMnO4), an oxidizing agent which is thought to mimic the enzymes released by the soil microbial community. The advantage of this method is that it is accessible: it is fast, requires little resource input and is field appropriate. There is no consensus however as to which soil carbon fraction the method targets. Furthermore Skjemstad et al. (2006) has indicated that KMnO4 may oxidise charcoal, a component of the non-labile carbon pool; this has implications for the suitability of the method when used for soils of shifting cultivation systems. The purpose of this study was to investigate the potential of permanganate oxidizable carbon (Pox C) as a reliable indicator of soil quality in agricultural upland systems in Northern Lao PDR. Focus was placed on the relations between Pox C and other soil quality parameters (bulk density, pH, CEC, TOC, total N, exchangeable K, plant available P) and upland rice yields. The

  12. Visual soil evaluation and soil compaction research

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    M.L. Guimarães, Rachel; Keller, Thomas; Munkholm, Lars Juhl

    2017-01-01

    Following on from discussions that took place during the 19th International Conference of the International Soil Tillage Research Organization (ISTRO) in Montevideo, Uruguay, in 2012, the ISTRO working groups “Visual Soil Examination and Evaluation” (VSEE) and “Subsoil Compaction” decided...... to organize a joint workshop. The present special issue is an outcome from the workshop on “Soil structural quality of tropical soils: Visual evaluation methods and soil compaction prevention strategies” that was held 26–29 May 2014 in Maringá, Paraná, Brazil. There has been a long-lasting interest in Visual...... Soil Evaluation (VSE). An ISTRO working group was established more than 30 years ago with the objectives to exchange knowledge and experiences on field methods of visual-tactile soil assessment and to foster international cooperation on new or refined methods. The three previous meeting of the group...

  13. Assessment of produced water contaminated soils to determine remediation requirements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Clodfelter, C.

    1995-01-01

    Produced water and drilling fluids can impact the agricultural properties of soil and result in potential regulatory and legal liabilities. Produced water typically is classified as saline or a brine and affects surface soils by increasing the sodium and chloride content. Sources of produced water which can lead to problems include spills from flowlines and tank batteries, permitted surface water discharges and pit areas, particularly the larger pits including reserve pits, emergency pits and saltwater disposal pits. Methods to assess produced water spills include soil sampling with various chemical analyses and surface geophysical methods. A variety of laboratory analytical methods are available for soil assessment which include electrical conductivity, sodium adsorption ratio, cation exchange capacity, exchangeable sodium percent and others. Limiting the list of analytical parameters to reduce cost and still obtain the data necessary to assess the extent of contamination and determine remediation requirements can be difficult. The advantage to using analytical techniques is that often regulatory remediation standards are tied to soil properties determined from laboratory analysis. Surface geophysical techniques can be an inexpensive method to rapidly determine the extent and relative magnitude of saline soils. Data interpretations can also provide an indication of the horizontal as well as the vertical extent of impacted soils. The following discussion focuses on produced water spills on soil and assessment of the impacted soil. Produced water typically contains dissolved hydrocarbons which are not addressed in this discussion

  14. Soil microbiology and soil health assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soil scientists have long recognized the importance of soil biology in ecological health. In particular, soil microbes are crucial for many soil functions including decomposition, nutrient cycling, synthesis of plant growth regulators, and degradation of synthetic chemicals. Currently, soil biologis...

  15. Risk assessment framework on time impact: Infrastructure projects in soft soil during construction stage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Low, W. W.; Wong, K. S.; Lee, J. L.

    2018-04-01

    With the growth of economy and population, there is an increase in infrastructure construction projects. As such, it is unavoidable to have construction projects on soft soil. Without proper risk management plan, construction projects are vulnerable to different types of risks which will have negative impact on project’s time, cost and quality. Literature review showed that little or none of the research is focused on the risk assessment on the infrastructure project in soft soil. Hence, the aim of this research is to propose a risk assessment framework in infrastructure projects in soft soil during the construction stage. This research was focused on the impact of risks on project time and internal risk factors. The research method was Analytical Hierarchy Process and the sample population was experienced industry experts who have experience in infrastructure projects. Analysis was completed and result showed that for internal factors, the five most significant risks on time element are lack of special equipment, potential contractual disputes and claims, shortage of skilled workers, delay/lack of materials supply, and insolvency of contractor/sub-contractor. Results indicated that resources risk factor play a critical role on project time frame in infrastructure projects in soft soil during the construction stage.

  16. Ecological evaluation of rangeland quality in dry subtropics of Azerbaijan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gasanova, A. F.

    2014-12-01

    The results of ecological evaluation of soil-landscape complexes of winter rangelands of Gobustan with the use of energy criteria are discussed. The diagnostic characteristics of soil fertility and correction coefficients for the thickness of texture of soil horizons, soil salinization, soil erosion, and microelemental composition of soils have been used to separate the soils of winter rangelands into several quality groups. A larger part of the soils belongs to the medium quality group with the mean weighted quality factor (bonitet) of 52. Special assessment scales have been suggested for the differential ecological assessment and monitoring of the rangelands. In the past 40 years, the area of steppe landscapes has decreased from 22.7 to 12%, whereas the area of semideserts has increased up to 64%. The area of best-quality soils within the studied rangelands had decreased by three times, and their average quality factor has decreased from 92 to 86.

  17. Indicators of soil quality in the implantation of no-till system with winter crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Antonio Nogueira

    Full Text Available We assessed the effect of different winter crops on indicators of soil quality related to C and N cycling and C fractions in a Rhodic Kandiudult under no-till system at implantation, during two growing seasons, in Londrina PR Brazil. The experimental design was randomized blocks with split-plot in time arrangement, with four replications. The parcels were the winter crops: multicropping of cover crops with black oat (Avena strigosa, hairy vetch (Vicia villosa and fodder radish (Raphanus sativus; sunflower (Heliantus annuus intercropped with Urochloa ruziziensis; corn (Zea mays intercropped with Urochloa; and corn; fodder radish; or wheat (Triticum aestivum as sole crops. The subplots were the years: 2008 and 2009. Determinations consisted of total organic C, labile and resistant C, total N, microbial biomass C and N, the C/N ratio of soil organic matter, and the microbial quotient (qMic, besides microbiological and biochemical attributes, assessed only in 2009. The attributes significantly changed with the winter crops, especially the multicropping of cover crops and fodder radish, as well as effect of years. Despite stimulating the microbiological/biochemical activity, fodder radish cropping decreased the soil C in the second year, likewise the wheat cropping. The multicropping of cover crops in winter is an option for management in the establishment of no-till system, which contributes to increase the concentrations of C and stimulate the soil microbiological/biochemical activity.

  18. Potential ecological risk assessment and predicting zinc accumulation in soils

    OpenAIRE

    Baran, Agnieszka; Wieczorek, Jerzy; Mazurek, Ryszard; Urbański, Krzysztof; Klimkowicz-Pawlas, Agnieszka

    2017-01-01

    The aims of this study were to investigate zinc content in the studied soils; evaluate the efficiency of geostatistics in presenting spatial variability of zinc in the soils; assess bioavailable forms of zinc in the soils and to assess soil–zinc binding ability; and to estimate the potential ecological risk of zinc in soils. The study was conducted in southern Poland, in the Malopolska Province. This area is characterized by a great diversity of geological structures and types of land use and...

  19. Power quality assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fathi, H.M.E.

    2012-01-01

    The electrical power systems are exposed to different types of power quality disturbances problems. Assessment of power quality is necessary for maintaining accurate operation of sensitive equipment's especially for nuclear installations, it also ensures that unnecessary energy losses in a power system are kept at a minimum which lead to more profits. With advanced in technology growing of industrial / commercial facilities in many region. Power quality problems have been a major concern among engineers; particularly in an industrial environment, where there are many large-scale type of equipment. Thus, it would be useful to investigate and mitigate the power quality problems. Assessment of Power quality requires the identification of any anomalous behavior on a power system, which adversely affects the normal operation of electrical or electronic equipment. The choice of monitoring equipment in a survey is also important to ascertain a solution to these power quality problems. A power quality assessment involves gathering data resources; analyzing the data (with reference to power quality standards); then, if problems exist, recommendation of mitigation techniques must be considered. The main objective of the present work is to investigate and mitigate of power quality problems in nuclear installations. Normally electrical power is supplied to the installations via two sources to keep good reliability. Each source is designed to carry the full load. The Assessment of power quality was performed at the nuclear installations for both sources at different operation conditions. The thesis begins with a discussion of power quality definitions and the results of previous studies in power quality monitoring. The assessment determines that one source of electricity was deemed to have relatively good power quality; there were several disturbances, which exceeded the thresholds. Among of them are fifth harmonic, voltage swell, overvoltage and flicker. While the second

  20. Soil quality changes in land degradation as indicated by soil chemical, biochemical and microbiological properties in a karst area of southwest Guizhou, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Pingjiu; Li, Lianqing; Pan, Genxing; Ren, Jingchen

    2006-12-01

    Not only the nutritional status and biological activity but also the soil ecological functioning or soil health has been impacted profoundly by land degradation in the karst area of southwest China where the karst ecosystems are generally considered as extremely vulnerable to land degradation under intensified land-use changes. The objectives of this study are to elucidate the changes in overall soil quality by a holistic approach of soil nutritional, biological activity, and soil health indicators in the karst area as impacted by intense cultivation and vegetation degradation. Topsoil samples were collected on selected eco-tesserae in a sequence of land degradation in a karst area of southwest Guizhou in 2004. The soil nutrient pools of organic carbon (Corg), extractable extracellular carbon (Cext), total soil nitrogen (Nt), alkali-hydrolyzable nitrogen (Nah), total phosphorus (Pt), available phosphorus (Pa) were analyzed by wet soil chemistry. The soil biological properties were studied by means of measurements of microbial biomass carbon (both by fumigation-extraction, FE-Cmic, and by calculation from substrate-incubation respiration, SIR-Cmic) of respiration [respiration without addition of substrates, basal respiration (BR), and potential respiration (PR) with substrate-incubation] and of soil enzyme activities (invertase, urease, and alkaline phosphatase). Soil health status was assessed by simple indices of Cmic/Corg and BR/Cmic in conjunction with bacterial community structures determined by polymerase chain reaction and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis. While the nutritional pool parameters, such as Corg and Cext, described basically the changes in soil life-supporting capacity with cultivation interference and vegetation declined, those parameters of biological activity such as FE-Cmic, SIR, and SIR-Cmic as well as bacterial community structures measured by molecular method evidenced well the changes in soil functioning for ecosystem health with

  1. Paradoxical differences in N-dynamics between Luxembourg soils: litter quality or parent material?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kooijman, A.M.; Smit, A.

    2009-01-01

    To explore whether litter quality could alter differences in N-dynamics between soil types, we compared spruce and beech growing on soils with parent material sandstone and limestone, and beech and hornbeam on acid marl and limestone. We measured pH, organic matter content, C:N ratio, soil

  2. Paradoxical differences in N-dynamics between Luxembourg soils: Litter quality or parent material?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kooijman, A.M.; Smit, A.

    2009-01-01

    To explore whether litter quality could alter differences in N-dynamics between soil types, we compared spruce and beech growing on soils with parent material sandstone and limestone, and beech and hornbeam on acid marl and limestone. We measured pH, organic matter content, C:N ratio, soil

  3. Field Scale Spatial Modelling of Surface Soil Quality Attributes in Controlled Traffic Farming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guenette, Kris; Hernandez-Ramirez, Guillermo

    2017-04-01

    The employment of controlled traffic farming (CTF) can yield improvements to soil quality attributes through the confinement of equipment traffic to tramlines with the field. There is a need to quantify and explain the spatial heterogeneity of soil quality attributes affected by CTF to further improve our understanding and modelling ability of field scale soil dynamics. Soil properties such as available nitrogen (AN), pH, soil total nitrogen (STN), soil organic carbon (SOC), bulk density, macroporosity, soil quality S-Index, plant available water capacity (PAWC) and unsaturated hydraulic conductivity (Km) were analysed and compared among trafficked and un-trafficked areas. We contrasted standard geostatistical methods such as ordinary kriging (OK) and covariate kriging (COK) as well as the hybrid method of regression kriging (ROK) to predict the spatial distribution of soil properties across two annual cropland sites actively employing CTF in Alberta, Canada. Field scale variability was quantified more accurately through the inclusion of covariates; however, the use of ROK was shown to improve model accuracy despite the regression model composition limiting the robustness of the ROK method. The exclusion of traffic from the un-trafficked areas displayed significant improvements to bulk density, macroporosity and Km while subsequently enhancing AN, STN and SOC. The ability of the regression models and the ROK method to account for spatial trends led to the highest goodness-of-fit and lowest error achieved for the soil physical properties, as the rigid traffic regime of CTF altered their spatial distribution at the field scale. Conversely, the COK method produced the most optimal predictions for the soil nutrient properties and Km. The use of terrain covariates derived from light ranging and detection (LiDAR), such as of elevation and topographic position index (TPI), yielded the best models in the COK method at the field scale.

  4. Differences in soil quality between organic and conventional farming over a maize crop season

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira, Carla; Veiga, Adelcia; Puga, João; Kikuchi, Ryunosuke; Ferreira, António

    2017-04-01

    Land degradation in agricultural areas is a major concern. The large number of mechanical interventions and the amount of inputs used to assure high crop productivity, such as fertilizers and pesticides, have negative impacts on soil quality and threaten crop productivity and environmental sustainability. Organic farming is an alternative agriculture system, based on organic fertilizers, biological pest control and crop rotation, in order to mitigate soil degradation. Maize is the third most important cereal worldwide, with 2008 million tons produced in 2013 (IGN, 2016). In Portugal, 120000 ha of arable land is devoted to maize production, leading to annual yields of about 930000 ton (INE, 2015). This study investigates soil quality differences in maize farms under organic and conventional systems. The study was carried out in Coimbra Agrarian Technical School (ESAC), in central region of Portugal. ESAC campus comprises maize fields managed under conventional farming - Vagem Grande (32 ha), and organic fields - Caldeirão (12 ha), distancing 2.8 km. Vagem Grande has been intensively used for grain maize production for more than 20 years, whereas Caldeirão was converted to organic farming in 2008, and is being used to select regional maize varieties. The region has a Mediterranean climate. The maize fields have Eutric Fluvisols, with gentle slopes (analyses. Additional soil samples were also collected with soil ring samplers (137 cm3) for bulk density analyses after sowing. Surface water infiltration was also measured with tension infiltrometer (membrane of 20cm), using different tensions (0 cm, -3cm, -6 cm e -15cm). Decomposition rate and litter stabilisation was assessed over a 3-month period through the Tea Bag Index (Keuskamp et al., 2013). The number and diversity of earthworms were also measured at the surface (0-20cm), through extraction, and at the subsurface (>20cm), using mustard solution.

  5. Changes in soil quality indicators under long-term sewage irrigation in a sub-tropical environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masto, Reginald Ebhin; Chhonkar, Pramod K.; Singh, Dhyan; Patra, Ashok K.

    2009-01-01

    Though irrigation with sewage water has potential benefits of meeting the water requirements, the sewage irrigation may mess up to harm the soil health. To assess the potential impacts of long-term sewage irrigation on soil health and to identify sensitive soil indicators, soil samples were collected from crop fields that have been irrigated with sewage water for more than 20 years. An adjacent rain-fed Leucaena leucocephala plantation system was used as a reference to compare the impact of sewage irrigation on soil qualities. Soils were analyzed for different physical, chemical, biological and biochemical parameters. Results have shown that use of sewage for irrigation improved the clay content to 18-22.7%, organic carbon to 0.51-0.86% and fertility status of soils. Build up in total N was up to 2,713 kg ha-1, available N (397 kg ha-1), available P (128 kg ha-1), available K (524 kg ha-1) and available S (65.5 kg ha-1) in the surface (0.15 m) soil. Long-term sewage irrigation has also resulted a significant build-up of DTPA extractable Zn (314%), Cu (102%), Fe (715%), Mn (197.2), Cd (203%), Ni (1358%) and Pb (15.2%) when compared with the adjacent rain-fed reference soil. Soils irrigated with sewage exhibited a significant decrease in microbial biomass carbon (-78.2%), soil respiration (-82.3%), phosphatase activity (-59.12%) and dehydrogenase activity (-59.4%). An attempt was also made to identify the sensitive soil indicators under sewage irrigation, where microbial biomass carbon was singled out as the most sensitive indicator.

  6. Impact of model uncertainty on soil quality standards for cadmium in rice paddy fields

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Römkens, P.F.A.M.; Brus, D.J.; Guo, H.Y.; Chu, C.L.; Chiang, C.M.; Koopmans, G.F.

    2011-01-01

    At present, soil quality standards used for agriculture do not consider the influence of pH and CEC on the uptake of pollutants by crops. A database with 750 selected paired samples of cadmium (Cd) in soil and paddy rice was used to calibrate soil to plant transfer models using the soil metal

  7. Visual soil evaluation - future research requirements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emmet-Booth, Jeremy; Forristal, Dermot; Fenton, Owen; Ball, Bruce; Holden, Nick

    2017-04-01

    A review of Visual Soil Evaluation (VSE) techniques (Emmet-Booth et al., 2016) highlighted their established utility for soil quality assessment, though some limitations were identified; (1) The examination of aggregate size, visible intra-porosity and shape forms a key assessment criterion in almost all methods, thus limiting evaluation to structural form. The addition of criteria that holistically examine structure may be desirable. For example, structural stability can be indicated using dispersion tests or examining soil surface crusting, while the assessment of soil colour may indirectly indicate soil organic matter content, a contributor to stability. Organic matter assessment may also indicate structural resilience, along with rooting, earthworm numbers or shrinkage cracking. (2) Soil texture may influence results or impeded method deployment. Modification of procedures to account for extreme texture variation is desirable. For example, evidence of compaction in sandy or single grain soils greatly differs to that in clayey soils. Some procedures incorporate separate classification systems or adjust deployment based on texture. (3) Research into impacts of soil moisture content on VSE evaluation criteria is required. Criteria such as rupture resistance and shape may be affected by moisture content. It is generally recommended that methods are deployed on moist soils and quantification of influences of moisture variation on results is necessary. (4) Robust sampling strategies for method deployment are required. Dealing with spatial variation differs between methods, but where methods can be deployed over large areas, clear instruction on sampling is required. Additionally, as emphasis has been placed on the agricultural production of soil, so the ability of VSE for exploring structural quality in terms of carbon storage, water purification and biodiversity support also requires research. References Emmet-Booth, J.P., Forristal. P.D., Fenton, O., Ball, B

  8. Weight-of-evidence approach in assessment of ecotoxicological risks of acid sulphate soils in the Baltic Sea river estuaries

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wallin, Jaana, E-mail: jaana.wallin@jyu.fi [Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, Survontie 9 A, FI-40500 Jyväskylä (Finland); Karjalainen, Anna K. [Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, Survontie 9 A, FI-40500 Jyväskylä (Finland); Schultz, Eija [Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, Hakuninmaantie 6, FI-00430 Helsinki (Finland); Järvistö, Johanna; Leppänen, Matti; Vuori, Kari-Matti [Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, Survontie 9 A, FI-40500 Jyväskylä (Finland)

    2015-03-01

    Acidity and leaching of metals from acid sulphate soils (ASSs) impair the water quality of receiving surface waters. The largest ASS areas in Europe are found in the coasts of the northern Baltic Sea. We used weight-of-evidence (WoE) approach to assess potential risks in 14 estuary sites affected by ASS in the Gulf of Finland, northern Baltic Sea. The assessment was based on exposure and effect profiles utilizing sediment and water metal concentrations and concurrent pH variation, sediment toxicity tests using the luminescent bacterium Vibrio fischeri and the midge Chironomus riparius, and the ecological status of benthic macroinvertebrate communities. Sediment metal concentrations were compared to national sediment quality criteria/guidelines, and water metal concentrations to environmental quality standards (EQSs). Hazard quotients (HQs) were established for maximum aluminium, cadmium and zinc concentrations at low pH based on applicable US EPA toxicity database. Sediment metal concentrations were clearly elevated in most of the studied estuaries. The EQS of cadmium (0.1 μg/l) was exceeded in 3 estuaries out of 14. The pH-minima were below the national threshold value (5.5) between good and satisfactory water quality in 10 estuaries. V. fischeri bioluminescence indicated toxicity of the sediments but toxic response was not observed in the C. riparius emergence test. Benthic invertebrate communities were deteriorated in 6 out of 14 sites based on the benthic invertebrate quality index. The overall ecotoxicological risk was assessed as low in five, moderate in three and high in five of the estuary sites. The risk assessment utilizing the WoE approach indicated that harmful effects of ASSs are likely to occur in the Baltic Sea river estuaries located at the ASS hotspot area. - Highlights: • Acid sulphate soils release high amounts of metals and acidity. • Metals and acidity are transported to estuary sites. • Acid sulphate soils impair the ecological status

  9. Welfare Quality assessment protocol for laying hens = Welfare Quality assessment protocol voor leghennen

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Niekerk, van T.G.C.M.; Gunnink, H.; Reenen, van C.G.

    2012-01-01

    Results of a study on the Welfare Quality® assessment protocol for laying hens. It reports the development of the integration of welfare assessment as scores per criteria as well as simplification of the Welfare Quality® assessment protocol. Results are given from assessment of 122 farms.

  10. REVIEW OF SELECTED BIOLOGICAL METHODS OF ASSESSING THE QUALITY OF NATURAL ENVIRONMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monika Beata Jakubus

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The xenobiotics introduced into the environment are the effect of human activities. It is especially soil contamination that leads to degradation of soils, which may finally be referred to the biological imbalance of the ecosystem. Normally chemical methods are used for the assessment of soil’s quality. Unfortunately, they are not always quick and inexpensive. Therefore, the practice and the science at environmental monitoring more frequently employ biological methods. Most of them meet the above mentioned conditions and become a supplement of routine laboratory practices. This publication shows an overview of selected common biological methods used to estimate the quality of the environment. The first part of the paper presents biomonitoring as a first step of environmental control which relies on the observation of indicator organisms. The next section was dedicated to the bioassays, indicating the greater or lesser practical applications confirmed by literature on the subject. Particular attention has been focused on phytotests and the tests based on the invertebrates.

  11. Assessing and monitoring soil erosion and land degradation in Malta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Symeonakis, Elias; Brearley, James

    2017-04-01

    The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) identifies the Mediterranean as one of the most seriously affected by land degradation and desertification (LDD) regions in the World. LDD is a complex process related with a multitude of biogeographical and socioeconomic parameters and is often assessed using proxies or indicators. One of the most important indicators of LDD is soil erosion. Here, we assess the evolution of soil erosion and LDD in the Mediterranean islands of Malta between 1986 and 2002. Soil erosion is estimated using the Revised Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE). For the assessment of LDD, we employ a modification of the Environmentally Sensitive Area Index (ESAI) methodology with Landsat imagery and ancillary GIS datasets. We incorporate 4 vegetation-related indicators, 3 climate-related, 5 soil-related and 3 socio-economic ones in the final assessment of the evolution of LDD. Results show that there has been an increase in soil erosion rates and in the sensitivity to LDD in the areas of San Pawl il-Bahar and Il-Mizieb most likely due to the transition from agricultural use to Mediterranean shrubs. Also, almost the entire country is flagged as belonging to the 'Fragile' and 'Critical' ESAI classes. It is clear that soil erosion and LDD mitigation measures are necessary, especially in the most critical (i.e. 'C3') areas which occupy 10% of Malta.

  12. Ecological risk assessment: influence of texture on background concentration of microelements in soils of Russia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beketskaya, Olga

    2010-05-01

    In Russia quality standards of contaminated substances values in environment consist of ecological and sanitary rate-setting. The sanitary risk assessment base on potential risk that contaminants pose to protect human beings. The main purpose of the ecological risk assessment is to protect ecosystem. To determine negative influence on living organisms in the sanitary risk assessment in Russia we use MPC. This value of contaminants show how substances affected on different part of environment, biological activity and soil processes. The ecological risk assessment based on comparison compounds concentration with background concentration for definite territories. Taking into account high interval of microelements value in soils, we suggest using statistic method for determination of concentration levels of chemical elements concentration in soils of Russia. This method is based on determination middle levels of elements content in natural condition. The top limit of middle chemical elements concentration in soils is value, which exceed middle regional background level in three times standard deviation. The top limit of natural concentration excess we can explain as anthropogenic impact. At first we study changing in the middle content value of microelements in soils of geographic regions in European part of Russia on the basis of cartographical analysis. Cartographical analysis showed that the soil of mountainous and mountain surrounding regions is enriched with microelements. On the plain territory of European part of Russia for most of microelements was noticed general direction of increasing their concentration in soils from north to south, also in the same direction soil clay content rise for majority of soils. For all other territories a clear connection has been noticed between the distribution of sand sediment. By our own investigation and data from scientific literature data base was created. This data base consist of following soil properties: texture

  13. Bioindication with soil microfauna

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aescht, E.; Foissner, W.

    1992-01-01

    The state of a soil can be characterised through its inhabitant micro-, meso-, and macrofauna. For an appropriate assessment of soil quality at least one representative of each of these size categories should be studied (e.g. testacea, mites, earthworms). This contribution summarizes the insights gained from microscopic soil fauna in this context. The following practical examples are discussed: pesticides, organic and artificial fertilisers, soil compaction, ecological and conventional farming, recolonisation. The 'weighted cenosis index' represents a quantitative measure for the influence of anthropogenic activity on a soil. (orig.) [de

  14. Report on the NAT-9 quality control exercise on uranium isotopes in two soil samples

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bleise, Andreas

    2001-04-01

    The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) section of Nutritional and Health related Environmental Studies (NAHRES) organized a quality control study for laboratories analysing samples from the UNEP field mission to Kosovo. Quality control was the major responsibility of the IAEA in the UN field assessment team. The NAT-9 quality control study consists of two soil materials from the IAEA Laboratories in Seibersdorf. The scope of this exercise was to determine the content of the uranium isotopes U-234, U-235 and U-238. The IAEA did not provide specific instructions, the participants were encouraged to apply their established analytical procedures to the samples. Five laboratories were invited to participate, four laboratories submitted results. For each soil sample 10 laboratory mean values were reported, using ICP-MS (3 laboratories) and α-spectrometry (1 laboratory). The participating laboratories were capable to distinguish the different uranium isotopes. All laboratories obtained the natural uranium ratio between U-235 and U-238. However, the results highlight a particular analytical weak spot. Although the methods of measuring the analytical signals are highly dependable, the sample preparation steps, in particular the sample dissolution procedure, appears to be lacking total quality control and has contributed to the deviations from the reported target values. One laboratory has documented evidence that extensive and well-controlled digestion methods can yield measurement results close to the target values. (author)

  15. Soil enzymes: health and quality indicators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura E. Cerón Rincón

    2005-01-01

    define sustainability, in other words, the maintenance of their functions inside the limits of an ecosystem. The health and quality indicators are a set of measurements (physical, chemical and biological properties that pretend to establish quality standards for this resource; the enzymatic activity is placed inside this set because of its close relationship with the other properties and because of its sensibleness to the changes due to handling and use. The present review pretends to illustrate how the tracking of the biological catalysis of the soil through uses and alterations that an ecosystem may suffer, may supply information for the understanding of how the processes responsible for the maintenance of functions such as biomass production, pollutant remediation and cycling of nutrients, suffer changes and if these are positive, negative or iterative.

  16. Metal assessment in urban park soils in Sao Paulo 1. Ibirapuera Park

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Figueiredo, Ana Maria G.; Camargo, Sonia P.; Pavese, Arthur C.; Gumiero, Felipe C.; Enzweiler, Jacinta; Sigolo, Joel B.

    2007-01-01

    In the last years urban soils received increasing attention by scientists, leading to studies focused on their description and investigation all over the world, due to the increasing metal pollution derived from incinerators, industrial waste, atmospheric deposition of dust and aerosols, and other activities. Metal contamination in Sao Paulo public parks is an important environmental question and there is little information on this subject. As part of a project which aims metal assessment in urban park soils from Sao Paulo, in the present paper the concentration of the elements As, Ba, Cr, Pb, Sb and Zn were determined in surface soil samples (0-5 cm) from Ibirapuera park of Sao Paulo. Ibirapuera park is one of the biggest and most visited parks of the city of Sao Paulo, receiving during the weekends more than 400,000 visitors. Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis (INAA) and X-ray Fluorescence (FRX) were used for metal analysis. Preliminary results showed concentration levels of the analyzed elements higher than the values considered as reference values for soils in Sao Paulo, according to the Environmental Protection Agency of the State of Sao Paulo (CETESB). For As, Ba, Cr and Sb, in some samples the concentrations were even higher than the Prevention values reported by CETESB. The high concentrations of the elements As, Ba, Cr, Pb, Sb and Zn in the Ibirapuera park top soils suggest an anthropogenic source and indicate a potential damage to soil quality. (author)

  17. Graphical approach to assess the soil fertility evaluation model validity for rice (case study: southern area of Merapi Mountain, Indonesia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Julianto, E. A.; Suntoro, W. A.; Dewi, W. S.; Partoyo

    2018-03-01

    Climate change has been reported to exacerbate land resources degradation including soil fertility decline. The appropriate validity use on soil fertility evaluation could reduce the risk of climate change effect on plant cultivation. This study aims to assess the validity of a Soil Fertility Evaluation Model using a graphical approach. The models evaluated were the Indonesian Soil Research Center (PPT) version model, the FAO Unesco version model, and the Kyuma version model. Each model was then correlated with rice production (dry grain weight/GKP). The goodness of fit of each model can be tested to evaluate the quality and validity of a model, as well as the regression coefficient (R2). This research used the Eviews 9 programme by a graphical approach. The results obtained three curves, namely actual, fitted, and residual curves. If the actual and fitted curves are widely apart or irregular, this means that the quality of the model is not good, or there are many other factors that are still not included in the model (large residual) and conversely. Indeed, if the actual and fitted curves show exactly the same shape, it means that all factors have already been included in the model. Modification of the standard soil fertility evaluation models can improve the quality and validity of a model.

  18. Sudbury soils study : summary of volume 3 : ecological risk assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2009-03-15

    The Sudbury soils study was comprised of 3 volumes: (1) a background, study organization and 2001 soils survey; (2) a human health risk assessment; and (3) an ecological risk assessment (ERA). This document provided details of the ERA, which was conducted to characterize the current and future risks of chemicals of concern (COC) to terrestrial and ecosystem components from Sudbury smelter particulate emissions. The extent to which COC are preventing the recovery of regionally representative terrestrial plant communities was investigated. Risks to terrestrial wildlife populations and endangered species and communities were evaluated. Samples of soil, water, sediment, plants, terrestrial invertebrates, and fish tissue were collected. Data were then analyzed by scientists and independent consultants in order to assess the impacts of arsenic, cadmium, cobalt, copper, lead, nickel and selenium. Results of the study indicated that terrestrial plant communities in the region continue to be impacted by COC in the soil, as well as by soil erosion, low nutrient levels, and a lack of soil organic matter. Direct impacts on wildlife populations were also observed. 5 refs., 7 tabs., 21 figs.

  19. (wetland) soils in akwa ibom state

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    OLUWOLE AKINNAGBE

    ... assess the soil quality. The results indicated that gleying (g), low potassium reserve (k) and acidic ... monitoring nutrients status through soil and plant tissue tests as farmers ..... Farmers should plant crops, which could adapt to water- logging ...

  20. Assessing the strength of soil aggregates produced by two types of organic matter amendments using the ultrasonic energy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Zhaolong; minasny, Budiman; Field, Damien; Angers, Denis

    2017-04-01

    The presence of organic matter (OM) is known to stimulate the formation of soil aggregates, but the aggregation strength may vary with different amount and type/quality of OM. Conventionally wet sieving method was used to assess the aggregates' strength. In this study, we wish to get insight of the effects of different types of C inputs on aggregate dynamics using quantifiable energy via ultrasonic agitation. A clay soil with an inherently low soil organic carbon (SOC) content, was amended with two different sources of organic matter (alfalfa, C:N = 16.7 and barley straw, C:N = 95.6) at different input levels (0, 10, 20, & 30 g C kg-1 soil). The soil's inherent macro aggregates were first destroyed via puddling. The soils were incubated in pots at moisture content 70% of field capacity for a period of 3 months. The pots were housed in a 1.2L sealed opaque plastic container. The CO2 generated during the incubation was captured by a vial of NaOH which was placed in each of the sealed containers and sampled per week. At 14, 28, 56, and 84 days, soil samples were collected and the change in aggregation was assessed using a combination of wet sieving and ultrasonic agitation. The relative strength of aggregates exposed to ultrasonic agitation was modelled using the aggregate disruption characteristic curve (ADCC) and soil dispersion characteristic curve (SDCC). Both residue quality and quantity of organic matter input influenced the amount of aggregates formed and their relative strength. The MWD of soils amended with alfalfa residues was greater than that of barley straw at lower input rates and early in the incubation. In the longer term, the use of ultrasonic energy revealed that barley straw resulted in stronger aggregates, especially at higher input rates despite showing similar MWD as alfalfa. The use of ultrasonic agitation, where we quantify the energy required to liberate and disperse aggregates allowed us to differentiate the effects of C inputs on the size of

  1. Chemical fingerprinting of hydrocarbon-contamination in soil

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boll, Esther Sørensen; Nejrup, Jens; Jensen, Julie K.

    2015-01-01

    Chemical fingerprinting analyses of 29 hydrocarbon-contaminated soils were performed to assess the soil quality and determine the main contaminant sources. The results were compared to an assessment based on concentrations of the 16 priority polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons pointed out by the U...... and in assessing weathering trends of hydrocarbon contamination in the soils. Multivariate data analysis of sum-normalized concentrations could as a stand-alone tool distinguish between hydrocarbon sources of petrogenic and pyrogenic origin, differentiate within petrogenic sources, and detect weathering trends....... Diagnostic ratios of PACs were not successful for source identification of the heavily weathered hydrocarbon sources in the soils. The fingerprinting of contaminated soils revealed an underestimation of PACs in petrogenic contaminated soils when the assessment was based solely on EPAPAH16. As alkyl...

  2. LANDSCAPE MANAGEMENT FOR SUSTAINABLE SUPPLIES OF BIOENERGY FEEDSTOCK AND ENHANCED SOIL QUALITY

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Douglas L. Karlen; David J. Muth, Jr.

    2012-09-01

    Agriculture can simultaneously address global food, feed, fiber, and energy challenges provided our soil, water, and air resources are not compromised in doing so. As we embark on the 19th Triennial Conference of the International Soil and Tillage Research Organization (ISTRO), I am pleased to proclaim that our members are well poised to lead these endeavors because of our comprehensive understanding of soil, water, agricultural and bio-systems engineering processes. The concept of landscape management, as an approach for integrating multiple bioenergy feedstock sources, including biomass residuals, into current crop production systems, is used as the focal point to show how these ever-increasing global challenges can be met in a sustainable manner. Starting with the 2005 Billion Ton Study (BTS) goals, research and technology transfer activities leading to the 2011 U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Revised Billion Ton Study (BT2) and development of a residue management tool to guide sustainable crop residue harvest will be reviewed. Multi-location USDA-Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Renewable Energy Assessment Project (REAP) team research and on-going partnerships between public and private sector groups will be shared to show the development of landscape management strategies that can simultaneously address the multiple factors that must be balanced to meet the global challenges. Effective landscape management strategies recognize the importance of nature’s diversity and strive to emulate those conditions to sustain multiple critical ecosystem services. To illustrate those services, the soil quality impact of harvesting crop residues are presented to show how careful, comprehensive monitoring of soil, water and air resources must be an integral part of sustainable bioenergy feedstock production systems. Preliminary analyses suggest that to sustain soil resources within the U.S. Corn Belt, corn (Zea mays L.) stover should not be harvested if average grain

  3. Enhanced yields and soil quality in a wheat-maize rotation using buried straw mulch.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Zhibin; Liu, Hui; Wan, Shuixia; Hua, Keke; Jiang, Chaoqiang; Wang, Daozhong; He, Chuanlong; Guo, Xisheng

    2017-08-01

    Straw return may improve soil quality and crop yields. In a 2-year field study, a straw return method (ditch-buried straw return, DB-SR) was used to investigate the soil quality and crop productivity effects on a wheat-corn rotation system. This study consisted of three treatments, each with three replicates: (1) mineral fertilisation alone (CK0); (2) mineral fertilisation + 7500 kg ha -1 wheat straw incorporated at depth of 0-15 cm (NPKWS); and (3) mineral fertilisation + 7500 kg ha -1 wheat straw ditch buried at 15-30 cm (NPKDW). NPKWS and NPKDW enhanced crop yield and improved soil biotical properties compared to mineral fertilisation alone. NPKDW contributed to greater crop yields and soil nutrient availability at 15-30 cm depths, compared to NPKWS treatment. NPKDW enhanced soil microbial activity and bacteria species richness and diversity in the 0-15 cm layer. NPKWS increased soil microbial biomass, bacteria species richness and diversity at 15-30 cm. The comparison of the CK0 and NPKWS treatments indicates that a straw ditch buried by digging to the depth of 15-30 cm can improve crop yields and soil quality in a wheat-maize rotation system. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry.

  4. Soil Quality of Restinga Forest: Organic Matter and Aluminum Saturation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigues Almeida Filho, Jasse; Casagrande, José Carlos; Martins Bonilha, Rodolfo; Soares, Marcio Roberto; Silva, Luiz Gabriel; Colato, Alexandre

    2013-04-01

    The restinga vegetation (sand coastal plain vegetation) consists of a mosaic of plant communities, which are defined by the characteristics of the substrates, resulting from the type and age of the depositional processes. This mosaic complex of vegetation types comprises restinga forest in advanced (high restinga) and medium regeneration stages (low restinga), each with particular differentiating vegetation characteristics. Of all ecosystems of the Atlantic Forest, restinga is the most fragile and susceptible to anthropic disturbances. The purpose of this study was evaluating the organic matter and aluminum saturation effects on soil quality index (SQI). Two locations were studied: State Park of the Serra do Mar, Picinguaba, in the city of Ubatuba (23°20' e 23°22' S / 44°48' e 44°52' W), and State Park of Cardoso Island in the city of Cananéia (25°03'05" e 25°18'18" S / 47°53'48" e 48° 05'42" W). The soil samples were collect at a depth of 0-10 cm, where concentrate 70% of vegetation root system. Was studied an additive model to evaluate soil quality index. The shallow root system development occurs due to low calcium levels, whose disability limits their development, but also can reflect on delay, restriction or even in the failure of the development vegetation. The organic matter is kept in the soil restinga ecosystem by high acidity, which reduces the decomposition of soil organic matter, which is very poor in nutrients. The base saturation, less than 10, was low due to low amounts of Na, K, Ca and Mg, indicating low nutritional reserve into the soil, due to very high rainfall and sandy texture, resulting in high saturation values for aluminum. Considering the critical threshold to 3% organic matter and for aluminum saturation to 40%, the IQS ranged from 0.95 to 0.1 as increased aluminum saturation and decreased the soil organic matter, indicating the main limitation to the growth of plants in this type of soil, when deforested.

  5. Conservation agriculture among small scale farmers in semi-arid region of Kenya does improve soil biological quality and soil organic carbon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waweru, Geofrey; Okoba, Barrack; Cornelis, Wim

    2016-04-01

    The low food production in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) has been attributed to declining soil quality. This is due to soil degradation and fertility depletion resulting from unsustainable conventional farming practices such as continuous tillage, crop residue burning and mono cropping. To overcome these challenges, conservation agriculture (CA) is actively promoted. However, little has been done in evaluating the effect of each of the three principles of CA namely: minimum soil disturbance, maximum surface cover and diversified/crop rotation on soil quality in SSA. A study was conducted for three years from 2012 to 2015 in Laikipia East sub county in Kenya to evaluate the effect of tillage, surface cover and intercropping on a wide variety of physical, chemical and biological soil quality indicators, crop parameters and the field-water balance. This abstract reports on soil microbial biomass carbon (SMBC) and soil organic carbon (SOC). The experimental set up was a split plot design with tillage as main treatment (conventional till (CT), no-till (NT) and no-till with herbicide (NTH)), and intercropping and surface cover as sub treatment (intercropping maize with: beans, MB; beans and leucaena, MBL; beans and maize residues at 1.5 Mg ha-1 MBMu, and dolichos, MD). NT had significantly higher SMBC by 66 and 31% compared with CT and NTH respectively. SOC was significantly higher in NTH than CT and NT by 15 and 4%, respectively. Intercropping and mulching had significant effect on SMBC and SOC. MBMu resulted in higher SMBC by 31, 38 and 43%, and SOC by 9, 20 and 22% as compared with MBL, MD and MB, respectively. SMBC and SOC were significantly affected by the interaction between tillage, intercropping and soil cover with NTMBMu and NTHMBMu having the highest SMBC and SOC, respectively. We conclude that indeed tillage, intercropping and mulching substantially affect SMBC and SOC. On the individual components of CA, tillage and surface cover had the highest effect on SMBC and

  6. How the type of pyrogenic organic matter determines the SOM quality in amended soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merino, Agustin; Gartzia-Bengoetxea, Nahia; Morangues, Lur; Arias-Gonzalez, Ander

    2016-04-01

    Charred biomass can be used as an organic amendment and to enhance the C sink capacity of soils. There are two types of by-products containing pyrogenic OM that could be used to improve in agricultural or forestry, biochar and wood ash. Due to their different heating conditions under which it is produced (pyrolysis, combustion and different temperatures, feedstocks,..), the properties of this pyrogenic OM might be highly variable, which could affect the SOM quality and the C sink capacity of the amended soil. The purpose of this study was to assess how SOM quality is influenced by pyrogenic organic matter with different degree of carbonization. Biochar and bottom wood ash were added to two Atlantic forest soils (Pinus radiata, 12 °C, 1200 mm) with different texture, clayey loam and sandy loam. The experiment consisted in a randomized block trials, in which different doses of biochar (0, 3, 9, 18 Mh ha-1) and wood ash (0, 1.5, 4.5, and 9 Mg ha-1) were added. The Biochar applied (pH: 9.8; C: 87 %) was produced by the pyrolysis of Myscanthus sp. at 450°C in a Pyreg® pyrolysis unit. The bottom wood ash (pH: 10.6; C: 30 %) was produced by combustion in a biomass power plant. The aromatization/carbonization was lightly higher in biochar than in wood ash. This latter by-product, in addition to the black carbon, it also contained mineral ash, as well as unburnt or lightly charred plant biomass. The evolution of soil chemical and SOM properties were monitored over three years by solid state Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) and 13C CPMAS NMR. These techniques were applied in bulk samples and also in fractions of different densityes. The changes in microbial activity were studied by analysis of microbial biomass C and basal respiration and soil microbial community. Three years after applications the SOM content increased lightly in the treatment receiving the highest doses of biochar and wood ash, specially in the clay loam soil. SOM in the treated soils displayed a

  7. Bioavailability assessment of contaminants in soils via respiration and nitrification tests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hund-Rinke, Kerstin; Simon, Markus

    2008-01-01

    For the assessment of contaminated soils ecotoxicological tests are used to estimate the bioavailability of contaminants in soil samples. Terrestrial tests reveal the habitat function of soils, and parameters applied in tests involving microorganisms include respiration activity and potential ammonium oxidation. For such tests, the threshold values needed to assess the results have already been established in guidelines ISO 17155 and ISO 15685. In this paper, we discuss about the respiration activity and potential ammonium oxidation results obtained from a wide variety of soils with different physico-chemical properties and levels of contamination. These results show that microbial respiration and potential ammonium oxidation have different sensitivities to various classes of contaminants. We demonstrated that both organic and inorganic contaminants influence potential ammonium oxidation, whereas microbial respiration is predominantly affected by biodegradable organic contaminants. These differences might be useful for more detailed assessments of soil contamination, leading to different recommended actions depending on which parameter is affected. - The paper provides a further criterion for a more detailed assessment of soil contamination, leading to different recommended actions depending on which parameter is affected

  8. Bioavailability assessment of contaminants in soils via respiration and nitrification tests

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hund-Rinke, Kerstin [Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology, Auf dem Aberg 1, 57392 Schmallenberg (Germany)], E-mail: kerstin.hund-rinke@ime.fraunhofer.de; Simon, Markus [Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology, Auf dem Aberg 1, 57392 Schmallenberg (Germany)], E-mail: markus.simon@ime.fraunhofer.de

    2008-05-15

    For the assessment of contaminated soils ecotoxicological tests are used to estimate the bioavailability of contaminants in soil samples. Terrestrial tests reveal the habitat function of soils, and parameters applied in tests involving microorganisms include respiration activity and potential ammonium oxidation. For such tests, the threshold values needed to assess the results have already been established in guidelines ISO 17155 and ISO 15685. In this paper, we discuss about the respiration activity and potential ammonium oxidation results obtained from a wide variety of soils with different physico-chemical properties and levels of contamination. These results show that microbial respiration and potential ammonium oxidation have different sensitivities to various classes of contaminants. We demonstrated that both organic and inorganic contaminants influence potential ammonium oxidation, whereas microbial respiration is predominantly affected by biodegradable organic contaminants. These differences might be useful for more detailed assessments of soil contamination, leading to different recommended actions depending on which parameter is affected. - The paper provides a further criterion for a more detailed assessment of soil contamination, leading to different recommended actions depending on which parameter is affected.

  9. Modeling Soil Quality Thresholds to Ecosystem Recovery at Fort Benning, Georgia, USA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Garten Jr., C.T.

    2004-03-08

    The objective of this research was to use a simple model of soil C and N dynamics to predict nutrient thresholds to ecosystem recovery on degraded soils at Fort Benning, Georgia, in the southeastern USA. The model calculates aboveground and belowground biomass, soil C inputs and dynamics, soil N stocks and availability, and plant N requirements. A threshold is crossed when predicted soil N supplies fall short of predicted N required to sustain biomass accrual at a specified recovery rate. Four factors were important to development of thresholds to recovery: (1) initial amounts of aboveground biomass, (2) initial soil C stocks (i.e., soil quality), (3) relative recovery rates of biomass, and (4) soil sand content. Thresholds to ecosystem recovery predicted by the model should not be interpreted independent of a specified recovery rate. Initial soil C stocks influenced the predicted patterns of recovery by both old field and forest ecosystems. Forests and old fields on soils with varying sand content had different predicted thresholds to recovery. Soil C stocks at barren sites on Fort Benning generally lie below predicted thresholds to 100% recovery of desired future ecosystem conditions defined on the basis of aboveground biomass (18000 versus 360 g m{sup -2} for forests and old fields, respectively). Calculations with the model indicated that reestablishment of vegetation on barren sites to a level below the desired future condition is possible at recovery rates used in the model, but the time to 100% recovery of desired future conditions, without crossing a nutrient threshold, is prolonged by a reduced rate of forest growth. Predicted thresholds to ecosystem recovery were less on soils with more than 70% sand content. The lower thresholds for old field and forest recovery on more sandy soils are apparently due to higher relative rates of net soil N mineralization in more sandy soils. Calculations with the model indicate that a combination of desired future

  10. Social Advertising Quality: Assessment Criteria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. B. Kalmykov

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: the The purpose of the publication is development of existing criterial assessment in social advertising sphere. The next objectives are provided for its achievement: to establish research methodology, to develop the author’s version of necessary notional apparatus and conceptual generalization, to determine the elements of social advertising quality, to establish the factors of its quality, to conduct the systematization of existing criteria and measuring instruments of quality assessment, to form new criteria of social advertising quality, to apply received results for development of criterial assessment to determine the further research perspectives. Methods: the methodology of research of management of social advertising interaction with target audience, which has dynamic procedural character with use of sociological knowledge multivariate paradigmatic status, has been proposed. Results: the primary received results: the multivariate paradigmatic research basis with use of works of famous domestic and foreign scientists in sociology, qualimetry and management spheres; the definitions of social advertising, its quality, sociological quality provision system, target audience behavior model during social advertising interaction are offered; the quality factors with three groups by level of effect on consumer are established; the systematization of existing quality and its measure instruments assessment criteria by detected social advertising quality elements are conducted; the two new criteria and its management quality assessment measuring instruments in social advertising sphere are developed; the one of the common groups of production quality criteria – adaptability with considering of new management quality criteria and conducted systematization of existing social advertising creative quality assessment criteria development; the perspective of further perfection of quality criterial assessment based on social advertising

  11. Soil bioindicators as a usefull tools for land management and spatial planning processes: a case-study of prioritization of contaminated soil remediation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grand, Cécile; Pauget, Benjamin; Villenave, Cécile; Le Guédard, Marina; Piron, Denis; Nau, Jean-François; Pérès, Guénola

    2017-04-01

    When setting up new land management, contaminated site remediation or soil use change are sometimes necessary to ensure soil quality and the restoration of the ecosystem services. The biological characterization of the soil can be used as complementary information to chemical data in order to better define the conditions for operating. Then, in the context of urban areas, elements on the soil biological quality can be taken into consideration to guide the land development. To assess this "biological state of soil health", some biological tools, called bioindicators, could provide comprehensive information to understand and predict the functioning of the soil ecosystem. In this context, a city of 200 thousand inhabitants has decided to integrate soil bioindicators in their soil diagnostic for their soil urban management. This city had to elaborate a spatial soil management in urban areas which presented soil contamination linked to a complex industrial history associated with bad uses of gardens not always safe for the environment. The project will lead to establish a Natural Urban Park (PNU) in order to develop recreational and leisure activities in a quality environment. In order to complete the knowledge of soil contamination and to assess the transfer of contaminants to the terrestrial ecosystem, a biological characterization of soils located in different areas was carried out using six bioindicators: bioindicators of accumulation which allowed to evaluate the transfers of soil contaminants towards the first 2 steps of a trophic chain (plants and soil fauna, e.g. snails), bioindicators of effects (Omega 3 index was used to assess the effects of soil contamination and to measure their impact on plants), bioindicators of soil functioning (measurement of microbial biomass, nematodes and earthworm community) ; the interest of these last bioindicators is that they also act on the functioning of ecosystems as on the dynamics of organic matter (mineralization) but also

  12. Soil quality indicators of a mature alley-cropping agroforestry system in temperate North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Although agroforestry practices are believed to improve soil quality, reports on long-term effects of alley cropping on soils within agroforestry in the temperate zone are limited. The objective of this study was to examine effects of management, landscape, and soil depth of an established agrofores...

  13. Potentialities of line planting technique in rehabilitation of logged over area referred to species diversity, growth and soil quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    PRIJANTO PAMOENGKAS

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Pamoengkas P (2010 Potentialities of line planting technique in rehabilitation of logged over area referred to species diversity, growth and soil quality. Biodiversitas 11: 34-39. Human interventions in the utilization of tropical forest resources are experiencing unanticipated consequences. The selective logging practices generally cause considerable damage to vegetation and the soil surface. It is supposed that soil condition and vegetation growth rate are deteriorated and reduced. Therefore, scientist strongly argue that the only way to achieve sustainability of Indonesian natural forest will require that the production natural forest is managed through methods that are acceptable from the perspective of environment as well as timber production. This means that there will be a strong need and incentive for methods and innovative technology. For more than two decades, tropical rainforest in Indonesia have been managed intensively under the Indonesian selective cutting (TPI and later on by the Indonesian selective cutting and replanting (TPTI and then, selective cutting and line planting (TPTJ system. TPTJ, as one example of selective cutting, recently become a proper alternative should be taken into consideration in the management of production natural forest in Indonesia by planting dipterocarp species in line. In this system, planting line (width 3 m and intermediate line (width 17 m are made alternately. The initial width of line is 3 m and to be expanded until 10 m within 5 years to introduce more light. The objective of this research was to assess growth and soil quality of TPTJ system. The object of research was TPTJ plot of various ages from 1 year to 7 years. For achieving the objective, 14 sample plots measuring 200 m x 200 m each, were laid out at research plots. The result showed that growth respond of Shorea leprosula toward the width of planting line was better comparing to Shorea parvifolia, but generally from this growth

  14. Variability of apparently homogeneous soilscapes in São Paulo state, Brazil: II. quality of soil maps

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. van Den Berg

    2000-06-01

    Full Text Available The quality of semi-detailed (scale 1:100.000 soil maps and the utility of a taxonomically based legend were assessed by studying 33 apparently homogeneous fields with strongly weathered soils in two regions in São Paulo State: Araras and Assis. An independent data set of 395 auger sites was used to determine purity of soil mapping units and analysis of variance within and between mapping units and soil classification units. Twenty three soil profiles were studied in detail. The studied soil maps have a high purity for some legend criteria, such as B horizon type (> 90% and soil texture class (> 80%. The purity for the "trophic character" (eutrophic, dystrophic, allic was only 55% in Assis. It was 88% in Araras, where many soil units had been mapped as associations. In both regions, the base status of clay-textured soils was generally better than suggested by the maps. Analysis of variance showed that mapping was successful for "durable" soil characteristics such as clay content (> 80% of variance explained and cation exchange capacity (≥ 50% of variance explained of 0-20 and 60-80 cm layers. For soil characteristics that are easily modified by management, such as base saturation of the 0-20 cm layer, the maps had explained very little ( 100 m; (b taking advantage of correlations between easily measured soil characteristics and chemical soil properties and, (c unbending the link between legend criteria and a taxonomic system. The maps are well suited to obtain an impression of land suitability for high-input farming. Additional field work and data on former land use/management are necessary for the evaluation of chemical properties of surface horizons.

  15. Using DTPA-extractable soil fraction to assess the bioconcentration factor of plants in phytoremediation of urban soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez-Bocanegra, Javier; Roca, Núria; Tume, Pedro; Bech, Jaume

    2017-04-01

    Urban soils may be highly contaminated with potentially toxic metals, as a result of intensive anthropogenic activities. Developing cities are increasing the number of lands where is practiced the urban agriculture. In this way, it is necessary to assess the part of heavy metals that is transferred to plants in order to a) know the potential health risk that represent soils and b) know the relation soil-plant to assess the ability of these plants to remove heavy metals from soil. Nowadays, to assess the bioconcentration factor (BF) of plants in phytoremediation, the pseudototal o total concentration has been used by many authors. Two different urban soils with similar pH and carbonates content but with different pollution degree were phytoremediated with different plant species. Urban soil from one Barcelona district (Spain), the most contaminated soil, showed an extractability of Cu, Pb and Zn of 9.6, 6.7 and 5.8% of the total fraction respectively. The soil from Talcahuano city (Chile), with contents of heavy metals slightly above the background upper limit, present values of 15.5, 13.5 and 12% of the total fraction of studied heavy metals. Furthermore, a peri-urban analysed soil from Azul (Argentina) also showed an elevated extractability with values of 24, 13.5 and 14% of the Cu, Pb and Zn contents respectively. These soils presented more extractability than other disturbed soils, like for example, soils from mine areas. The urban soils present more developed soil with an interaction between solution and solid phase in polluted systems. The most important soil surface functional groups include the basal plane of phyllosilicates and metal hydroxyls at edge sites of clay minerals, iron oxyhydroxides, manganese oxyhydroxides and organic matter. The interaction between solution and solid phase in polluted urban systems tends to form labile associations and pollutants are more readily mobilized because their bonds with soil particles are weaker. Clay and organic

  16. Soil ecotoxicity assessment using cadmium sensitive plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    An, Youn-Joo

    2004-01-01

    The crop plants, sorghum and cucumber, can be used as indicator species to assess ecotoxicity of soils contaminated by cadmium. - Four crop plant species (sweet corn, Zea may; wheat, Triticum aestivum; cucumber, Cucumis sativus; and sorghum, Sorghum bicolor) were tested to assess an ecotoxicity in cadmium-amended soils. The measurement endpoints used were seed germination and seedling growth (shoot and root). The presence of cadmium decreased the seedling growth. The medium effective concentration values (EC50) for shoot or root growth were calculated by the Trimmed Spearman-Karber method. Due to the greater accumulation of Cd to the roots, root growth was a more sensitive endpoint than shoot growth. Bioavailability and transport of Cd within plant were related to concentration and species. The ratio of bioaccumulation factor (BAF) in the shoots to the roots indicated high immobilization of Cd in the roots. Seed germination was insensitive to Cd toxicity, and is not recommended for a suitable assay. Among the test plants and test endpoints, root growth of sorghum and cucumber appears to be a good protocol to assess ecotoxicity of soils contaminated by Cd.

  17. Soil ecotoxicity assessment using cadmium sensitive plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An, Youn-Joo

    2004-01-01

    The crop plants, sorghum and cucumber, can be used as indicator species to assess ecotoxicity of soils contaminated by cadmium. - Four crop plant species (sweet corn, Zea may; wheat, Triticum aestivum; cucumber, Cucumis sativus; and sorghum, Sorghum bicolor) were tested to assess an ecotoxicity in cadmium-amended soils. The measurement endpoints used were seed germination and seedling growth (shoot and root). The presence of cadmium decreased the seedling growth. The medium effective concentration values (EC50) for shoot or root growth were calculated by the Trimmed Spearman-Karber method. Due to the greater accumulation of Cd to the roots, root growth was a more sensitive endpoint than shoot growth. Bioavailability and transport of Cd within plant were related to concentration and species. The ratio of bioaccumulation factor (BAF) in the shoots to the roots indicated high immobilization of Cd in the roots. Seed germination was insensitive to Cd toxicity, and is not recommended for a suitable assay. Among the test plants and test endpoints, root growth of sorghum and cucumber appears to be a good protocol to assess ecotoxicity of soils contaminated by Cd

  18. Response of detritus food web and litter quality to elevated CO2 and crop cultivars and their feedback to soil functionality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Zhengkun; Chen, Xiaoyun; Zhu, Chunwu; Bonkowski, Michael; Hu, Shuijin; Li, Huixin; Hu, Feng; Liu, Manqiang

    2017-04-01

    Elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations (eCO2) often increase plant growth and alter the belowground detritus soil food web. Interactions with agriculture management may further modify soil process and the associated ecosystem functionality. Little attention, however, has been directed toward assessing the responses of soil food web and their feedback to soil functionality, particularly in wetland agroecosystems. We report results from a long-term free air CO2 enrichment (FACE) experiment in a rice paddy field that examined the responses of detritus food webs to eCO2 (200 ppm higher than ambient CO2 (aCO2)) of two rice cultivars with distinctly weak and strong responses to eCO2. Soil detritus food web components, including soil microbes and microfauna, soil environment as well as resources availability variables, were determined at the rice ripening stage. To obtain the information of soil functionality, indicated by litter decomposition and enzyme activities, we adopted a reciprocal transplant approach that fully manipulate the factors of litter straw and food web components for the incubation of 120 days. Results about the field investigation showed that eCO2 lead to a higher C/N ratio of litter and soil compared to aCO2, especially for the strong responsive cultivar. eCO2-induced enhanced carbon input stimulated the fungal decomposition pathway by increasing fungal biomass, fungi: bacteria ratio and fungivorous nematode. Results from the manipulative incubation experiment showed eCO2-induced lower quality of straw decreased cumulative C mineralization, but changes in detritus food web induced by eCO2 and strongly responsive cultivar lead to an increased CO2 respiration coincidently within each straw type, mainly due to the adaption to the high C/N ratio environment which increased their functional breadth. Based on SEMs and curves of carbon mineralization rate, soil communities showed significant effects on C release at the early stage through mediating enzyme

  19. Introducing litter quality to the ecosystem model LPJ-GUESS: Effects on short- and long-term soil carbon dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portner, Hanspeter; Wolf, Annett; Rühr, Nadine; Bugmann, Harald

    2010-05-01

    Many biogeochemical models have been applied to study the response of the carbon cycle to changes in climate, whereby the process of carbon uptake (photosynthesis) has usually gained more attention than the equally important process of carbon release by respiration. The decomposition of soil organic matter is driven by a combination of factors like soil temperature, soil moisture and litter quality. We have introduced dependence on litter substrate quality to heterotrophic soil respiration in the ecosystem model LPJ-GUESS [Smith et al.(2001)]. We were interested in differences in model projections before and after the inclusion of the dependency both in respect to short- and long-term soil carbon dynamics. The standard implementation of heterotrophic soil respiration in LPJ-GUESS is a simple carbon three-pool model whose decay rates are dependent on soil temperature and soil moisture. We have added dependence on litter quality by coupling LPJ-GUESS to the soil carbon model Yasso07 [Tuomi et al.(2008)]. The Yasso07 model is based on an extensive number of measurements of litter decomposition of forest soils. Apart from the dependence on soil temperature and soil moisture, the Yasso07 model uses carbon soil pools representing different substrate qualities: acid hydrolyzable, water soluble, ethanol soluble, lignin compounds and humus. Additionally Yasso07 differentiates between woody and non-woody litter. In contrary to the reference implementation of LPJ-GUESS, in the new model implementation, the litter now is divided according to its specific quality and added to the corresponding soil carbon pool. The litter quality thereby differs between litter source (leaves, roots, stems) and plant functional type (broadleaved, needleleaved, grass). The two contrasting model implementations were compared and validated at one specific CarboEuropeIP site (Lägern, Switzerland) and on a broader scale all over Switzerland. Our focus lay on the soil respiration for the years 2006

  20. Assessment of soil-gas, seep, and soil contamination at the North Range Road Landfill, Fort Gordon, Georgia, 2008-2009

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landmeyer, James E.; Falls, W. Fred; Ratliff, W. Hagan; Wellborn, John B.

    2011-01-01

    Soil gas, seeps, and soil were assessed for contaminants at the North Range Road Landfill at Fort Gordon, Georgia, from October 2008 to September 2009. The assessment included delineating organic contaminants present in soil-gas samples beneath the area estimated to be the landfill and in water samples collected from three seeps at the base of the landfill. Inorganic contaminants were determined in three seep samples and in soil samples. This assessment was conducted to provide environmental contamination data to Fort Gordon pursuant to requirements for the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act Part B Hazardous Waste Permit process.

  1. Contributions of water supply from the weathered bedrock zone to forest soil quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    James H. Witty; Robert C. Graham; Kenneth R. Hubbert; James A. Doolittle; Jonathan A. Wald

    2003-01-01

    One measure of forest soil quality is the ability of the soil to support tree growth. In mediterranean-type ecosystems, such as most of California's forests, there is virtually no rainfall during the summer growing season, so trees must rely on water stored within the substrate. Water is the primary limitation to productivity in these forests. Many forest soils in...

  2. In situ remediation and phytotoxicity assessment of lead-contaminated soil by biochar-supported nHAP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Zhangmei; Fang, Zhanqiang; Tsang, Pokeung Eric; Fang, Jianzhang; Zhao, Dongye

    2016-11-01

    In this study, a kind of biochar-supported nano-hydroxyapatite (nHAP@BC) material was used in in-situ remediation of lead-contaminated soil. Column experiments were performed to compare the mobility of nHAP@BC and Bare-nHAP. The immobilization, accumulation and toxic effects of Pb in the after-amended soil were assessed by the in vitro toxicity tests and pot experiments. The column experiments showed a significant improvement in the mobility of nHAP@BC. The immobilization rate of Pb in the soil was 74.8% after nHAP@BC remediation. Sequential extraction procedures revealed that the residual fraction of Pb increased by 66.6% after nHAP@BC remediation, which greatly reduced the bioavailability of Pb in the soil. In addition, pot experiments indicated that nHAP@BC could effectively reduce the upward translocation capacity of Pb in a soil-plant system. The concentration of Pb in the aerial part of the cabbage mustard was 0.1 mg/kg, which is lower than the tolerance limit (0.3 mg/kg). nHAP@BC can remediate Pb-contaminated soil effectively, which can restore soil quality for planting. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Soil-ecological risks for soil degradation estimation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trifonova, Tatiana; Shirkin, Leonid; Kust, German; Andreeva, Olga

    2016-04-01

    Soil degradation includes the processes of soil properties and quality worsening, primarily from the point of view of their productivity and decrease of ecosystem services quality. Complete soil cover destruction and/or functioning termination of soil forms of organic life are considered as extreme stages of soil degradation, and for the fragile ecosystems they are normally considered in the network of their desertification, land degradation and droughts /DLDD/ concept. Block-model of ecotoxic effects, generating soil and ecosystem degradation, has been developed as a result of the long-term field and laboratory research of sod-podzol soils, contaminated with waste, containing heavy metals. The model highlights soil degradation mechanisms, caused by direct and indirect impact of ecotoxicants on "phytocenosis- soil" system and their combination, frequently causing synergistic effect. The sequence of occurring changes here can be formalized as a theory of change (succession of interrelated events). Several stages are distinguished here - from heavy metals leaching (releasing) in waste and their migration downward the soil profile to phytoproductivity decrease and certain phytocenosis composition changes. Phytoproductivity decrease leads to the reduction of cellulose content introduced into the soil. The described feedback mechanism acts as a factor of sod-podzolic soil self-purification and stability. It has been shown, that using phytomass productivity index, integrally reflecting the worsening of soil properties complex, it is possible to solve the problems dealing with the dose-reflecting reactions creation and determination of critical levels of load for phytocenosis and corresponding soil-ecological risks. Soil-ecological risk in "phytocenosis- soil" system means probable negative changes and the loss of some ecosystem functions during the transformation process of dead organic substance energy for the new biomass composition. Soil-ecological risks estimation is

  4. Assessing soil ecotoxicity of methyl tert-butyl ether using earthworm bioassay; closed soil microcosm test for volatile organic compounds

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An, Youn-Joo

    2005-01-01

    An earthworm bioassay was conducted to assess ecotoxicity in methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE)-amended soils. Ecotoxicity of MTBE to earthworms was evaluated by a paper contact method, natural field soil test, and an OECD artificial soil test. All tests were conducted in closed systems to prevent volatilization of MTBE out of test units. Test earthworm species were Perionyx excavatus and Eisenia andrei. Mortality and abnormal morphology of earthworms exposed to different concentrations of MTBE were examined. MTBE was toxic to both earthworm species and the severity of response increased with increasing MTBE concentrations. Perionyx excavatus was more sensitive to MTBE than Eisenia andrei in filter papers and two different types of soils. MTBE toxicity was more severe in OECD artificial soils than in field soils, possibly due to the burrowing behavior of earthworms into artificial soils. The present study demonstrated that ecotoxicity of volatile organic compounds such as MTBE can be assessed using an earthworm bioassay in closed soil microcosm with short-term exposure duration. - Earthworm bioassay can be a good protocol to assess soil ecotoxicity of volatile organic compounds such as MTBE

  5. Rice production in relation to soil quality under different rice-based cropping systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran Ba, Linh; Sleutel, Steven; Nguyen Van, Qui; Thi, Guong Vo; Le Van, Khoa; Cornelis, Wim

    2016-04-01

    Soil quality of shallow paddy soils may be improved by introducing upland crops and thus a more diverse crop cultivation pattern. Yet, the causal relationship between crop performance and enhanced soil traits in rice-upland crop rotations remains elusive. The objectives of this study were to (i) find correlations among soil properties under different rice-upland crop systems and link selected soil properties to rice growth and yield, (ii) present appropriate values of soil parameters for sustainable rice productivity in heavy clay soil, (iii) evaluate the effect of rotating rice with upland crops on rice yield and economic benefit in a long-term experiment. A rice-upland crop rotational field experiment in the Vietnamese Mekong delta was conducted for 10 years using a randomized complete block design with four treatments and four replications. Treatments were: (i) rice-rice-rice (control - conventional system as farmers' practice), (ii) rice-maize-rice, (iii) rice-mung bean-rice, and (iv) rice-mung bean-maize. Soil and plant sampling were performed after harvest of the rice crop at the end of the final winter-spring cropping season (i.e. year 10). Results show differences in rice growth and yield, and economic benefit as an effect of the crop rotation system. These differences were linked with changes in bulk density, soil porosity, soil aggregate stability index, soil penetration resistance, soil macro-porosity, soil organic carbon, acid hydrolysable soil C and soil nutrient elements, especially at soil depth of 20-30 cm. This is evidenced by the strong correlation (P < 0.01) between rice plant parameters, rice yield and soil properties such as bulk density, porosity, penetration resistance, soil organic carbon and Chydrolysable. It turned out that good rice root growth and rice yield corresponded to bulk density values lower than 1.3 Mg m-3, soil porosity higher than 50%, penetration resistance below 1.0 MPa, and soil organic carbon above 25 g kg-1. The optimal

  6. Assessing soil constituents and labile soil organic carbon by mid-infrared photoacoustic spectroscopy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Peltre, Clément; Bruun, Sander; Du, Changwen

    2014-01-01

    ) degradability. The objective of this study was to assess the potential of FTIR-PAS for the characterisation of the labile fraction of SOC and more classical soil parameters, such as carbon and clay content, for a range of 36 soils collected from various field experiments in Denmark. Partial least squares (PLS...... signal. This also means that it should be advantageous for soil analysis because of its highly opaque nature. However, only a limited number of studies have so far applied FTIR-PAS to soil characterization and investigation is still required into its potential to determine soil organic carbon (SOC......) regression was used to correlate the collected FTIR-PAS spectra with the proportion of soil organic carbon mineralised after 238 days of incubation at 15°C and pF 2 (C238d) taken as an indicator of the labile fraction of SOC. Results showed that it is possible to predict total organic carbon content, total...

  7. Soil-plant water status and wine quality: the case study of Aglianico wine (the ZOViSA project)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonfante, Antonello; Manna, Piero; Albrizio, Rossella; Basile, Angelo; Agrillo, Antonietta; De Mascellis, Roberto; Caputo, Pellegrina; Delle Cave, Aniello; Gambuti, Angelita; Giorio, Pasquale; Guida, Gianpiero; Minieri, Luciana; Moio, Luigi; Orefice, Nadia; Terribile, Fabio

    2014-05-01

    The terroir analysis, aiming to achieve a better use of environmental features with respect to plant requirement and wine production, needs to be strongly rooted on hydropedology. In fact, the relations between wine quality and soil moisture regime during the cropping season is well established. The ZOViSA Project (Viticultural zoning at farm scale) tests a new physically oriented approach to terroir analysis based on the relations between the soil-plant water status and wine quality. The project is conducted in southern Italy in the farm Quintodecimo of Mirabella Eclano (AV) located in the Campania region, devoted to quality Aglianico red wine production (DOC). The soil spatial distribution of study area (about 3 ha) was recognized by classical soil survey and geophysics scan by EM38DD; then the soil-plant water status was monitored for three years in two experimental plots from two different soils (Cambisol and Calcisol). Daily climate variables (temperature, solar radiation, rainfall, wind), daily soil water variables (through TDR probes and tensiometers), crop development (biometric and physiological parameters), and grape must and wine quality were monitored. The agro-hydrological model SWAP was calibrated and applied in the two experimental plots to estimate soil-plant water status in different crop phenological stages. The effects of crop water status on crop response and wine quality was evaluated in two different pedo-systems, comparing the crop water stress index with both: crop physiological measurements (leaf gas exchange, leaf water potential, chlorophyll content, LAI measurement), grape bunches measurements (berry weight, sugar content, titratable acidity, etc.) and wine quality (aromatic response). Finally a "spatial application" of the model was carried out and different terroirs defined.

  8. Soil quality under two different management schemes in coffee plantations of southern Colombia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oscar Eduardo Valbuena-Calderón

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this work was to develop an additive soil quality index (ASQI in agrofostery managements of coffee (Coffea arabica L.. The study took place under two intense and traditional management schemes, in nine farms (32 lots in the south of Colombia, during 2013. A separation of means analysis was held through the LSD Fisher test (P<0,05 to each of the physical and chemical variables of the soil. The variables that showed differences between the schemes were submitted to a main components analysis to select the minimum data set (MDS of the components that explained the most variability and the redundancy was veri ed within the indicators, based on the correlation. The ASQI was obtained from the total sum of soil quality index (SQI of all the indicators, taking into account that the higher the score of the ASQI, the higher the quality of the soil within the study system. The selected physical variables were the content of sand and clay; while the chemical variables were: organic carbon (OC, P, CA, Mg, total bases (TB and Ca/Mg. The best ASQI was obtained from traditional management, because the value of the selected variables matched in a bigger proportion with the quality objective identi ed for the ASQI quanti cation; in this case the crop yield, based on limit values for coffee plantations.

  9. [Immobilization remediation of Cd and Pb contaminated soil: remediation potential and soil environmental quality].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yue-Bing; Wang, Peng-Chao; Xu, Ying-Ming; Sun, Yang; Qin, Xu; Zhao, Li-Jie; Wang, Lin; Liang, Xue-Feng

    2014-12-01

    A pot experiment was conducted to investigate the immobilization remediation effects of sepiolite on soils artificially combined contamination by Cd and Pb using a set of various pH and speciation of Cd and Pb in soil, heavy metal concentration in Oryza sativa L., and soil enzyme activity and microbial quantity. Results showed that the addition of sepiolite increased the soil pH, and the exchangeable fraction of heavy metals was converted into Fe-Mn oxide, organic and residual forms, the concentration of exchangeable form of Cd and Pb reduced by 1.4% - 72.9% and 11.8% - 51.4%, respectively, when compared with the control. The contents of heavy metals decreased with increasing sepiolite, with the maximal Cd reduction of 39.8%, 36.4%, 55.2% and 32.4%, respectively, and 22.1%, 54.6%, 43.5% and 17.8% for Pb, respectively, in the stems, leaves, brown rice and husk in contrast to CK. The addition of sepiolite could improve the soil environmental quality, the catalase and urease activities and the amount of bacteria and actinomycete were increased to some extents. Although the fungi number and invertase activity were inhibited compared with the control group, it was not significantly different (P > 0.05). The significant correlation between pH, available heavy metal content, urease and invertase activities and heavy metal concentration in the plants indicated that these parameters could be used to evaluate the effectiveness of stabilization remediation of heavy metal contaminated soil.

  10. The effects of straw or straw-derived gasification biochar applications on soil quality and crop productivity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Veronika; Müller-Stöver, Dorette Sophie; Imparato, Valentina

    2017-01-01

    Thermal gasification of straw is a highly efficient technology that produces bioenergy and gasification biochar that can be used as a soil amendment, thereby returning non-renewable nutrients and stable carbon, and securing soil quality and crop productivity. A Danish on-farm field study investig......Thermal gasification of straw is a highly efficient technology that produces bioenergy and gasification biochar that can be used as a soil amendment, thereby returning non-renewable nutrients and stable carbon, and securing soil quality and crop productivity. A Danish on-farm field study...... investigated the impact of traditional straw incorporation vs. straw removal for thermal gasification bioenergy production and the application of straw gasification biochar (GB) on soil quality and crop production. Two rates of GB were applied over three successive years in which the field was cropped...... long-term effects and to identify the optimum balance between straw removal and biochar application rate....

  11. Accounting for potassium and magnesium in irrigation water quality assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J.D. Oster

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Irrigation with treated wastewater is expected to increase significantly in California during the coming decade as a way to reduce the impact of drought and mitigate water transfer issues. To ensure that such wastewater reuse does not result in unacceptable impacts on soil permeability, water quality guidelines must effectively address sodicity hazard. However, current guidelines are based on the sodium adsorption ratio (SAR and thus assume that potassium (K and magnesium (Mg, which often are at elevated concentrations in recycled wastewaters, pose no hazard, despite many past studies to the contrary. Recent research has established that the negative effects of high K and Mg concentrations on soil permeability are substantial and that they can be accounted for by a new irrigation water quality parameter, the cation ratio of structural stability (CROSS, a generalization of SAR. We show that CROSS, when suitably optimized, correlates strongly with a standard measure of soil permeability reduction for an agricultural soil leached with winery wastewater, and that it can be incorporated directly into existing irrigation water quality guidelines by replacing SAR.

  12. Ecotoxicological hazard assessment of hydrocarbon contaminated soils: A case study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roy, Y.; Pauwels, S.J.; Chasse, R.

    1994-01-01

    The Ecotoxicological Hazard Assessment (EHA) developed by the Quebec Ministry of Environment and Wildlife was used as part of the management scheme of contaminated soils from a former refinery. The study consists of assessing five types of soils (reference, heavily contaminated, slightly contaminated, thermally-treated, and biotreated) to determine their relative intrinsic hazard. During the exploratory activities a series of ten assessment endpoints where identified to support this typical EHA. During SOURCE characterization, the physicochemical make-up of the soils is described and the presence and concentrations of priority pollutants is determined. During FATE characterization, the potential for bioconcentration, mobility, and persistence of pollutants is determined. During EFFECTS characterization, the soils and their leachates are tested using standard terrestrial and aquatic bioassays. The data from the toxicological and analytical testing program are evaluated semi-quantitatively on the basis of a scoring system developed by consensus. The discussion will highlight how data are used within an EHA to streamline the decision-making process regarding the follow-up cleanup and disposal of contaminated soils

  13. The characterization of the soil biological quality of organic viticulture can be achieved by analyzing soil nematofauna

    OpenAIRE

    Coll, P; Le Cadre, E; Mérot, A; Villenave, C

    2013-01-01

    Soil nematofauna is a bioindicator that can highlight changes in biological functioning when changing agricultural practices. In the present study, the effects of conversion of vineyards to organic agriculture on biological soil quality were evaluated. Twenty four conventional plots and organic plots in Cruscades (Aude) were studied: they were divided into four groups: (1) conventional, (2) converted for 7 years (Bio 7 years), (3) converted for 11 years (Bio 11) and (4) converted for 17 (Bio ...

  14. In situ assessment of phytotechnologies for multicontaminated soil management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ouvrard, S; Barnier, C; Bauda, P; Beguiristain, T; Biache, C; Bonnard, M; Caupert, C; Cébron, A; Cortet, J; Cotelle, S; Dazy, M; Faure, P; Masfaraud, J F; Nahmani, J; Palais, F; Poupin, P; Raoult, N; Vasseur, P; Morel, J L; Leyval, C

    2011-01-01

    Due to human activities, large volumes of soils are contaminated with organic pollutants such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and very often by metallic pollutants as well. Multipolluted soils are therefore a key concern for remediation. This work presents a long-term evaluation of the fate and environmental impact of the organic and metallic contaminants of an industrially polluted soil under natural and plant-assisted conditions. A field trial was followed for four years according to six treatments in four replicates: unplanted, planted with alfalfa with or without mycorrhizal inoculation, planted with Noccaea caerulescens, naturally colonized by indigenous plants, and thermally treated soil planted with alfalfa. Leaching water volumes and composition, PAH concentrations in soil and solutions, soil fauna and microbial diversity, soil and solution toxicity using standardized bioassays, plant biomass, mycorrhizal colonization, were monitored. Results showed that plant cover alone did not affect total contaminant concentrations in soil. However, it was most efficient in improving the contamination impact on the environment and in increasing the biological diversity. Leaching water quality remained an issue because of its high toxicity shown by micro-algae testing. In this matter, prior treatment of the soil by thermal desorption proved to be the only effective treatment.

  15. The Soils and Groundwater – EM-20 S&T Roadmap Quality Assurance Project Plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fix, N. J.

    2008-02-11

    The Soils and Groundwater – EM-20 Science and Technology Roadmap Project is a U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Environmental Management-funded initiative designed to develop new methods, strategies and technology for characterizing, modeling, remediating, and monitoring soils and groundwater contaminated with metals, radionuclides, and chlorinated organics. This Quality Assurance Project Plan provides the quality assurance requirements and processes that will be followed by EM-20 Roadmap Project staff.

  16. Patent Assessment Quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Burke, Paul F.; Reitzig, Markus

    2006-01-01

    The increasing number of patent applications worldwide and the extension of patenting to the areas of software and business methods have triggered a debate on "patent quality". While patent quality may have various dimensions, this paper argues that consistency in the decision making on the side...... of the patent office is one important dimension, particularly in new patenting areas (emerging technologies). In order to understand whether patent offices appear capable of providing consistent assessments of a patent's technological quality in such novel industries from the beginning, we study the concordance...... of the European Patent Office's (EPO's) granting and opoposition decisions for individual patents. We use the historical example of biotech patens filed between 1978 until 1986, the early stage of the industry. Our results indicate that the EPO shows systematically different assessments of technological quality...

  17. Quality evaluation of processed clay soil samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steiner-Asiedu, Matilda; Harrison, Obed Akwaa; Vuvor, Frederick; Tano-Debrah, Kwaku

    2016-01-01

    This study assessed the microbial quality of clay samples sold on two of the major Ghanaian markets. The study was a cross-sectional assessing the evaluation of processed clay and effects it has on the nutrition of the consumers in the political capital town of Ghana. The items for the examination was processed clay soil samples. Staphylococcus spp and fecal coliforms including Klebsiella, Escherichia, and Shigella and Enterobacterspp were isolated from the clay samples. Samples from the Kaneshie market in Accra recorded the highest total viable counts 6.5 Log cfu/g and Staphylococcal count 5.8 Log cfu/g. For fecal coliforms, Madina market samples had the highest count 6.5 Log cfu/g and also recorded the highest levels of yeast and mould. For Koforidua, total viable count was highest in the samples from the Zongo market 6.3 Log cfu/g. Central market samples had the highest count of fecal coliforms 4.6 Log cfu/g and yeasts and moulds 6.5 Log cfu/g. "Small" market recorded the highest staphylococcal count 6.2 Log cfu/g. The water activity of the clay samples were low, and ranged between 0.65±0.01 and 0.66±0.00 for samples collected from Koforidua and Accra respectively. The clay samples were found to contain Klebsiella spp. Escherichia, Enterobacter, Shigella spp. staphylococcus spp., yeast and mould. These have health implications when consumed.

  18. Assessment of soil lead exposure in children in Shenyang, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ren, H.M.; Wang, J.D.; Zhang, X.L.

    2006-01-01

    Soil lead pollution is serious in Shenyang, China. The paper brings together the soil work, the bioaccessibility, and the blood lead data to assess the soil lead exposure in children in Shenyang, China. Approximately 15.25% of the samples were above China Environment Protection Agency guideline concentration for soil Pb to protect human from health risk (350 mg kg -1 ). Pb concentrations varied among use scenarios. The main lead contamination sources are industry emission and automobile exhaust. Bioaccessibility also varied among use scenarios. Children, who ingested soil from industrial area, public parks, kindergarten playground, and commercial area, are more susceptible to soil lead toxicity. The industrial area soil samples presented higher bioaccessibility compared to the other use scenario soil samples contaminated by automobile exhaust. The result also suggested a most significant linear relationship between the level of Pb contamination and the amount of Pb mobilized from soil into ingestion juice. Soil pH seemed to have insignificant influence on bioaccessibility in the present study. Bioaccessibility was mainly controlled by other factors that are not investigated in this study. A linear relationship between children blood lead and soil intestinal bioaccessibility was present in the study. Children who are 4-5 years old are more likely to demonstrate the significant relationship between soil lead bioaccessibility and blood lead as their behaviors place them at greatest risk of soil lead toxicity, and their blood lead levels are more likely to represent recent exposure. - Children were exposed to soil lead and the exposure was assessed by bioaccessibility using in vitro digestion model in a modified version

  19. Information System Quality Assessment Methods

    OpenAIRE

    Korn, Alexandra

    2014-01-01

    This thesis explores challenging topic of information system quality assessment and mainly process assessment. In this work the term Information System Quality is defined as well as different approaches in a quality definition for different domains of information systems are outlined. Main methods of process assessment are overviewed and their relationships are described. Process assessment methods are divided into two categories: ISO standards and best practices. The main objective of this w...

  20. Saline soil properties, quality and productivity of wheat grown with bagasse ash and thiourea in different climatic zones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seleiman, Mahmoud F; Kheir, Ahmed M S

    2018-02-01

    Soil salinity and atmosphere temperature change have negative impacts on crop productivity and its quality and can pose a significant risk to soil properties in semi-arid regions. We conducted two field experiments in North (first zone) and South (second zone) of Egypt to investigate the effects of soil bagasse ash (10 ton ha -1 ), foliar thiourea (240 g ha -1 ) and their combination in comparison to the control treatment on saline soil properties and productivity and quality traits of wheat. All studied treatments were received the recommended rate of N, P and K fertilizations. Combination of soil bagasse ash and foliar thiourea application resulted in a significant improvement of most studied soil properties (i.e. EC, compaction, hydraulic conductivity, OM and available P, K, N contents) after harvest in comparison to other treatments in both of zones. Also, it enhanced growth and grain yield of wheat in terms of photosynthesis related attributes and yield components. Moreover, combination of soil bagasse ash and foliar thiourea application resulted in superior grain quality traits in terms of carbohydrate, fibre, protein and ash contents than separated application of soil bagasse ash, foliar thiourea or even control treatment. In conclusion, combination of soil bagasse ash and foliar thiourea application can be used as suitable option to enhance plant nutrition, wheat productivity and improve wheat grain quality and soil traits in saline soil as well as can alleviate heat stress. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Assessing Soil Quality in Areas Affected by Sulfide Mining. Application to Soils in the Iberian Pyrite Belt (SW Spain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isabel González

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available The characterization, evaluation and remediation of polluted soils is one of the present environmental challenges to be addressed in the coming years. The origin of trace elements in soils can be either geogenic or anthropogenic, but only the latter is interesting from a legal point of view. The hazard of the pollutants in the soils not only depends on their total concentration, but particularly on their availability. The mobility of the trace elements depends on their speciation, and it is also affected by several soil parameters. Mining activity is one of the most important anthropogenic causes of soil pollution. As a case study, this work is focused in the Riotinto mining area (Iberian Pyrite Belt, IPB, SW Spain. The IPB is one of the most important metallogenic provinces in the world and it has been exploited for thousands of years. The disposal of mining residues has produced important sources of contamination by trace elements and acidic waters affecting soils and rivers. In addition to these problems, the closure of mines in the Pyrite Belt at the end of the 20th Century has led to a great loss of employment, which has caused the development of an intensive agriculture of citrus fruits as a new source of income. The intensive growing of citrus fruits and the traditional subsistence agriculture have been developed surrounding the mining areas and on floodplains near to mining sites. The level of soil pollution has not been taken into account in these cases, nor has its impact on the health of the inhabitants of these areas. Therefore, it is of great interest to study the current state of the cultivated soils and the sources and types of contaminants derived from mining activity in order to program its decontamination, where appropriate, according to legislation. In order to know the present and future hazard posed by the soils chemical and mineralogical speciation has been carried out, given that the availability of a metal depends on the

  2. A brief review and evaluation of earthworm biomarkers in soil pollution assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Zhiming; Tang, Zhiwen; Wang, Congying

    2017-05-01

    Earthworm biomarker response to pollutants has been widely investigated in the assessment of soil pollution. However, whether and how the earthworm biomarker-approach can be actually applied to soil pollution assessment is still a controversial issue. This review is concerned about the following points: 1. Despite much debate, biomarker is valuable to ecotoxicology and biomarker approach has been properly used in different fields. Earthworm biomarker might be used in different scenarios such as large-scale soil pollution survey and soil pollution risk assessment. Compared with physicochemical analysis, they can provide more comprehensive and straightforward information about soil pollution at low cost. 2. Although many earthworm species from different ecological categories have been tested, Eisenia fetida/andrei is commonly used. Many earthworm biomarkers have been screened from the molecular to the individual level, while only a few biomarkers, such as avoidance behavior and lysosomal membrane stability, have been focused on. Other aspects of the experimental design were critically reviewed. 3. More studies should focus on determining the reliability of various earthworm biomarkers in soil pollution assessment in future research. Besides, establishing a database of a basal level of each biomarker, exploring biomarker response in different region/section/part of earthworm, and other issues are also proposed. 4. A set of research guideline for earthworm biomarker studies was recommended, and the suitability of several earthworm biomarkers was briefly evaluated with respect to their application in soil pollution assessment. This review will help to promote further studies and practical application of earthworm biomarker in soil pollution assessment.

  3. Assessment of nutritional status of soil supporting coconut (Cocus ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    AJB SERVER

    2007-02-05

    Feb 5, 2007 ... Assessment of nutritional status of soil supporting coconut ... Infact coconut plays a vital role in the ... A high fertility status of the supporting soils is required for high .... the amount/concentration of basic fertility elements of the.

  4. The influence of rice husk and tobacco waste biochars on soil quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amir Hamzah

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Heavy metal pollution in agricultural land threatens soil and food quality. Soil pollution could be remediate using biochar, but the effectiveness of biochar on soil quality improvement is determined by types of feedstock and pyrolysis temperature. This study was aimed to explore the effect of different types of biochar on soil properties.  Biochar from rice husk and tobacco waste was applied to soil contaminated with lead and mercury. This study was conducted at Sumber Brantas, Malang East Java, and used a completely randomized design with three replicates. Heavy metals content was measured using AAS. The results of measurements were analyzed using analysis of variance at 5% and 1% significance levels. The initial analysis of the soil properties at the research site showed that the soil nutrient status was low, i.e. N (0.2 %, K (0.50 cmol+/kg, and CEC (5.9 me/100g respectively, but soil pH was neutral (6.8. The research site also has crossed the threshold of heavy metal content for Hg (0.5 ppm, Pb (25.22 ppm, Cd (1.96 ppm, and As (0.78 ppm. Biochar added had a positive influence on soil characteristics improvement. It could increase the content of organic C, i.e. 35.12% and 31.81% and CEC (cation exchange capacity, i.e.30.56 me/100g and 28.13 me/100 g for rice husk biochar and tobacco waste biochar, respectively.  However, N, P, and K contents were low i.e. N ( 0.33 and 0.30 %; P2O5 (148.79 and 152 ppm; K (1.58 and 2.11 mg/100g for rice husk biochar and tobacco waste biochar, respectively.

  5. In-depth variations of the quality of organic matter in a gypsiferous forest soil under controlled burning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J.A. González-Pérez

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Forest fires exert changes in soil organic matter quality and quantity mainly in the organic top soil and first centimetres in the mineral horizon. These effects are highly variable and among other factors depend on fire and soil characteristics. In this work the changes caused by fire to the soil organic matter in a gypseous soil (Hypergypsic Gypsisol. Undisturbed soil blocks were sampled in the field and burned in the laboratory. The burning treatment finished when the temperature reached 250 °C at 1cm depth in the Ah-horizon. In the burned blocks a decrease in soil organic carbon (CO was observed in the soil O horizon (75% and down till the 1st cm in the mineral Ah horizon. Under the conditions of our burning experiment no appreciable neat differences were observed in the inorganic C content (CI. Soil organic matter alteration caused by fire was assessed at a molecular level using direct analytical pyrolysis (Py-GC/MS. Fire severely modified soil organic matter molecular structure. In the organic soil layer (O horizon an almost complete disappearance of chromatographic peaks is apparent. In the mineral Ah horizon the effect of fire is still apparent (0-1 cm depth affecting the chromatograms both qualitative and quantitative with a complete disappearance of some biogenic compounds, a reduction in the relative abundance of typical vegetation markers and neat deviations of the natural distribution of the alkylic series i.e. shifts in parity and increase in the relative abundance of low molecular weight homologues.

  6. Biological detoxification of a hydrocarbon contaminated soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fabbri, F.; Lucchese, G.; Nardella, A.

    2005-01-01

    The soil quality of an industrial site chronically contaminated by 39000 mg/kg of oil was detrimentally affected. Soil treatments by bio-pile and land-farming resulted in a reduction of the level of contamination exceeding 90% of the original values, but without reaching regulatory limits. However, the bio-remediation treatments dramatically reduced the mobility of the contaminants and, accordingly, microbial tests clearly indicate that the soil quality improved to acceptable levels, similar to those typically observed in unaltered soils. Hydrocarbon mobility was estimated by the use of water and mild extractants (methanol and sodium dodecyl sulphate) to leach the contaminants from the soil; soil quality was evaluated by comparing the values of selected microbial and enzymatic parameters of the treated soil samples to reference values determined for natural soils. Microbial assessments included: measurement of the nitrification potential, dehydrogenase activity, measures of respiration and lipase activity, microbial counts (MPN on rich media) and Microtox TM assays of the water elutriate. Dermal absorption potential was evaluated using absorption on C 18 disks

  7. Assessment of Soil-Gas and Soil Contamination at the Former Military Police Range, Fort Gordon, Georgia, 2009-2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falls, W. Fred; Caldwell, Andral W.; Guimaraes, Wladmir B.; Ratliff, W. Hagan; Wellborn, John B.; Landmeyer, James E.

    2011-01-01

    Soil gas and soil were assessed for organic and inorganic contaminants at the former military police range at Fort Gordon, Georgia, from May to September 2010. The assessment evaluated organic contaminants in soil-gas samplers and inorganic contaminants in soil samples. This assessment was conducted to provide environmental contamination data to Fort Gordon pursuant to requirements of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act Part B Hazardous Waste Permit process. Soil-gas samplers deployed and collected from May 20 to 24, 2010, identified masses above method detection level for total petroleum hydrocarbons, gasoline-related and diesel-related compounds, and chloroform. Most of these detections were in the southwestern quarter of the study area and adjacent to the road on the eastern boundary of the site. Nine of the 11 chloroform detections were in the southern half of the study area. One soil-gas sampler deployed adjacent to the road on the southern boundary of the site detected a mass of tetrachloroethene greater than, but close to, the method detection level of 0.02 microgram. For soil-gas samplers deployed and collected from September 15 to 22, 2010, none of the selected organic compounds classified as chemical agents and explosives were detected above method detection levels. Inorganic concentrations in the five soil samples collected at the site did not exceed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regional screening levels for industrial soil and were at or below background levels for similar rocks and strata in South Carolina.

  8. Assessment of water supply system and water quality of Lighvan village using water safety plan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mojtaba Pourakbar

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Background: Continuous expansion of potable water pollution sources is one of the main concerns of water suppliers, therefore measures such as water safety plan (WSP, have been taken into account to control these sources of pollution. The aim of this study was to identify probable risks and threatening hazards to drinking water quality in Lighvan village along with assessment of bank filtration of the village. Methods: In the present study all risks and probable hazards were identified and ranked. For each of these cases, practical suggestions for removing or controlling them were given. To assess potable water quality in Lighvan village, sampling was done from different parts of the village and physicochemical parameters were measured. To assess the efficiency of bank filtration system of the village, independent t test was used to compare average values of parameters in river and treated water. Results: One of the probable sources of pollution in this study was domestic wastewater which threatens water quality. The results of this study show that bank filtration efficiency in water supply of the village is acceptable. Conclusion: Although Bank filtration imposes fewer expenses on governments, it provides suitable water for drinking and other uses. However, it should be noted that application of these systems should be done after a thorough study of water pollution level, types of water pollutants, soil properties of the area, soil percolation and system distance from pollutant sources.

  9. Relationship between soybean yield/quality and soil quality in a major soybean-producing area based on a 2D-QSAR model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Ming; Li, Shiwei

    2017-05-01

    Based on experimental data of the soybean yield and quality from 30 sampling points, a quantitative structure-activity relationship model (2D-QSAR) was established using the soil quality (elements, pH, organic matter content and cation exchange capacity) as independent variables and soybean yield or quality as the dependent variable, with SPSS software. During the modeling, the full data set (30 and 14 compounds) was divided into a training set (24 and 11 compounds) for model generation and a test set (6 and 3 compounds) for model validation. The R2 values of the resulting models and data were 0.826 and 0.808 for soybean yield and quality, respectively, and all regression coefficients were significant (P test set were 0.961 and 0.956, respectively, indicating that the models had a good predictive ability. Moreover, the Mo, Se, K, N and organic matter contents and the cation exchange capacity of soil had a positive effect on soybean production, and the B, Mo, Se, K and N contents and cation exchange coefficient had a positive effect on soybean quality. The results are instructive for enhancing soils to improve the yield and quality of soybean, and this method can also be used to study other crops or regions, providing a theoretical basis to improving the yield and quality of crops.

  10. Soybean susceptibility to manufactured nanomaterials with evidence for food quality and soil fertility interruption

    OpenAIRE

    Priester, John H.; Ge, Yuan; Mielke, Randall E.; Horst, Allison M.; Moritz, Shelly Cole; Espinosa, Katherine; Gelb, Jeff; Walker, Sharon L.; Nisbet, Roger M.; An, Youn-Joo; Schimel, Joshua P.; Palmer, Reid G.; Hernandez-Viezcas, Jose A.; Zhao, Lijuan; Gardea-Torresdey, Jorge L.

    2012-01-01

    Based on previously published hydroponic plant, planktonic bacterial, and soil microbial community research, manufactured nanomaterial (MNM) environmental buildup could profoundly alter soil-based food crop quality and yield. However, thus far, no single study has at once examined the full implications, as no studies have involved growing plants to full maturity in MNM-contaminated field soil. We have done so for soybean, a major global commodity crop, using farm soil amended with two high-pr...

  11. Assessment of hyporheic zone, flood-plain, soil-gas, soil, and surface-water contamination at the Old Incinerator Area, Fort Gordon, Georgia, 2009-2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guimaraes, Wladmir B.; Falls, W. Fred; Caldwell, Andral W.; Ratliff, W. Hagan; Wellborn, John B.; Landmeyer, James E.

    2011-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of the Army Environmental and Natural Resources Management Office of the U.S. Army Signal Center and Fort Gordon, Georgia, assessed the hyporheic zone, flood plain, soil gas, soil, and surface-water for contaminants at the Old Incinerator Area at Fort Gordon, from October 2009 to September 2010. The assessment included the detection of organic contaminants in the hyporheic zone, flood plain, soil gas, and surface water. In addition, the organic contaminant assessment included the analysis of explosives and chemical agents in selected areas. Inorganic contaminants were assessed in soil and surface-water samples. The assessment was conducted to provide environmental contamination data to the U.S. Army at Fort Gordon pursuant to requirements of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act Part B Hazardous Waste Permit process. Total petroleum hydrocarbons were detected above the method detection level in all 13 samplers deployed in the hyporheic zone and flood plain of an unnamed tributary to Spirit Creek. The combined concentrations of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and total xylene were detected at 3 of the 13 samplers. Other organic compounds detected in one sampler included octane and trichloroethylene. In the passive soil-gas survey, 28 of the 60 samplers detected total petroleum hydrocarbons above the method detection level. Additionally, 11 of the 60 samplers detected the combined masses of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and total xylene above the method detection level. Other compounds detected above the method detection level in the passive soil-gas survey included octane, trimethylbenzene, perchlorethylene, and chloroform. Subsequent to the passive soil-gas survey, six areas determined to have relatively high contaminant mass were selected, and soil-gas samplers were deployed, collected, and analyzed for explosives and chemical agents. No explosives or chemical agents were detected above

  12. Soil fauna and organic amendment interactions affect soil carbon and crop performance in semi-arid West Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ouédraogo, E.; Brussaard, L.; Stroosnijder, L.

    2007-01-01

    A field experiment was conducted at Kaibo in southern Burkina Faso on an Eutric Cambisol during the 2000 rainy season to assess the interaction of organic amendment quality and soil fauna, affecting soil organic carbon and sorghum ( Sorghum bicolor L. Moench) performance. Plots were treated with the

  13. Quality assessment of laparoscopic hysterectomy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Driessen, S.R.C.

    2017-01-01

    Quality assessment is surgical care is very important, though very difficult. With this thesis we attempted to overcome the limitations of currently used quality indicators and developed a dynamic, unique quality assessment tool to reflect upon individual surgical performance with case-mix

  14. CHEMICAL AND MICROBIOLOGICAL ATTRIBUTES UNDER DIFFERENT SOIL COVER

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elaine Novak

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available A challenge for the environmental recovery of degraded areas is the search for soil data. In this process, the microbiological parameters and soil chemicals are potential indicators of soil quality. This study aimed to evaluate soil quality based on microbiological and chemical soil attributes in different areas involving environmental recovery, sugarcane cultivation and remnants of native vegetation located in a rural private property farm in State of Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil, in Hapludox Eutrophic soil. The microbiological (microbial biomass carbon, basal respiration, microbial quotient and metabolic quotient and chemical parameters (organic matter, carbon, pH, cationic exchange capacity, sum of bases, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, saturation base and potential acidity were assessed. Data were assessed by variance and multivariate analysis (Principal Component Analysis and cluster analysis. Overall, the results showed highest alteration in the chemical and microbiological characteristics of the soil in sugarcane cultivation area in comparison with other areas. Considering the studied recovery areas, REC1, REC5 and REC7 show chemical and microbiological conditions with most similarity to native vegetation. Despite the short period of the resilience enhancement of environmental recovery areas, the development of vegetation cover and establishment of the microbial community were determined to be important factors for improving soil quality and environmental recovery in several of the areas studied.

  15. Assessing earthworm and sewage sludge impacts on microbiological and biochemical soil quality using multivariate analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hanye Jafari Vafa

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Land application of organic wastes and biosolids such as municipal sewage sludge has been an important and attractive practice for improving different properties of agricultural soils with low organic matter content in semi-arid regions, due to an increase of soil organic matter level and fertility. However, application of this organic waste may directly or indirectly affect soil bio-indicators such as microbial and enzymatic activities through a change in the activity of other soil organisms such as earthworms. Earthworms are the most important soil saprophagous fauna and much of the faunal biomass is attributed to the presence of these organisms in the soil. Therefore, it is crucial to evaluate the effect of earthworm activity on soil microbial and biochemical attributes, in particularly when soils are amended with urban sewage sludge. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the earthworm effects on biochemical and microbiological properties of a calcareous soil amended with municipal sewage sludge using Factor Analysis (FA. Materials and Methods: In the present study, the experimental treatments were sewage sludge (without and with 1.5% sewage sludge as the first factor and earthworm (no earthworm, Eiseniafoetida from epigeic group, Allolobophracaliginosa from endogeic group and a mixture of the two species as the second factor. The study was setup as 2×4 full factorial experiment arranged in a completely randomized design with three replications for each treatment under greenhouse conditions over 90 days. A calcareous soil from the 0-30 cm layer with clay loam texture was obtained from a farmland field under fallow without cultivation history for ten years. The soil was air-dried and passed through a 2-mm sieve for the experiment. Sewage sludge as the soil organic amendment was collected from Wastewater Treatment Plant in Shahrekord. Sewage sludge was air-dried and grounded to pass through a 1-mm sieve for a uniform mixture

  16. Engineering of Soil Biological Quality from Nickel Mining Stockpile Using Two Earthworm Ecological Groups

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L M H Kilowasid

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Earthworms have the ability in modifying soil biological quality for plant growth. Their ability is mostly depending on its ecological groups. The objectives of the research were to study the influence of two ecological groups of earthworms on soil microbial activity and soil micro-fauna abundance, and to know the potential of soil modified by earthworms as plant growth medium. Eight combination of individual earthworm from epigeic and endogeic groups was applied into pot that was filled by soil from two years of nickel stockpile and each treatment was repeated by five times. The experiment was following complete randomize design procedure. After sixteen days of research, the soil sample from each pot was analyzed for soil FDA activity, number of flagellate and nematodes. Furthermore, one kg of the soil from each pot was taken and every pot was grown by Paraserianthes falcataria seedling with the age of five days and continued its growth for two months. The results indicated that the soil FDA activity, number of flagellate and nematodes among treatments were significantly differences. In addition, it indicated the significant differences in dry weight of shoot, root, total plant, and root to shoot ratio of P. falcataria seedlings. It concluded that the combination of an individual number of epigeic and endogeic earthworms improved soil biological quality of stock pile, amd most suitable for seedlings growth in nickel mining area.

  17. Effect of Water Quality and Temperature on the Efficiency of Two Kinds of Hydrophilic Polymers in Soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dehkordi, Davoud Khodadadi

    2018-06-01

      In this study, evaluation of two-superabsorbent effects, Super-AB-A-300 and Super-AB-A-200 in a sandy soil on the water retention capability and saturated hydraulic conductivity (Ks) at different water quality and soil temperature were done. The Super-AB-A-200 was less effective in water uptake than Super-AB-A-300. The efficiency of these polymers in water retention was negatively influenced by the water quality and temperature. The efficiency of these polymer treatments in water uptake reduced significantly (P < 0.05) with increasing soil temperature. In the control soil, the Ks stayed nearly constant with increasing soil temperature. As compared to the untreated control, the treated soil demonstrated a significant (P < 0.05) linear increase of Ks with increasing soil temperature. In the control soil, the water holding properties curve did not change with increasing soil temperature.

  18. Using the VS-Fast methodology for soil degradation assessment: a case study from Senegal

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sonneveld, B.G.J.S.; McGarry, D.; Ndiaye, D.

    2012-01-01

    Soil degradation threatens sustainable food production and accelerates global warming. Poorer countries, whose agricultural sectors are highly dependent on their natural resource bases, are hit particularly hard by declining soil productivity. Calls for soil-quality monitoring are therefore,

  19. A Risk Assessment Example for Soil Invertebrates Using Spatially Explicit Agent-Based Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Reed, Melissa; Alvarez, Tania; Chelinho, Sonia

    2016-01-01

    Current risk assessment methods for measuring the toxicity of plant protection products (PPPs) on soil invertebrates use standardized laboratory conditions to determine acute effects on mortality and sublethal effects on reproduction. If an unacceptable risk is identified at the lower tier...... population models for ubiquitous soil invertebrates (collembolans and earthworms) as refinement options in current risk assessment. Both are spatially explicit agent-based models (ABMs), incorporating individual and landscape variability. The models were used to provide refined risk assessments for different...... application scenarios of a hypothetical pesticide applied to potato crops (full-field spray onto the soil surface [termed “overall”], in-furrow, and soil-incorporated pesticide applications). In the refined risk assessment, the population models suggest that soil invertebrate populations would likely recover...

  20. Investigation of the impacts of ethyl lactate based Fenton treatment on soil quality for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)-contaminated soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gan, Suyin; Yap, Chiew Lin; Ng, Hoon Kiat; Venny

    2013-11-15

    This study aims to investigate the impacts of ethyl lactate (EL) based Fenton treatment on soil quality for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)-contaminated soils. Accumulation of oxygenated-polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (oxy-PAHs) was observed, but quantitative measurement on the most abundant compound 9,10-anthraquinone (ATQ) showed lower accumulation of the compound than that reported for ethanol (ET) based Fenton treatment. In general, as compared to conventional water (CW) based Fenton treatment, the EL based Fenton treatment exerted either a lower or higher negative impact on soil physicochemical properties depending on the property type and shared the main disadvantage of reduced soil pH. For revegetation, EL based Fenton treatment was most appropriately adopted for soil with native pH >/~ 6.2 in order to obtain a final soil pH >/~ 4.9 subject to the soil buffering capacity. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Potential ecological risk assessment and predicting zinc accumulation in soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baran, Agnieszka; Wieczorek, Jerzy; Mazurek, Ryszard; Urbański, Krzysztof; Klimkowicz-Pawlas, Agnieszka

    2018-02-01

    The aims of this study were to investigate zinc content in the studied soils; evaluate the efficiency of geostatistics in presenting spatial variability of zinc in the soils; assess bioavailable forms of zinc in the soils and to assess soil-zinc binding ability; and to estimate the potential ecological risk of zinc in soils. The study was conducted in southern Poland, in the Malopolska Province. This area is characterized by a great diversity of geological structures and types of land use and intensity of industrial development. The zinc content was affected by soil factors, and the type of land use (arable lands, grasslands, forests, wastelands). A total of 320 soil samples were characterized in terms of physicochemical properties (texture, pH, organic C content, total and available Zn content). Based on the obtained data, assessment of the ecological risk of zinc was conducted using two methods: potential ecological risk index and hazard quotient. Total Zn content in the soils ranged from 8.27 to 7221 mg kg -1 d.m. Based on the surface semivariograms, the highest variability of zinc in the soils was observed from northwest to southeast. The point sources of Zn contamination were located in the northwestern part of the area, near the mining-metallurgical activity involving processing of zinc and lead ores. These findings were confirmed by the arrangement of semivariogram surfaces and bivariate Moran's correlation coefficients. The content of bioavailable forms of zinc was between 0.05 and 46.19 mg kg -1 d.m. (0.01 mol dm -3 CaCl 2 ), and between 0.03 and 71.54 mg kg -1 d.m. (1 mol dm -3 NH 4 NO 3 ). Forest soils had the highest zinc solubility, followed by arable land, grassland and wasteland. PCA showed that organic C was the key factor to control bioavailability of zinc in the soils. The extreme, very high and medium zinc accumulation was found in 69% of studied soils. There is no ecological risk of zinc to living organisms in the study area, and in 90

  2. Data Quality Assessment Report for the Remedial Investigation of Hanford Site Releases to the Columbia River, Hanford Site, Washington

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    L.C. Hulstrom

    2010-09-21

    This report summarizes the results of the data quality assessment that was performed on the analytical data generated in connection with the 2008/2009 surface water, sediment, and soil data collection; groundwater upwelling investigation sample collection; and fish tissue sample collection.

  3. Data Quality Assessment Report for the Remedial Investigation of Hanford Site Releases to the Columbia River, Hanford Site, Washington

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    L.C. Hulstrom

    2010-08-10

    This report summarizes the results of the data quality assessment that was performed on the analytical data generated in connection with the 2008/2009 surface water, sediment, and soil data collection; groundwater upwelling investigation sample collection; and fish tissue sample collection.

  4. Soil fertility management: Impacts on soil macrofauna, soil aggregation and soil organic matter allocation.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ayuke, F.O.; Brussaard, L.; Vanlauwe, B.; Six, J.; Lelei, D.K.; Kibunja, C.N.; Pulleman, M.M.

    2011-01-01

    Maintenance of soil organic matter through integrated soil fertility management is important for soil quality and agricultural productivity, and for the persistence of soil faunal diversity and biomass. Little is known about the interactive effects of soil fertility management and soil macrofauna

  5. The Northeast Stream Quality Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Metre, Peter C.; Riva-Murray, Karen; Coles, James F.

    2016-04-22

    In 2016, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) is assessing stream quality in the northeastern United States. The goal of the Northeast Stream Quality Assessment (NESQA) is to assess the quality of streams in the region by characterizing multiple water-quality factors that are stressors to aquatic life and evaluating the relation between these stressors and biological communities. The focus of NESQA in 2016 will be on the effects of urbanization and agriculture on stream quality in all or parts of eight states: Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.Findings will provide the public and policymakers with information about the most critical factors affecting stream quality, thus providing insights about possible approaches to protect the health of streams in the region. The NESQA study will be the fourth regional study conducted as part of NAWQA and will be of similar design and scope to the first three, in the Midwest in 2013, the Southeast in 2014, and the Pacific Northwest in 2015 (http://txpub.usgs.gov/RSQA/).

  6. Feasibility Study of Soil Quality Survey using Visible and Near Infrared Spectroscopy in Rice Paddy Fields in China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongyi Li

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Survey and monitoring of soil quality are needed to prevent soil degradation and are important for sustainable farming and food production. Conventional soil survey involves intensive soil sampling and laboratory analysis, which are time consuming and expensive. Visible and near infrared spectroscopy of soil has proved to be accurate, cheap and robust and has huge potential for survey of soil quality. To test its potential, 327 soil samples were taken from long-term paddy rice fields in four provinces in south of China and covered a wide range of soil types and texture. The samples were air-dried, ground and passed through a 2 mm sieve. They were then scanned by an ASD vis–NIR spectrometer with wavelength range from 350 to 2500 nm. Organic matter (OM, pH, total nitrogen (TN and available nitrogen (N_av were also measured on soil samples to build calibration models and also to validate the models’ accuracy. On the basis of the ratio of prediction deviation (RPD, which is standard deviation (SD of prediction divided by the root mean square error of prediction (RMSEP, the accuracy of leave-one-out cross-validation of soil N_av model was classified very good (RPD=1.96 and soil OM and TN was good (RPD=1.78 and RPD=1.81, respectively. However, the model accuracy of pH was poor due to non-direct soil spectral response for soil pH in vis–NIR spectroscopy. The independent validation results showed excellent accuracy for soil N_av (RPD=3.26, good accuracy for OM and TN (RPD=1.76 and RPD=1.78 and relative poor accuracy for soil pH (RPD=1.27. This feasibility study is encouraging for the application of vis–NIR surveys of soil quality accuracy at regional and national scales; it found good to excellent accuracy for some important soil properties in quality survey.

  7. Ecotoxicological and analytical assessment of hydrocarbon-contaminated soils and application to ecological risk assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Saterbak, A.; Toy, R.J.; Wong, D.C.L.; McMain, B.J.; Williams, M.P.; Dorn, P.B.; Brzuzy, L.P.; Chai, E.Y.; Salanitro, J.P.

    1999-07-01

    Ecotoxicological assessments of contaminated soil aim to understand the effect of introduced chemicals on the soil flora and fauna. Ecotoxicity test methods were developed and conducted on hydrocarbon-contaminated soils and on adjacent uncontaminated control soils from eight field locations. Tests included 7-d, 14-d, and chronic survival tests and reproduction assays for the earthworm (Eisenia fetida) and seed germination, root length, and plant growth assays for corn, lettuce, mustard, and wheat. Species-specific responses were observed with no-observed effect concentrations (NOECs) ranging from <1 to 100% contaminated soil. The 14-d earthworm survival NOEC was equal to or greater than the reproduction NOEC values for numbers of cocoons and juveniles, which were similar to one another. Cocoon and juvenile production varied among the control soils. Germination and root length NOECs for mustard and lettuce were less than NOECs for corn and wheat. Root length NOECs were similar to or less than seed germination NOECs. Statistically significant correlations for earthworm survival and seed germination as a function of hydrocarbon measurements were found. The 14-d earthworm survival and the seed germination tests are recommended for use in the context of a risk-based framework for the ecological assessment of contaminated sites.

  8. Quality of fresh organic matter affects priming of soil organic matter and substrate utilization patterns of microbes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Hui; Boutton, Thomas W.; Xu, Wenhua; Hu, Guoqing; Jiang, Ping; Bai, Edith

    2015-05-01

    Changes in biogeochemical cycles and the climate system due to human activities are expected to change the quantity and quality of plant litter inputs to soils. How changing quality of fresh organic matter (FOM) might influence the priming effect (PE) on soil organic matter (SOM) mineralization is still under debate. Here we determined the PE induced by two 13C-labeled FOMs with contrasting nutritional quality (leaf vs. stalk of Zea mays L.). Soils from two different forest types yielded consistent results: soils amended with leaf tissue switched faster from negative PE to positive PE due to greater microbial growth compared to soils amended with stalks. However, after 16 d of incubation, soils amended with stalks had a higher PE than those amended with leaf. Phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) results suggested that microbial demand for carbon and other nutrients was one of the major determinants of the PE observed. Therefore, consideration of both microbial demands for nutrients and FOM supply simultaneously is essential to understand the underlying mechanisms of PE. Our study provided evidence that changes in FOM quality could affect microbial utilization of substrate and PE on SOM mineralization, which may exacerbate global warming problems under future climate change.

  9. Assessing heterogeneity in soil nitrogen cycling: a plot-scale approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peter Baas; Jacqueline E. Mohan; David Markewitz; Jennifer D. Knoepp

    2014-01-01

    The high level of spatial and temporal heterogeneity in soil N cycling processes hinders our ability to develop an ecosystem-wide understanding of this cycle. This study examined how incorporating an intensive assessment of spatial variability for soil moisture, C, nutrients, and soil texture can better explain ecosystem N cycling at the plot scale. Five sites...

  10. Paradoxical differences in N-dynamics between Luxembourg soils: litter quality or parent material?

    OpenAIRE

    Kooijman, A.M.; Smit, A.

    2009-01-01

    To explore whether litter quality could alter differences in N-dynamics between soil types, we compared spruce and beech growing on soils with parent material sandstone and limestone, and beech and hornbeam on acid marl and limestone. We measured pH, organic matter content, C:N ratio, soil respiration and net N-mineralization of the organic layer and the mineral topsoil in a laboratory incubation experiment and estimated gross N-mineralization and immobilization with a simulation model. Speci...

  11. Vermicompost Improves Tomato Yield and Quality and the Biochemical Properties of Soils with Different Tomato Planting History in a Greenhouse Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xin-Xin; Zhao, Fengyan; Zhang, Guoxian; Zhang, Yongyong; Yang, Lijuan

    2017-01-01

    A greenhouse pot test was conducted to study the impacts of replacing mineral fertilizer with organic fertilizers for one full growing period on soil fertility, tomato yield and quality using soils with different tomato planting history. Four types of fertilization regimes were compared: (1) conventional fertilizer with urea, (2) chicken manure compost, (3) vermicompost, and (4) no fertilizer. The effects on plant growth, yield and fruit quality and soil properties (including microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen, [Formula: see text]-N, [Formula: see text]-N, soil water-soluble organic carbon, soil pH and electrical conductivity) were investigated in samples collected from the experimental soils at different tomato growth stages. The main results showed that: (1) vermicompost and chicken manure compost more effectively promoted plant growth, including stem diameter and plant height compared with other fertilizer treatments, in all three types of soil; (2) vermicompost improved fruit quality in each type of soil, and increased the sugar/acid ratio, and decreased nitrate concentration in fresh fruit compared with the CK treatment; (3) vermicompost led to greater improvements in fruit yield (74%), vitamin C (47%), and soluble sugar (71%) in soils with no tomato planting history compared with those in soils with long tomato planting history; and (4) vermicompost led to greater improvements in soil quality than chicken manure compost, including higher pH (averaged 7.37 vs. averaged 7.23) and lower soil electrical conductivity (averaged 204.1 vs. averaged 234.6 μS/cm) at the end of experiment in each type of soil. We conclude that vermicompost can be recommended as a fertilizer to improve tomato fruit quality and yield and soil quality, particularly for soils with no tomato planting history.

  12. Long-term toxicity assessment of soils in a recovered area affected by a mining spill

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Romero-Freire, A.; García Fernández, I.; Simón Torres, M.; Martínez Garzón, F.J.; Martín Peinado, F.J.

    2016-01-01

    Residual pollution in the Guadiamar Green Corridor still remains after Aználcollar mine spill in 1998. The polluted areas are identified by the absence of vegetation, soil acidic pH and high concentrations of As, Pb, Zn and Cu. Soil toxicity was assessed by lettuce root elongation and induced soil respiration bioassays. In bare soils, total As and Pb concentrations and water-extractable levels for As, Zn and Cu exceeded the toxicity guidelines. Pollutants responsible for toxicity were different depending on the tested organism, with arsenic being most toxic for lettuce and the metal mixture to soil respiration. Soil properties, such as pH or organic carbon content, are key factors to control metal availability and toxicity in the area. According to our results, there is a risk of pollution to living organisms and the soil quality criteria established in the area should be revised to reduce the risk of toxicity. - Highlights: • 15 years after the Aznalcóllar mine spill residual pollution remains in some areas. • Toxic levels were exceeded for total As and Pb and for soluble As, Zn and Cu. • Metals responsible for soil toxicity are different depending on the tested organism. • pH and organic carbon content reduce metal availability and therefore soil toxicity. • Regulatory guidelines in the area should be revised to reduce the risk of toxicity. - Residual pollution in the Guadiamar Green Corridor remains in some areas after long-term stabilization, with some risk of pollution according to toxicity bioassays.

  13. [Transportation and risk assessment of heavy metal pollution in water-soil from the Riparian Zone of Daye Lake, China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jia-quan; Li, Xiu; Zhang, Quan-fa; Li, Qiong; Xiao, Wen-sheng; Wang, Yong-kui; Zhang, Jian-chun; Gai, Xi-guang

    2015-01-01

    Each 20 water samples and soil samples (0-10 cm, 10-20 cm) were collected from the riparian zone of Daye Lake in dry season during March 2013. Heavy metals (Cu, Ph, Cd, Zn) have been detected by flame atomic absorption spectrometric (FAAS). The results showed that the average concentrations of Cu, Pb, Cd, Zn in the water were 7.14, 25.94, 15.72 and 37.58 microg x L(-1), respectively. The concentration of Cu was higher than the five degree of the surface water environment quality standard. The average concentrations of Cu, Pb, Cd, Zn in soil(0-10 cm) were 108.38, 53.92, 3.55, 139.26 mg x kg(-1) in soil (10-20 cm) were 93.00, 51.72, 2.08, 171.00 mg x kg(-1), respectively. The Cd concentrations were higher than the three grade value of the national soil environment quality standard. The transportation of Pb from soil to water was relatively stable, and Zn was greatly influenced by soil property and the surrounding environment from soil to water. The transformation of heavy metal in west riparian zone was higher than that of east riparian zone. The potential environmental risk was relatively high. Cu, Pb, Cd, Zn were dominated by residue fraction of the modified BCR sequential extraction method. The overall migration order of heavy metal element was: Pb > Cu > Cd > Zn. There were stronger transformation and higher environmental pollution risk of Cu, Pb. The index of assessment and potential ecological risk coefficient indicated that heavy metal pollution in soil (0-10 cm) was higher than the soil (10-20 cm), Cd was particularly serious.

  14. Does Formative Assessment Improve Student Learning and Performance in Soil Science?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kopittke, Peter M.; Wehr, J. Bernhard; Menzies, Neal W.

    2012-01-01

    Soil science students are required to apply knowledge from a range of disciplines to unfamiliar scenarios to solve complex problems. To encourage deep learning (with student performance an indicator of learning), a formative assessment exercise was introduced to a second-year soil science subject. For the formative assessment exercise, students…

  15. Structural quality of polyacrylamide-treated cohesive soils in the coastal tablelands of Pernambuco

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diego Vandeval Maranhão de Melo

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Water-soluble polymers are characterized as effective flocculating agents due to their molecular features. Their application to soils with horizons with structural problems, e.g, a cohesive character, contributes to improvements in the physical quality and thus to the agricultural suitability of such soils. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the structural quality of soils with cohesive horizons of coastal tablelands in the State of Pernambuco treated with polyacrylamide (PAM as chemical soil conditioner. To this end, three horizons (one cohesive and two non-cohesive of a Yellow Argisol (Ultisol were evaluated and to compare cohesive horizons, the horizon of a Yellow Latosol (Oxisol was selected. The treatments consisted of aqueous PAM solutions (12.5; 50.0; 100.0 mg kg-1 and distilled water (control. The structural aspects of the horizons were evaluated by the stability (soil mass retained in five diameter classes, aggregate distribution per size class (mean weight diameter- MWD, geometric mean diameter - GMD and the magnitude of the changes introduced by PAM by measuring the sensitivity index (Si. Aqueous PAM solutions increased aggregate stability in the largest evaluated diameter class of the cohesive and non-cohesive horizons, resulting in higher MWD and GMD, with highest efficiency of the 100 mg kg-1 solution. The cohesive horizon Bt1 in the Ultisol was most sensitive to the action of PAM, where highest Si values were found, but the structural quality of the BA horizon of the Oxisol was better in terms of stability and aggregate size distribution.

  16. Improving soil enzyme activities and related quality properties of reclaimed soil by applying weathered coal in opencast-mining areas of the Chinese loess plateau

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Hua [College of Environment and Resources, Shanxi University, Taiyuan (China); CAS/Shandong Provincial Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Process, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Yantai (China); Shao, Hongbo [CAS/Shandong Provincial Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Process, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Yantai (China); Institute for Life Sciences, Qingdao University of Science and Technology (QUST), Qingdao (China); Li, Weixiang; Bi, Rutian [Shanxi Agricultural University, Taigu (China); Bai, Zhongke [Department of Land Science Technology, University of Geosciences, Beijing (China)

    2012-03-15

    There are many problems for the reclaimed soil in opencast-mining areas of the Loess Plateau of China such as poor soil structure and extreme poverty in soil nutrients and so on. For the sake of finding a better way to improve soil quality, the current study was to apply the weathered coal for repairing soil media and investigate the physicochemical properties of the reclaimed soil and the changes in enzyme activities after planting Robinia pseucdoacacia. The results showed that the application of the weathered coal significantly improved the quality of soil aggregates, increased the content of water stable aggregates, and the organic matter, humus, and the cation exchange capacity of topsoil were significantly improved, but it did not have a significant effect on soil pH. Planting R. pseucdoacacia significantly enhanced the activities of soil catalase, urease, and invertase, but the application of the weathered coal inhibited the activity of catalase. Although the application of appropriate weathered coal was able to significantly increase urease activity, the activities of catalase, urease, or invertase had a close link with the soil profile levels and time. This study suggests that applying weathered coals could improve the physicochemical properties and soil enzyme activities of the reclaimed soil in opencast-mining areas of the Loess Plateau of China and the optimum applied amount of the weathered coal for reclaimed soil remediation is about 27 000 kg hm{sup -2}. (Copyright copyright 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH and Co. KGaA, Weinheim)

  17. Using high-resolution radar images to determine vegetation cover for soil erosion assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bargiel, D; Herrmann, S; Jadczyszyn, J

    2013-07-30

    Healthy soils are crucial for human well-being. Because soils are threatened worldwide, politicians recognize the need for soil protection. For example, the European Commission has launched the Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection, which requests the European member states to identify high risk areas for soil degradation. Most states use the Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE) to assess soil erosion risk at the national scale. The USLE includes different factors, one of them is the vegetation cover and management factor (C factor). Modern satellite-based radar sensors now provide highly accurate vegetation cover data, enabling opportunities to improve the accuracy of the C factor. The presented study proves the suitability for C factor determination based on a multi-temporal classification of high-resolution radar images. Further USLE factors were derived from existing data sources (meteorological data, soil maps, digital elevation model) to conduct an USLE-based soil erosion assessment. The resulting map illustrates a qualitative assessment for soil erosion risk within a plot of about 7*12 km in an agricultural region in Poland that is very susceptible to soil erosion processes. A high erosion risk of more than 10 tonnes per ha and year was assessed to occur on 13.6% (646 ha) of the agricultural areas within the investigated plot. Further 7.8% (372 ha) of agricultural land is threaten by a medium risk of 5-10 tonnes per ha and year. Such a spatial information about areas of high or medium soil erosion risk are crucial for the development of strategies for the protection of soils. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Regional soil erosion assessment based on a sample survey and geostatistics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Shuiqing; Zhu, Zhengyuan; Wang, Li; Liu, Baoyuan; Xie, Yun; Wang, Guannan; Li, Yishan

    2018-03-01

    Soil erosion is one of the most significant environmental problems in China. From 2010 to 2012, the fourth national census for soil erosion sampled 32 364 PSUs (Primary Sampling Units, small watersheds) with the areas of 0.2-3 km2. Land use and soil erosion controlling factors including rainfall erosivity, soil erodibility, slope length, slope steepness, biological practice, engineering practice, and tillage practice for the PSUs were surveyed, and the soil loss rate for each land use in the PSUs was estimated using an empirical model, the Chinese Soil Loss Equation (CSLE). Though the information collected from the sample units can be aggregated to estimate soil erosion conditions on a large scale; the problem of estimating soil erosion condition on a regional scale has not been addressed well. The aim of this study is to introduce a new model-based regional soil erosion assessment method combining a sample survey and geostatistics. We compared seven spatial interpolation models based on the bivariate penalized spline over triangulation (BPST) method to generate a regional soil erosion assessment from the PSUs. Shaanxi Province (3116 PSUs) in China was selected for the comparison and assessment as it is one of the areas with the most serious erosion problem. Ten-fold cross-validation based on the PSU data showed the model assisted by the land use, rainfall erosivity factor (R), soil erodibility factor (K), slope steepness factor (S), and slope length factor (L) derived from a 1 : 10 000 topography map is the best one, with the model efficiency coefficient (ME) being 0.75 and the MSE being 55.8 % of that for the model assisted by the land use alone. Among four erosion factors as the covariates, the S factor contributed the most information, followed by K and L factors, and R factor made almost no contribution to the spatial estimation of soil loss. The LS factor derived from 30 or 90 m Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) digital elevation model (DEM) data

  19. The Pacific northwest stream quality assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Metre, Peter C.; Morace, Jennifer L.; Sheibley, Rich W.

    2015-01-01

    In 2015, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) program is assessing stream quality in the Pacific Northwest. The goals of the Pacific Northwest Stream Quality Assessment (Pacific Northwest study) are to assess the quality of streams in the region by characterizing multiple water-quality factors that are stressors to aquatic life and to evaluate the relation between these stressors and biological communities. The effects of urbanization and agriculture on stream quality for the Puget Lowlands and Willamette Valley are the focus of this regional study. Findings will provide the public and policymakers with information regarding which human and environmental factors are the most critical in affecting stream quality and, thus, provide insights about possible approaches to protect or improve the health of streams in the region.

  20. Results of the ARN participation in the quality assessment program of the EML-DOE during period 2000-2001

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Equillor, Hugo E.; Serdeiro, Nelida H.; Fernandez, Jorge A.; Gavini, Ricardo M.; Grinman, Ana D.R.; Lewis, Esther C.; Medici, Marcela A.; Palacios, Miguel A.; Diodati, Jorge M.

    2003-01-01

    The Nuclear Regulatory Authority (ARN) participates every six months in the Quality Assessment Program (QAP), carried out by the Environmental Measurements Laboratory - United States Department Of Energy (EML-USDOE). The aim of this participation is to assess the quality of the radiochemical determinations and alpha, beta, gamma measurements, that ARN realises routinely. The analysed matrix are: water, filter, soil and vegetable. In the present work, the results of the ARN participation in the last four intercomparisons, period 2000-2001, are detailed and analysed statistically. The results are compared with obtained ones by all the laboratories. (author)