WorldWideScience

Sample records for sustain dryland soil

  1. Modelling soil transport by wind in drylands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hassan, M.H.A.

    1994-01-01

    Understanding the movement of windblown soil particles and the resulting formation of complex surface features are among the most intriguing problems in dryland research. This understanding can only be achieved trough physical and mathematical modelling and must also involve observational data and laboratory experiments. Some current mathematical models that have contributed to the basic understanding of the transportation and deposition of soil particles by wind are presented and solved in these notes. (author). 26 refs, 5 figs

  2. Optimizing soil and water management in dryland farming systems in Cabo Verde

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Santos Baptista Costa, Dos I.

    2016-01-01

    “Optimizing Soil and Water Management in Dryland Farming Systems in Cabo Verde”

    Isaurinda Baptista

    Summary

    Soil and land degradation poses a great challenge for sustainable development worldwide and, in Cabo Verde, has strongly affected both

  3. Sustainable semiarid dryland production in relation to tillage effects on Hydrology: 1983-2013

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semiarid dryland crop yields with no-till, NT, residue management are often greater than stubble-mulch tillage, SM, as a result of improved soil conditions or water conservation, but knowledge of long-term tillage effects on the comprehensive field hydrology and sustained crop production is needed. ...

  4. Sustainable land management (SLM) practices in drylands: how do they address desertification threats?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwilch, G; Liniger, H P; Hurni, H

    2014-11-01

    Managing land sustainably is a huge challenge, especially under harsh climatic conditions such as those found in drylands. The socio-economic situation can also pose challenges, as dryland regions are often characterized by remoteness, marginality, low-productive farming, weak institutions, and even conflict. With threats from climate change, disputes over water, competing claims on land, and migration increasing worldwide, the demands for sustainable land management (SLM) measures will only increase in the future. Within the EU-funded DESIRE project, researchers and stakeholders jointly identified existing SLM technologies and approaches in 17 dryland study sites located in the Mediterranean and around the world. In order to evaluate and share this valuable SLM experience, local researchers documented the SLM technologies and approaches in collaboration with land users, utilizing the internationally recognized WOCAT questionnaires. This article provides an analysis of 30 technologies and 8 approaches, enabling an initial evaluation of how SLM addresses prevalent dryland threats, such as water scarcity, soil degradation, vegetation degradation and low production, climate change, resource use conflicts, and migration. Among the impacts attributed to the documented technologies, those mentioned most were diversified and enhanced production and better management of water and soil degradation, whether through water harvesting, improving soil moisture, or reducing runoff. Favorable local-scale cost-benefit relationships were mainly found when considered over the long term. Nevertheless, SLM was found to improve people's livelihoods and prevent further outmigration. More field research is needed to reinforce expert assessments of SLM impacts and provide the necessary evidence-based rationale for investing in SLM.

  5. Sustainable Land Management (SLM) Practices in Drylands: How Do They Address Desertification Threats?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwilch, G.; Liniger, H. P.; Hurni, H.

    2014-11-01

    Managing land sustainably is a huge challenge, especially under harsh climatic conditions such as those found in drylands. The socio-economic situation can also pose challenges, as dryland regions are often characterized by remoteness, marginality, low-productive farming, weak institutions, and even conflict. With threats from climate change, disputes over water, competing claims on land, and migration increasing worldwide, the demands for sustainable land management (SLM) measures will only increase in the future. Within the EU-funded DESIRE project, researchers and stakeholders jointly identified existing SLM technologies and approaches in 17 dryland study sites located in the Mediterranean and around the world. In order to evaluate and share this valuable SLM experience, local researchers documented the SLM technologies and approaches in collaboration with land users, utilizing the internationally recognized WOCAT questionnaires. This article provides an analysis of 30 technologies and 8 approaches, enabling an initial evaluation of how SLM addresses prevalent dryland threats, such as water scarcity, soil degradation, vegetation degradation and low production, climate change, resource use conflicts, and migration. Among the impacts attributed to the documented technologies, those mentioned most were diversified and enhanced production and better management of water and soil degradation, whether through water harvesting, improving soil moisture, or reducing runoff. Favorable local-scale cost-benefit relationships were mainly found when considered over the long term. Nevertheless, SLM was found to improve people's livelihoods and prevent further outmigration. More field research is needed to reinforce expert assessments of SLM impacts and provide the necessary evidence-based rationale for investing in SLM.

  6. Biological soil crusts: a fundamental organizing agent in global drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, J.; Zhang, Y.

    2013-12-01

    Ecosystem function is profoundly affected by plant community composition, which is ultimately determined by factors that govern seed retention. Dryland ecosystems constitute ~35% of terrestrial surfaces, with most soils in these regions covered by biological soil crusts (biocrusts), a community whose autotrophs are dominated by cyanobacteria, lichens, and mosses. Studies at 550 sites revealed that plant community composition was controlled by the interaction among biocrust type, disturbance regime, and external morphology of seeds. In bare soils (due to disturbance), all seed types were present in the seedbank and plant community. As biocrusts became better developed (i.e., the cover of lichens and mosses increased), they more strongly filtered out seeds with appendages. Thus, soils under late successional biocrusts contained seedbanks dominated by smooth seeds and vascular plants growing in late successional biocrusts were dominated by those with smooth seeds. Therefore, the tension between the removal of biocrusts by soil surface disturbance and their recovery creates a shifting mosaic of plant patch types in both space and time. Because changes in vascular plant communities reverberate throughout both below ground and above ground food webs and thus affect multiple trophic levels, we propose that biocrusts are a fundamental organizing agent in drylands worldwide. Future increased demand for resources will intensify land use both temporally and spatially, resulting in an increased rate of biocrust loss across larger areas. As a result, we can expect shifts in the composition and distribution of plant communities, accompanied by concomitant changes in many aspects of dryland ecosystems. Conceptual model of shifting dryland plant mosaics through space and time. Within the large circles, soil surface type changes with time in the same space, going from bare uncrusted soil (B) to cyanobacterial biocrust (C) to lichen/moss (L/M) biocrust. Disturbance (D) drives the

  7. Dryland soil microbial communities display spatial biogeographic patterns associated with soil depth and soil parent material

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steven, Blaire; Gallegos-Graves, La Verne; Belnap, Jayne; Kuske, Cheryl R.

    2013-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are common to drylands worldwide. We employed replicated, spatially nested sampling and 16S rRNA gene sequencing to describe the soil microbial communities in three soils derived from different parent material (sandstone, shale, and gypsum). For each soil type, two depths (biocrusts, 0–1 cm; below-crust soils, 2–5 cm) and two horizontal spatial scales (15 cm and 5 m) were sampled. In all three soils, Cyanobacteria and Proteobacteria demonstrated significantly higher relative abundance in the biocrusts, while Chloroflexi and Archaea were significantly enriched in the below-crust soils. Biomass and diversity of the communities in biocrusts or below-crust soils did not differ with soil type. However, biocrusts on gypsum soil harbored significantly larger populations of Actinobacteria and Proteobacteria and lower populations of Cyanobacteria. Numerically dominant operational taxonomic units (OTU; 97% sequence identity) in the biocrusts were conserved across the soil types, whereas two dominant OTUs in the below-crust sand and shale soils were not identified in the gypsum soil. The uniformity with which small-scale vertical community differences are maintained across larger horizontal spatial scales and soil types is a feature of dryland ecosystems that should be considered when designing management plans and determining the response of biocrusts to environmental disturbances.

  8. 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

  9. ESD as a Means to Strengthen the Sustainable Management of Marginal Drylands in Egypt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salem, Boshra B.

    2012-01-01

    The objective of this article is to present results of and lessons learnt from implementing education for sustainable development (ESD) in marginal drylands, based on experiences from the TEMPUS IV project, Education for Sustainable Development beyond the Campus (EDUCAMP), in Egypt and the multinational project, Sustainable Development of Marginal…

  10. Biological soil crusts as an organizing principle in drylands: Chapter 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, Jayne; Weber, Bettina; Büdel, Burkhard; Weber, Bettina; Buedel, Burkhard; Belnap, Jayne

    2016-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) have been present on Earth’s terrestrial surfaces for billions of years. They are a critical part of ecosystem processes in dryland regions, as they cover most of the soil surface and thus mediate almost all inputs and outputs from soils in these areas. There are many intriguing, but understudied, roles these communities may play in drylands. These include their function in nutrient capture and transformation, influence on the movement and distribution of nutrients and water within dryland soils, ability to structure vascular plant communities, role in creating biodiversity hotspots, and the possibility that they can be used as indicators of soil health. There are still many fascinating aspects of these communities that need study, and we hope that this chapter will facilitate such efforts.

  11. Management options to increase soil organic matter and nitrogen availability in cultivated drylands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Grace, P.R.

    1998-01-01

    Cropping of dryland soils in marginal regions with an emphasis on economic rather than ecological sustainability has generally led to decline in soil organic matter reserves and hence nutrient availability. Outputs commonly exceed inputs, with degradation of soil structure, reduction in infiltration and increase in runoff. Biological productivity is severely affected, leading to a vicious cycle of events usually culminating in decreased N release, excessive soil loss and ultimately desertification. Reducing the incidence of bare fallow, increasing crop-residue retention, strategic N-fertilizer application and shifting to cereal-legume rotations (as opposed to monocultures) and intercropping can slow the spiral. Simulation models such as DSSAT and SOCRATES provide suitable and easy-to-use platforms to evaluate these management strategies in terms of soil organic matter accumulation and yield performance. Through the linkage of these models to global information systems and the use of spatial-characterization software to identify zones of similarity, it is now possible to examine the transportability and risk of a particular management strategy under a wide range of climatic and soil conditions. (author)

  12. Multifaceted Impacts of Sustainable Land Management in Drylands: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Jose Marques

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Biophysical restoration or rehabilitation measures of land have demonstrated to be effective in many scientific projects and small-scale environmental experiments. However circumstances such as poverty, weak policies, or inefficient scientific knowledge transmission can hinder the effective upscaling of land restoration and the long term maintenance of proven sustainable use of soil and water. This may be especially worrisome in lands with harsh environmental conditions. This review covers recent efforts in landscape restoration and rehabilitation with a functional perspective aiming to simultaneously achieve ecosystem sustainability, economic efficiency, and social wellbeing. Water management and rehabilitation of ecosystem services in croplands, rangelands, forests, and coastlands are reviewed. The joint analysis of such diverse ecosystems provides a wide perspective to determine: (i multifaceted impacts on biophysical and socio-economic factors; and (ii elements influencing effective upscaling of sustainable land management practices. One conclusion can be highlighted: voluntary adoption is based on different pillars, i.e. external material and economic support, and spread of success information at the local scale to demonstrate the multidimensional benefits of sustainable land management. For the successful upscaling of land management, more attention must be paid to the social system from the first involvement stage, up to the long term maintenance.

  13. Nested archetypes of vulnerability in African drylands: where lies potential for sustainable agricultural intensification?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sietz, D.; Ordoñez, J. C.; Kok, M. T. J.; Janssen, P.; Hilderink, H. B. M.; Tittonell, P.; Van Dijk, H.

    2017-09-01

    Food production is key to achieving food security in the drylands of sub-Saharan Africa. Since agricultural productivity is limited, however, due to inherent agro-ecological constraints and land degradation, sustainable agricultural intensification has been widely discussed as an opportunity for improving food security and reducing vulnerability. Yet vulnerability determinants are distributed heterogeneously in the drylands of sub-Saharan Africa and sustainable intensification cannot be achieved everywhere in cost-effective and efficient ways. To better understand the heterogeneity of farming systems’ vulnerability in order to support decision making at regional scales, we present archetypes, i.e. socio-ecological patterns, of farming systems’ vulnerability in the drylands of sub-Saharan Africa and reveal their nestedness. We quantitatively indicated the most relevant farming systems’ properties at a sub-national resolution. These factors included water availability, agro-ecological potential, erosion sensitivity, population pressure, urbanisation, remoteness, governance, income and undernourishment. Cluster analysis revealed eight broad archetypes of vulnerability across all drylands of sub-Saharan Africa. The broad archetype representing better governance and highest remoteness in extremely dry and resource-constrained regions encompassed the largest area share (19%), mainly indicated in western Africa. Moreover, six nested archetypes were identified within those regions with better agropotential and prevalent agricultural livelihoods. Among these patterns, the nested archetype depicting regions with highest erosion sensitivity, severe undernourishment and lower agropotential represented the largest population (30%) and area (28%) share, mainly found in the Sahel region. The nested archetype indicating medium undernourishment, better governance and lowest erosion sensitivity showed particular potential for sustainable agricultural intensification, mainly in

  14. Challenges and Alternatives to Sustainable Management of Agriculture and Pastoral Ecosystems in Asian Drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, J.

    2015-12-01

    There is no question that human must produce additional 70% food to feed the new 2.2 billion of people on the planet by 2050, but the question is where to grow the additional food. The demand for the additional food lies not only in producing the basic resources needed to sustain a healthy lifestyle, but also from a changing diet, especially in rapidly developing countries in the dryland regions around the world. It is forecast that this demand for meat will require an additional 0.2 billion tons per year by 2050, which is almost a doubling of present meat consumption. These new demands create mounting pressures on agriculture and pastoral ecosystems and the reported trajectory of warmer and drier climate in the future increases uncertainties in food security, adding further stresses to the already stressed nations in the Asian dryland belt. Different approaches are being either proposed or practiced in the region but the question is whether or not the current practices are sustainable or optimal in addressing the emerging issues. Given the complexity and interplay among the food, water and energy, what are alternatives to ensure a sustainable trajectory of regional development to meet the new food demand? This presentation reviews existing practices and proposes alternative solutions, by specifically examining the trade-offs between different ecosystem services that drylands in Asian may provide. Preliminary analysis suggested that the current trajectory of meat and milk production is likely not on a sustainable pathway.

  15. Climatic sensitivity of dryland soil CO2 fluxes differs dramatically with biological soil crust successional state

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Colin; Ferrenberg, Scott; Reed, Sasha C.

    2018-01-01

    Arid and semiarid ecosystems make up approximately 41% of Earth’s terrestrial surface and are suggested to regulate the trend and interannual variability of the global terrestrial carbon (C) sink. Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are common dryland soil surface communities of bryophytes, lichens, and/or cyanobacteria that bind the soil surface together and that may play an important role in regulating the climatic sensitivity of the dryland C cycle. Major uncertainties exist in our understanding of the interacting effects of changing temperature and moisture on CO2 uptake (photosynthesis) and loss (respiration) from biocrust and sub-crust soil, particularly as related to biocrust successional state. Here, we used a mesocosm approach to assess how biocrust successional states related to climate treatments. We subjected bare soil (Bare), early successional lightly pigmented cyanobacterial biocrust (Early), and late successional darkly pigmented moss-lichen biocrust (Late) to either ambient or + 5°C above ambient soil temperature for 84 days. Under ambient temperatures, Late biocrust mesocosms showed frequent net uptake of CO2, whereas Bare soil, Early biocrust, and warmed Late biocrust mesocosms mostly lost CO2 to the atmosphere. The inhibiting effect of warming on CO2 exchange was a result of accelerated drying of biocrust and soil. We used these data to parameterize, via Bayesian methods, a model of ecosystem CO2 fluxes, and evaluated the model with data from an autochamber CO2 system at our field site on the Colorado Plateau in SE Utah. In the context of the field experiment, the data underscore the negative effect of warming on fluxes both biocrust CO2 uptake and loss—which, because biocrusts are a dominant land cover type in this ecosystem, may extend to ecosystem-scale C cycling.

  16. Climate change impacts on yields and soil carbon in dryland agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dryland agroecosystems could be a sizable sink for atmospheric carbon (C) due to their spatial extent and level of degradation, providing climate change mitigation. We examined productivity and soil C dynamics under two IPCC climate change scenarios (RCP 4.5; RCP 8.5), utilizing long-term experiment...

  17. Climate and soil attributes determine plant species turnover in global drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maestre, Fernando T.; Gotelli, Nicholas J.; Quero, José L.; Delgado-Baquerizo, Manuel; Bowker, Matthew A.; Eldridge, David J.; Ochoa, Victoria; Gozalo, Beatriz; Valencia, Enrique; Berdugo, Miguel; Escolar, Cristina; García-Gómez, Miguel; Escudero, Adrián; Prina, Aníbal; Alfonso, Graciela; Arredondo, Tulio; Bran, Donaldo; Cabrera, Omar; Cea, Alex; Chaieb, Mohamed; Contreras, Jorge; Derak, Mchich; Espinosa, Carlos I.; Florentino, Adriana; Gaitán, Juan; Muro, Victoria García; Ghiloufi, Wahida; Gómez-González, Susana; Gutiérrez, Julio R.; Hernández, Rosa M.; Huber-Sannwald, Elisabeth; Jankju, Mohammad; Mau, Rebecca L.; Hughes, Frederic Mendes; Miriti, Maria; Monerris, Jorge; Muchane, Muchai; Naseri, Kamal; Pucheta, Eduardo; Ramírez-Collantes, David A.; Raveh, Eran; Romão, Roberto L.; Torres-Díaz, Cristian; Val, James; Veiga, José Pablo; Wang, Deli; Yuan, Xia; Zaady, Eli

    2015-01-01

    Aim Geographic, climatic, and soil factors are major drivers of plant beta diversity, but their importance for dryland plant communities is poorly known. This study aims to: i) characterize patterns of beta diversity in global drylands, ii) detect common environmental drivers of beta diversity, and iii) test for thresholds in environmental conditions driving potential shifts in plant species composition. Location 224 sites in diverse dryland plant communities from 22 geographical regions in six continents. Methods Beta diversity was quantified with four complementary measures: the percentage of singletons (species occurring at only one site), Whittake’s beta diversity (β(W)), a directional beta diversity metric based on the correlation in species occurrences among spatially contiguous sites (β(R2)), and a multivariate abundance-based metric (β(MV)). We used linear modelling to quantify the relationships between these metrics of beta diversity and geographic, climatic, and soil variables. Results Soil fertility and variability in temperature and rainfall, and to a lesser extent latitude, were the most important environmental predictors of beta diversity. Metrics related to species identity (percentage of singletons and β(W)) were most sensitive to soil fertility, whereas those metrics related to environmental gradients and abundance ((β(R2)) and β(MV)) were more associated with climate variability. Interactions among soil variables, climatic factors, and plant cover were not important determinants of beta diversity. Sites receiving less than 178 mm of annual rainfall differed sharply in species composition from more mesic sites (> 200 mm). Main conclusions Soil fertility and variability in temperature and rainfall are the most important environmental predictors of variation in plant beta diversity in global drylands. Our results suggest that those sites annually receiving ~ 178 mm of rainfall will be especially sensitive to future climate changes. These

  18. Climate and soil attributes determine plant species turnover in global drylands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ulrich, Werner; Soliveres, Santiago; Maestre, Fernando T; Gotelli, Nicholas J; Quero, José L; Delgado-Baquerizo, Manuel; Bowker, Matthew A; Eldridge, David J; Ochoa, Victoria; Gozalo, Beatriz; Valencia, Enrique; Berdugo, Miguel; Escolar, Cristina; García-Gómez, Miguel; Escudero, Adrián; Prina, Aníbal; Alfonso, Graciela; Arredondo, Tulio; Bran, Donaldo; Cabrera, Omar; Cea, Alex; Chaieb, Mohamed; Contreras, Jorge; Derak, Mchich; Espinosa, Carlos I; Florentino, Adriana; Gaitán, Juan; Muro, Victoria García; Ghiloufi, Wahida; Gómez-González, Susana; Gutiérrez, Julio R; Hernández, Rosa M; Huber-Sannwald, Elisabeth; Jankju, Mohammad; Mau, Rebecca L; Hughes, Frederic Mendes; Miriti, Maria; Monerris, Jorge; Muchane, Muchai; Naseri, Kamal; Pucheta, Eduardo; Ramírez-Collantes, David A; Raveh, Eran; Romão, Roberto L; Torres-Díaz, Cristian; Val, James; Veiga, José Pablo; Wang, Deli; Yuan, Xia; Zaady, Eli

    2014-12-01

    Geographic, climatic, and soil factors are major drivers of plant beta diversity, but their importance for dryland plant communities is poorly known. This study aims to: i) characterize patterns of beta diversity in global drylands, ii) detect common environmental drivers of beta diversity, and iii) test for thresholds in environmental conditions driving potential shifts in plant species composition. 224 sites in diverse dryland plant communities from 22 geographical regions in six continents. Beta diversity was quantified with four complementary measures: the percentage of singletons (species occurring at only one site), Whittake's beta diversity (β(W)), a directional beta diversity metric based on the correlation in species occurrences among spatially contiguous sites (β(R 2 )), and a multivariate abundance-based metric (β(MV)). We used linear modelling to quantify the relationships between these metrics of beta diversity and geographic, climatic, and soil variables. Soil fertility and variability in temperature and rainfall, and to a lesser extent latitude, were the most important environmental predictors of beta diversity. Metrics related to species identity (percentage of singletons and β(W)) were most sensitive to soil fertility, whereas those metrics related to environmental gradients and abundance ((β(R 2 )) and β(MV)) were more associated with climate variability. Interactions among soil variables, climatic factors, and plant cover were not important determinants of beta diversity. Sites receiving less than 178 mm of annual rainfall differed sharply in species composition from more mesic sites (> 200 mm). Soil fertility and variability in temperature and rainfall are the most important environmental predictors of variation in plant beta diversity in global drylands. Our results suggest that those sites annually receiving ~ 178 mm of rainfall will be especially sensitive to future climate changes. These findings may help to define appropriate

  19. Production of greenhouse-grown biocrust mosses and associated cyanobacteria to rehabilitate dryland soil function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antoninka, Anita; Bowker, Matthew A.; Reed, Sasha C.; Doherty, Kyle

    2016-01-01

    Mosses are an often-overlooked component of dryland ecosystems, yet they are common members of biological soil crust communities (biocrusts) and provide key ecosystem services, including soil stabilization, water retention, carbon fixation, and housing of N2 fixing cyanobacteria. Mosses are able to survive long dry periods, respond rapidly to precipitation, and reproduce vegetatively. With these qualities, dryland mosses have the potential to be an excellent dryland restoration material. Unfortunately, dryland mosses are often slow growing in nature, and ex situ cultivation methods are needed to enhance their utility. Our goal was to determine how to rapidly produce, vegetatively, Syntrichia caninervis and S. ruralis, common and abundant moss species in drylands of North America and elsewhere, in a greenhouse. We manipulated the length of hydration on a weekly schedule (5, 4, 3, or 2 days continuous hydration per week), crossed with fertilization (once at the beginning, monthly, biweekly, or not at all). Moss biomass increased sixfold for both species in 4 months, an increase that would require years under dryland field conditions. Both moss species preferred short hydration and monthly fertilizer. Remarkably, we also unintentionally cultured a variety of other important biocrust organisms, including cyanobacteria and lichens. In only 6 months, we produced functionally mature biocrusts, as evidenced by high productivity and ecosystem-relevant levels of N2 fixation. Our results suggest that biocrust mosses might be the ideal candidate for biocrust cultivation for restoration purposes. With optimization, these methods are the first step in developing a moss-based biocrust rehabilitation technology.

  20. The potential roles of biological soil crusts in dryland hydrologic cycles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, J.

    2006-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are the dominant living cover in many drylands of the world. They possess many features that can influence different aspects of local hydrologic cycles, including soil porosity, absorptivity, roughness, aggregate stability, texture, pore formation, and water retention. The influence of biological soil crusts on these factors depends on their internal and external structure, which varies with climate, soil, and disturbance history. This paper presents the different types of biological soil crusts, discusses how crust type likely influences various aspects of the hydrologic cycle, and reviews what is known and not known about the influence of biological crusts on sediment production and water infiltration versus runoff in various drylands around the world. Most studies examining the effect of biological soil crusts on local hydrology are done by comparing undisturbed sites with those recently disturbed by the researchers. Unfortunately, this greatly complicates interpretation of the results. Applied disturbances alter many soil features such as soil texture, roughness, aggregate stability, physical crusting, porosity, and bulk density in ways that would not necessarily be the same if crusts were not naturally present. Combined, these studies show little agreement on how biological crusts affect water infiltration or runoff. However, when studies are separated by biological crust type and utilize naturally occurring differences among these types, results indicate that biological crusts in hyperarid regions reduce infiltration and increase runoff, have mixed effects in and regions, and increase infiltration and reduce runoff in semiarid cool and cold drylands. However, more studies are needed before broad generalizations can be made on how biological crusts affect infiltration and runoff. We especially need studies that control for sub-surface soil features such as bulk density, micro- and macropores, and biological crust structure. Unlike

  1. The Soil Program of the Restoration Seedbank Initiative: addressing knowledge gaps in degraded soils for use in dryland restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Bateman, Amber; Erickson, Todd E.; Turner, Shane; Merritt, David J.

    2017-04-01

    Global environmental changes and other anthropogenic impacts are rapidly transforming the structure and functioning of ecosystems worldwide. These changes are leading to land degradation with an estimated 25 % of the global land surface being affected. Landscape-scale restoration of these degraded ecosystems has therefore been recognised globally as an international priority. In the resource-rich biodiverse semi-arid Pilbara region of north-west Western Australia hundreds of thousands of hectares are disturbed due to established and emerging iron-ore mine operations. At this scale, the need to develop cost-effective large-scale solutions to restore these landscapes becomes imperative to preserve biodiversity and achieve functionality and sustainability of these ecosystems. The Restoration Seedbank Initiative (RSB) (http://www.plants.uwa.edu.au/ research/restoration-seedbank-initiative) is a five-year multidisciplinary research project that aims to build knowledge and design strategies to restore mine-impacted landscapes in the Pilbara and other arid and semi-arid landscapes worldwide (Kildiseheva et al., 2016). The RSB comprises four research programs that focus on seedbank management and curation, seed storage, seed enhancement, and the use of alternative soil substrates (soil or growing medium program) respectively. These multi-disciplinary programs address the significant challenges of landscape scale restoration in arid systems. In the soil program we follow an integrated approach that includes the characterization of undisturbed ecosystems, assessment of restored soils with the use of soil quality indicators, and design of alternative soil substrates to support the establishment of native plant communities. A series of glasshouse studies and field trials have been conducted in the last three years to advance our knowledge on soil limitations and to provide solutions to effectively overcome these challenges in arid ecosystem restoration. These studies include

  2. Ancient Soils in a Sunburnt Country: Nutrient and Carbon Distributions in an Australian Dryland River System

    Science.gov (United States)

    McIntyre, R. E.; Grierson, P. F.; Adams, M. A.

    2005-05-01

    Riparian systems are hotspots in dryland landscapes for nutrient supply and transformation. Biogeochemical fluxes in riparian systems are closely coupled to hydrological flowpaths, which, in dryland regions, are characterised by catastrophic flooding and long periods of erratic or no flow. Re-wetting of soils stimulates soil microbial processes that drive mineralization of nutrients necessary for plant growth. We present here the first data of a 3-year research project investigating biogeochemical processes in riparian systems in the semi-arid Pilbara region of Western Australia. Spatial patterns of nitrogen, phosphorus and carbon were closely related to topographic zone (across floodplain and channels) and vegetation type. NO3- and PCi concentrations were four-fold higher in channel, bank and riparian soils than in soils of floodplain and riparian-floodplain transition zones. Nitrogen distribution was highly heterogeneous in riparian soils (NO3- CV=102%, NH4+ CV=84%) while phosphorus was particularly heterogeneous in floodplain soils (PCi CV=153%, PCo CV=266%), in comparison to other zones. Phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) and enzymatic profiles will be used to assess microbial functional groups, combined with mineralisation experiments and stable isotope studies (15N and 13C). These data will improve understanding of biogeochemical cycling in dryland riparian systems, and contribute to improved regional management of water resources.

  3. Abiotic versus biotic controls on soil nitrogen cycling in drylands along a 3200 km transect

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Dongwei; Zhu, Weixing; Wang, Xiaobo; Pan, Yuepeng; Wang, Chao; Xi, Dan; Bai, Edith; Wang, Yuesi; Han, Xingguo; Fang, Yunting

    2017-03-01

    Nitrogen (N) cycling in drylands under changing climate is not well understood. Our understanding of N cycling over larger scales to date relies heavily on the measurement of bulk soil N, and the information about internal soil N transformations remains limited. The 15N natural abundance (δ15N) of ammonium and nitrate can serve as a proxy record for the N processes in soils. To better understand the patterns and mechanisms of N cycling in drylands, we collected soils along a 3200 km transect at about 100 km intervals in northern China, with mean annual precipitation (MAP) ranging from 36 to 436 mm. We analyzed N pools and δ15N of ammonium, dual isotopes (15N and 18O) of nitrate, and the microbial gene abundance associated with soil N transformations. We found that N status and its driving factors were different above and below a MAP threshold of 100 mm. In the arid zone with MAP below 100 mm, soil inorganic N accumulated, with a large fraction being of atmospheric origin, and ammonia volatilization was strong in soils with high pH. In addition, the abundance of microbial genes associated with soil N transformations was low. In the semiarid zone with MAP above 100 mm, soil inorganic N concentrations were low and were controlled mainly by biological processes (e.g., plant uptake and denitrification). The preference for soil ammonium over nitrate by the dominant plant species may enhance the possibility of soil nitrate losses via denitrification. Overall, our study suggests that a shift from abiotic to biotic controls on soil N biogeochemistry under global climate changes would greatly affect N losses, soil N availability, and other N transformation processes in these drylands in China.

  4. Relationship among soil surface properties, hydrology and nitrogen cycling along a climatological gradient in drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaady, E.; Segoli, M.; Eldridge, D. J.; Groffman, P. M.; Boeken, B.; Shachak, M.

    2009-04-01

    Primary production and nutrient cycling in dryland systems are limited by water supply. There are two groups of primary producers, high biomass production plants and low biomass producing organisms found in biological soil crusts (BSC's), which control energy flow, nutrient cycling and hydrology. Biological or biogenic soil crusts are common in the world's drylands, from dry sub-humid to hyper-arid systems. The crusts are formed by communities of microphytes, mainly cyanobacteria, green algae, mosses, and lichens. The extracellular polysaccharide materials produced by the crust organisms attach soil particles, creating a solid horizontal layer of crust. Biological soil crusts modify soil quality by (1) aggregating soil particles, thereby reducing wind and water erosion; (2) reducing water infiltration, causing overland water run-off; and (3) N fixation and C sequestration. Dryland landscapes are two phase mosaic composed of BSC and high production patches. Development or loss of BSC may trigger changes in the spatial distribution of the patch types and therefore transitions between functional and degraded ecosystem states. We present a conceptual model depicting the function of each patch type and the link between them. Taking into account the contrast between low and high vegetation cover of dryland systems and their role in controlling soil nitrogen and water flows. The model describes the functioning of dryland systems with low biomass producing crust organisms cover, low rainfall, low top soil water and production, which cause low infiltration rate, low N uptake, nitrate accumulation, high evaporation and runoff. This leads to leaching of nitrates, oxygen depletion with high anaerobic conditions, high denitrification rates and N loss, resulting in low plant cover and soil organic matter i.e., degraded soil. It also depicts the functioning of the high production plants under low rainfall regimes resulting in low rates of N and energy flows. The model shows that

  5. Modeling Soil Sodicity Problems under Dryland and Irrigated Conditions: Case Studies in Argentina and Colombia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pla-Sentís, Ildefonso

    2014-05-01

    Salt-affected soils, both saline and sodic, my develop both under dryland and irrigated conditions, affecting negatively the physical and chemical soil properties, the crop production and the animal and human health.Among the development processes of salt-affected soils, the processes of sodification have been generally received less attention and is less understood than the development of saline soils. Although in both of them, hydrological processes are involved in their development, in the case of sodic soils we have to consider some additional chemical and physicochemical reactions, making more difficult their modeling and prediction. In this contribution we present two case studies: one related to the development of sodic soils in the lowlands of the Argentina Pampas, under dryland conditions and sub-humid temperate climate, with pastures for cattle production; the other deals with the development of sodic soils in the Colombia Cauca Valley, under irrigated conditions and tropical sub-humid climate, in lands used for sugarcane cropping dedicated to sugar and ethanol production. In both cases the development of sodicity in the surface soil is mainly related to the effects of the composition and level of groundwater, affected in the case of Argentina Pampas by the off-site changes in dryland use and management in the upper zones and by the drainage conditions in the lowlands, and in the case of the Cauca Valley, by the on-site irrigation and drainage management in lands with sugarcane. There is shown how the model SALSODIMAR, developed by the main author, based on the balance of water and soluble componentes of both the irrigation water and groundwater under different water and land management conditions, may be adapted for the diagnosis and prediction of both problems, and for the selection of alternatives for their management and amelioration.

  6. Climate change predicted to negatively influence surface soil organic matter of dryland cropping systems in the Inland Pacific Northwest, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soil organic matter (SOM) is a key indicator of agricultural productivity and overall soil health. Currently, dryland cropping systems of the inland Pacific Northwest (iPNW) span a large gradient in mean annual temperature (MAT) and precipitation (MAP).These climatic drivers are major determinants o...

  7. Soil Fertility Evaluation and Land Management of Dryland Farming at Tegallalang Sub-District, Gianyar Regency, Bali, Indonesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sardiana, I. K.; Susila, D.; Supadma, A. A.; Saifulloh, M.

    2017-12-01

    The landuse of Tegallalang Subdistrict is dominated by dryland farming. The practice of cultivation on agricultural dryland that ignores the carrying capacity of the environment can lead to land degradation that makes the land vulnerable to the deterioration of soil fertility. Soil fertility evaluation and land management of dryland farming in Tegallalang Sub-district, Gianyar Regency were aimed at (1) identifying the soil fertility and it’s respective limiting factors, (2) mapping the soil fertility using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and (3) developing land management for dryland farming in Tegallalang Sub-district. This research implementing explora-tory method which followed by laboratory analysis. Soil samples were taken on each homogene-ous land units which developed by overlay of slope, soil type, and land use maps. The following soil fertility were measured, such as CEC, base saturation, P2O5, K- Total and C-Organic. The values of soil fertility were mapping using QGIS 2.18.7 and refer to land management evaluation. The results showed that the soil fertility in the research area considered high, and low level. The High soil fertility presents on land units at the flat to undulating slope with different land management systems (fertilizer, without fertilizer, soil tillage and without soil tillage). The low soil fertility includes land units that present on steep slope, and without land managements. The limiting factors of soil fertility were texture, C-Organic, CEC, P2O5, and K- total. It was recommended to applying organic fertilizer, Phonska, and dolomite on the farming area.

  8. Biological soil crusts emit large amounts of NO and HONO affecting the nitrogen cycle in drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamm, Alexandra; Wu, Dianming; Ruckteschler, Nina; Rodríguez-Caballero, Emilio; Steinkamp, Jörg; Meusel, Hannah; Elbert, Wolfgang; Behrendt, Thomas; Sörgel, Matthias; Cheng, Yafang; Crutzen, Paul J.; Su, Hang; Pöschl, Ulrich; Weber, Bettina

    2016-04-01

    Dryland systems currently cover ˜40% of the world's land surface and are still expanding as a consequence of human impact and global change. In contrast to that, information on their role in global biochemical processes is limited, probably induced by the presumption that their sparse vegetation cover plays a negligible role in global balances. However, spaces between the sparse shrubs are not bare, but soils are mostly covered by biological soil crusts (biocrusts). These biocrust communities belong to the oldest life forms, resulting from an assembly between soil particles and cyanobacteria, lichens, bryophytes, and algae plus heterotrophic organisms in varying proportions. Depending on the dominating organism group, cyanobacteria-, lichen-, and bryophyte-dominated biocrusts are distinguished. Besides their ability to restrict soil erosion they fix atmospheric carbon and nitrogen, and by doing this they serve as a nutrient source in strongly depleted dryland ecosystems. In this study we show that a fraction of the nitrogen fixed by biocrusts is metabolized and subsequently returned to the atmosphere in the form of nitric oxide (NO) and nitrous acid (HONO). These gases affect the radical formation and oxidizing capacity within the troposphere, thus being of particular interest to atmospheric chemistry. Laboratory measurements using dynamic chamber systems showed that dark cyanobacteria-dominated crusts emitted the largest amounts of NO and HONO, being ˜20 times higher than trace gas fluxes of nearby bare soil. We showed that these nitrogen emissions have a biogenic origin, as emissions of formerly strongly emitting samples almost completely ceased after sterilization. By combining laboratory, field, and satellite measurement data we made a best estimate of global annual emissions amounting to ˜1.1 Tg of NO-N and ˜0.6 Tg of HONO-N from biocrusts. This sum of 1.7 Tg of reactive nitrogen emissions equals ˜20% of the soil release under natural vegetation according

  9. Dryland photoautotrophic soil surface communities endangered by global change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez-Caballero, Emilio; Belnap, Jayne; Büdel, Burkhard; Crutzen, Paul J.; Andreae, Meinrat O.; Pöschl, Ulrich; Weber, Bettina

    2018-03-01

    Photoautotrophic surface communities forming biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are crucial for soil stability as well as water, nutrient and trace gas cycling at regional and global scales. Quantitative information on their global coverage and the environmental factors driving their distribution patterns, however, are not readily available. We use observations and environmental modelling to estimate the global distribution of biocrusts and their response to global change using future projected scenarios. We find that biocrusts currently covering approximately 12% of Earth's terrestrial surface will decrease by about 25-40% within 65 years due to anthropogenically caused climate change and land-use intensification, responding far more drastically than vascular plants. Our results illustrate that current biocrust occurrence is mainly driven by a combination of precipitation, temperature and land management, and future changes are expected to be affected by land-use and climate change in similar proportion. The predicted loss of biocrusts may substantially reduce the microbial contribution to nitrogen cycling and enhance the emissions of soil dust, which affects the functioning of ecosystems as well as human health and should be considered in the modelling, mitigation and management of global change.

  10. Dryland photoautotrophic soil surface communities endangered by global change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez-Caballero, Emilio; Belnap, Jayne; Büdel, Burkhard; Crutzen, Paul J.; Andreae, Meinrat O.; Pöschl, Ulrich; Weber, Bettina

    2018-01-01

    Photoautotrophic surface communities forming biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are crucial for soil stability as well as water, nutrient and trace gas cycling at regional and global scales. Quantitative information on their global coverage and the environmental factors driving their distribution patterns, however, are not readily available. We use observations and environmental modelling to estimate the global distribution of biocrusts and their response to global change using future projected scenarios. We find that biocrusts currently covering approximately 12% of Earth’s terrestrial surface will decrease by about 25–40% within 65 years due to anthropogenically caused climate change and land-use intensification, responding far more drastically than vascular plants. Our results illustrate that current biocrust occurrence is mainly driven by a combination of precipitation, temperature and land management, and future changes are expected to be affected by land-use and climate change in similar proportion. The predicted loss of biocrusts may substantially reduce the microbial contribution to nitrogen cycling and enhance the emissions of soil dust, which affects the functioning of ecosystems as well as human health and should be considered in the modelling, mitigation and management of global change.

  11. Sustainable Soil Management

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Green, Ole; Evgrafova, Alevtina; Kirkegaard Nielsen, Søren

    Linket til højre henviser til rapporten i trykt format til download. This report provides an overview on new technologies for integrate sustainable and resilient management practices in arable ecosystems for advanced farmers, consultants, NGOs and policy makers. By following sustainable soil...... and soil quality in short- and long-terms. This report also illustrates the importance to combine a system approach for plant production by assessing field readiness, managing in-field traffic management, implementing the sitespecific controlled as well as sensor-controlled seedbed preparation, seeding...

  12. Adoptability of sustainable intensification technologies in dryland smallholder farming systems of West Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Woittiez, L.S.; Descheemaeker, K.K.E.; Giller, K.E.

    2015-01-01

    Within the framework of CGIAR Research Program (CRP) 1.1: Dryland Systems, the compilation of a review of options, constraints and potential for agricultural intensification at a number of specific sites in West African dryland areas has been requested, using an integrated systems approach. CRP 1.1

  13. Biological soil crust effects must be included to accurately model infiltration and erosion in drylands : an example from Tabernas Badlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rodriguez-Caballero, E.; Canton, Y.; Jetten, V.G.

    2015-01-01

    In dryland ecosystems, runoff is mainly generated in bare areas, which are also more susceptible to water erosion than vegetated areas. These bare areas are often covered and protected by biological soil crusts (BSCs), which modify numerous physicochemical surface properties involved in runoff and

  14. A systems approach to restoring degraded drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeremy J. James; Roger L. Sheley; Todd Erickson; Kimberly S. Rollins; Michael H. Taylor; Kingsley W. Dixon

    2013-01-01

    Drylands support over 2 billion people and are major providers of critical ecosystem goods and services across the globe. Drylands, however, are one of the most susceptible biomes to degradation. International programmes widely recognize dryland restoration as key to combating global dryland degradation and ensuring future global sustainability. While the need to...

  15. Biological soil crusts accelerate the nitrogen cycle through large NO and HONO emissions in drylands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, Bettina; Wu, Dianming; Tamm, Alexandra; Ruckteschler, Nina; Rodríguez-Caballero, Emilio; Steinkamp, Jörg; Meusel, Hannah; Elbert, Wolfgang; Behrendt, Thomas; Sörgel, Matthias; Cheng, Yafang; Crutzen, Paul J; Su, Hang; Pöschl, Ulrich

    2015-12-15

    Reactive nitrogen species have a strong influence on atmospheric chemistry and climate, tightly coupling the Earth's nitrogen cycle with microbial activity in the biosphere. Their sources, however, are not well constrained, especially in dryland regions accounting for a major fraction of the global land surface. Here, we show that biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are emitters of nitric oxide (NO) and nitrous acid (HONO). Largest fluxes are obtained by dark cyanobacteria-dominated biocrusts, being ∼20 times higher than those of neighboring uncrusted soils. Based on laboratory, field, and satellite measurement data, we obtain a best estimate of ∼1.7 Tg per year for the global emission of reactive nitrogen from biocrusts (1.1 Tg a(-1) of NO-N and 0.6 Tg a(-1) of HONO-N), corresponding to ∼20% of global nitrogen oxide emissions from soils under natural vegetation. On continental scales, emissions are highest in Africa and South America and lowest in Europe. Our results suggest that dryland emissions of reactive nitrogen are largely driven by biocrusts rather than the underlying soil. They help to explain enigmatic discrepancies between measurement and modeling approaches of global reactive nitrogen emissions. As the emissions of biocrusts strongly depend on precipitation events, climate change affecting the distribution and frequency of precipitation may have a strong impact on terrestrial emissions of reactive nitrogen and related climate feedback effects. Because biocrusts also account for a large fraction of global terrestrial biological nitrogen fixation, their impacts should be further quantified and included in regional and global models of air chemistry, biogeochemistry, and climate.

  16. Potential of Using Manure to Improve Soil Fertility in A Maize/Bean Intercrop in the Drylands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buigutt, J.C.

    2002-01-01

    Low soil fertility as a limiting factor in maize and bean production in ASALS areas is a pertinent topic for investigation, owing to the importance of the crops as staple foods as well as sources of income and employment for the increasing population occasioned by high fertility rates and immigration from the congested high potential highlands. The use of readily available and cheaper sources of plant nutrients such as farm yard manure (FYM), under the common practice of intercropping is one way of sustaining agricultural production in the drylands. The objective of the study conducted in LM5 (under irrigation) and LM5 (under rainfed) Agro-ecological zones of Baringo district was to determine the potential of use FYM and bean intercropping to improve soil fertility for higher maize yields. The result showed that under maize pure stand the highest yields of 3.2 tons/ha were obtained under DAP though this was not significantly different with FYM, FYM+CAN and No Fertilizer treatments. Under intercrop the highest maize yields of 2.8 t/ha were obtained under FYM+CAN. Economic analysis showed that bean pure stand system gave the highest result net benefits followed by intercrop and lastly maize pure stand. The result further showed that the generally low crop yield coupled by low prices renders Katumani maize variety uneconomical to be grown under irrigation and that the higher yielding hybrids (eg H513 using FYM+CAN could be more profitable to farmers in both zones)

  17. Biocrust-forming mosses mitigate the impact of aridity on soil microbial communities in drylands: observational evidence from three continents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delgado-Baquerizo, Manuel; Maestre, Fernando T; Eldridge, David J; Bowker, Matthew A; Jeffries, Thomas C; Singh, Brajesh K

    2018-04-02

    Recent research indicates that increased aridity linked to climate change will reduce the diversity of soil microbial communities and shift their community composition in drylands, Earth's largest biome. However, we lack both a theoretical framework and solid empirical evidence of how important biotic components from drylands, such as biocrust-forming mosses, will regulate the responses of microbial communities to expected increases in aridity with climate change. Here we report results from a cross-continental (North America, Europe and Australia) survey of 39 locations from arid to humid ecosystems, where we evaluated how biocrust-forming mosses regulate the relationship between aridity and the community composition and diversity of soil bacteria and fungi in dryland ecosystems. Increasing aridity was negatively related to the richness of fungi, and either positively or negatively related to the relative abundance of selected microbial phyla, when biocrust-forming mosses were absent. Conversely, we found an overall lack of relationship between aridity and the relative abundance and richness of microbial communities under biocrust-forming mosses. Our results suggest that biocrust-forming mosses mitigate the impact of aridity on the community composition of globally distributed microbial taxa, and the diversity of fungi. They emphasize the importance of maintaining biocrusts as a sanctuary for soil microbes in drylands. © 2018 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2018 New Phytologist Trust.

  18. [Soil moisture variation under different water and fertilization managements in apple orchard of Weibei dryland, China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Zhi Yuan; Zheng, Wei; Liu, Jie; Ma, Peng Yi; Li, Zi Yan; Zhai, Bing Nian; Wang, Zhao Hui

    2018-04-01

    To evaluate the variations of soil moisture under different water and fertilizer treatments in apple orchard in the Weibei dryland, a field experiment was carried out in 2013-2016 at Tianjiawa Village, Baishui County, Shaanxi Province. There were three treatments, i.e., farmers traditional model (only addition of NPK chemical fertilizer, FM), extension model (swine manure and NPK chemical fertilizer combined with black plastic film in tree row space, EM), and optimized model (swine manure and NPK chemical fertilizer combined with black plastic film in tree row space and planting rape in the inter-row of apple trees, OM). The results showed that OM treatment significantly increased soil water storage capacity in 0-200 cm soil layer. Water content of 0-100 cm soil layer was increased by 5.6% and 15.3% in the dry season compared with FM and EM treatment, respectively. Moreover, the soil water relative deficit index of OM was lower than that of EM in 200-300 cm soil layer. The rainfall infiltration in the dry year could reach 300 cm depth under OM. Meanwhile, OM stabilized soil water content and efficiently alleviated the desiccation in deep soil layer. Compared with FM and EM, the 4-year average yield of OM was increased by 36.6% and 22.5%, respectively. In summary, OM could increase water use efficiency through increasing the contents of available soil water and improving the soil water condition in shallow and deep layers, which help alleviate the soil deficit in deep layer and increase yield.

  19. Sustainable Soil Management

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Green, Ole; Evgrafova, Alevtina; Kirkegaard Nielsen, Søren

    management strategies, which consider the site- and field-specific parameters and agricultural machinery’s improvements, it is possible to maximize production and income, while reducing negative environmental impacts and human health issues induced by agricultural activities as well as improving food......Linket til højre henviser til rapporten i trykt format til download. This report provides an overview on new technologies for integrate sustainable and resilient management practices in arable ecosystems for advanced farmers, consultants, NGOs and policy makers. By following sustainable soil...... and soil quality in short- and long-terms. This report also illustrates the importance to combine a system approach for plant production by assessing field readiness, managing in-field traffic management, implementing the sitespecific controlled as well as sensor-controlled seedbed preparation, seeding...

  20. The Role of Different Plant Soil-Water Feedbacks in Models of Dryland Vegetation Patterns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silber, M.; Bonetti, S.; Gandhi, P.; Gowda, K.; Iams, S.; Porporato, A. M.

    2017-12-01

    Understanding the processes underlying the formation of regular vegetation patterns in arid and semi-arid regions is important to assessing desertification risk under increasing anthropogenic pressure. Various modeling frameworks have been proposed, which are all capable of generating similar patterns through self-organizing mechanisms that stem from assumptions about plant feedbacks on surface/subsurface water transport. We critically discuss a hierarchy of hydrology-vegetation models for the coupled dynamics of surface water, soil moisture, and vegetation biomass on a hillslope. We identify distinguishing features and trends for the periodic traveling wave solutions when there is an imposed idealized topography and make some comparisons to satellite images of large-scale banded vegetation patterns in drylands of Africa, Australia and North America. This work highlights the potential for constraining models by considerations of where the patterns may lie on a landscape, such as whether on a ridge or in a valley.

  1. Increased temperature and altered summer precipitation have differential effects on biological soil crusts in a dryland ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Shannon L.; Kuske, Cheryl R.; Carney, Travis D.; Housman, David C.; Gallegos-Graves, La Verne; Belnap, Jayne

    2012-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are common and ecologically important members of dryland ecosystems worldwide, where they stabilize soil surfaces and contribute newly fixed C and N to soils. To test the impacts of predicted climate change scenarios on biocrusts in a dryland ecosystem, the effects of a 2–3 °C increase in soil temperature and an increased frequency of smaller summer precipitation events were examined in a large, replicated field study conducted in the cold desert of the Colorado Plateau, USA. Surface soil biomass (DNA concentration), photosynthetically active cyanobacterial biomass (chlorophyll a concentration), cyanobacterial abundance (quantitative PCR assay), and bacterial community composition (16S rRNA gene sequencing) were monitored seasonally over 2 years. Soil microbial biomass and bacterial community composition were highly stratified between the 0–2 cm depth biocrusts and 5–10 cm depth soil beneath the biocrusts. The increase in temperature did not have a detectable effect on any of the measured parameters over 2 years. However, after the second summer of altered summer precipitation pattern, significant declines occurred in the surface soil biomass (avg. DNA concentration declined 38%), photosynthetic cyanobacterial biomass (avg. chlorophyll a concentration declined 78%), cyanobacterial abundance (avg. gene copies g−1 soil declined 95%), and proportion of Cyanobacteria in the biocrust bacterial community (avg. representation in sequence libraries declined 85%). Biocrusts are important contributors to soil stability, soil C and N stores, and plant performance, and the loss or reduction of biocrusts under an altered precipitation pattern associated with climate change could contribute significantly to lower soil fertility and increased erosion and dust production in dryland ecosystems at a regional scale.

  2. Soil microbial communities drive the resistance of ecosystem multifunctionality to global change in drylands across the globe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delgado-Baquerizo, Manuel; Eldridge, David J; Ochoa, Victoria; Gozalo, Beatriz; Singh, Brajesh K; Maestre, Fernando T

    2017-10-01

    The relationship between soil microbial communities and the resistance of multiple ecosystem functions linked to C, N and P cycling (multifunctionality resistance) to global change has never been assessed globally in natural ecosystems. We collected soils from 59 dryland ecosystems worldwide to investigate the importance of microbial communities as predictor of multifunctionality resistance to climate change and nitrogen fertilisation. Multifunctionality had a lower resistance to wetting-drying cycles than to warming or N deposition. Multifunctionality resistance was regulated by changes in microbial composition (relative abundance of phylotypes) but not by richness, total abundance of fungi and bacteria or the fungal: bacterial ratio. Our results suggest that positive effects of particular microbial taxa on multifunctionality resistance could potentially be controlled by altering soil pH. Together, our work demonstrates strong links between microbial community composition and multifunctionality resistance in dryland soils from six continents, and provides insights into the importance of microbial community composition for buffering effects of global change in drylands worldwide. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  3. Novel, non-symbiotic isolates of Neorhizobium from a dryland agricultural soil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amalia Soenens

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Semi-selective enrichment, followed by PCR screening, resulted in the successful direct isolation of fast-growing Rhizobia from a dryland agricultural soil. Over 50% of these isolates belong to the genus Neorhizobium, as concluded from partial rpoB and near-complete 16S rDNA sequence analysis. Further genotypic and genomic analysis of five representative isolates confirmed that they form a coherent group within Neorhizobium, closer to N. galegae than to the remaining Neorhizobium species, but clearly differentiated from the former, and constituting at least one new genomospecies within Neorhizobium. All the isolates lacked nod and nif symbiotic genes but contained a repABC replication/maintenance region, characteristic of rhizobial plasmids, within large contigs from their draft genome sequences. These repABC sequences were related, but not identical, to repABC sequences found in symbiotic plasmids from N. galegae, suggesting that the non-symbiotic isolates have the potential to harbor symbiotic plasmids. This is the first report of non-symbiotic members of Neorhizobium from soil.

  4. Novel, non-symbiotic isolates of Neorhizobium from a dryland agricultural soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soenens, Amalia; Imperial, Juan

    2018-01-01

    Semi-selective enrichment, followed by PCR screening, resulted in the successful direct isolation of fast-growing Rhizobia from a dryland agricultural soil. Over 50% of these isolates belong to the genus Neorhizobium , as concluded from partial rpoB and near-complete 16S rDNA sequence analysis. Further genotypic and genomic analysis of five representative isolates confirmed that they form a coherent group within Neorhizobium , closer to N. galegae than to the remaining Neorhizobium species, but clearly differentiated from the former, and constituting at least one new genomospecies within Neorhizobium. All the isolates lacked nod and nif symbiotic genes but contained a repABC replication/maintenance region, characteristic of rhizobial plasmids, within large contigs from their draft genome sequences. These repABC sequences were related, but not identical, to repABC sequences found in symbiotic plasmids from N. galegae , suggesting that the non-symbiotic isolates have the potential to harbor symbiotic plasmids. This is the first report of non-symbiotic members of Neorhizobium from soil.

  5. Sustainable Soil Water Management Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Basch, G.; Kassam, A.; Friedrich, T.; Santos, F.L.; Gubiani, P.I.; Calegari, A.; Reichert, J.M.; dos Santos, D.R.

    2012-01-01

    Soil quality and its management must be considered as key elements for an effective management of water resources, given that the hydrological cycle and land management are intimately linked (Bossio et al. 2007). Soil degradation has been described by Bossio et al. (2010) as the starting point of a negative cycle of soil-water relationships, creating a positive, self-accelerating feedback loop with important negative impacts on water cycling and water productivity. Therefore, sustainable soil...

  6. Biophysical constraints to sustainable agricultural intensification in West African drylands: an example of the WASCAL Research Action Plan (WRAP 2.0) Flagship Strategy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tondoh, E. J.; Forkuor, G.; Adegoke, J. O.

    2017-12-01

    The West African Science Service Centre on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL) is an intergovernmental research organization established in 2012 as result of multilateral collaborations between the Republic of Germany and Governments of 10 West African countries. Its new research program termed WASCAL Research Action Plan (WRAP 2.0) aims to deploy first-class, demand-driven, and impact-oriented research to achieve development outcomes and deliver key science-based climate and environmental services. It's therefore structured around key flagships, including "Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security" with a focus on enhancing the adaptive capacity of socio-ecological landscapes through increased agricultural productivity. However, as land degradation is one of the major obstacles to sustainable agricultural production and food security in sub Saharan African, it's imperative to mitigate this complex multifaceted process which is particularly acute in West African drylands. This case study aims to diagnose the main constraints to sustainable agricultural intensification at landscape scale and derive best bet soil management practices. The methodological approach is built around biophysical survey at sites of 100 km2 organized around 16 clusters each composed of 10 georeferenced sampling plots in three semi-arid agro-ecological landscapes located in upper-west region of Ghana (Lambussie), southwestern Burkina Faso (Bondigui) and southwestern Mali (Finkolo). Soil samples were collected in both the topsoil (0-20cm) and subsoil (20-50) and key soil physical constraints were measured at each sampling point. Remote Sensing (RS) variables representing biomass, climate and topography were correlated with soil organic carbon (SOC) to determine the influence of these variables on soil health. Results revealed within and between site variations in SOC concentration, soil pH, soil fertility index (SFI), erosion prevalence and root depth restriction. Different RS

  7. Navigating challenges and opportunities of land degradation and sustainable livelihood development in dryland social-ecological systems: a case study from Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huber-Sannwald, Elisabeth; Palacios, Mónica Ribeiro; Moreno, José Tulio Arredondo; Braasch, Marco; Peña, Ruth Magnolia Martínez; Verduzco, Javier García de Alba; Santos, Karina Monzalvo

    2012-11-19

    Drylands are one of the most diverse yet highly vulnerable social-ecological systems on Earth. Water scarcity has contributed to high levels of heterogeneity, variability and unpredictability, which together have shaped the long coadaptative process of coupling humans and nature. Land degradation and desertification in drylands are some of the largest and most far-reaching global environmental and social change problems, and thus are a daunting challenge for science and society. In this study, we merged the Drylands Development Paradigm, Holling's adaptive cycle metaphor and resilience theory to assess the challenges and opportunities for livelihood development in the Amapola dryland social-ecological system (DSES), a small isolated village in the semi-arid region of Mexico. After 450 years of local social-ecological evolution, external drivers (neoliberal policies, change in land reform legislation) have become the most dominant force in livelihood development, at the cost of loss of natural and cultural capital and an increasingly dysfunctional landscape. Local DSESs have become increasingly coupled to dynamic larger-scale drivers. Hence, cross-scale connectedness feeds back on and transforms local self-sustaining subsistence farming conditions, causing loss of livelihood resilience and diversification in a globally changing world. Effective efforts to combat desertification and improve livelihood security in DSESs need to consider their cyclical rhythms. Hence, we advocate novel dryland stewardship strategies, which foster adaptive capacity, and continuous evaluation and social learning at all levels. Finally, we call for an effective, flexible and viable policy framework that enhances local biotic and cultural diversity of drylands to transform global drylands into a resilient biome in the context of global environmental and social change.

  8. Navigating challenges and opportunities of land degradation and sustainable livelihood development in dryland social–ecological systems: a case study from Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huber-Sannwald, Elisabeth; Ribeiro Palacios, Mónica; Arredondo Moreno, José Tulio; Braasch, Marco; Martínez Peña, Ruth Magnolia; de Alba Verduzco, Javier García; Monzalvo Santos, Karina

    2012-01-01

    Drylands are one of the most diverse yet highly vulnerable social–ecological systems on Earth. Water scarcity has contributed to high levels of heterogeneity, variability and unpredictability, which together have shaped the long coadaptative process of coupling humans and nature. Land degradation and desertification in drylands are some of the largest and most far-reaching global environmental and social change problems, and thus are a daunting challenge for science and society. In this study, we merged the Drylands Development Paradigm, Holling's adaptive cycle metaphor and resilience theory to assess the challenges and opportunities for livelihood development in the Amapola dryland social–ecological system (DSES), a small isolated village in the semi-arid region of Mexico. After 450 years of local social–ecological evolution, external drivers (neoliberal policies, change in land reform legislation) have become the most dominant force in livelihood development, at the cost of loss of natural and cultural capital and an increasingly dysfunctional landscape. Local DSESs have become increasingly coupled to dynamic larger-scale drivers. Hence, cross-scale connectedness feeds back on and transforms local self-sustaining subsistence farming conditions, causing loss of livelihood resilience and diversification in a globally changing world. Effective efforts to combat desertification and improve livelihood security in DSESs need to consider their cyclical rhythms. Hence, we advocate novel dryland stewardship strategies, which foster adaptive capacity, and continuous evaluation and social learning at all levels. Finally, we call for an effective, flexible and viable policy framework that enhances local biotic and cultural diversity of drylands to transform global drylands into a resilient biome in the context of global environmental and social change. PMID:23045713

  9. Experimental warming in a dryland community reduced plant photosynthesis and soil CO2 efflux although the relationship between the fluxes remained unchanged

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wertin, Timothy M.; Belnap, Jayne; Reed, Sasha C.

    2016-01-01

    1. Drylands represent our planet's largest terrestrial biome and, due to their extensive area, maintain large stocks of carbon (C). Accordingly, understanding how dryland C cycling will respond to climate change is imperative for accurately forecasting global C cycling and future climate. However, it remains difficult to predict how increased temperature will affect dryland C cycling, as substantial uncertainties surround the potential responses of the two main C fluxes: plant photosynthesis and soil CO2 efflux. In addition to a need for an improved understanding of climate effects on individual dryland C fluxes, there is also notable uncertainty regarding how climate change may influence the relationship between these fluxes.2. To address this important knowledge gap, we measured a growing season's in situphotosynthesis, plant biomass accumulation, and soil CO2 efflux of mature Achnatherum hymenoides (a common and ecologically important C3 bunchgrass growing throughout western North America) exposed to ambient or elevated temperature (+2°C above ambient, warmed via infrared lamps) for three years.3. The 2°C increase in temperature caused a significant reduction in photosynthesis, plant growth, and soil CO2 efflux. Of important note, photosynthesis and soil respiration appeared tightly coupled and the relationship between these fluxes was not altered by the elevated temperature treatment, suggesting C fixation's strong control of both above-ground and below-ground dryland C cycling. Leaf water use efficiency was substantially increased in the elevated temperature treatment compared to the control treatment.4. Taken together, our results suggest notable declines in photosynthesis with relatively subtle warming, reveal strong coupling between above- and below-ground C fluxes in this dryland, and highlight temperature's strong effect on fundamental components of dryland C and water cycles.

  10. Soil biodiversity for agricultural sustainability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brussaard, L.; Ruiter, de P.C.; Brown, G.G.

    2007-01-01

    We critically highlight some evidence for the importance of soil biodiversity to sustaining (agro-)ecosystem functioning and explore directions for future research. We first deal with resistance and resilience against abiotic disturbance and stress. There is evidence that soil biodiversity does

  11. Low soil moisture during hot periods drives apparent negative temperature sensitivity of soil respiration in a dryland ecosystem: A multi-model comparison

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Colin; Reed, Sasha C.

    2016-01-01

    Arid and semiarid ecosystems (drylands) may dominate the trajectory of biosphere-to-atmosphere carbon (C) flux over the coming century. Accordingly, understanding dryland CO2 efflux controls is important for understanding C cycling at the global-scale: key unknowns regarding how temperature and moisture interact to regulate dryland C cycling remain. Further, the patchiness of dryland vegetation can create ‘islands of fertility’, with spatially heterogeneous rates of soil respiration (Rs). At our study site in southeastern Utah, USA we added or removed litter (0 to 650% of control) in paired plots that were either associated with a shrub or with interspaces between vascular plants. We measured Rs, soil temperature, and water content (θ) on eight sampling dates between October 2013 and November 2014. Rs was highest following monsoon rains in late summer when soil temperature was ~30°C. During mid-summer, Rs was low, associated with high soil temperatures (>40°C), resulting in an apparent negative temperature sensitivity of Rs at high temperatures, and positive temperature sensitivity at low-moderate temperatures. We used Bayesian statistical methods to compare multiple competing models capturing a wide range of hypothesized relationships between temperature, moisture, and Rs. The best fit model indicates apparent negative temperature sensitivity of soil respiration at high temperatures reflects the control of soil moisture – not high temperatures – in limiting Rs. The modeled Q10 ranged from 2.7 at 5°C to 1.4 at 45°C. Litter addition had no effect on temperature sensitivity or reference respiration (Rref = Rs at 20°C and optimum moisture) beneath shrubs, and little effect on Rref in interspaces, yet Rref was 1.5 times higher beneath shrubs than in interspaces. Together, these results suggest reduced Rs often observed at high temperatures in drylands is dominated by the control of moisture, and that variable litter inputs – at least over the short

  12. Challenges in the participatory assessment of sustainable management practices in dryland ecosystems under regime shifts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jucker Riva, Matteo; Schwilch, Gudrun; Liniger, Hanspeter

    2015-04-01

    Regime shifts, defined as a radical and persistent reconfiguration of an ecosystem following a disturbance, have been acknowledged by scientists as a very important aspect of the dynamic of ecosystems. However, their consideration in land management planning remains marginal and limited to specific processes and systems. Current research focuses on mathematical modeling and statistical analysis of spatio-temporal data for specific environmental variables. These methods do not fulfill the needs of land managers, who are confronted with a multitude of processes and pressure types and require clear and simple strategies to prevent regime shift or to increase the resilience of their environment. The EU-FP7 CASCADE project is looking at regime shifts of dryland ecosystems in southern Europe and specifically focuses on rangeland and forest systems which are prone to various land degradation threats. One of the aims of the project is to evaluate the impact of different management practices on the dynamic of the environment in a participatory manner, including a multi-stakeholder evaluation of the state of the environment and of the management potential. To achieve this objective we have organized several stakeholder meetings and we have compiled a review of management practices using the WOCAT methodology, which enables merging scientific and land users knowledge. We highlight here the main challenges we have encountered in applying the notion of regime shift to real world socio-ecological systems and in translating related concepts such as tipping points, stable states, hysteresis and resilience to land managers, using concrete examples from CASCADE study sites. Secondly, we explore the advantages of including land users' knowledge in the scientific understanding of regime shifts. Moreover, we discuss useful alternative concepts and lessons learnt that will allow us to build a participatory method for the assessment of resilient management practices in specific socio

  13. Soil Erosion and Agricultural Sustainability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montgomery, D. R.

    2009-04-01

    Data drawn from a global compilation of studies support the long articulated contention that erosion rates from conventionally plowed agricultural fields greatly exceed rates of soil production, erosion under native vegetation, and long-term geological erosion. Whereas data compiled from around the world show that soil erosion under conventional agriculture exceeds both rates of soil production and geological erosion rates by up to several orders of magnitude, similar global distributions of soil production and geological erosion rates suggest an approximate balance. Net soil erosion rates in conventionally plowed fields on the order of 1 mm/yr can erode typical hillslope soil profiles over centuries to millennia, time-scales comparable to the longevity of major civilizations. Well-documented episodes of soil loss associated with agricultural activities date back to the introduction of erosive agricultural methods in regions around the world, and stratigraphic records of accelerated anthropogenic soil erosion have been recovered from lake, fluvial, and colluvial stratigraphy, as well as truncation of soil stratigraphy (such as truncated A horizons). A broad convergence in the results from studies based on various approaches employed to study ancient soil loss and rates of downstream sedimentation implies that widespread soil loss has accompanied human agricultural intensification in examples drawn from around the world. While a broad range of factors, including climate variability and society-specific social and economic contexts — such as wars or colonial relationships — all naturally influence the longevity of human societies, the ongoing loss of topsoil inferred from studies of soil erosion rates in conventional agricultural systems has obvious long-term implications for agricultural sustainability. Consequently, modern agriculture — and therefore global society — faces a fundamental question over the upcoming centuries. Can an agricultural system

  14. Changes to dryland rainfall result in rapid moss mortality and altered soil fertility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, Sasha C.; Coe, Kirsten K.; Sparks, Jed P.; Housman, David C.; Zelikova, Tamara J.; Belnap, Jayne

    2012-01-01

    Arid and semi-arid ecosystems cover ~40% of Earth’s terrestrial surface, but we know little about how climate change will affect these widespread landscapes. Like many drylands, the Colorado Plateau in southwestern United States is predicted to experience elevated temperatures and alterations to the timing and amount of annual precipitation. We used a factorial warming and supplemental rainfall experiment on the Colorado Plateau to show that altered precipitation resulted in pronounced mortality of the widespread moss Syntrichia caninervis. Increased frequency of 1.2 mm summer rainfall events reduced moss cover from ~25% of total surface cover to fertility. Mosses are important members in many dryland ecosystems and the community changes observed here reveal how subtle modifications to climate can affect ecosystem structure and function on unexpectedly short timescales. Moreover, mortality resulted from increased precipitation through smaller, more frequent events, underscoring the importance of precipitation event size and timing, and highlighting our inadequate understanding of relationships between climate and ecosystem function in drylands.

  15. Biological soil crusts: An organizing principle in dryland ecosystems (aka: the role of biocrusts in arid land hydrology)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chamizo, Sonia; Belnap, Jayne; Elridge, David J; Issa, Oumarou M

    2016-01-01

    Biocrusts exert a strong influence on hydrological processes in drylands by modifying numerous soil properties that affect water retention and movement in soils. Yet, their role in these processes is not clearly understood due to the large number of factors that act simultaneously and can mask the biocrust effect. The influence of biocrusts on soil hydrology depends on biocrust intrinsic characteristics such as cover, composition, and external morphology, which differ greatly among climate regimes, but also on external factors as soil type, topography and vegetation distribution patterns, as well as interactions among these factors. This chapter reviews the most recent literature published on the role of biocrusts in infiltration and runoff, soil moisture, evaporation and non-rainfall water inputs (fog, dew, water absorption), in an attempt to elucidate the key factors that explain how biocrusts affect land hydrology. In addition to the crust type and site characteristics, recent studies point to the crucial importance of the type of rainfall and the spatial scale at which biocrust effects are analyzed to understand their role in hydrological processes. Future studies need to consider the temporal and spatial scale investigated to obtain more accurate generalizations on the role of biocrusts in land hydrology.

  16. Spatial variability and response of soil organic carbon stocks to land abandonment and erosion in mountainous drylands (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Baets, S. L.; Meersmans, J.; Vanacker, V.; Quine, T. A.; van oost, K.

    2013-12-01

    This research focuses on understanding the impact of human activities on C dynamics in a mountainous and semi-arid environment. Despite the low C status of drylands, soil organic carbon (SOC) is the largest C pool in these systems and hence possess a large restoration capacity. Still, regional estimates of SOC stocks and insights in their determining factors are lacking. This study therefore aims 1) to interpret the variability of soil organic carbon in relation to key soil, topographical and land use variables and 2) to quantify the effects of land regeneration following abandonment on SOC stocks. Soil profiles were taken in the Sierra de los Filabres (SE Spain) in different land units along geomorphic and degradation gradients. SOC contents were modelled using recovery period, soil and topographical variables. Sample depth, topographical position, altitude, recovery period and stone content are identified as the main factors for predicting SOC concentrations. SOC stocks in 1 m depth of soil vary between 3.16 and 76.44 t ha-1. Recovery period (years since abandonment), topographical position and altitude were used to predict and map SOC stocks in the top 0.2 m. The results show that C accumulates fast during the first 10-50 years following abandonment, whereafter the stocks evolve towards a steady state level. The erosion zones in the study area demonstrate a higher potential to increase their SOC stocks when abandoned. Deposition zones have higher SOC stocks, although their C accumulation rate is lower compared to erosion dominated landscapes in the first 10-50 years following abandonment. Therefore, full understanding of the C sequestration potential of land use change in areas of complex topography requires knowledge of spatial variability in soil properties and in particular SOC.

  17. Dryland Winter Wheat Yield, Grain Protein, and Soil Nitrogen Responses to Fertilizer and Biosolids Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard T. Koenig

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Applications of biosolids were compared to inorganic nitrogen (N fertilizer for two years at three locations in eastern Washington State, USA, with diverse rainfall and soft white, hard red, and hard white winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L. cultivars. High rates of inorganic N tended to reduce yields, while grain protein responses to N rate were positive and linear for all wheat market classes. Biosolids produced 0 to 1400 kg ha−1 (0 to 47% higher grain yields than inorganic N. Wheat may have responded positively to nutrients other than N in the biosolids or to a metered N supply that limited vegetative growth and the potential for moisture stress-induced reductions in grain yield in these dryland production systems. Grain protein content with biosolids was either equal to or below grain protein with inorganic N, likely due to dilution of grain N from the higher yields achieved with biosolids. Results indicate the potential to improve dryland winter wheat yields with biosolids compared to inorganic N alone, but perhaps not to increase grain protein concentration of hard wheat when biosolids are applied immediately before planting.

  18. Dryland soil hydrological processes and their impacts on the nitrogen balance in a soil-maize system of a freeze-thawing agricultural area.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Ouyang

    Full Text Available Understanding the fates of soil hydrological processes and nitrogen (N is essential for optimizing the water and N in a dryland crop system with the goal of obtaining a maximum yield. Few investigations have addressed the dynamics of dryland N and its association with the soil hydrological process in a freeze-thawing agricultural area. With the daily monitoring of soil water content and acquisition rates at 15, 30, 60 and 90 cm depths, the soil hydrological process with the influence of rainfall was identified. The temporal-vertical soil water storage analysis indicated the local albic soil texture provided a stable soil water condition for maize growth with the rainfall as the only water source. Soil storage water averages at 0-20, 20-40 and 40-60 cm were observed to be 490.2, 593.8, and 358 m3 ha-1, respectively, during the growing season. The evapo-transpiration (ET, rainfall, and water loss analysis demonstrated that these factors increased in same temporal pattern and provided necessary water conditions for maize growth in a short period. The dry weight and N concentration of maize organs (root, leaf, stem, tassel, and grain demonstrated the N accumulation increased to a peak in the maturity period and that grain had the most N. The maximum N accumulative rate reached about 500 mg m-2d-1 in leaves and grain. Over the entire growing season, the soil nitrate N decreased by amounts ranging from 48.9 kg N ha-1 to 65.3 kg N ha-1 over the 90 cm profile and the loss of ammonia-N ranged from 9.79 to 12.69 kg N ha-1. With soil water loss and N balance calculation, the N usage efficiency (NUE over the 0-90 cm soil profile was 43%. The soil hydrological process due to special soil texture and the temporal features of rainfall determined the maize growth in the freeze-thawing agricultural area.

  19. Soil management practices for sustainable crop production

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abalos, E.B.

    2005-01-01

    In a sustainable system, the soil is viewed as a fragile and living medium that must be protected and nurtured to ensure its long-term productivity and stability. However, due to high demand for food brought about by high population as well as the decline in agricultural lands, the soil is being exploited beyond its limit thus, leading to poor or sick soils. Sound soil management practices in the Philippines is being reviewed. The technologies, including the advantages and disadvantages are hereby presented. This includes proper cropping systems, fertilizer program, soil erosion control and correcting soil acidity. Sound soil management practices which conserve organic matter for long-term sustainability includes addition of compost, maintaining soil cover, increasing aggregates stability, soil tilt and diversity of soil microbial life. A healthy soil is a key component to sustainability as a health soil produce healthy crop plants and have optimum vigor or less susceptible to pests. (author)

  20. Restoration of degraded drylands through exclosures enhancing woody species diversity and soil nutrients in the highlands of Tigray, Northern Ethiopia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kide M. Gebremedihin

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Exclusion of grazing animals and tree plantations were among the methods used for the rehabilitation of degraded lands in tropical semiarid areas. Exclosures can foster secondary forest succession by improving soil conditions, attracting seed-dispersal agents and modifying microclimate for understory growth. This paper compares the woody species diversity and soil chemical properties under exclosure with increasing age and grazing land at different slope positions. The study has been conducted in northern Ethiopia from 12 exclosure sites paired each with adjacent grazing land with four treatments replicated three times. In the entire study 216 plots were examined of which 108 were in exclosures and 108 in communal grazing lands.There were four age classes and three slope positions in each of the landuses. Vegetation data were collected using plots measuring 100 m2. Soils for physicochemical properties were collected from the four corners and center of 5 × 5m plots which was inside the 10 × 10m plot. A total of 61 woody plant species belonging to 41 families were recorded. Diversity and species richness were higher in the exclosures than in grazing lands. Among exclosures these parameters were higher in exclosures older than 30 years and at the foot of the slope. Grazing lands, the youngest exclosures and upper elevation gradient recorded lower values. Chemical soil properties were significantly higher in the exclosures, among them in the oldest exclosures and at foot elevation (except for P than these were in the grazing land, the youngest exclosures and upper parts of slopes respectively. Exclosures are instrumental to improve the woody species diversity and soil chemical properties in the drylands.

  1. Dryland biological soil crust cyanobacteria show unexpected decreases in abundance under long-term elevated CO2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steven, Blaire; Gallegos-Graves, La Verne; Yeager, Chris M.; Belnap, Jayne; Evans, R. David; Kuske, Cheryl R.

    2012-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) cover soil surfaces in many drylands globally. The impacts of 10 years of elevated atmospheric CO2 on the cyanobacteria in biocrusts of an arid shrubland were examined at a large manipulated experiment in Nevada, USA. Cyanobacteria-specific quantitative PCR surveys of cyanobacteria small-subunit (SSU) rRNA genes suggested a reduction in biocrust cyanobacterial biomass in the elevated CO2 treatment relative to the ambient controls. Additionally, SSU rRNA gene libraries and shotgun metagenomes showed reduced representation of cyanobacteria in the total microbial community. Taxonomic composition of the cyanobacteria was similar under ambient and elevated CO2 conditions, indicating the decline was manifest across multiple cyanobacterial lineages. Recruitment of cyanobacteria sequences from replicate shotgun metagenomes to cyanobacterial genomes representing major biocrust orders also suggested decreased abundance of cyanobacteria sequences across the majority of genomes tested. Functional assignment of cyanobacteria-related shotgun metagenome sequences indicated that four subsystem categories, three related to oxidative stress, were differentially abundant in relation to the elevated CO2 treatment. Taken together, these results suggest that elevated CO2 affected a generalized decrease in cyanobacteria in the biocrusts and may have favoured cyanobacteria with altered gene inventories for coping with oxidative stress.

  2. How is overland flow produced under intermittent rain? An analysis using plot-scale rainfall simulation on dryland soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunkerley, David

    2018-01-01

    The characteristic intermittency of rainfall includes temporary cessations (hiatuses), as well as periods of very low intensity within more intense events. To understand how these characteristics of rainfall affect overland flow production, rainfall simulations involving repeated cycles of on-off intermittency were carried out on dryland soils in arid western New South Wales, Australia. Periods of rain (10 mm/h) and no-rain were applied in alternation with cycle times from 3 min to 25 min, in experiments lasting 1-1.5 h. Results showed that intermittency could delay the onset of runoff by more than 30 min, reduce the runoff ratio, reduce the peak runoff rate, and reduce the apparent event infiltration rate by 30-45%. When hiatuses in rainfall were longer than 15-20 min, runoff that had resulted from prior rain ceased completely before the recommencement of rain. Results demonstrate that if rainfall intermittency is not accounted for, estimates of infiltrability based on runoff plot data can be systematically in error. Despite the use of intermittent rain, the episodic occurrence of runoff could be predicted successfully by fitting multiple affine Horton infiltration equations, whose changing f0 and Kf coefficients, but uniform values of fc, reflected the redistribution of soil moisture and the change in the infiltrability f during hiatuses in rainfall. The value of fc varied little among the fitted equations, so constituting an affine set of relationships. This new approach provides an alternative to the use of steady-state methods that are common in rainfall simulation experiments and which typically yield only an estimate of fc. The new field results confirm that intermittency affects infiltration and runoff depths and timing at plot scale and on intra-event timescales. Additional work on other soil types, and at other spatial and temporal scales, is needed to test the generality of these findings.

  3. Response of soil carbon fractions and dryland maize yield to mulching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stimulation of root growth from mulching may enhance soil C fractions under maize (Zea mays L.). We studied the 5-yr straw (SM) and plastic film (PM) mulching effect on soil C fractions and maize yield compared with no mulching (CK) in the Loess Plateau of China. Soil samples collected from 0- to 10...

  4. Soil protection for a sustainable future

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    O'Sullivan, L.; Bampa, F.; Knights, K.; Creamer, R.E.

    2017-01-01

    The increased recognition of the importance of soil is reflected in the UN Post-2015 Development Agenda with sustainable development goals that directly and indirectly relate to soil quality and protection. Despite a lack of legally binding legislation for soil protection, the European Commission

  5. Long-term conventional and no-tillage effects on field hydrology and yields of a dryland crop rotation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semiarid dryland crop yields with no-till, NT, residue management are often greater than stubble-mulch, SM, tillage as a result of improved soil conditions and water conservation, but information on long-term tillage effects on field hydrology and sustained crop production are needed. Our objective ...

  6. Impact of HydroPolymers on the soil biological components in mediterranean drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dvořáčková, Helena; Hueso González, Paloma; Záhora, Jaroslav; Mikajlo, Irina; Damián Ruiz Sinoga, Jose

    2016-04-01

    Soil degradation affects more than 52 million ha of land in counties of the European Union. This problem is particularly serious in Mediterranean areas, where the effects of anthropogenic activities (tillage on slopes, deforestation, and pasture production) add to problems caused by prolonged periods of drought and intense and irregular rainfall. Soil microbiota can be used as an indicator of the soil healthy in degraded areas. This is because soil microbiota participates in the cycle elements and in the organic matter decomposition. All this helps to the young plants establishment and in long term protect the soils against the erosion. During dry periods in the Mediterranean areas, the lack of water entering the soil matrix leads to a loss of soil microbiological activity and it turns into a lower soil production capabilities. Under these conditions, the aim of this study was to evaluate the positive effect on soil biological components produced by an hydro absorbent polymer (Terracottem). The aim of the experiment was to evaluate the impact assessment of an hydropolymer (Terracottem) on the soil biological components. An experimental flowerpot layout was established in June 2015 and 12 variants with different amount of Terracottem were applied as follow: i) 3.0 kg.m3 ; ii) 1.5 kg.m3 and; iii) 0 kg.m3. In all the variants were tested the further additives: a) 1% of glucose, b) 50 kg N.ha-1 of Mineral nitrogen, c) 1% of Glucose + 50 kg N.ha-1 of Mineral nitrogen d) control (no additive). According to natural conditions, humidity have been kept at 15% in all the variants. During four weeks, mineral nitrogen leaching and soil respiration have been measured in each flowerplot. Respiration has been quantified four times every time while moistening containers and alkaline soda lime has been used as a sorbent. The amount of CO2 increase has been measured with the sorbent. Leaching of mineral nitrogen has been quantified by ion exchange resins (IER). IER pouches have been

  7. How development and disturbance of biological soil crust do affect runoff and erosion in drylands?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chamizo, S.; Canton, Y.; Afana, A.; Lazaro, R.; Domingo, F.; Sole-Benet, A.

    2009-07-01

    Deserts and semiarid ecosystems (shrub lands and grasslands) are the largest terrestrial biome, covering more than 40% of the Earth's terrestrial surface and Biological Soil Crusts (BSCs) are the predominant surface type in most of those ecosystems covering up to 70% of its surface. BSCs have been demonstrated to be very vulnerable to disturbance due to human activities and their loss has been implicated as a factor leading to accelerate soil erosion and other forms of land degradation. Incorporation of the response of different type of soil crusts and the effects of the their disturbance is likely to improve the prediction of runoff and water erosion models in arid and semi-arid catchments. The aim of this work is to analyse the influence of crust disturbance on infiltration and erosion. Extreme rainfall simulations at micro plots scale were performed in two semiarid ecosystems with different lithology and conditions of occurrence of BSCs: El Cautivo and Amoladeras. (Author) 10 refs.

  8. How development and disturbance of biological soil crust do affect runoff and erosion in drylands?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chamizo, S.; Canton, Y.; Afana, A.; Lazaro, R.; Domingo, F.; Sole-Benet, A.

    2009-01-01

    Deserts and semiarid ecosystems (shrub lands and grasslands) are the largest terrestrial biome, covering more than 40% of the Earth's terrestrial surface and Biological Soil Crusts (BSCs) are the predominant surface type in most of those ecosystems covering up to 70% of its surface. BSCs have been demonstrated to be very vulnerable to disturbance due to human activities and their loss has been implicated as a factor leading to accelerate soil erosion and other forms of land degradation. Incorporation of the response of different type of soil crusts and the effects of the their disturbance is likely to improve the prediction of runoff and water erosion models in arid and semi-arid catchments. The aim of this work is to analyse the influence of crust disturbance on infiltration and erosion. Extreme rainfall simulations at micro plots scale were performed in two semiarid ecosystems with different lithology and conditions of occurrence of BSCs: El Cautivo and Amoladeras. (Author) 10 refs.

  9. Sustainable agriculture a challenge for soil microbiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nubia Moreno Sarmiento

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Soils: a solid foundation for life, was the theme of the celebration of 2015, the General Assembly of the UN, decides to declare as the International Year of Soils, considering that these are the foundation of agricultural development, the essential functions of ecosystems and food security. It is therefore a key to sustaining life on Earth element. During that year several actions that contributed to the awareness of their problems and protection of soil resources were made. One was that FAO, reviewed and published in June 2015, the World Soil Charter (originally developed in 1982. The World Soil Charter of Revised, as a preamble quote: 1. Soils are essential for life on Earth, but pressures on soil resources are reaching critical limits. Careful soil management is an essential factor of sustainable agriculture and also provides a valuable tool to regulate climate and a way to safeguard ecosystem services and biodiversity spring. 2. In the final document of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development, held in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil in June 2012, "The future we want" economic and social importance of good management is recognized land, including land, particularly its contribution to economic growth, biodiversity, sustainable agriculture, food security, poverty eradication, empowerment of women, measures to address climate change and increase water availability.

  10. Sustainable agriculture and soil conservation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olsen, Preben; Dubgaard, Alex

    , sandy soils in the West, (that had not been covered by ice) from more fertile soils being mostly sandy loams and finer textured soils covering the Eastern part of the study area. Several geological features such as pitting due to dead ice formation, smaller, terminal moraines in association with melt......, separate the moraine plateau. From the plateau several, minor erosion valleys, formed at the end of the glaciation some 10,000 years ago, feed into the two valleys. Very accurate soil type information is available for the area as intensive measurements within the area has formed the basis for a new...... methodology for soil classification in Denmark. The soil survey included a detailed mapping at field level, using the electromagnetic sensor, EM38. A high-resolution digital elevation model, obtained by use of laser scanning, is available for the study area. The original scanning has a horizontal resolution...

  11. Impacts of manure application on soil environment, rainfall use efficiency and crop biomass under dryland farming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiaojuan; Jia, Zhikuan; Liang, Lianyou; Yang, Baoping; Ding, Ruixia; Nie, Junfeng; Wang, Junpeng

    2016-02-12

    Because of inadequate nutrient and water supply, soils are often unproductive in Northwest China. We studied the effects of manure application at low (LM 7.5  t ha(-1)), medium (MM 15 t ha(-1)), and high (HM 22.5 t ha(-1)) rates combined with fixed levels of chemical fertilizers on maize growth and rainfall use efficiency compared with chemical fertilizers (CK) under semi-arid conditions over a three-year period. HM and MM treatments could significantly increase soil water storage (0-120 cm) at tasseling stage of maize compared with LM treatment and CK (P < 0.05). Dry matter accumulation and rainfall use efficiency increased as manure application rate increasing (P < 0.05). HM treatment significantly increased rainfall use efficiency by 6.5-12.7% at big trumpeting - tasseling stage compared with LM and MM treatments. HM and MM treatments increased rainfall use efficiency by 8.6-18.1% at tasseling - grain filling stage compared with CK. There was no significant difference on biomass between HM and MM treatments at grain filling and maturity stages of maize in 2009 and 2010.

  12. Elevated CO2 as a driver of global dryland greening

    KAUST Repository

    Lu, Xuefei; Wang, Lixin; McCabe, Matthew

    2016-01-01

    While recent findings based on satellite records indicate a positive trend in vegetation greenness over global drylands, the reasons remain elusive. We hypothesize that enhanced levels of atmospheric CO2 play an important role in the observed greening through the CO2 effect on plant water savings and consequent available soil water increases. Meta-analytic techniques were used to compare soil water content under ambient and elevated CO2 treatments across a range of climate regimes, vegetation types, soil textures and land management practices. Based on 1705 field measurements from 21 distinct sites, a consistent and statistically significant increase in the availability of soil water (11%) was observed under elevated CO2 treatments in both drylands and non-drylands, with a statistically stronger response over drylands (17% vs. 9%). Given the inherent water limitation in drylands, it is suggested that the additional soil water availability is a likely driver of observed increases in vegetation greenness.

  13. Elevated CO2 as a driver of global dryland greening

    KAUST Repository

    Lu, Xuefei

    2016-02-12

    While recent findings based on satellite records indicate a positive trend in vegetation greenness over global drylands, the reasons remain elusive. We hypothesize that enhanced levels of atmospheric CO2 play an important role in the observed greening through the CO2 effect on plant water savings and consequent available soil water increases. Meta-analytic techniques were used to compare soil water content under ambient and elevated CO2 treatments across a range of climate regimes, vegetation types, soil textures and land management practices. Based on 1705 field measurements from 21 distinct sites, a consistent and statistically significant increase in the availability of soil water (11%) was observed under elevated CO2 treatments in both drylands and non-drylands, with a statistically stronger response over drylands (17% vs. 9%). Given the inherent water limitation in drylands, it is suggested that the additional soil water availability is a likely driver of observed increases in vegetation greenness.

  14. Greening Drylands with Seawater Easily and Naturally.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moustafa, Khaled

    2017-03-01

    The sun and sea are inexhaustible sources of energy and water that could be used to transform drylands into more viable ecosystems. A sustainable and cost-effective approach is proposed for greening drylands and restoring wildlife and biodiversity in deserts using seawater desert-houses (or movable seawater ponds) that could offer important environmental advantages. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Sustaining "the Genius of Soils"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sposito, G.

    2011-12-01

    Soils are weathered porous earth surficial materials that exhibit an approximately vertical stratification reflecting the continual action of percolating water and living organisms. They are complex open, multicomponent, multiphase biogeochemical systems which function as both provisioning and regulatory agents in terrestrial ecosystems while influencing aquatic ecosystems through their impacts on evapotranspiration and runoff. The ability of soils to engage in their supportive ecosystem functions depends on what has been termed metaphorically as their "natural capital," the defining properties that condition soil response to biological, geological, and hydrological processes as well as human-driven activities. Natural capital must necessarily differ among soils depending on how they have developed under the five soil-forming processes, but it also can be determined by land use and by the flows of matter and energy that link the global atmosphere, biosphere, and hydrosphere. These latter two determinants have in recent decades begun to exhibit strong variability that exceeds what has been characteristic of them during the past 10 millennia of earth history, thereby raising the apocalyptic issue of whether a deleterious or even catastrophic undermining of the ability of soils to function supportively in ecosystems is in the offing. Resolving this issue will require deeper understanding of how soils perform their provisioning and regulatory functions, how they respond to land-use changes, and how they mediate the global flows of matter and energy.

  16. Response of Surface Soil Hydrology to the Micro-Pattern of Bio-Crust in a Dry-Land Loess Environment, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Wei; Yu, Yun; Chen, Liding

    2015-01-01

    The specific bio-species and their spatial patterns play crucial roles in regulating eco-hydrologic process, which is significant for large-scale habitat promotion and vegetation restoration in many dry-land ecosystems. Such effects, however, are not yet fully studied. In this study, 12 micro-plots, each with size of 0.5 m in depth and 1 m in length, were constructed on a gentle grassy hill-slope with a mean gradient of 8° in a semiarid loess hilly area of China. Two major bio-crusts, including mosses and lichens, had been cultivated for two years prior to the field simulation experiments, while physical crusts and non-crusted bare soils were used for comparison. By using rainfall simulation method, four designed micro-patterns (i.e., upper bio-crust and lower bare soil, scattered bio-crust, upper bare soil and lower bio-crust, fully-covered bio-crust) to the soil hydrological response were analyzed. We found that soil surface bio-crusts were more efficient in improving soil structure, water holding capacity and runoff retention particularly at surface 10 cm layers, compared with physical soil crusts and non-crusted bare soils. We re-confirmed that mosses functioned better than lichens, partly due to their higher successional stage and deeper biomass accumulation. Physical crusts were least efficient in water conservation and erosion control, followed by non-crusted bare soils. More importantly, there were marked differences in the efficiency of the different spatial arrangements of bio-crusts in controlling runoff and sediment generation. Fully-covered bio-crust pattern provides the best option for soil loss reduction and runoff retention, while a combination of upper bio-crust and lower bare soil pattern is the least one. These findings are suggested to be significant for surface-cover protection, rainwater infiltration, runoff retention, and erosion control in water-restricted and degraded natural slopes.

  17. Influence of Conservation Tillage on some Soil Physical Properties and Crop Yield in Vetch-Wheat Rotation in Dryland Cold Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I Eskandari

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Introduction Winter wheat is an important, well-adapted grain crop under dryland condition of the northwest of Iran. Soil water is the most limiting resource for crop growth in dryland areas. Therefore, farmers need to use crop residues and minimum tillage to control the soil erosion and effectively store and to use the limited precipitation received for crop production. Crop rotation and tillage system could affect crop yield due to their effects on water conservation and soil chemical and physical properties. Galantini et al., (2000 studied the effect of crop rotation on wheat productivity in the Pampean semi-arid region of Argentina and found that a wheat–vetch (Vicia sativa L. rotation resulted in higher yield and protein content, and greater yield components than the other rotations.Payne et al. (2000 stated that where precipitation amount is marginal (400 mm, dry field pea offers a potential alternative to summer fallowing. The purpose of this study was to identify the optimal tillage system for increasing crop productivity in a vetch–wheat rotation in dryland farming of the northwest of Iran. Materials and Methods The field experiment was carried out from 2010 to 2014 at the Dryland Agricultural Research Station (latitude37° 12´N; longitude 46◦20´E; 1730 m a.s.l., 25 km east of Maragheh, East Azerbaijan Province, Iran. The long-term (10 years average precipitation, temperature and relative humidity of the station are 336.5 mm, 9.4 ◦C and 47.5%, respectively. The soil (Fine Mixed, Mesic, Vertic Calcixerepts, USDA system; Calcisols, FAO system at the study site had a clay loam texture in the 0–15 cm surface layer and a clay texture in the 15–80 cm depth. This study was conducted in vetch (Vicia pannonica- wheat (Triticum aestivum L. rotation. The experiment was arranged in a randomized complete block design with four replications. The tillage treatments consisted of (1 conventional tillage: moldboard plowing followed by one

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Dryland Degradation by wind erosion and its control

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sterk, G.; Riksen, M.; Goossens, D.

    2001-01-01

    Global population growth, is expected to impose an increasing pressure on agricultural production in the world's drylands, which cover approximately 41␘f the continental area. The land resources in drylands are severely threatened by soil degradation, with wind erosion being, one of the major

  1. Microbial fixation of CO2 in water bodies and in drylands to combat climate change, soil loss and desertification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossi, Federico; Olguín, Eugenia J; Diels, Ludo; De Philippis, Roberto

    2015-01-25

    The growing concern for the increase of the global warming effects due to anthropogenic activities raises the challenge of finding novel technological approaches to stabilize CO2 emissions in the atmosphere and counteract impinging interconnected issues such as desertification and loss of biodiversity. Biological-CO2 mitigation, triggered through biological fixation, is considered a promising and eco-sustainable method, mostly owing to its downstream benefits that can be exploited. Microorganisms such as cyanobacteria, green algae and some autotrophic bacteria could potentially fix CO2 more efficiently than higher plants, due to their faster growth. Some examples of the potential of biological-CO2 mitigation are reported and discussed in this paper. In arid and semiarid environments, soil carbon sequestration (CO2 fixation) by cyanobacteria and biological soil crusts is considered an eco-friendly and natural process to increase soil C content and a viable pathway to soil restoration after one disturbance event. Another way for biological-CO2 mitigation intensively studied in the last few years is related to the possibility to perform carbon dioxide sequestration using microalgae, obtaining at the same time bioproducts of industrial interest. Another possibility under study is the exploitation of specific chemotrophic bacteria, such as Ralstonia eutropha (or picketii) and related organisms, for CO2 fixation coupled with the production chemicals such as polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs). In spite of the potential of these processes, multiple factors still have to be optimized for maximum rate of CO2 fixation by these microorganisms. The optimization of culture conditions, including the optimal concentration of CO2 in the provided gas, the use of metabolic engineering and of dual purpose systems for the treatment of wastewater and production of biofuels and high value products within a biorefinery concept, the design of photobioreactors in the case of phototrophs are some

  2. Designing sustainable soils in Earth's critical zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banwart, Steven Allan; de Souza, Danielle Maia; Menon, Manoj; Nikolaidis, Nikolaos; Panagos, Panos; Vala Ragnardsdottir, Kristin; Rousseva, Svelta; van Gaans, Pauline

    2014-05-01

    particle aggregation dynamics and organic matter mineralization. Simulation results show that soil structure is highly dynamic and is sensitive to organic matter production and minearlisation rates as influenced by vegetation, tillage and organic carbon amendments. These results point to a step-change in the capability to design soil management and land use through computational simulation. This approach of "sustainability by design" describes the mechanistic process linkages that exist between the above-ground inputs to the CZ and the internal processes that produce soil functions. This approach provides a rational, scientific approach to selecting points of intervention with the CZ in order to design methods to mitigate soil threats and to enhance and sustain vital soil functions. Furthermore, this approach provides a successful pilot study to the use of international networks of CZOs as a planetary-scale laboratory to test the response of CZ process rates along gradients of global environmental change - and to test adaptation strategies to manage the risks arising from the CZ impacts. Acknowledgements. The authors acknowledge the substantial contributions of the entire team of investigators and funding of the SoilTrEC project (EC FP7, agreement no. 244118; www.soiltrec.eu).

  3. Effect of Integrated Water-Nutrient Management Strategies on Soil Erosion Mediated Nutrient Loss and Crop Productivity in Cabo Verde Drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baptista, Isaurinda; Ritsema, Coen; Geissen, Violette

    2015-01-01

    Soil erosion, runoff and related nutrient losses are a big risk for soil fertility in Cabo Verde drylands. In 2012, field trials were conducted in two agro-ecological zones to evaluate the effects of selected techniques of soil-water management combined with organic amendments (T1: compost/manure + soil surfactant; T2: compost/animal or green manure + pigeon-pea hedges + soil surfactant; T3: compost/animal or green manure + mulch + pigeon-pea hedges) on nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) losses in eroded soil and runoff and on crop yields. Three treatments and one control (traditional practice) were tested in field plots at three sites with a local maize variety and two types of beans. Runoff and eroded soil were collected after each erosive rain, quantified, and analysed for NO3-N and PO4-P concentrations. In all treatments runoff had higher concentrations of NO3-N (2.20-4.83 mg L-1) than of PO4-P (0.02-0.07 mg L-1), and the eroded soil had higher content of PO4-P (5.27-18.8 mg g-1) than of NO3-N (1.30-8.51 mg g-1). The control had significantly higher losses of both NO3-N (5.4, 4.4 and 19 kg ha-1) and PO4-P (0.2, 0.1 and 0.4 kg ha-1) than the other treatments. T3 reduced soil loss, runoff and nutrient losses to nearly a 100% while T1 and T2 reduced those losses from 43 to 88%. The losses of NO3-N and PO4-P were highly correlated with the amounts of runoff and eroded soil. Nutrient losses from the applied amendments were low (5.7% maximum), but the losses in the control could indicate long-term nutrient depletion in the soil (19 and 0.4 kg ha-1 of NO3-N and PO4-P, respectively). T1-T3 did not consistently increase crop yield or biomass in all three sites, but T1 increased both crop yield and biomass. We conclude that T3 (combining crop-residue mulch with organic amendment and runoff hedges) is the best treatment for steep slope areas but, the pigeon-pea hedges need to be managed for higher maize yield. T1 (combining organic amendment with soil surfactant) could be a

  4. Effect of Integrated Water-Nutrient Management Strategies on Soil Erosion Mediated Nutrient Loss and Crop Productivity in Cabo Verde Drylands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baptista, Isaurinda; Ritsema, Coen; Geissen, Violette

    2015-01-01

    Soil erosion, runoff and related nutrient losses are a big risk for soil fertility in Cabo Verde drylands. In 2012, field trials were conducted in two agro-ecological zones to evaluate the effects of selected techniques of soil-water management combined with organic amendments (T1: compost/manure + soil surfactant; T2: compost/animal or green manure + pigeon-pea hedges + soil surfactant; T3: compost/animal or green manure + mulch + pigeon-pea hedges) on nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) losses in eroded soil and runoff and on crop yields. Three treatments and one control (traditional practice) were tested in field plots at three sites with a local maize variety and two types of beans. Runoff and eroded soil were collected after each erosive rain, quantified, and analysed for NO3-N and PO4-P concentrations. In all treatments runoff had higher concentrations of NO3-N (2.20-4.83 mg L-1) than of PO4-P (0.02-0.07 mg L-1), and the eroded soil had higher content of PO4-P (5.27-18.8 mg g-1) than of NO3-N (1.30-8.51 mg g-1). The control had significantly higher losses of both NO3-N (5.4, 4.4 and 19 kg ha-1) and PO4-P (0.2, 0.1 and 0.4 kg ha-1) than the other treatments. T3 reduced soil loss, runoff and nutrient losses to nearly a 100% while T1 and T2 reduced those losses from 43 to 88%. The losses of NO3-N and PO4-P were highly correlated with the amounts of runoff and eroded soil. Nutrient losses from the applied amendments were low (5.7% maximum), but the losses in the control could indicate long-term nutrient depletion in the soil (19 and 0.4 kg ha-1 of NO3-N and PO4-P, respectively). T1-T3 did not consistently increase crop yield or biomass in all three sites, but T1 increased both crop yield and biomass. We conclude that T3 (combining crop-residue mulch with organic amendment and runoff hedges) is the best treatment for steep slope areas but, the pigeon-pea hedges need to be managed for higher maize yield. T1 (combining organic amendment with soil surfactant) could be a

  5. Agricultural Soil Alkalinity and Salinity Modeling in the Cropping Season in a Spectral Endmember Space of TM in Temperate Drylands, Minqin, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danfeng Sun

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the potential of the four-image spectral endmember (EM space comprising sand (SL, green vegetation (GV, saline land (SA, and dark materials (DA, unmixed from Landsat TM/ETM+ to map dryland agricultural soil alkalinity and salinity (i.e., soil alkalinity (pH and soil electrical conductivity (EC in the shallow root zone (0–20 cm using partial least squares regression (PLSR and an artificial neural network (ANN. The results reveal that SA, SL, and GV fractions at the subpixel level, and land surface temperature (LST are necessary independent variables for soil EC modeling in Minqin Oasis, a temperate-arid system in China. The R2 (coefficient of determination of the optimized parameters with the ANN model was 0.79, the root mean squared error (RMSE was 0.13, and the ratio of prediction to deviation (RPD was 1.95 when evaluated against all sampled data. In addition to the aforementioned four variables, the DA fraction and the recent historical SA fraction (SAH in the spring dry season in 2008 were also helpful for soil pH modeling. The model performance is R2 = 0.76, RMSE = 0.24, and RPD = 1.96 for all sampled data. In summary, the stable EMs and LST space of TM imagery with an ANN approach can generate near-real-time regional soil alkalinity and salinity estimations in the cropping period. This is the case even in the critical agronomic range (EC of 0–20 dS·m−1 and pH of 7–9 at which researchers and policy-makers require near-real-time crop management information.

  6. Biological phosphorus cycling in dryland regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, Jayne; Bunemann, Else; Oberson, Astrid; Frossard, Emmanuel

    2011-01-01

    The relatively few studies done on phosphorus (P) cycling in arid and semiarid lands (drylands) show many factors that distinguish P cycling in drylands from that in more mesic regions. In drylands, most biologically relevant P inputs and losses are from the deposition and loss of dust. Horizontal and vertical redistribution of P is an important process. P is concentrated at the soil surface and thus vulnerable to loss via erosion. High pH and CaCO3 limit P bioavailability, and low rainfall limits microbe and plant ability to free abiotically bound P via exudates, thus making it available for uptake. Many invasive plants are able to access recalcitrant P more effectively than are native plants. As P availability depends on soil moisture and temperature, climate change is expected to have large impacts on P cycling

  7. Dryland systems

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Wessels, Konrad J

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available to overall moisture deficit but also to other environmental variables, such as soils and geomorphological and landscape features. Furthermore, a greater degree of species richness and diversity of ecosystem services is observed as aridity declines... of sealing and crus- ting (Hoogmoed 1999). Water regulation may be augmented by landscape management (terraces, small dams, and so on), which slows down surface runoff, thereby promoting water infiltration and flood avoidance. PAGE 630 22.2.2.2 Climate...

  8. Response of Surface Soil Hydrology to the Micro-Pattern of Bio-Crust in a Dry-Land Loess Environment, China.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Wei

    Full Text Available The specific bio-species and their spatial patterns play crucial roles in regulating eco-hydrologic process, which is significant for large-scale habitat promotion and vegetation restoration in many dry-land ecosystems. Such effects, however, are not yet fully studied. In this study, 12 micro-plots, each with size of 0.5 m in depth and 1 m in length, were constructed on a gentle grassy hill-slope with a mean gradient of 8° in a semiarid loess hilly area of China. Two major bio-crusts, including mosses and lichens, had been cultivated for two years prior to the field simulation experiments, while physical crusts and non-crusted bare soils were used for comparison. By using rainfall simulation method, four designed micro-patterns (i.e., upper bio-crust and lower bare soil, scattered bio-crust, upper bare soil and lower bio-crust, fully-covered bio-crust to the soil hydrological response were analyzed. We found that soil surface bio-crusts were more efficient in improving soil structure, water holding capacity and runoff retention particularly at surface 10 cm layers, compared with physical soil crusts and non-crusted bare soils. We re-confirmed that mosses functioned better than lichens, partly due to their higher successional stage and deeper biomass accumulation. Physical crusts were least efficient in water conservation and erosion control, followed by non-crusted bare soils. More importantly, there were marked differences in the efficiency of the different spatial arrangements of bio-crusts in controlling runoff and sediment generation. Fully-covered bio-crust pattern provides the best option for soil loss reduction and runoff retention, while a combination of upper bio-crust and lower bare soil pattern is the least one. These findings are suggested to be significant for surface-cover protection, rainwater infiltration, runoff retention, and erosion control in water-restricted and degraded natural slopes.

  9. Response of Surface Soil Hydrology to the Micro-Pattern of Bio-Crust in a Dry-Land Loess Environment, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Wei; Yu, Yun; Chen, Liding

    2015-01-01

    The specific bio-species and their spatial patterns play crucial roles in regulating eco-hydrologic process, which is significant for large-scale habitat promotion and vegetation restoration in many dry-land ecosystems. Such effects, however, are not yet fully studied. In this study, 12 micro-plots, each with size of 0.5 m in depth and 1 m in length, were constructed on a gentle grassy hill-slope with a mean gradient of 8° in a semiarid loess hilly area of China. Two major bio-crusts, including mosses and lichens, had been cultivated for two years prior to the field simulation experiments, while physical crusts and non-crusted bare soils were used for comparison. By using rainfall simulation method, four designed micro-patterns (i.e., upper bio-crust and lower bare soil, scattered bio-crust, upper bare soil and lower bio-crust, fully-covered bio-crust) to the soil hydrological response were analyzed. We found that soil surface bio-crusts were more efficient in improving soil structure, water holding capacity and runoff retention particularly at surface 10 cm layers, compared with physical soil crusts and non-crusted bare soils. We re-confirmed that mosses functioned better than lichens, partly due to their higher successional stage and deeper biomass accumulation. Physical crusts were least efficient in water conservation and erosion control, followed by non-crusted bare soils. More importantly, there were marked differences in the efficiency of the different spatial arrangements of bio-crusts in controlling runoff and sediment generation. Fully-covered bio-crust pattern provides the best option for soil loss reduction and runoff retention, while a combination of upper bio-crust and lower bare soil pattern is the least one. These findings are suggested to be significant for surface-cover protection, rainwater infiltration, runoff retention, and erosion control in water-restricted and degraded natural slopes. PMID:26207757

  10. Improving evapotranspiration estimates in Mediterranean drylands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Morillas, Laura; Leuning, Ray; Villagarcia, Luis

    2013-01-01

    An adaptation of a simple model for evapotranspiration (E) estimations in drylands based on remotely sensed leaf area index and the Penman-Monteith equation (PML model) (Leuning et al., 2008) is presented. Three methods for improving the consideration of soil evaporation influence in total evapo-...

  11. Dryland orchard development in southern Tamil Nadu

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mohandas, S.; Marimuthu, R.; Karthikeyan, M.

    2002-01-01

    With low annual rainfall and high potential of evaporation in southern districts of Tamil Nadu, it is difficult to grow the crops, successfully. Drylands of this tract are vulnerable to high radiation, high temperature and variable rainfall. Hence, dryfarming has become a risky enterprise in this zone and all the above factors altogether reduce the choice of agricultural crops. Considering the magnitude of the area and it's untapped potential, which offers enormous scope for dryland horticulture in this region and thereby improving the soil productivity for other crops too

  12. Do plant-based amendments improve soil physiochemical and microbiological properties and plant growth in dryland ecosystems?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kneller, Tayla; Harris, Richard; Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam

    2017-04-01

    Background Land intensive practices including mining have contributed to the degradation of landscapes globally. Current challenges in post-mine restoration revolve around the use of substrates poor in organic materials (e.g. overburden and waste rock) and lack of original topsoil which may result in poor seedling recruitment and in later stages in soil nutrient deficiency, metal toxicity, decreased microbial activity and high salinity (Bateman et al., 2016; Muñoz-Rojas et al., 2016). Despite continuous efforts and advances we have not proportionally advanced our capability to successfully restore these landscapes following mining. Recent attempts to improve plant establishment in arid zone restoration programs have included the application of plant based amendments to soil profiles. This approach usually aims to accelerate soil reconstruction via improvement of soil aggregate stability and increase of soil organic carbon, and water holding capacity. Whilst a significant amount of recent research has focused on the application of such amendments, studies on the potential application of plant based materials to recover soil functionality and re-establish plant communities in post-mined landscapes in arid regions are limited. Here we will discuss our work investigating the application of a plant based amendment on soil substrates commonly used in post mining restoration in the Pilbara region, Western Australia. Methodology The study was conducted in a glasshouse facility where environmental conditions were continuously monitored. Using two growth materials (topsoil and waste rock) and a plant based amendment (dry biomass of the most common grass in the Pilbara, Triodia wiseana) five different treatments were tested. Treatments consisted of control soil treatments (topsoil, waste and a mixture of the former soil types (mixture)) and two amended soil treatments (waste amended and mixture amended). Additionally, three different vegetation communities were studies

  13. Strategies for sustainable woodland on contaminated soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dickinson, N M

    2000-07-01

    Extensive in situ reclamation treatment technologies are appropriate for a large proportion of contaminated land in place of total removal or complete containment of soil. In this paper, initial results are presented of site descriptions, tree survival and metal uptake patterns from two field planting trials on a highly industrially contaminated site adjacent to a metal refinery and on old sanitary landfill sites. Survival rate was high in both trials but factors besides heavy metals were particularly significant. Uptake patterns of metals into foliage and woody tissues were variable, with substantial uptake in some species and clones supporting the findings of earlier pot experiments. It is argued that there is sufficient evidence to consider the use of trees in reclamation as part of a realistic, integrated, low-cost, ecologically-sound and sustainable reclamation strategy for contaminated land. This is an opportunity to bring a large number of brownfield sites into productive use, which otherwise would be prohibitively expensive to restore.

  14. Assessing the Biophysical Impact and Financial Viability of Soil Management Technologies Under Variable Climate in Cabo Verde Drylands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baptista, Isaurinda; Irvine, Brian; Fleskens, Luuk; Geissen, Violette; Ritsema, Coen

    2016-01-01

    Field trials have demonstrated the potential of soil conservation technologies but have also shown significant spatial-temporal yield variability. This study considers the Pan-European Soil Erosion Risk Assessment - Desertification Mitigation Cost-Effectiveness modelling approach to capture a

  15. Can biofuel crops alleviate tribal poverty in India's drylands?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Agoramoorthy, Govindasamy; Hsu, Minna J.; Chaudhary, Sunita; Shieh, Po-Chuen

    2009-01-01

    The on-going climate change concerns have stimulated heavy interest in biofuels, and supporters of biofuels hail that they are considered naturally carbon-neutral. Critiques on the other hand cry that the large-scale production of biofuels can not only strain agricultural resources, but also threaten future food security. People who live in the drylands of India are often faced with challenges and constraints of poverty. Foremost among the challenges are the marginal environmental conditions for agriculture, often influenced by low and erratic rainfall, frequent droughts, poor soil condition, unreliable irrigation water supply, and rural migration to urban areas in search of work. In this paper, we have analyzed a case study of community lift irrigation practiced in India and its impact in boosting agricultural productivity and enhancing local food security. The lift-irrigation model practiced in the drylands of India to grow food crops can be adopted for the expansion of biofuel crops that has the potential to eradicate poverty among farming communities if appropriate sustainable development measures are carefully implemented. (author)

  16. Mitigating Drought Impacts in Drylands : Quantifying the Potential for Strengthening Crop- and Livestock-Based Livelihoods

    OpenAIRE

    Carfagna, Federica; Cervigni, Raffaello

    2018-01-01

    Drylands account for three-quarters of Sub-Saharan Africa's cropland, two-thirds of cereal production, and four-fifths of livestock holdings. Today frequent and severe shocks, especially droughts, limit the livelihood opportunities available to millions of households and undermine efforts to eradicate poverty in the drylands. Prospects for sustainable development of drylands are assessed in this book through the lens of resilience, understood here to mean the ability of people to withstand an...

  17. Relating soil biochemistry to sustainable crop production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amino acids, amino sugars, carbohydrates, phenols, and fatty acids together comprise appreciable proportions of soil organic matter (SOM). Their cycling contribute to soil processes, including nitrogen availability, carbon sequestration and aggregation. For example, soil accumulation of phenols has ...

  18. Many shades of brown : The condition and colour of Dutch archaeological textiles from dryland sandy soils, bogs, and the sea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Joosten, I.; van Bommel, M.R.; Kluiving, S.; Kootker, L.; Hermans, R.

    2017-01-01

    Archaeological textiles excavated from Dutch soils usually have a brown appearance. Three sets of woollen textile finds varying both in age and burial context were analysed to study their original character. Bog finds from the Bronze Age (2000‑800 BC) and late Iron Age (250-12 BC) were compared to

  19. Long-Term Effect of Manure and Fertilizer on Soil Organic Carbon Pools in Dryland Farming in Northwest China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Enke; Yan, Changrong; Mei, Xurong; Zhang, Yanqing; Fan, Tinglu

    2013-01-01

    An understanding of the dynamics of soil organic carbon (SOC) as affected by farming practices is imperative for maintaining soil productivity and mitigating global warming. The objectives of this study were to investigate the effects of long-term fertilization on SOC and SOC fractions for the whole soil profile (0–100 cm) in northwest China. The study was initiated in 1979 in Gansu, China and included six treatments: unfertilized control (CK), nitrogen fertilizer (N), nitrogen and phosphorus (P) fertilizers (NP), straw plus N and P fertilizers (NP+S), farmyard manure (FYM), and farmyard manure plus N and P fertilizers (NP+FYM). Results showed that SOC concentration in the 0–20 cm soil layer increased with time except in the CK and N treatments. Long-term fertilization significantly influenced SOC concentrations and storage to 60 cm depth. Below 60 cm, SOC concentrations and storages were statistically not significant between all treatments. The concentration of SOC at different depths in 0–60 cm soil profile was higher under NP+FYM follow by under NP+S, compared to under CK. The SOC storage in 0–60 cm in NP+FYM, NP+S, FYM and NP treatments were increased by 41.3%, 32.9%, 28.1% and 17.9%, respectively, as compared to the CK treatment. Organic manure plus inorganic fertilizer application also increased labile soil organic carbon pools in 0–60 cm depth. The average concentration of particulate organic carbon (POC), dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and microbial biomass carbon (MBC) in organic manure plus inorganic fertilizer treatments (NP+S and NP+FYM) in 0–60 cm depth were increased by 64.9–91.9%, 42.5–56.9%, and 74.7–99.4%, respectively, over the CK treatment. The POC, MBC and DOC concentrations increased linearly with increasing SOC content. These results indicate that long-term additions of organic manure have the most beneficial effects in building carbon pools among the investigated types of fertilization. PMID:23437161

  20. Monitoring soil for sustainable development and land degradation neutrality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tóth, Gergely; Hermann, Tamás; da Silva, Manuela Ravina; Montanarella, Luca

    2018-01-04

    The adoption of the 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) listed in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by the United Nations urged the scientific community to generate information for planning and monitoring socioeconomic development and the underlying environmental compartments. SDGs 2, 3, 6, 11, 13, 14, and 15 have targets which commend direct consideration of soil resources. There are five groups of SDGs and assigned SDG indicators where soil plays a central role. Frameworks of soil-related sustainable development goals and related indicators which can be monitored in current monitoring schemes are proposed.

  1. Saving Soil for Sustainable Land Use

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carmelo M. Torre

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper experiments with some costs-benefit analyses, seeking a balance between soil-take and buildability due to land policy and management. The activities have been carried out inside the MITO lab (Lab for Multimedia Information for Territorial Objects of the Polytechnic University of Bari. Reports have been produced about the Southern Italian Apulia Region, which is rich in farmland and coastline, often invaded by construction, with a severe loss of nature, a degradation of the soil, landscape, and ecosystem services. A methodological approach to the assessment of sustainability of urban expansion related, on one hand, to “plus values” deriving from the transformation of urban fringes and, on the other hand to the analysis of the transition of land-use, with the aim of “saving soil” against urban sprawl. The loss of natural and agricultural surfaces due to the expanding artificial lands is an unsustainable character of urban development, especially in the manner in which it was carried out in past decades. We try to assess how plus value can be considered “unearned”, and to understand if the “land value recapture” can compensate for the negative environmental effects of urban expansion. We measured the transition from farmlands and natural habitat to urbanization with the support of the use of some Geographic Information Systems (GIS tools, in favor of a new artificial land cover in the region of Apulia, Southern Italy. Data have been collected at the regional scale and at the local level, producing information about land use change and increases of property values due to improvements, referring to the 258 municipalities of the region. Looking at the results of our measurements, we started an interpretation of the driving forces that favor the plus values due to the transition of land-use. Compensation, easements, recapture of plus value, and improvement are, nowadays in Italy, discussed as major land-policy tools for

  2. Ecosystem Services and Community-Based Approaches to Wastewater and Saline Soils Reclamation in the Drylands of Uzbekistan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toderich, Kristina; Khujanazarov, Timur; Aralova, Dildora; Shuyskaya, Elena; Gismatulina, Liliya; Boboev, Hasan

    2017-04-01

    The working hypothesis of this article support an indication of declining water quality, increasing soils salinity and higher production costs in the Bukhara oasis- a borderline lands between the sandy Kyzylkum Desert and irrigated zone in the lower stream of Zarafshan River Basin. The pollution of waters and soils with toxic metals is the major environmental problem in these agro-ecological zones. Conventional remediation approaches usually do not ensure adequate results. The mobility of toxic pollutants can be highly facilitated by the chemical properties of soils and the aridity of the climate. The impact of these factors of land degradation induces reduction in biodiversity and yields losses of agricultural crops and wild desert plant communities. A recent survey showed that the chemical composition of the drainage effluents is sulfate-chloride-hydrocarbonate - magnesium-sodium-calcium with high level of mineralization 4200 - 18800 ppm. Concentration of chloride and sulfate, detected both in drainage effluents and ground water, is 10 times higher than maximum allowable concentration (MAC); and traces of heavy metals, such as strontium, selenium, arsenic, lead, zinc, uranium are 2 times higher than MAC. Distribution of boron showed a strong correlation with those of arsenic and antimony. Aluminum has a significant correlation with arsenic and lead distribution. Antimony correlates significantly with zinc and arsenic, while copper and iron (Fe57) also well correlate with each other. Because these metals rarely exist in natural environment, it is presumed that they are caused both by the usage of some chemicals at the agricultural field in harvest season and by the discharge of some technogenic chemicals from industry. The desalinated/treated wastewater were used to irrigate high value crops and the waste brine is transformed into a resource that was used to grow aquatic species (fish, algae) and irrigate halophytic species with benefits for livestock, farmers and

  3. Soil and water conservation strategies and impact on sustainable livelihood in Cape Verde - Case study of Ribeira Seca watershed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baptista, I.; Ferreira, A. D.; Tavares, J.; Querido, A. L. E.; Reis, A. E. A.; Geissen, V.; Ritsema, C.; Varela, A.

    2012-04-01

    Cape Verde, located off the coast of Senegal in western Africa, is a volcanic archipelago where a combination of human, climatic, geomorphologic and pedologic factors has led to extensive degradation of the soils. Like other Sahelian countries, Cape Verde has suffered the effects of desertification through the years, threatening the livelihood of the islands population and its fragile environment. In fact, the steep slopes in the ore agricultural islands, together with semi-arid and arid environments, characterized by an irregular and poorly distributed rainy season, with high intensity rainfall events, make dryland production a challenge. To survive in these fragile conditions, the stabilization of the farming systems and the maintenance of sustainable yields have become absolute priorities, making the islands an erosion control laboratory. Soil and water conservation strategies have been a centerpiece of the government's agricultural policies for the last half century. Aiming to maintain the soil in place and the water inside the soil, the successive governments of Cape Verde have implemented a number of soil and water conservation techniques, the most common ones being terraces, half moons, live barriers, contour rock walls, contour furrows and microcatchments, check dams and reforestation with drought resistant species. The soil and water conservation techniques implemented have contributed to the improvement of the economical and environmental conditions of the treated landscape, making crop production possible, consequently, improving the livelihood of the people living on the islands. In this paper, we survey the existing soil and water conservation techniques, analyze their impact on the livelihood condition of the population through a thorough literature review and field monitoring using a semi-quantitative methodology and evaluate their effectiveness and impact on crop yield in the Ribeira Seca watershed. A brief discussion is given on the cost and

  4. Monitoring soil for sustainable development and land degradation neutrality

    OpenAIRE

    Tóth, Gergely; Hermann, Tamás; da Silva, Manuela Ravina; Montanarella, Luca

    2018-01-01

    The adoption of the 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) listed in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by the United Nations urged the scientific community to generate information for planning and monitoring socioeconomic development and the underlying environmental compartments. SDGs 2, 3, 6, 11, 13, 14, and 15 have targets which commend direct consideration of soil resources. There are five groups of SDGs and assigned SDG indicators where soil plays a central role. Frameworks of ...

  5. Agronomic & entomological results from 7 years of dryland cropping systems research at Briggsdale, Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dryland crop production in the semi-arid Great Plains is limited by both the quantity and timing of precipitation. Sustainable dryland cropping systems maximize precipitation use efficiency by managing precipitation capture, storage, and use. Pest management approaches are also critical for efficie...

  6. Sustainable remediation of mercury contaminated soils by thermal desorption.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sierra, María J; Millán, Rocio; López, Félix A; Alguacil, Francisco J; Cañadas, Inmaculada

    2016-03-01

    Mercury soil contamination is an important environmental problem that needs the development of sustainable and efficient decontamination strategies. This work is focused on the application of a remediation technique that maintains soil ecological and environmental services to the extent possible as well as search for alternative sustainable land uses. Controlled thermal desorption using a solar furnace at pilot scale was applied to different types of soils, stablishing the temperature necessary to assure the functionality of these soils and avoid the Hg exchange to the other environmental compartments. Soil mercury content evolution (total, soluble, and exchangeable) as temperature increases and induced changes in selected soil quality indicators are studied and assessed. On total Hg, the temperature at which it is reduced until acceptable levels depends on the intended soil use and on how restrictive are the regulations. For commercial, residential, or industrial uses, soil samples should be heated to temperatures higher than 280 °C, at which more than 80 % of the total Hg is released, reaching the established legal total Hg level and avoiding eventual risks derived from high available Hg concentrations. For agricultural use or soil natural preservation, conversely, maintenance of acceptable levels of soil quality limit heating temperatures, and additional treatments must be considered to reduce available Hg. Besides total Hg concentration in soils, available Hg should be considered to make final decisions on remediation treatments and potential future uses. Graphical Abstract Solar energy use for remediation of soils affected by mercury.

  7. Transformation towards more sustainable soil management on Dutch arable farms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Claus, Sebastien; Egdom, van Ilona; Suter, Bruno; Sarpong, Clara; Pappa, Aikaterini; Miah, Imtiaz; Luppa, Caterina; Potters, J.I.

    2017-01-01

    Currently a debate is ongoing in the Netherlands on how to increase soil sustainable management in general and specifically in short term lease. Sustainable practices may not be adopted by farmers because of an interplay between EU, national and provincial legislation, short-term land lease system,

  8. Soil Degradation, Policy Intervention and Sustainable Agricultural Growth

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sasmal, J.; Weikard, H.P.

    2013-01-01

    Sustainable agricultural growth in developing countries is jeopardized by soil degradation consequent upon intensive cultivation and use of increasing doses of chemical inputs. To pave the way to sustainable agricultural growth we develop a model that incorporates organic fertilizer into the

  9. Dryland ecohydrology and climate change: critical issues and technical advances

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Wang

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Drylands cover about 40% of the terrestrial land surface and account for approximately 40% of global net primary productivity. Water is fundamental to the biophysical processes that sustain ecosystem function and food production, particularly in drylands where a tight coupling exists between ecosystem productivity, surface energy balance, biogeochemical cycles, and water resource availability. Currently, drylands support at least 2 billion people and comprise both natural and managed ecosystems. In this synthesis, we identify some current critical issues in the understanding of dryland systems and discuss how arid and semiarid environments are responding to the changes in climate and land use. The issues range from societal aspects such as rapid population growth, the resulting food and water security, and development issues, to natural aspects such as ecohydrological consequences of bush encroachment and the causes of desertification. To improve current understanding and inform upon the needed research efforts to address these critical issues, we identify some recent technical advances in terms of monitoring dryland water dynamics, water budget and vegetation water use, with a focus on the use of stable isotopes and remote sensing. These technological advances provide new tools that assist in addressing critical issues in dryland ecohydrology under climate change.

  10. Water Resources Assessment and Management in Drylands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magaly Koch

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Drylands regions of the world face difficult issues in maintaining water resources to meet current demands which will intensify in the future with population increases, infrastructure development, increased agricultural water demands, and climate change impacts on the hydrologic system. New water resources evaluation and management methods will be needed to assure that water resources in drylands are optimally managed in a sustainable manner. Development of water management and conservation methods is a multi-disciplinary endeavor. Scientists and engineers must collaborate and cooperate with water managers, planners, and politicians to successfully adopt new strategies to manage water not only for humans, but to maintain all aspects of the environment. This particularly applies to drylands regions where resources are already limited and conflicts over water are occurring. Every aspect of the hydrologic cycle needs to be assessed to be able to quantify the available water resources, to monitor natural and anthropogenic changes, and to develop flexible policies and management strategies that can change as conditions dictate. Optimal, sustainable water management is achieved by cooperation and not conflict, thereby necessitating the need for high quality scientific research and input into the process.

  11. Ecology, equity and economics: reframing dryland policy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hesse, Ced

    2011-11-15

    Drylands are among the world's most variable and unpredictable environments. But people here have long learnt how to live with and harness this variability to support sustainable and productive economies, societies and ecosystems. Policymakers have for too long ignored this wealth of experience and expertise with dire consequences. Attempts to replace traditional land use practices with modern techniques have simply exacerbated poverty, degradation and conflict. In the face of climate change and increasing uncertainty in the drylands, the need to reframe policy and practice has never been greater. The future must be built on sound scientific information, local knowledge, informed participation and the wisdom of customary institutions that emphasise social equity, ecological integrity and economic development.

  12. Engineering Global Soils to Sustain Planet Earth

    OpenAIRE

    Banwart, Steven A.; Menon, Manoj

    2014-01-01

    Global soils are under intense pressure from the demographic drivers of increasing human population and\\ud wealth. During the next 40 years Earth’s human population is project to approach 10 billion with a quadrupling\\ud in the global economy, a doubling in the demand for food, a doubling in the demand for fuel, and a more than\\ud 50% increase in the demand for clean water. Can Earth’s soils keep up?

  13. 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

  14. Total evaporation estimates from a Renosterveld and dryland wheat ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    2010-07-09

    Jul 9, 2010 ... 1 CSIR Natural Resources and the Environment, PO Box 320 Stellenbosch 7599, South ... A change in land use from Renosterveld to dryland annual crops could therefore affect the soil .... Modelling total evaporation spatially: Surface Energy ..... similar, with ETo's ranging between 1.8 mm∙d-1 (on a cloudy/.

  15. Sustainability of three modified soil conservation methods in agriculture area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Setiawan, M. A.; Sara, F. H.; Christanto, N.; Sartohadi, J.; Samodra, G.; Widicahyono, A.; Ardiana, N.; Widiyati, C. N.; Astuti, E. M.; Martha, G. K.; Malik, R. F.; Sambodo, A. P.; Rokhmaningtyas, R. P.; Swastanto, G. A.; Gomez, C.

    2018-04-01

    Recent innovations in soil conservation methods do not present any breakthrough. Providing more attractive soil conservation methods from the farmer’s perspective is however still of critical importance. Contributing to this soil research gap we attempt to evaluate the sustainable use of three modified conservation methods, namely JALAPA (Jala Sabut Kelapa - geotextile made of coconut fibres), wood sediment trap, and polybag system compared to traditional tillage without conservation method. This research provides both qualitative and quantitative analysis on the performance of each conservation measures. Therefore, in addition to the total sediment yield value and investment cost – as quantitative analysis, we also evaluate qualitatively the indicator of soil loss, installation, maintenance, and the durability of conservation medium. Those criteria define the sustainability use of each conservation method. The results show that JALAPA is the most effective method for controlling soil loss, but it also requires the most expensive cost for installation. However, our finding confirms that geotextile is sensitive to sun heating by which the coconut fibre can become dry and shrink. Wood sediment trap is the cheapest and easiest to install; however it is easily damaged by termite. Polybag method results in the highest productivity, but requires more time during the first installation. In terms of the farmer’s perspective, soil conservation using polybag system was the most accepted technique due to its high benefits; even if it is less effective at reducing soil loss compared to JALAPA.

  16. Using soil quality indicators for monitoring sustainable forest management

    Science.gov (United States)

    James A. Burger; Garland Gray; D. Andrew Scott

    2010-01-01

    Most private and public forest land owners and managers are compelled to manage their forests sustainably, which means management that is economically viable,environmentally sound, and socially acceptable. To meet this mandate, the USDA Forest Service protects the productivity of our nation’s forest soils by monitoring and evaluating management activities to ensure...

  17. Vegetation and erosion: comments on the linking mechanisms from the perspective of the Australian drylands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunkerley, D.

    2009-04-01

    of overland flow behaviour. In such analyses, the role of vascular plants has to be seen as one component of the system that also includes organic litter and non-vascular plants. A gap in understanding here relates to splash dislodgement of soil materials. This is known to depend on the depth of water lying above the mineral soil, being reduced for both shallow and deep water layers, and maximised at depths of a few incident drop diameters. Resolving how vegetation modifies surface water depths, and how splash dislodgement responds, across the spectrum of event sizes, remains a significant research challenge. Australian dryland streams exhibit abundant channel-associated vegetation. This exhibits diverse roles, again depending on context. Trees growing in the channel, together with associated barriers formed from floating woody debris, reduce flow speeds. On the other hand, deflector jams can result in locally intensified erosion of the banks. But the mechanisms linking vegetation and erosion are again complex. For instance, by reducing flow speeds and creating backwater effects, debris barriers promote mud deposition over channel margin sediments. This in turn reduces transmission losses, and sustains peak flow and associated sediment transport capacity further downstream than would otherwise be the case. As for hillslope processes, much remains to be learned about how these various processes play out across the spectrum of event magnitudes. Clearly, therefore, in a time of ongoing environmental change, the informed management of the global drylands requires continued research effort of the kind so well championed by John Thornes.

  18. Soil Tillage Conservation and its Effect on Soil Properties Bioremediation and Sustained Production of Crops

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rusu, Teodor; Ioana Moraru, Paula; Muresan, Liliana; Andriuca, Valentina; Cojocaru, Olesea

    2017-04-01

    Soil Tillage Conservation (STC) is considered major components of agricultural technology for soil conservation strategies and part of Sustainable Agriculture (SA). Human action upon soil by tillage determines important morphological, physical-chemical and biological changes, with different intensities and evaluative directions. Nowadays, internationally is unanimous accepted the fact that global climatic changes are the results of human intervention in the bio-geo-chemical water and material cycle, and the sequestration of carbon in soil is considered an important intervention to limit these changes. STC involves reducing the number of tillage's (minimum tillage) to direct sowing (no-tillage) and plant debris remains at the soil surface in the ratio of at least 30%. Plant debris left on the soil surface or superficial incorporated contributes to increased biological activity and is an important source of carbon sequestration. STC restore soil structure and improve overall soil drainage, allowing more rapid infiltration of water into soil. The result is a soil bioremediation, more productive, better protected against wind and water erosion and requires less fuel for preparing the germinative bed. Carbon sequestration in soil is net advantageous, improving the productivity and sustainability. We present the influence of conventional plough tillage system on soil, water and organic matter conservation in comparison with an alternative minimum tillage (paraplow, chisel plow and rotary harrow) and no-tillage system. The application of STC increased the organic matter content 0.8 to 22.1% and water stabile aggregate content from 1.3 to 13.6%, in the 0-30 cm depth, as compared to the conventional system. For the organic matter content and the wet aggregate stability, the statistical analysis of the data showed, increasing positive significance of STC. While the soil fertility and the wet aggregate stability were initially low, the effect of conservation practices on the

  19. SOIL ECOLOGY AS KEY TO SUSTAINABLE CROP PRODUCTION.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Deyn, G B

    2015-01-01

    Sustainable production of food, feed and fiberwarrants sustainable soil management and crop protection. The tools available to achieve this are both in the realm of the plants and of the soil, with a key role for plant-soil interactions. At the plant level we have vast knowledge of variation within plant species with respect to pests and diseases, based on which we can breed for resistance. However, given that systems evolve this resistance is bound to be temporarily, hence also other strategies are needed. Here I plea for an integrative approach for sustainable production using ecological principles. Ecology, the study of how organisms interact with their environment, teaches us that diversity promotes productivity and yield stability. These effects are thought to be governed through resource use complementarity and reduced build-up of pests and diseases both above- and belowground. In recent years especially the role of soil biotic interactions has revealed new insights in how plant diversity and productivity are related to soil biodiversity and the functions soil biota govern. In our grassland biodiversity studies we found that root feeders can promote plant diversity and succession without reducing plant community productivity, this illustrates the role of diversity to maintain productivity. Also diversity within species offers scope for sustainable production, for example through awareness of differences between plant genotypes in chemical defense compounds that can attract natural enemies of pests aboveground- and belowground thereby providing plant protection. Plant breeding can also benefit from using complementarity between plant species in the selection for new varieties, as our work demonstrated that when growing in species mixtures plant species adapt to each other over time such that their resource acquisition traits become more complementing. Finally, in a recent meta-analysis we show that earthworms can stimulate crop yield with on average 25%, but

  20. Knowledge, conservation and sustainable use of soil: agricultural chemistry aspects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola Adamo

    Full Text Available Soil is an environmental resource and plays ecological, social and economic functions which are fundamental for the life. To guarantee its availability to future generations, soil resource needs sustainable management. The CEC Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection identifies a series of soil degradation processes or threats, which must be identified and combated. These include erosion, decline in organic matter, local and diffuse contamination, sealing, compaction, decline in biodiversity, salinisation, floods and landslides. With respect to management of contamination with potentially toxic elements, an approach based on the identification and quantification of the various forms or, at least, the main pools, in which contaminants occur in soil, is envisaged. The residence time of an element in soil depends, indeed, by the mobility of its predominant forms. Speciation studies provide information on the mobility and biological availability of contaminants, and seek to assess not simply the contamination level, but rather the risk/toxicity of a polluted soil and to predict its reduction after application of remediation techniques. Soil degradation is often associated with a decrease in the organic matter content, mainly caused by soil use change and global warming. Improving the accumulation of organic matter in soil or contrasting its reduction has positive effects on soil and water quality, crop yields, biodiversity and climate leading to a reduction of green-house gas emissions from soil to the atmosphere. In order to obtain a real accumulation of organic matter in soil, it is not sufficient to temporarily increase its total content, but it is necessary to favour the main processes which govern organic matter stabilization. This requires an approach at both molecular and multidisciplinary level. The reforestation of agricultural and highly degraded soils or conservative agronomic practices, such as the use of humified compounds characterized by

  1. Knowledge, conservation and sustainable use of soil: agricultural chemistry aspects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola Adamo

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Soil is an environmental resource and plays ecological, social and economic functions which are fundamental for the life. To guarantee its availability to future generations, soil resource needs sustainable management. The CEC Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection identifies a series of soil degradation processes or threats, which must be identified and combated. These include erosion, decline in organic matter, local and diffuse contamination, sealing, compaction, decline in biodiversity, salinisation, floods and landslides. With respect to management of contamination with potentially toxic elements, an approach based on the identification and quantification of the various forms or, at least, the main pools, in which contaminants occur in soil, is envisaged. The residence time of an element in soil depends, indeed, by the mobility of its predominant forms. Speciation studies provide information on the mobility and biological availability of contaminants, and seek to assess not simply the contamination level, but rather the risk/toxicity of a polluted soil and to predict its reduction after application of remediation techniques. Soil degradation is often associated with a decrease in the organic matter content, mainly caused by soil use change and global warming. Improving the accumulation of organic matter in soil or contrasting its reduction has positive effects on soil and water quality, crop yields, biodiversity and climate leading to a reduction of green-house gas emissions from soil to the atmosphere. In order to obtain a real accumulation of organic matter in soil, it is not sufficient to temporarily increase its total content, but it is necessary to favour the main processes which govern organic matter stabilization. This requires an approach at both molecular and multidisciplinary level. The reforestation of agricultural and highly degraded soils or conservative agronomic practices, such as the use of humified compounds characterized by

  2. From Process Understanding Via Soil Functions to Sustainable Soil Management - A Systemic Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wollschlaeger, U.; Bartke, S.; Bartkowski, B.; Daedlow, K.; Helming, K.; Kogel-Knabner, I.; Lang, B.; Rabot, E.; Russell, D.; Stößel, B.; Weller, U.; Wiesmeier, M.; Rabot, E.; Vogel, H. J.

    2017-12-01

    Fertile soils are central resources for the production of biomass and the provision of food and energy. A growing world population and latest climate targets lead to an increasing demand for both, food and bio-energy, which requires preserving and improving the long-term productivity of soils as a bio-economic resource. At the same time, other soil functions and ecosystem services need to be maintained: filter for clean water, carbon sequestration, provision and recycling of nutrients, and habitat for biological activity. All these soil functions result from the interaction of a multitude of physical, chemical and biological processes that are not yet sufficiently understood. In addition, we lack understanding about the interplay between the socio-economic system and the soil system and how soil functions benefit human wellbeing. Hence, a solid and integrated assessment of soil quality requires the consideration of the ensemble of soil functions and its relation to soil management to finally be able to develop site-specific options for sustainable soil management. We present an integrated modeling approach that investigates the influence of soil management on the ensemble of soil functions. It is based on the mechanistic relationships between soil functional attributes, each explained by a network of interacting processes as derived from scientific evidence. As the evidence base required for feeding the model is for the most part stored in the existing scientific literature, another central component of our work is to set up a public "knowledge-portal" providing the infrastructure for a community effort towards a comprehensive knowledge base on soil processes as a basis for model developments. The connection to the socio-economic system is established using the Drivers-Pressures-Impacts-States-Responses (DPSIR) framework where our improved understanding about soil ecosystem processes is linked to ecosystem services and resource efficiency via the soil functions.

  3. Education on sustainable soil management for the masses? The Soil4Life MOOC

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maroulis, Jerry; Demie, Moore; Riksen, Michel; Ritsema, Coen

    2017-04-01

    Although soil is one of our most important natural resources and the foundation for all life on Earth it remains one of the most neglected of our resources. We, in soil science know this, but what do we do to reach more people more quickly? MOOCs, 'Massive Open Online Courses', are a vehicle for offering learning to virtually unlimited audiences at little cost to the student. Could MOOCs be the format for introducing more people worldwide to the importance of soil and sustainable soil management? MOOCs have their limitations and critics. However, depending on your goals, expectations and resources, they are a means for getting information to a much broader population than is possible through conventional educational formats. Wageningen University (WU) agreed and approved the development of a MOOC on sustainable soil management entitled Soil4Life. This presentation reviews the format and results of Soil4Life, concluding with some observations and reflections about this approach to soil science education. The Soil4Life MOOC introduces the role of soil in life on earth, soil degradation, and socio-economic issues related to generating action for long-term sustainability of the many soil-related ecosystem services. The objectives of Soil4Life are to raise awareness about the many important aspects of soil and sustainable soil management, and to allow the educational materials we produced to be available for use by others. The process of creating the Soil4Life MOOC involved 18 academic staff across all WU soil-related groups plus a vital team of education and technical staff. This number of people posed various challenges. However, with clear guidelines, lots of encouragement and technical support, Soil4Life was started in late 2015 and launched on the edx platform in May 2016. Just over 5000 students from 161 countries enrolled in the first offer of the Soil4Life MOOC - a modest number for MOOCs, but not bad for soil science. The targeted audience was initially high

  4. SOIL CONSERVATION TECHNIQUES IN OIL PALM CULTIVATION FOR SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Halus Satriawan

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Currently, many have been concerned with the oil palm cultivation since it may also put land resources in danger and bring about environmental damage. Poor practices in managing agricultural land very often occur due to the inadequate knowledge of soil conservation. Application of soil and water conservation is to maintain the productivity of the land and to prevent further damage by considering land capability classes. This research was aimed at obtaining soil and water conservation techniques which are the most appropriate and optimal for oil palm cultivation areas based on land capability classes which can support sustainable oil palm cultivation. Several soil conservation techniques had been treated to each different class III, IV, and VI of the studied area. These treatment had been performed by a standard plot erosion. The results showed for the land capability class III, Cover plants + Manure was able to control runoff, erosion and reduce leaching of N (LSD P≤0,05, in which soil conservation produced the lowest erosion (3,73t/ha, and N leaching (0,25%. On land capability class IV, Sediment Trap + cover plants+ manure was able to control runoff, erosion and reduce organic C and P leaching (LSD P≤0,05, in which soil conservation produced the lowest runoff (127,77 m3/ha, erosion (12,38t/ha, organic C leaching (1,14 %, and P leaching (1,28 ppm. On land capability class VI, there isn’t significant effect of soil conservation, but Bench Terrace + cover plants +manure has the lowest runoff, erosion and soil nutrient leaching.

  5. Conservation tillage for dryland farming in China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cai, D.X.; Ke, J.; Wang, X.B.; Hoogmoed, W.B.; Oenema, O.; Perdok, U.D.

    2006-01-01

    Dryland regions account for above 70% of total nation's farmland in China. These dryland are vital contributors to the total national production of grains, cash crops and animal products. However, the development of dryland farming is constrained by harsh climate, bad economic situation and poor

  6. The significance of soils and soil science towards realization of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keesstra, Saskia D.; Bouma, Johan; Wallinga, Jakob; Tittonell, Pablo; Smith, Pete; Cerdà, Artemi; Montanarella, Luca; Quinton, John N.; Pachepsky, Yakov; van der Putten, Wim H.; Bardgett, Richard D.; Moolenaar, Simon; Mol, Gerben; Jansen, Boris; Fresco, Louise O.

    2016-04-01

    In this forum paper we discuss how soil scientists can help to reach the recently adopted UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the most effective manner. Soil science, as a land-related discipline, has important links to several of the SDGs, which are demonstrated through the functions of soils and the ecosystem services that are linked to those functions (see graphical abstract in the Supplement). We explore and discuss how soil scientists can rise to the challenge both internally, in terms of our procedures and practices, and externally, in terms of our relations with colleague scientists in other disciplines, diverse groups of stakeholders and the policy arena. To meet these goals we recommend the following steps to be taken by the soil science community as a whole: (i) embrace the UN SDGs, as they provide a platform that allows soil science to demonstrate its relevance for realizing a sustainable society by 2030; (ii) show the specific value of soil science: research should explicitly show how using modern soil information can improve the results of inter- and transdisciplinary studies on SDGs related to food security, water scarcity, climate change, biodiversity loss and health threats; (iii) take leadership in overarching system analysis of ecosystems, as soils and soil scientists have an integrated nature and this places soil scientists in a unique position; (iii) raise awareness of soil organic matter as a key attribute of soils to illustrate its importance for soil functions and ecosystem services; (iv) improve the transfer of knowledge through knowledge brokers with a soil background; (v) start at the basis: educational programmes are needed at all levels, starting in primary schools, and emphasizing practical, down-to-earth examples; (vi) facilitate communication with the policy arena by framing research in terms that resonate with politicians in terms of the policy cycle or by considering drivers, pressures and responses affecting impacts of land

  7. Using internet technology to inform researchers, policy makers and other stakeholders about sustainable land management in drylands: experience from a large interdisciplinary and international project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geeson, N.; van den Elsen, E.; Brandt, J.; Quaranta, G.; Salvia, R.

    2012-04-01

    In the last twenty years the advent of the internet has made it much easier to share the results of scientific research with a wider range of audiences. Where once there were only scientific journals and books, it is now possible to deliver messages and dissemination products instantly, by email or other media, to huge circulation lists; thereby also addressing non-scientific audiences. Most scientific projects now host a website, but until recently few have exploited the communication possibilities to maximum advantage. DESIRE has been a large interdisciplinary and international project working to mitigate desertification by selecting and trialling sustainable land management practices with stakeholders. Therefore it has been very important to use a general project website, and a separate Harmonised Information System, to ensure that partners and stakeholders are able to understand the sustainable options and learn from one another. The project website has included many useful features, such as general project and partner information, a schedule of future meetings, and repositories of publicly (and project only) downloadable documents. Lessons have been learned about communication preferences between groups with different interests. For example, an on-line forum seemed a good way of allowing project partners to have their say on various topics. However it was not well-used and it was concluded that partners preferred to communicate just by email, a medium that they access most days for many uses. Whereas the project website focuses on the latest news, the Harmonised Information System has been used to document the history of the project, stage by stage, filling in each section as results became available. Information can be accessed from the perspective of both the research aims and each study site. Interactive tools and drop-down menus are among the features that are used to make the information as attractive and as accessible as possible. Although English is the

  8. The impact of the quality of coal mine stockpile soils on sustainable vegetation growth and productivity

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mushia, NM

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available , chemical, and biological properties, limiting their capability for sustainable vegetation growth. The aim of the study was to evaluate the impact of stockpile soils of differing depth and quality on vegetation growth and productivity. Soils were collected...

  9. Albedo feedbacks to future climate via climate change impacts on dryland biocrusts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rutherford, William A.; Painter, Thomas H.; Ferrenberg, Scott; Belnap, Jayne; Okin, Gregory S.; Flagg, Cody B.; Reed, Sasha C.

    2017-01-01

    Drylands represent the planet’s largest terrestrial biome and evidence suggests these landscapes have large potential for creating feedbacks to future climate. Recent studies also indicate that dryland ecosystems are responding markedly to climate change. Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) ‒ soil surface communities of lichens, mosses, and/or cyanobacteria ‒ comprise up to 70% of dryland cover and help govern fundamental ecosystem functions, including soil stabilization and carbon uptake. Drylands are expected to experience significant changes in temperature and precipitation regimes, and such alterations may impact biocrust communities by promoting rapid mortality of foundational species. In turn, biocrust community shifts affect land surface cover and roughness—changes that can dramatically alter albedo. We tested this hypothesis in a full-factorial warming (+4 °C above ambient) and altered precipitation (increased frequency of 1.2 mm monsoon-type watering events) experiment on the Colorado Plateau, USA. We quantified changes in shortwave albedo via multi-angle, solar-reflectance measurements. Warming and watering treatments each led to large increases in albedo (>30%). This increase was driven by biophysical factors related to treatment effects on cyanobacteria cover and soil surface roughness following treatment-induced moss and lichen mortality. A rise in dryland surface albedo may represent a previously unidentified feedback to future climate.

  10. Albedo feedbacks to future climate via climate change impacts on dryland biocrusts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rutherford, William A.; Painter, Thomas H.; Ferrenberg, Scott; Belnap, Jayne; Okin, Gregory S.; Flagg, Cody; Reed, Sasha C.

    2017-03-01

    Drylands represent the planet’s largest terrestrial biome and evidence suggests these landscapes have large potential for creating feedbacks to future climate. Recent studies also indicate that dryland ecosystems are responding markedly to climate change. Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) ‒ soil surface communities of lichens, mosses, and/or cyanobacteria ‒ comprise up to 70% of dryland cover and help govern fundamental ecosystem functions, including soil stabilization and carbon uptake. Drylands are expected to experience significant changes in temperature and precipitation regimes, and such alterations may impact biocrust communities by promoting rapid mortality of foundational species. In turn, biocrust community shifts affect land surface cover and roughness—changes that can dramatically alter albedo. We tested this hypothesis in a full-factorial warming (+4 °C above ambient) and altered precipitation (increased frequency of 1.2 mm monsoon-type watering events) experiment on the Colorado Plateau, USA. We quantified changes in shortwave albedo via multi-angle, solar-reflectance measurements. Warming and watering treatments each led to large increases in albedo (>30%). This increase was driven by biophysical factors related to treatment effects on cyanobacteria cover and soil surface roughness following treatment-induced moss and lichen mortality. A rise in dryland surface albedo may represent a previously unidentified feedback to future climate.

  11. A Field-Scale Sensor Network Data Set for Monitoring and Modeling the Spatial and Temporal Variation of Soil Water Content in a Dryland Agricultural Field

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gasch, C. K.; Brown, D. J.; Campbell, C. S.; Cobos, D. R.; Brooks, E. S.; Chahal, M.; Poggio, M.

    2017-12-01

    We describe a soil water content monitoring data set and auxiliary data collected at a 37 ha experimental no-till farm in the Northwestern United States. Water content measurements have been compiled hourly since 2007 by ECH2O-TE and 5TE sensors installed at 42 locations and five depths (0.3, 0.6, 0.9, 1.2, and 1.5 m, 210 sensors total) across the R.J. Cook Agronomy Farm, a Long-Term Agro-Ecosystem Research Site stationed on complex terrain in a Mediterranean climate. In addition to soil water content readings, the data set includes hourly and daily soil temperature readings, annual crop histories, a digital elevation model, Bt horizon maps, seasonal apparent electrical conductivity, soil texture, and soil bulk density. Meteorological records are also available for this location. We discuss the unique challenges of maintaining the network on an operating farm and demonstrate the nature and complexity of the soil water content data. This data set is accessible online through the National Agriculture Library, has been assigned a DOI, and will be maintained for the long term.

  12. [Effects of deep plowing time during the fallow period on water storage-consumption characteristics and wheat yield in dry-land soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dang, Jian You; Pei, Xue Xia; Zhang, Ding Yi; Wang, Jiao Ai; Zhang, Jing; Wu, Xue Ping

    2016-09-01

    Through a three-year field trail, effects of deep plowing time during the fallow period on water storage of 0-200 cm soil before sowing, water consumption of growth period, and growth and development of wheat were investigated. Results demonstrated that soil water storage (SWS) of the fallow period was influenced by deep plowing time, precipitation, and rainfall distribution. With postponing the time of deep plowing in the fallow period, SWS was increased firstly, and then decreased. SWS with deep plowing in early or middle of August was 23.9-45.8 mm more than that with deep plowing in mid-July. It would benefit SWS when more precipitation occurred in the fallow period or more rainfall was distributed in August and September. Deep plowing at a proper time could facilitate SWS, N and P absorption of wheat, and the number of stems before winter and the spike number. The yield of wheat with deep plowing in early or middle August was 3.67%-18.2% higher than that with deep plowing in mid-July, and it was positively correlated with water storage of 0-200 cm soil during the fallow period and SWS of each soil layer during the wheat growth period. However, this correlation coefficient would be weakened by adequate rainfall in spring, the critical growing period for wheat. The time of deep plowing mainly affected the water consumption at soil layer of 60-140 cm during wheat growth. Under current farming conditions of south Shanxi, the increased grain yield of wheat could be achieved by combining the measures of high wheat stubble and wheat straw covering for holding soil water and deep plowing between the Beginning of Autumn (August 6th) and the Limit of Heat (August 21st) for promoting soil water penetration characteristics to improve the number of stems before winter and spike.

  13. Arid waste? Reassessing the value of dryland pastoralism

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hesse, Ced; MacGregor, James

    2009-06-15

    East Africa has a huge hidden asset – but risks throwing it away in the quest for economic development. This is its millions-strong herds of dryland livestock managed by pastoralists. New findings show that pastoralism has immense potential value for reducing poverty, managing the environment, promoting sustainable development and building climate resilience. In Kenya alone, the sector is worth an estimated three-quarters of a billion dollars a year. Yet pastoralism is seen by many as archaic, economically inefficient, chaotic and environmentally destructive – perceptions that are not evidence-based, yet drive much regional policy. Inadequate, inaccurate national statistics on pastoralism do little to alter this view. Persistent undervaluation has effectively trapped up to 20 million dryland pastoralists in a cycle of poverty, conflict and environmental degradation. Now, with climate change biting, the time is ripe for a conceptual framework that captures the total economic benefits of this livelihood.

  14. Effect of sustainable land management practices on soil aggregation and stabilization of organic carbon in semiarid mediterranean ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Franco, Noelia; Albaladejo, Juan; Almagro, María; Wiesmeier, Martin; Martínez-Mena, María

    2016-04-01

    Arid and semiarid regions represent about 47% of the total land area of the world (UNEP, 1992). At present, there is a priority interest for carbon (C) sequestration in drylands. These areas are considered as very fragile ecosystems with low organic carbon (OC) saturation, and potentially, high capacity for soil OC sequestration. In addition, the restoration of these areas is one of the major challenges for scientists, who will be able to identify and recommended the best land uses and sustainable land management (SLM) practices for soil conservation and mitigation of climate change in these environments. In this regard, in semiarid Mediterranean ecosystems there is an urgent need for the implementation of SLM practices regardless of land-use type (forest, agricultural and shrubland) to maintain acceptable levels of soil organic matter (SOM) and the physico-chemical protection of the OC. Long- and short-term effects of SLM practices on soil aggregation and SOC stabilization were studied in two land uses. The long-term experiment was conducted in a reforestation area with Pinus halepensis Mill., where two afforestation techniques were implemented 20 years ago: a) mechanical terracing with a single application of organic waste of urban soil refuse, and b) mechanical terracing without organic amendment. An adjacent shrubland was considered as the reference plot. The short-term experiment was conducted in a rain-fed almond (Prunus dulcis Mill., var. Ferragnes) orchard where two SLM practices were introduced 4 years ago: a) reduced tillage plus green manure, and b) no tillage. Reduced tillage was considered as the reference plot given that it is the habitual management practice. Four aggregate size classes were differentiated by sieving (large and small macroaggregates, microaggregates, and the silt plus clay fraction), and the microaggregates occluded within small macroaggregates (SMm) were isolated. In addition, different organic C fractions corresponding with active

  15. Soil as a Sustainable Resource for the Bioeconomy - BonaRes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wollschläger, Ute; Amelung, Wulf; Brüggemann, Nicolas; Brunotte, Joachim; Gebbers, Robin; Grosch, Rita; Heinrich, Uwe; Helming, Katharina; Kiese, Ralf; Leinweber, Peter; Reinhold-Hurek, Barbara; Veldkamp, Edzo; Vogel, Hans-Jörg; Winkelmann, Traud

    2017-04-01

    Fertile soils are a fundamental resource for the production of biomass and provision of food and energy. A growing world population and latest climate targets lead to an increasing demand for bio-based products which require preserving and - ideally - improving the long-term productivity of soils as a bio-economic resource. At the same time, other soil functions and ecosystem services need to be maintained: filter for clean water, carbon sequestration, provision and recycling of nutrients, and habitat for biological activity. All these soil functions result from the interaction of a multitude of physical, chemical and biological processes which are insufficiently understood. In addition, we lack understanding about the interplay between the socio-economic system and the soil system and how soil functions benefit human wellbeing, including SDGs. However, a solid and integrated assessment of soil quality requires the consideration of the ensemble of soil functions and its relation to soil management. To make soil management sustainable, we need to establish a scientific knowledge base of complex soil system processes that allows for developing models and tools to quantitatively predict the impact of a multitude of management measures on soil functions. This will finally allow for the provision of options for a site-specific, sustainable soil management. To face this challenge, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) recently launched the funding program "Soil as a Sustainable Resource for the Bioeconomy - BonaRes". In a joint effort, ten collaborative projects and the coordinating BonaRes Centre are engaged to close existing knowledge gaps for a profound and systemic assessment and understanding of soil functions and their sensitivity to soil management. In BonaRes, the complete process chain of sustainable soil use in the context of a sustainable bio-economy is being addressed: from understanding of soil processes using state-of the art and

  16. A dam in the drylands: Effects of soil geomorphic actions on a mediterranean alluvial scrubland and the endangered Santa Ana woolly star (Eriastrum densifolium spp. sanctorum)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernandez, R. R.; Sandquist, D. R.

    2017-12-01

    When dams preclude natural flow, maintenance of river ecosystems adapted to infrequent, catastrophic floods poses unique challenges. Further, riparian mediterranean ecosystems with high inter-annual and seasonal precipitation variability, coupled with complicated patterns of biotic and abiotic heterogeneity, intensify challenges for management under disrupted flow regimes. In this study, we evaluated the impact of six unique soil geomorphic actions on the rare Riversidian alluvial fan sage scrub plant community, which includes the endangered Santa Ana River woolly star (Eriastrum densifolium spp. sanctorum [Eds]) after 5, 7.5, and 13 years of response. We implemented a complete randomized block design, with each block incorporating six geomorphic treatments: cleared, diked, cut, filled (10 cm soil), filled (20 cm soil), and filled (30 cm soil), mimicking one of more physical disturbance process occurring after a natural flood event. We performed native and exotic plant community surveys on full plots in summer 2006, representing 7.5 years of response from the original 1999 disturbance, and on (re-disturbed half) plots in fall 2012, representing (5 years) 13 years of response. We found that recruitment of Eds into late-successional (i.e., control) plots is highly limited (0.0, 4.1, and 2.5% cover) after 5, 7.5, and 13 years, respectively, with implications for the persistence of this species, whereas the cut treatment showed significantly higher cover of Eds (25.3, 53.4, 14.3%, respectively). Our results also suggest that exotic annual grasses may inhibit Eds and other Riversidian alluvial fan sage scrub plant community members under a disrupted flow regime but that soil geomorphic treatment of late-successional habitat can be effective in facilitating Eds and Riversidian alluvial fan sage scrub establishment.

  17. 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...

  18. Soil Eroison, T Values, and Sustainability: A Review and Exercise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beach, Timothy; Gersmehl, Philip

    1993-01-01

    Reviews issues related to soil erosion and soil loss tolerance in the United States. Describes an instructional plan in which students estimate soil loses in three geographical regions using the Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE). Recommends integrating the geography of soil erosion with broader conceptual questions in physical geography. (CFR)

  19. Uncertainty indication in soil function maps - transparent and easy-to-use information to support sustainable use of soil resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greiner, Lucie; Nussbaum, Madlene; Papritz, Andreas; Zimmermann, Stephan; Gubler, Andreas; Grêt-Regamey, Adrienne; Keller, Armin

    2018-05-01

    Spatial information on soil function fulfillment (SFF) is increasingly being used to inform decision-making in spatial planning programs to support sustainable use of soil resources. Soil function maps visualize soils abilities to fulfill their functions, e.g., regulating water and nutrient flows, providing habitats, and supporting biomass production based on soil properties. Such information must be reliable for informed and transparent decision-making in spatial planning programs. In this study, we add to the transparency of soil function maps by (1) indicating uncertainties arising from the prediction of soil properties generated by digital soil mapping (DSM) that are used for soil function assessment (SFA) and (2) showing the response of different SFA methods to the propagation of uncertainties through the assessment. For a study area of 170 km2 in the Swiss Plateau, we map 10 static soil sub-functions for agricultural soils for a spatial resolution of 20 × 20 m together with their uncertainties. Mapping the 10 soil sub-functions using simple ordinal assessment scales reveals pronounced spatial patterns with a high variability of SFF scores across the region, linked to the inherent properties of the soils and terrain attributes and climate conditions. Uncertainties in soil properties propagated through SFA methods generally lead to substantial uncertainty in the mapped soil sub-functions. We propose two types of uncertainty maps that can be readily understood by stakeholders. Cumulative distribution functions of SFF scores indicate that SFA methods respond differently to the propagated uncertainty of soil properties. Even where methods are comparable on the level of complexity and assessment scale, their comparability in view of uncertainty propagation might be different. We conclude that comparable uncertainty indications in soil function maps are relevant to enable informed and transparent decisions on the sustainable use of soil resources.

  20. Aeolian and fluvial processes in dryland regions: the need for integrated studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, Jayne; Munson, Seth M.; Field, Jason P.

    2011-01-01

    Aeolian and fluvial processes play a fundamental role in dryland regions of the world and have important environmental and ecological consequences from local to global scales. Although both processes operate over similar spatial and temporal scales and are likely strongly coupled in many dryland systems, aeolian and fluvial processes have traditionally been studied separately, making it difficult to assess their relative importance in drylands, as well as their potential for synergistic interaction. Land degradation by accelerated wind and water erosion is a major problem throughout the world's drylands, and although recent studies suggest that these processes likely interact across broad spatial and temporal scales to amplify the transport of soil resources from and within drylands, many researchers and land managers continue to view them as separate and unrelated processes. Here, we illustrate how aeolian and fluvial sediment transport is coupled at multiple spatial and temporal scales and highlight the need for these interrelated processes to be studied from a more integrated perspective that crosses traditional disciplinary boundaries. Special attention is given to how the growing threat of climate change and land-use disturbance will influence linkages between aeolian and fluvial processes in the future. We also present emerging directions for interdisciplinary needs within the aeolian and fluvial research communities that call for better integration across a broad range of traditional disciplines such as ecology, biogeochemistry, agronomy, and soil conservation.

  1. Soil mapping and processes modelling for sustainable land management: a review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Paulo; Brevik, Eric; Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Miller, Bradley; Smetanova, Anna; Depellegrin, Daniel; Misiune, Ieva; Novara, Agata; Cerda, Artemi

    2017-04-01

    Soil maps and models are fundamental for a correct and sustainable land management (Pereira et al., 2017). They are an important in the assessment of the territory and implementation of sustainable measures in urban areas, agriculture, forests, ecosystem services, among others. Soil maps represent an important basis for the evaluation and restoration of degraded areas, an important issue for our society, as consequence of climate change and the increasing pressure of humans on the ecosystems (Brevik et al. 2016; Depellegrin et al., 2016). The understanding of soil spatial variability and the phenomena that influence this dynamic is crucial to the implementation of sustainable practices that prevent degradation, and decrease the economic costs of soil restoration. In this context, soil maps and models are important to identify areas affected by degradation and optimize the resources available to restore them. Overall, soil data alone or integrated with data from other sciences, is an important part of sustainable land management. This information is extremely important land managers and decision maker's implements sustainable land management policies. The objective of this work is to present a review about the advantages of soil mapping and process modeling for sustainable land management. References Brevik, E., Calzolari, C., Miller, B., Pereira, P., Kabala, C., Baumgarten, A., Jordán, A. (2016) Historical perspectives and future needs in soil mapping, classification and pedological modelling, Geoderma, 264, Part B, 256-274. Depellegrin, D.A., Pereira, P., Misiune, I., Egarter-Vigl, L. (2016) Mapping Ecosystem Services in Lithuania. International Journal of Sustainable Development and World Ecology, 23, 441-455. Pereira, P., Brevik, E., Munoz-Rojas, M., Miller, B., Smetanova, A., Depellegrin, D., Misiune, I., Novara, A., Cerda, A. (2017) Soil mapping and process modelling for sustainable land management. In: Pereira, P., Brevik, E., Munoz-Rojas, M., Miller, B

  2. Rehabilitation of Degraded Rangeland in Drylands by Prickly Pear (Opuntia ficus-indica L. Plantations: Effect on Soil and Spontaneous Vegetation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Souad Neffar

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available In arid and semi-arid lands, the spiny prickly pear (Opuntia ficus-indica is an outstanding plant for soil conservation and restoration. To determine the role of Opuntia ficus-indica on vegetation recovery process in desertified areas of Southern Tebessa (Northeast Algeria, we investigated the effect of prickly pear plantation age and some soil properties (grain size, pH, electrical conductivity, organic matter, total nitrogen, available phosphorus, and CaCO3 equivalents on native plant community. Vegetation cover and plant diversity were assessed by calculating the number of individual plants (N, species richness (S, their ratio (N/S, Shannon index, and Evenness in prickly pear plantation plots of different ages (control, 5 and 20 years. Even if surveyed soil parameters did not differ significantly among O. ficus-indica plantations, results of ANOVA testing the effect of Opuntia plantations on native vegetation traits revealed significant variation for plant abundance (P < 0.0001, N/S ratio (P = 0.003 and vegetation cover (P < 0.0001. Vegetation cover differed significantly with both prickly-pear plantation age (P = 0.031 and seasons (P = 0.019. Tukey's tests revealed that all vegetation traits were significantly higher on prickly pear plantations than in control plots. Multiple comparisons also showed that plant abundance, N/S ratio and vegetation cover were significantly different between both young and old plantations and the controls. Prickly pear cultures facilitated the colonization and development of herbaceous species by ameliorating the severe environmental conditions. In conclusion, the facilitative effect of O. ficus-indica has been clearly demonstrated for both abundance and cover of native vegetation.

  3. Drought preparedness and drought mitigation in the developing world׳s drylands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahmoud Solh

    2014-06-01

    Drought is a climatic event that cannot be prevented, but interventions and preparedness to drought can help to: (i be better prepared to cope with drought; (ii develop more resilient ecosystems (iii improve resilience to recover from drought; and (iv mitigate the impacts of droughts. Preparedness strategies to drought include: (a geographical shifts of agricultural systems; (b climate-proofing rainfall-based systems; (c making irrigated systems more efficient; (d expanding the intermediate rainfed–irrigated systems. The paper presents successful research results and case studies applying some innovative techniques where clear impact is demonstrated to cope with drought and contribute to food security in dry areas. The CGIAR Consortium Research Program (CRP on “Integrated and Sustainable Agricultural Production Systems for Improved Food Security and Livelihoods in Dry Areas” (in short, “Dryland Systems”, led by ICARDA, was launched in May 2013 with many partners and stakeholders from 40 countries. It addresses farming systems in dry areas, at a global level, involving 80 partner institutions. The Dryland Systems Program aims at coping with drought and water scarcity to enhance food security and reduce poverty in dry areas through an integrated agro-ecosystem approach. It will also deliver science-based solutions that can be adopted in regions that are not yet experiencing extreme shocks, but will be affected in the medium to long-term. The approach entails shifting the thinking away from the traditional focus on a small number of research components to take an integrated approach aiming to address agro-ecosystems challenges. Such an approach involves crops, livestock, rangeland, trees, soils, water and policies. It is one of the first global research for development efforts that brings “systems thinking” to farming innovations leading to improved livelihoods in the developing world. The new technique uses modern innovation platforms to involve all

  4. The role of soils in sustaining society and the environment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hartemink, A.E.; McBratney, A.B.; White, R.E.

    2009-01-01

    This four-volume set, edited by leading experts in soil science, brings together in one collection a series of papers that have been fundamental to the development of soil science as a defined discipline. Volume 4 on The Role of Soils in Society and the Environment covers: - Soils and the

  5. Performance of dryland and wetland plant species on extensive green roofs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacIvor, J Scott; Ranalli, Melissa A; Lundholm, Jeremy T

    2011-04-01

    Green roofs are constructed ecosystems where plants perform valuable services, ameliorating the urban environment through roof temperature reductions and stormwater interception. Plant species differ in functional characteristics that alter ecosystem properties. Plant performance research on extensive green roofs has so far indicated that species adapted to dry conditions perform optimally. However, in moist, humid climates, species typical of wetter soils might have advantages over dryland species. In this study, survival, growth and the performance of thermal and stormwater capture functions of three pairs of dryland and wetland plant species were quantified using an extensive modular green roof system. Seedlings of all six species were germinated in a greenhouse and planted into green roof modules with 6 cm of growing medium. There were 34 treatments consisting of each species in monoculture and all combinations of wet- and dryland species in a randomized block design. Performance measures were survival, vegetation cover and roof surface temperature recorded for each module over two growing seasons, water loss (an estimate of evapotranspiration) in 2007, and albedo and water capture in 2008. Over two seasons, dryland plants performed better than wetland plants, and increasing the number of dryland species in mixtures tended to improve functioning, although there was no clear effect of species or habitat group diversity. All species had survival rates >75 % after the first winter; however, dryland species had much greater cover, an important indicator of green roof performance. Sibbaldiopsis tridentata was the top performing species in monoculture, and was included in the best treatments. Although dryland species outperformed wetland species, planting extensive green roofs with both groups decreased performance only slightly, while increasing diversity and possibly habitat value. This study provides further evidence that plant composition and diversity can

  6. Re-spacing African drylands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Korf, Benedikt; Hagmann, Tobias; Emmenegger, Rony Hugo

    2015-01-01

    processes of state territorialization and indigenous commodification become mutually entangled. Sedentarization is not imposed by the state or corporate capital, but by indigenous merchants who capture the frontier's potential resource dividend. Land appropriation in the drylands is co-produced by political...... claims to territory, capital investment and new technopolitics through which indigenous (pastoral, Somali) merchants and politicians become complicit with the state's project of territorialization and sedentarization in a self-governing fashion. The irony of this situation is that the (Ethiopian) state...

  7. High resolution digital soil mapping as a future instrument for developing sustainable landuse strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gries, Philipp; Funke, Lisa-Marie; Baumann, Frank; Schmidt, Karsten; Behrens, Thorsten; Scholten, Thomas

    2016-04-01

    Climate change, increase in population and intensification of land use pose a great challenge for sustainable handling of soils. Intelligent landuse systems are able to minimize and/or avoid soil erosion and loss of soil fertility. A successful application of such systems requires area-wide soil information with high resolution. Containing three consecutive steps, the project INE-2-H („innovative sustainable landuse") at the University of Tuebingen is about creating high-resolution soil information using Digital Soil Mapping (DSM) techniques to develop sustainable landuse strategies. Input data includes soil data from fieldwork (texture and carbon content), the official digital soil and geological map (1:50.000) as well as a wide selection of local, complex and combined terrain parameters. First, soil maps have been created using the DSM approach and Random Forest (RF). Due to high resolution (10x10 m pixels), those maps show a more detailed spatial variability of soil information compared to the official maps used. Root mean square errors (RMSE) of the modelled maps vary from 2.11 % to 6.87 % and the coefficients of determination (R²) go from 0.42 to 0.68. Second, soil erosion potentials have been estimated according to the Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE). Long-term average annual soil loss ranges from 0.56 to 24.23 [t/ha/a]. Third, combining high-resolution erosion potentials with expert-knowledge of local farmers will result in a landuse system adapted to local conditions. This system will include sustainable strategies reducing soil erosion and conserving soil fertility.

  8. SUSTAINABILITY EFFECTS OF Crotalaria juncea L. AND Crotalaria spectabilis ROTH ON SOIL FERTILITY AND SOIL CONSERVATION

    Science.gov (United States)

    László, Márton, ,, Dr.

    2010-05-01

    Sustainable agriculture is defined as the successful management of resources for agriculture to satisfy changing human needs while maintaining or enhancing the quality of the environment and conserving natural resources. A sustained increase of agricultural production becomes a great possibility for international community. In this process a green manure crops application for example crotalaria get a new chance for improvement process on soil fertility and soil conservation. Field experiment was carried out on a calcareous chernozem soil (Experiment station Nagyhörcsök of RISSAC-HAS) in partly of experiment series (3 years) at Hungary in 1998. The soil with about 20% clay, 3% humus, 5% CaCO3 in its ploughed layer. To ensure a sufficient macro and micronutrient supply in the whole experiment, 100 kg N, 100 kg P2O5 and 100 kg K2O were given hectare. The Crotalaria juncea L. and Crotalaria spectabilis ROTH were applied with 2 replications. Each plot has an area of 45 m2 with 230-230 individual plants. In vegetation grown period were measured green and dry matter yield. The soil and plant samples were analysed for the macro and microelements contents. The main results achieved in 1998 are summarized as follows: 1. The green matter yield at before flowering reached 63.8 t ha-1 in case of Crotalaria juncea L. 2. Total dry matter yield at harvest (without roots) fluctuated between 9.6 and 17.0 t ha-1, depending on the crotalaria species. 3. The average of element concentration (including stems, leaves of Crotalaria juncea L. and Crotalaria spectabilis ROTH) before flowering reached to 3.2 % N, 2.3 % Ca, 1.3 % K, 0.39 % Mg, 0.22 % P and 0.24 % S. The content of Al and Fe total 14 - 25, while that of Sr, Mn, Na, B and Ba 2 - 6 ppm in dry matter. The Zn, Cu, Mo, Cr, Se, Ni, As, Pb, Cd and Co concentration did not reach here the value of 1 ppm. 4. The average of biological activated element uptake (including stems, leaves of Crotalaria juncea L. and Crotalaria spectabilis

  9. Noise-induced stability in dryland plant ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Odorico, Paolo; Laio, Francesco; Ridolfi, Luca

    2005-08-02

    Dryland plant ecosystems tend to exhibit bistable dynamics with two preferential configurations of bare and vegetated soils. Climate fluctuations are usually believed to act as a source of disturbance on these ecosystems and to reduce their stability and resilience. In contrast, this work shows that random interannual fluctuations of precipitation may lead to the emergence of an intermediate statistically stable condition between the two stable states of the deterministic dynamics of vegetation. As a result, there is an enhancement of ecosystem resilience and a decrease in the likelihood of catastrophic shifts to the desert state.

  10. Water conservation in semiarid dryland agriculture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Willis, W.O.

    1980-01-01

    Factors affecting water conservation in semiarid dryland regions are discussed. Because precipitation is the only source of water for plant growth in most semiarid regions, a good understanding of precipitation patterns (quantity, distribution, and their probable frequency) is needed for each dryland area. The various dryland practices, e.g. tillage, cultivars, residue management, fertility, erosion control, and grazing, must be considered as integral parts of an entire system to develop best management practices and to gain most efficient water conservation for food and fiber production. (author)

  11. Role of soil health in maintaining environmental sustainability of surface coal mining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acton, Peter M; Fox, James F; Campbell, J Elliott; Jones, Alice L; Rowe, Harold; Martin, Darren; Bryson, Sebastian

    2011-12-01

    Mountaintop coal mining (MCM) in the Southern Appalachian forest region greatly impacts both soil and aquatic ecosystems. Policy and practice currently in place emphasize water quality and soil stability but do not consider upland soil health. Here we report soil organic carbon (SOC) measurements and other soil quality indicators for reclaimed soils in the Southern Appalachian forest region to quantify the health of the soil ecosystem. The SOC sequestration rate of the MCM soils was 1.3 MgC ha(-1) yr(-1) and stocks ranged from 1.3 ± 0.9 to 20.9 ± 5.9 Mg ha(-1) and contained only 11% of the SOC of surrounding forest soils. Comparable reclaimed mining soils reported in the literature that are supportive of soil ecosystem health had SOC stocks 2.5-5 times greater than the MCM soils and sequestration rates were also 1.6-3 times greater. The high compaction associated with reclamation in this region greatly reduces both the vegetative rooting depth and infiltration of the soil and increases surface runoff, thus bypassing the ability of soil to naturally filter groundwater. In the context of environmental sustainability of MCM, it is proposed that the entire watershed ecosystem be assessed and that a revision of current policy be conducted to reflect the health of both water and soil.

  12. Phytostabilisation-A Sustainable Remediation Technique for Zinc in Soils

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Padmavathiamma, Prabha [University of British Columbia, Faculty of Land and Food Systems (Canada); Li, Loretta, E-mail: lli@civil.ubc.c [University of British Columbia, Department of Civil Engineering (Canada)

    2009-08-15

    Two studies were conducted to determine a feasible and practical phytoremediation strategy for Zn-contaminated soils. The aim of the first study was to identify promising plant species capable of Zn remediation for the soils and climatic conditions of British Columbia. The purpose of the second study was to assess the effects of soil amendments in modifying the soil properties and providing the right conditions for the plants to immobilise Zn. Promising plants for phytostabilisation in the first study (Lolium perenne, Festuca rubra and Poa pratensis) were tested in the presence of soil amendments (lime, phosphate and compost, both individually and in combination) in the second study. The efficiency of treatments to stabilise Zn was based on Zn fractionation in the soil and on absorption and partitioning of Zn in plants. Maximum Zn immobilisation was achieved in the soil by a combination of lime, phosphate and compost, in conjunction with growth of P. pratensis.

  13. A framework of connections between soil and people can help improve sustainability of the food system and soil functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ball, Bruce C; Hargreaves, Paul R; Watson, Christine A

    2018-04-01

    Globally soil quality and food security continue to decrease indicating that agriculture and the food system need to adapt. Improving connection to the soil by knowledge exchange can help achieve this. We propose a framework of three types of connections that allow the targeting of appropriate messages to different groups of people. Direct connection by, for example, handling soil develops soil awareness for management that can be fostered by farmers joining groups on soil-focused farming such as organic farming or no-till. Indirect connections between soil, food and ecosystem services can inform food choices and environmental awareness in the public and can be promoted by, for example, gardening, education and art. Temporal connection revealed from past usage of soil helps to bring awareness to policy workers of the need for the long-term preservation of soil quality for environmental conservation. The understanding of indirect and temporal connections can be helped by comparing them with the operations of the networks of soil organisms and porosity that sustain soil fertility and soil functions.

  14. An Underground Revolution: Biodiversity and Soil Ecological Engineering for Agricultural Sustainability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bender, S Franz; Wagg, Cameron; van der Heijden, Marcel G A

    2016-06-01

    Soil organisms are an integral component of ecosystems, but their activities receive little recognition in agricultural management strategies. Here we synthesize the potential of soil organisms to enhance ecosystem service delivery and demonstrate that soil biodiversity promotes multiple ecosystem functions simultaneously (i.e., ecosystem multifunctionality). We apply the concept of ecological intensification to soils and we develop strategies for targeted exploitation of soil biological traits. We compile promising approaches to enhance agricultural sustainability through the promotion of soil biodiversity and targeted management of soil community composition. We present soil ecological engineering as a concept to generate human land-use systems, which can serve immediate human needs while minimizing environmental impacts. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Beyond desertification: New paradigms for dryland landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    The dryland desertification paradigm focuses on losses of ecosystem services accompanying transitions from grasslands to systems dominated by bare ground or woody plants unpalatable for domestic livestock. However, recent studies reveal complex transitions across a range of environmental conditions ...

  16. Dryland climate change: Recent progress and challenges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, J.; Li, Y.; Fu, C.; Chen, F.; Fu, Q.; Dai, A.; Shinoda, M.; Ma, Z.; Guo, W.; Li, Z.; Zhang, L.; Liu, Y.; Yu, H.; He, Y.; Xie, Y.; Guan, X.; Ji, M.; Lin, L.; Wang, S.; Yan, H.; Wang, G.

    2017-09-01

    Drylands are home to more than 38% of the world's population and are one of the most sensitive areas to climate change and human activities. This review describes recent progress in dryland climate change research. Recent findings indicate that the long-term trend of the aridity index (AI) is mainly attributable to increased greenhouse gas emissions, while anthropogenic aerosols exert small effects but alter its attributions. Atmosphere-land interactions determine the intensity of regional response. The largest warming during the last 100 years was observed over drylands and accounted for more than half of the continental warming. The global pattern and interdecadal variability of aridity changes are modulated by oceanic oscillations. The different phases of those oceanic oscillations induce significant changes in land-sea and north-south thermal contrasts, which affect the intensity of the westerlies and planetary waves and the blocking frequency, thereby altering global changes in temperature and precipitation. During 1948-2008, the drylands in the Americas became wetter due to enhanced westerlies, whereas the drylands in the Eastern Hemisphere became drier because of the weakened East Asian summer monsoon. Drylands as defined by the AI have expanded over the last 60 years and are projected to expand in the 21st century. The largest expansion of drylands has occurred in semiarid regions since the early 1960s. Dryland expansion will lead to reduced carbon sequestration and enhanced regional warming. The increasing aridity, enhanced warming, and rapidly growing population will exacerbate the risk of land degradation and desertification in the near future in developing countries.

  17. The extent of forest in dryland biomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jean-Francois Bastin; Nora Berrahmouni; Alan Grainger; Danae Maniatis; Danilo Mollicone; Rebecca Moore; Chiara Patriarca; Nicolas Picard; Ben Sparrow; Elena Maria Abraham; Kamel Aloui; Ayhan Atesoglu; Fabio Attore; Caglar Bassullu; Adia Bey; Monica Garzuglia; Luis G. GarcÌa-Montero; Nikee Groot; Greg Guerin; Lars Laestadius; Andrew J. Lowe; Bako Mamane; Giulio Marchi; Paul Patterson; Marcelo Rezende; Stefano Ricci; Ignacio Salcedo; Alfonso Sanchez-Paus Diaz; Fred Stolle; Venera Surappaeva; Rene Castro

    2017-01-01

    Dryland biomes cover two-fifths of Earth’s land surface, but their forest area is poorly known. Here, we report an estimate of global forest extent in dryland biomes, based on analyzing more than 210,000 0.5-hectare sample plots through a photo-interpretation approach using large databases of satellite imagery at (i) very high spatial resolution and (ii) very high...

  18. Developing an Agro-Ecological Zoning Model for Tumbleweed (Salsola kali, as Energy Crop in Drylands of Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Falasca Silvia

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Salsola kali is considered extremely valuable as an energy crop worldwide because it adapts easily to environments with strong abiotic stresses (hydric, saline and alkaline and produces large amounts of biomass in drylands. This species is categorized as an important weed in Argentina. The aim of this work was to design an agro-ecological zoning model for tumbleweed in Argentina, employing a Geography Information System. Based on the bioclimatic requirements for the species and the climatic data for Argentina (1981–2010 period, an agro-climatic suitability map was drawn. This map was superimposed on the saline and alkaline soil maps delineated by the Food and Agriculture Organization for dry climates, generating the agro-ecological zoning on a scale of 1 : 500 000. This zoning revealed very suitable and suitable cultivation areas on halomorphic soils. The potential growing areas extend from N of the Salta province (approximately 22° S to the Santa Cruz province (50° S. The use of tumbleweed on halomorphic soils under semi-arid to arid conditions, for the dual purpose of forage use and source of lignocellulosic material for bioenergy, could improve agricultural productivity in these lands. Furthermore, it could also contribute to their environmental sustainability, since the species can be used to reclaim saline soils over the years. Based on international bibliography, the authors outlined an agro-ecological zoning model. This model may be applied to any part of the world, using the agro-ecological limits presented here.

  19. The impact of marketing systems on soil sustainability of agriculture in developing countries : a method and an application

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Castaño, J.; Meulenberg, M.T.G.; Tilburg, van A.

    2005-01-01

    This article is concerned with soil-sustainability problems of agriculture in developing countries, in particular with soil erosion. The aim of our study is to develop a comprehensive model that explains the adoption of sustainable agricultural practices with respect to soil conservation. Our

  20. Sustainable Soil Management: Its perception and the need for policy intervention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basch, Gottlieb; Kassam, Amir; González-Sánchez, Emilio

    2017-04-01

    As stated in the strategic objectives of the Global Soil Partnership "healthy soils and sustainable soil management are the precondition for human well-being and economic welfare and therefore play the key role for sustainable development". Although the functional properties of a healthy soil are well understood, in practice it is easily overlooked what is necessary to achieve and sustain healthy agricultural soils. This contribution intends: to discuss the concept of sustainable soil management in agricultural production with regard to soil health, and to highlight its importance in the achievement of both Sustainable Development Goals and the 4 per mille objectives, as well as for the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). In Europe, soil and the need for its conservation and stewardship gained visibility at the beginning of this century during the discussions related to the Soil Thematic Strategy. This higher level of awareness concerning the status of Europe's soils led to the introduction of soil conservation standards into the cross-compliance mechanism within the 1st Pillar of CAP. These standards were applied through the definition of Good Agricultural and Environmental Conditions (GAECs) which are compulsory for all farmers receiving direct payments, and in the last CAP reform in 2014, through the introduction of additional Greening Measures in Pilar 1. Despite these measures and the claim of some writers that they already contributed to significantly reducing soil erosion, the EC Joint Research Centre still reports water erosion in Europe amounting to almost one billion tonnes annually. Regarding soil conservation, soil carbon stocks or the provision of additional ecosystem services, measures called for in GAEC 4 (Minimum soil cover), in GAEC 5 (Minimum land management reflecting site specific conditions to limit soil erosion), and in GAEC 6 (Maintenance of soil organic matter level through appropriate practices, …), give the impression that a lot is being

  1. Thermal Treatment of Hydrocarbon-Impacted Soils: A Review of Technology Innovation for Sustainable Remediation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia E. Vidonish

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Thermal treatment technologies hold an important niche in the remediation of hydrocarbon-contaminated soils and sediments due to their ability to quickly and reliably meet cleanup standards. However, sustained high temperature can be energy intensive and can damage soil properties. Despite the broad applicability and prevalence of thermal remediation, little work has been done to improve the environmental compatibility and sustainability of these technologies. We review several common thermal treatment technologies for hydrocarbon-contaminated soils, assess their potential environmental impacts, and propose frameworks for sustainable and low-impact deployment based on a holistic consideration of energy and water requirements, ecosystem ecology, and soil science. There is no universally appropriate thermal treatment technology. Rather, the appropriate choice depends on the contamination scenario (including the type of hydrocarbons present and on site-specific considerations such as soil properties, water availability, and the heat sensitivity of contaminated soils. Overall, the convergence of treatment process engineering with soil science, ecosystem ecology, and plant biology research is essential to fill critical knowledge gaps and improve both the removal efficiency and sustainability of thermal technologies.

  2. Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) Web Academy Webinar: Compost from Food Waste: Understanding Soil Chemistry and Soil Biology on a College/University Campus

    Science.gov (United States)

    This page contains information about the Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) Web Academy Webinar Series titled Compost from Food Waste:Understanding Soil Chemistry and Soil Biology on a College/University Campus

  3. Can plastic mulching replace irrigation in dryland agriculture?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, L.; Daryanto, S.; Jacinthe, P. A.

    2017-12-01

    Increasing water use efficiency (WUE) is a key strategy to maintaining crops yield without over-exploiting the scarce water resource. Plastic mulching technology for wheat and maize has been commonly used in China, but their effect on yield, soil moisture, evapotranspiration (ET), and WUE has not been compared with traditional irrigation method. Using a meta-analysis approach, we quantitatively examined the efficacy of plastic mulching in comparison with traditional irrigation in dryland agriculture. Our results showed that plastic mulching technique resulted in yield increase comparable to irrigated crops but used 24% less water. By covering the ridges with plastic and channeling rainwater into a very narrow planting zone (furrow), plastic mulching increased WUE and available soil moisture. Higher WUE in plastic-mulched croplands was likely a result of greater proportion of available water being used for transpiration than evaporation. If problems related to production costs and residual plastic pollution could be managed, plastic mulching technology would become a promising strategy for dryland farming in other regions.

  4. Proceedings of the 25. Brazilian congress on soil science: the soil on the great morpho climatic dominion in Brazil and the sustained development. v. 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1995-01-01

    This congress discussed soil's science with emphasis in the Brazilian morphoclimatics dominion and the sustained development. Topics related to soil's physics, chemical, biology, fertility, classification, nutrition, mineralogy, soil's and water conservation,fertilizers, pollution and environmental quality were discussed. In the first volume of the abstracts are presented papers related to soil's physics and biology where nuclear methods of analysis were utilized

  5. Proceedings of the 25. Brazilian congress on soil science: the soil on the great morpho climatic dominion in Brazil and the sustained development. v. 2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1995-01-01

    This congress discussed soil's science with emphasis in the Brazilian morphoclimatics dominion and the sustained development. Topics related to soil's physics, chemical, biology, fertility, classification, nutrition, mineralogy, soil's and water conservation, fertilizers, pollution and environmental quality were discussed. In the second volume of the abstracts are presented papers related to soil's fertility and plants nutrition are discussed where nuclear methods of analysis are presented

  6. Dust-associated microbiomes from dryland wheat fields differ with tillage practice and biosolids application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlatter, Daniel C.; Schillinger, William F.; Bary, Andy I.; Sharratt, Brenton; Paulitz, Timothy C.

    2018-07-01

    Wind erosion is a significant threat to the productivity and sustainability of agricultural soils. In the dryland winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.)-fallow region of Inland Pacific Northwest of the USA (PNW), farmers increasingly use conservation tillage practices to control wind erosion. In addition, some farmers in this dry region apply municipal biosolids to soils as fertilizer and a source of stable organic matter. The impacts of soil management practices on emissions of dust microbiota to the atmosphere are understudied. We used high-throughput DNA sequencing to examine the impacts of conservation tillage and biosolids amendments on the transport of dust-associated fungal and bacterial communities during simulated high-wind events over two years at Lind, WA. The fungal and bacterial communities contained in windblown dust differed significantly with tillage (conservation vs. conventional) and fertilizer (synthetic vs. biosolids) treatments. However, the richness and diversity of fungal and bacterial communities of dust did not vary significantly with tillage or fertilizer treatments. Taxa enriched in dust from fields under conservation tillage represented many plant-associated taxa that likely grow on residue left on the soil surface, whereas taxa that were more abundant with conventional tillage were those that likely grow on buried plant residue. Dust from biosolids-amended fields harbored greater abundances of taxa that likely feed on introduced carbon. Most human-associated taxa that may pose a health risk were not present in dust after biosolids amendment, although members of Clostridiaceae were enriched with this treatment. Results show that tillage and fertilizer management practices impact the composition of bioaerosols emitted during high-wind events and have potential implications for plant and human health.

  7. Ecosystem services in agricultural landscapes: a spatially explicit approach to support sustainable soil management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forouzangohar, Mohsen; Crossman, Neville D; MacEwan, Richard J; Wallace, D Dugal; Bennett, Lauren T

    2014-01-01

    Soil degradation has been associated with a lack of adequate consideration of soil ecosystem services. We demonstrate a broadly applicable method for mapping changes in the supply of two priority soil ecosystem services to support decisions about sustainable land-use configurations. We used a landscape-scale study area of 302 km(2) in northern Victoria, south-eastern Australia, which has been cleared for intensive agriculture. Indicators representing priority soil services (soil carbon sequestration and soil water storage) were quantified and mapped under both a current and a future 25-year land-use scenario (the latter including a greater diversity of land uses and increased perennial crops and irrigation). We combined diverse methods, including soil analysis using mid-infrared spectroscopy, soil biophysical modelling, and geostatistical interpolation. Our analysis suggests that the future land-use scenario would increase the landscape-level supply of both services over 25 years. Soil organic carbon content and water storage to 30 cm depth were predicted to increase by about 11% and 22%, respectively. Our service maps revealed the locations of hotspots, as well as potential trade-offs in service supply under new land-use configurations. The study highlights the need to consider diverse land uses in sustainable management of soil services in changing agricultural landscapes.

  8. Multi-element accumulation near Rumex crispus roots under wetland and dryland conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kissoon, La Toya T.; Jacob, Donna L.; Otte, Marinus L.

    2010-01-01

    Rumex crispus was grown under wet and dry conditions in two-chamber columns such that the roots were confined to one chamber by a 21 μm nylon mesh, thus creating a soil-root interface ('rhizoplane'). Element concentrations at 3 mm intervals below the 'rhizoplane' were measured. The hypothesis was that metals accumulate near plant roots more under wetland than dryland conditions. Patterns in element distribution were different between the treatments. Under dryland conditions Al, Ba, Cu, Cr, Fe, K, La, Mg, Na, Sr, V, Y and Zn accumulated in soil closest to the roots, above the 'rhizoplane' only. Under wetland conditions Al, Fe, Cr, K, V and Zn accumulated above as well as 3 mm below the 'rhizoplane' whereas La, Sr and Y accumulated 3 mm below the 'rhizoplane' only. Plants on average produced 1.5 times more biomass and element uptake was 2.5 times greater under wetland compared to dryland conditions. - Patterns of element accumulation near the roots of plants differ between dryland and wetland conditions.

  9. Soil mapping and process modeling for sustainable land use management: a brief historical review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brevik, Eric C.; Pereira, Paulo; Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Miller, Bradley A.; Cerdà, Artemi; Parras-Alcántara, Luis; Lozano-García, Beatriz

    2017-04-01

    Basic soil management goes back to the earliest days of agricultural practices, approximately 9,000 BCE. Through time humans developed soil management techniques of ever increasing complexity, including plows, contour tillage, terracing, and irrigation. Spatial soil patterns were being recognized as early as 3,000 BCE, but the first soil maps didn't appear until the 1700s and the first soil models finally arrived in the 1880s (Brevik et al., in press). The beginning of the 20th century saw an increase in standardization in many soil science methods and wide-spread soil mapping in many parts of the world, particularly in developed countries. However, the classification systems used, mapping scale, and national coverage varied considerably from country to country. Major advances were made in pedologic modeling starting in the 1940s, and in erosion modeling starting in the 1950s. In the 1970s and 1980s advances in computing power, remote and proximal sensing, geographic information systems (GIS), global positioning systems (GPS), and statistics and spatial statistics among other numerical techniques significantly enhanced our ability to map and model soils (Brevik et al., 2016). These types of advances positioned soil science to make meaningful contributions to sustainable land use management as we moved into the 21st century. References Brevik, E., Pereira, P., Muñoz-Rojas, M., Miller, B., Cerda, A., Parras-Alcantara, L., Lozano-Garcia, B. Historical perspectives on soil mapping and process modelling for sustainable land use management. In: Pereira, P., Brevik, E., Muñoz-Rojas, M., Miller, B. (eds) Soil mapping and process modelling for sustainable land use management (In press). Brevik, E., Calzolari, C., Miller, B., Pereira, P., Kabala, C., Baumgarten, A., Jordán, A. 2016. Historical perspectives and future needs in soil mapping, classification and pedological modelling, Geoderma, 264, Part B, 256-274.

  10. Sustainable management of coastal saline soils in the Saloum river ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    conductivity, pH, water soluble cations and anions) were analysed to estimate the salinity level at each .... (floodplain, low terrace), saline soils are now .... Apart from having a high salt content, ..... permeability and thereby promotes continuous.

  11. The contribution of the European Society for Soil Conservation (ESSC) to scientific knowledge, education and sustainability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dazzi, Carmelo; Fullen, Michael A.; Costantini, Edoardo A. C.; Theocharopoulos, Sid; Rickson, Jane; Kasparinskis, Raimonds; Lo Papa, Giuseppe; Peres, Guenola; Sholten, Thomas; Kertész, Adam; Vasenev, Ivan; Dumitru, Mihail; Cornelis, Wim; Rubio, José L.

    2017-04-01

    Soil is an integral component of the global environmental system that supports the quality and diversity of terrestrial life on Earth. Therefore, it is vital to consider the processes and impacts of soil degradation on society, especially on the provision of environmental goods and services, including food security and climate change mitigation and adaptation. Scientific societies devoted to Soil Science play significant roles in promoting soil security by advancing scientific knowledge, education and environmental sustainability. The European Society for Soil Conservation (ESSC) was founded in Ghent (Belgium) on 4 November 1988 by a group of 23 researchers from several European countries. It is an interdisciplinary, non-political association with over 500 members in 56 countries. The ESSC produces and distributes a hardcopy Newsletter twice a year and maintains both a website and Facebook page: http://www.soilconservation.eu/ https://www.facebook.com/European-Society-for-Soil-Conservation-ESSC-100528363448094/ The ESSC aims to: • Support research on soil degradation, soil protection and soil and water conservation. • Provide a network for the exchange of knowledge about soil degradation processes and soil conservation research and practises. • Produce publications on major issues relating to soil degradation and soil and water conservation. • Advise regulators and policy-makers on soil issues, especially soil degradation, protection and conservation. The ESSC held its First International Congress in Silsoe (UK) in 1992. Further International Congresses were held in Munich (1996), Valencia (2000), Budapest (2004), Palermo (2007), Thessaloniki (2011) and Moscow (2015). The Eighth International Congress will be held in Lleida (Spain) in June 2017: http://www.consowalleida2017.com/ Interspersed between these international congresses, the ESSC organizes annual international conferences on specific topics. These include Imola, Italy (Biogeochemical Processes at

  12. Dynamic Hydrological Modeling in Drylands with TRMM Based Rainfall

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena Tarnavsky

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper introduces and evaluates DryMOD, a dynamic water balance model of the key hydrological process in drylands that is based on free, public-domain datasets. The rainfall model of DryMOD makes optimal use of spatially disaggregated Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM datasets to simulate hourly rainfall intensities at a spatial resolution of 1-km. Regional-scale applications of the model in seasonal catchments in Tunisia and Senegal characterize runoff and soil moisture distribution and dynamics in response to varying rainfall data inputs and soil properties. The results highlight the need for hourly-based rainfall simulation and for correcting TRMM 3B42 rainfall intensities for the fractional cover of rainfall (FCR. Without FCR correction and disaggregation to 1 km, TRMM 3B42 based rainfall intensities are too low to generate surface runoff and to induce substantial changes to soil moisture storage. The outcomes from the sensitivity analysis show that topsoil porosity is the most important soil property for simulation of runoff and soil moisture. Thus, we demonstrate the benefit of hydrological investigations at a scale, for which reliable information on soil profile characteristics exists and which is sufficiently fine to account for the heterogeneities of these. Where such information is available, application of DryMOD can assist in the spatial and temporal planning of water harvesting according to runoff-generating areas and the runoff ratio, as well as in the optimization of agricultural activities based on realistic representation of soil moisture conditions.

  13. Changes in Nitrogen Cycling in a Shrub-Encroached Dryland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turpin-Jelfs, T. C.; Michaelides, K.; Biederman, J. A.; Evershed, R. P.; Anesio, A. M.

    2017-12-01

    Land degradation is estimated to have occurred in 10-20% of Earth's drylands, where the environmental and socioeconomic consequences have affected 250 million people. The prevailing form of land degradation in drylands over the past ca. 150 years has been the encroachment of woody plants into arid and semi-arid grasslands. The density of mesquite (Prosopis spp.), a significant nitrogen (N)-fixing woody encroacher, has increased within the arid and semi-arid grasslands of the southwestern US by >400% over the past 30 years to occupy an area of >38 Mha. However, the impacts of an increasing density of N-fixing shrubs on the cycling and spatial variability of N within these ecosystems remains poorly understood. Here, we quantify how concentrations of N (ammonium-N, nitrate-N, organic N), as well as carbon (C; total C and organic C) and phosphorous (P; loosely-bound P, iron- and aluminium-bound P, apatite P and calcite-bound P, and residual P), and the structure of the microbial community (phospholipid fatty acids), change in the soils underneath and between shrub canopies along a gradient of shrub-encroachment for a semiarid grassland in the Santa Rita Experimental Range (SRER) Arizona, US. This gradient of encroachment was comprised of five sites that ranged from a grass dominated state to a shrub-dominated state characterised by mosaics of shrub patches and bare-soil interspaces. Our results show that the organic C and total N content of soils between shrubs decreased by >50% between grass dominant and shrub dominant end-member sites. Conversely, the organic C and total N content of soils beneath shrub canopies remained relatively constant along the encroachment gradient.

  14. Soil use in gardens as chance to socially promote the Sustainable Development Goals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teuber, Sandra; Kühn, Peter; Scholten, Thomas

    2017-04-01

    Gardening is a form for citizens to use the ecosystem functions of soils, while simultaneously contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 11, 12 and 15 of the UN. In 2016, 8.4 million people in Germany gardened several times a week and 14.2 million people worked in their garden several times a month*. Furthermore, the "Bundesverband Deutscher Gartenfreunde e.V.", an allotment gardening association, has 947.137 members that use an area of 460 km2 for gardening**. This shows that gardening is a frequent pastime for many people and thus can help achieve the SDG's. Interdisciplinary research in six gardening associations was conducted to investigate soil knowledge and soil use in Southern Germany. Questionnaires and interviews with people that chose gardening as a pastime took place in 2015 and 2016. The respondents were interviewed in the respective garden plot to also observe on-site garden management practices. The combination of sociological and ethnological approaches for investigating the soil scientific research question of soil management practices in leisure gardens is useful to start a public discourse on the importance of soil for society. The evaluation showed that soil use in gardens could contribute to the SDG's 11, 12 and 15. Goal 11 is to make cities resilient and sustainable. Soil use in form of gardening is a bottom-up approach that conserves knowledge on small-scale food production. This is important for the resilience of cities in times of crises, as has been the case during the Great Depression or the World Wars. It is closely connected to Goal 12, the sustainable consumption and production patterns. If gardening activities are sustainable in the use of fertilizers, small-scale sustainability and a resilient soil use that also protects the soil and ground water can be achieved. However, this necessitates cooperation between scientists, gardening societies and the individual gardeners on equal terms. Gardening also affects the

  15. The Impact of the Quality of Coal Mine Stockpile Soils on Sustainable Vegetation Growth and Productivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicky M Mushia

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Stockpiled soils are excavated from the ground during mining activities, and piled on the surface of the soil for rehabilitation purposes. These soils are often characterized by low organic matter (SOM content, low fertility, and poor physical, chemical, and biological properties, limiting their capability for sustainable vegetation growth. The aim of the study was to evaluate the impact of stockpile soils of differing depth and quality on vegetation growth and productivity. Soils were collected at three different depths (surface, mid, and deep as well as mixed (equal proportion of surface, mid and deep from two stockpiles (named Stockpile 1: aged 10 and Stockpile 2: 20 years at the coal mine near Witbank in the Mpumalanga province of South Africa. Soils were amended with different organic and inorganic fertilizer. A 2 × 4 × 5 factorial experiment in a completely randomized blocked design with four replications was established under greenhouse conditions. A grass species (Digiteria eriantha was planted in the pots with unamended and amended soils under greenhouse conditions at 26–28 °C during the day and 16.5–18.5 °C at night. Mean values of plant height, plant cover, total fresh biomass (roots, stems and leaves, and total dry biomass were found to be higher in Stockpile 1 than in Stockpile 2 soils. Plants grown on soils with no amendments had lower mean values for major plant parameters studied. Soil amended with poultry manure and lime was found to have higher growth rate compared with soils with other soil amendments. Mixed soils had better vegetation growth than soil from other depths. Stockpiled soils in the study area cannot support vegetation growth without being amended, as evidenced by low grass growth and productivity in this study.

  16. Water and Nitrogen Limitations of Ecosystem Processes Across Three Dryland Plant Communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beltz, C.; Lauenroth, W. K.; Burke, I. C.

    2017-12-01

    The availability of water and nitrogen (N) play a major role in controlling the distribution of ecosystem types and the rates of ecosystem processes across the globe. Both these resources are being altered by human activity. Anthropogenic fixation of N has increased inputs into the biosphere from 0.5 kg N ha-1 yr-1 to upwards of 10 kg N ha-1 yr-1, while the amount and seasonality of precipitation are expected to continue to change. Within dryland environments, the relationships between increasingly available N and ecosystem processes are especially complex due to dryland's characteristic strong limitation by low and highly variable precipitation. Other experiments have shown that this interplay between N and water can cause temporally complex co-limitation and spatially complex responses with variable effects on ecosystems, such as those to net primary productivity, soil respiration, and plant community composition. Research spanning multiple dryland plant communities is critical for generalizing findings to the 40% of the Earth's terrestrial surface covered in dryland ecosystems. Given IPCC projections in which both N availability and precipitation are altered, examining their interactive effect across multiple plant communities is critical to increasing our understanding of the limitations to ecosystem process in drylands. We are studying a gradient of three plant communities representing a C4 grassland (shortgrass steppe), a C3/C4 grassland (mixed grass prairie), and a shrub-dominated ecosystem with C3 and C4 grasses (sagebrush steppe). We added two levels of N (10 kg N ha-1 and 100 kg N ha-1) and increased summer monthly precipitation by 20%. Sites responded differently to treatments, with the scale of effect varying by treatment. The high-level nitrogen increased soil N availability and soil respiration, while decreasing soil carbon in the labile pool in the upper soil layers. These results will allow for better understanding of increased N in combination with

  17. Integrated nutrient management, soil fertility, and sustainable agriculture: Current issues and future challenges

    OpenAIRE

    Goletti, F.; Gruhn, P.; Yudelman, M.

    2000-01-01

    Metadata only record The challenge for agriculture over the coming decades will be to meet the world's increasing demand for food in a sustainable way. Declining soil fertility and mismanagement of plant nutrients have made this task more difficult. In their 2020 Vision discussion paper, Peter Gruhn, Francesco Goletti, and Montague Yudelman point out that as long as agriculture remains a soil-based industry, major increases in productivity are unlikely to be attained without ensuring that ...

  18. Fitting maize into sustainable cropping systems on acid soils of the tropics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Horst, W.J.

    2000-01-01

    One of the key elements of sustainable cropping systems is the integration of crops and/or crop cultivars with high tolerance of soil acidity and which make most efficient use of the nutrients supplied by soil and fertilizer. This paper is based mainly on on-going work within an EU-funded project combining basic research on plant adaptation mechanisms by plant physiologists, and field experimentation on acid soils in Brazil, Cameroon, Colombia and Guadeloupe by breeders, soil scientists and a agronomists. The results suggest that large genetic variability exists in adaptation of plants to acid soils. A range of morphological and physiological plant characteristics contribute to tolerance of acid soils, elucidation of which has contributed to the development of rapid techniques for screening for tolerance. Incorporation of acid-soil-tolerant species and cultivars into cropping systems contributes to improved nutrient efficiency overall, and thus reduces fertilizer needs. This may help to minimize maintenance applications of fertiliser through various pathways: (i) deeper root growth resulting in more-efficient uptake of nutrients from the sub-soil and less leaching, (ii) more biomass production resulting in less seepage and less leaching, with more intensive nutrient cycling, maintenance of higher soil organic-matter content, and, consequently, less erosion owing to better soil protection by vegetation and mulch. (author)

  19. Combining Sustainable Land Management Technologies to Combat Land Degradation and Improve Rural Livelihoods in Semi-arid Lands in Kenya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mganga, K Z; Musimba, N K R; Nyariki, D M

    2015-12-01

    Drylands occupy more than 80% of Kenya's total land mass and contribute immensely to the national economy and society through agriculture, livestock production, tourism, and wild product harvesting. Dryland ecosystems are areas of high climate variability making them vulnerable to the threats of land degradation. Consequently, agropastoralists inhabiting these ecosystems develop mechanisms and technologies to cope with the impacts of climate variability. This study is aimed to; (1) determine what agropastoralists inhabiting a semi-arid ecosystem in Kenya attribute to be the causes and indicators of land degradation, (2) document sustainable land management (SLM) technologies being undertaken to combat land degradation, and (3) identify the factors that influence the choice of these SLM technologies. Vegetation change from preferred indigenous forage grass species to woody vegetation was cited as the main indicator of land degradation. Land degradation was attributed to recurrent droughts and low amounts of rainfall, overgrazing, and unsustainable harvesting of trees for fuelwood production. However, despite the challenges posed by climate variability and recurrent droughts, the local community is engaging in simple SLM technologies including grass reseeding, rainwater harvesting and soil conservation, and dryland agroforestry as a holistic approach combating land degradation and improving their rural livelihoods. The choice of these SLM technologies was mainly driven by their additional benefits to combating land degradation. In conclusion, promoting such simple SLM technologies can help reverse the land degradation trend, improve agricultural production, food security including access to food, and subsequently improve livelihoods of communities inhabiting dryland ecosystems.

  20. Combining Sustainable Land Management Technologies to Combat Land Degradation and Improve Rural Livelihoods in Semi-arid Lands in Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mganga, K. Z.; Musimba, N. K. R.; Nyariki, D. M.

    2015-12-01

    Drylands occupy more than 80 % of Kenya's total land mass and contribute immensely to the national economy and society through agriculture, livestock production, tourism, and wild product harvesting. Dryland ecosystems are areas of high climate variability making them vulnerable to the threats of land degradation. Consequently, agropastoralists inhabiting these ecosystems develop mechanisms and technologies to cope with the impacts of climate variability. This study is aimed to; (1) determine what agropastoralists inhabiting a semi-arid ecosystem in Kenya attribute to be the causes and indicators of land degradation, (2) document sustainable land management (SLM) technologies being undertaken to combat land degradation, and (3) identify the factors that influence the choice of these SLM technologies. Vegetation change from preferred indigenous forage grass species to woody vegetation was cited as the main indicator of land degradation. Land degradation was attributed to recurrent droughts and low amounts of rainfall, overgrazing, and unsustainable harvesting of trees for fuelwood production. However, despite the challenges posed by climate variability and recurrent droughts, the local community is engaging in simple SLM technologies including grass reseeding, rainwater harvesting and soil conservation, and dryland agroforestry as a holistic approach combating land degradation and improving their rural livelihoods. The choice of these SLM technologies was mainly driven by their additional benefits to combating land degradation. In conclusion, promoting such simple SLM technologies can help reverse the land degradation trend, improve agricultural production, food security including access to food, and subsequently improve livelihoods of communities inhabiting dryland ecosystems.

  1. Mechanical performance and sustainability assessment of reinforced soil walls

    OpenAIRE

    Puig Damians, Ivan

    2016-01-01

    Soil reinforced retaining wall structures are materiallymore efficientthan competing construction solutions such as gravity and cantilever walls. Nevertheless, the behaviour and interactions between the com ponent materials are com plex and not fully understood. Current design methods are typically limited to simple cases with respect to material properties, geometry, and boundary conditions. Advanced numerical models using finite element and/or finite difference methods offer the possibility...

  2. NUTRIENT BALANCE IN WATER HARVESTING SOILS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Díaz, F

    2005-05-01

    Full Text Available Dryland farming on Fuerteventura and Lanzarote (Canary Islands, Spain, which has an annual rainfall of less than 150 mm/year, has been based traditionally on water harvesting techniques (known locally as “gavias”. Periods of high productivity alternate with those of very low yield. The systems are sustainable in that they reduce erosive processes, contribute to soil and soil-water conservation and are largely responsible for maintaining the soil’s farming potential. In this paper we present the chemical fertility status and nutrient balance of soils in five “gavia” systems. The results are compared with those obtained in adjacent soils where this water harvesting technique is not used. The main crops are wheat, barley, maize, lentils and chick-peas. Since neither organic nor inorganic fertilisers are used, nutrients are derived mainly from sediments carried by runoff water. Nutrients are lost mainly through crop harvesting and harvest residues. The soils where water harvesting is used have lower salt and sodium in the exchange complex, are higher in carbon, nitrogen, copper and zinc and have similar phosphorous and potassium content. It is concluded that the systems improve the soil’s natural fertility and also that natural renovation of nutrients occurs thanks to the surface deposits of sediments, which mix with the arable layer. The system helps ensure adequate fertility levels, habitual in arid regions, thus allowing dryland farming to be carried out.

  3. Proceedings of the 25. Brazilian congress on soil science: the soil on the great morpho climatic dominion in Brazil and the sustained development. v. 4

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1995-01-01

    This congress discussed soils science with emphasis in the Brazilian morpho climatic dominion and the sustained development. Topics related to soils physics, chemical, biology, fertility, classification, nutrition, mineralogy, soils and water conservation, fertilizers, pollution and environmental quality. In the fourth volume of the abstracts were presented papers related to use of fertilizers and herbicides

  4. Sustainable agriculture, soil management and erosion from prehistoric times to 2100

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanwalleghem, Tom; Gómez, Jose Alfonso; Infante Amate, Juan; González Molina, Manuel; Fernández, David Soto; Guzmán, Gema; Vanderlinden, Karl; Laguna, Ana; Giráldez, Juan Vicente

    2015-04-01

    The rational use of soil requires the selection of management practices to take profit of the beneficial functions of plant growth, water and nutrient storage, and pollutants removal by filtering and decomposition without altering its properties. However, the first evidence of important and widespread erosion peaks can generally be found with the arrival of the first farmers all over the world. In areas with a long land-use history such as the Mediterranean, clear signs indicating the advanced degradation status of the landscape, such as heavily truncated soils, are visible throughout. Soil conservation practices are then aimed at reducing erosion to geological rates, in equilibrium with long-term soil formation rates, while maximizing agricultural production. The adoption of such practices in most areas of the world are as old as the earliest soil erosion episodes themselves. This work firstly reviews historical evidence linking soil management and soil erosion intensity, with examples from N Europe and the Mediterranean. In particular, work by the authors in olive orchards will be presented that shows how significant variations in soil erosion rates between could be linked to the historical soil management. The potential of historical documents for calibrating a soil erosion model is shown as the model, in this case RUSLE-based and combining tillage and water erosion, adequately represents the measured erosion rate dynamics. Secondly, results from present-day, long-term farm experiments in the EU are reviewed to evaluate the effect of different soil management practices on physical soil properties, such as bulk density, penetration resistance, aggregate stability, runoff coefficient or sediment yield. Finally, we reflect upon model and field data that indicate how future global climate change is expected to affect soil management and erosion and how the examples used above hold clues about sustainable historical management practices that can be used successfully

  5. A soil-specific agro-ecological strategy for sustainable production in Argentina farm fields

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zamora, Martin; Barbera, Agustin; Castro-Franco, Mauricio; Hansson, Alejandro; Domenech, Marisa

    2017-04-01

    The continuous increment of frequencies and doses of pesticides, glyphosate and fertilizers, the deterioration of the structure, biotic balance and fertility of soils and the ground water pollution are characteristics of the current Argentinian agricultural model. In this context, agro-ecological innovations are needed to develop a real sustainable agriculture, enhancing the food supply. Precision agriculture technologies can strengthen the expansion of agro-ecological farming in experimental farm fields. The aim of this study was to propose a soil-specific agro-ecological strategy for sustainable production at field scale focused on the use of soil sensors and digital soil mapping techniques. This strategy has been developed in 15 hectares transition agro-ecological farm field, located at Barrow Experimental Station (Lat:-38.322844, Lon:-60.25572) Argentina. The strategy included five steps: (i) to measure apparent electrical conductivity (ECa) and elevation within agro-ecological farm field; (ii) to apply a clustering method using MULTISPATI-PCA algorithm to delimitate three soil-specific zones (Z1, Z2 and Z3); (iii) to determine three soil sampling points by zone, using conditioned Latin hypercube method, in addition to elevation and ECa as auxiliary information; (iv) to collect soil samples at 2-10 cm depth in each point and to determine in laboratory: total organic carbon content (TOC), cation-exchange capacity (CEC), pH and phosphorus availability (P-Bray). In addition, soil bulk density (SBD) was measured at 0-20 cm depth. Finally, (v) according to each soil-specific zone, a management strategy was recommended. Important differences in soil properties among zones could suggest that the strategy developed was able to apply an agro ecological soil-specific practice management. pH and P-Bray were significantly (pfertilizer and also rotating plots with high stocking rate. The aim is to increase soil organic matter content and CEC. Furthermore, P content will be

  6. A multiple soil ecosystem services approach to evaluate the sustainability of reduced tillage systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérès, Guénola; Menasseri, Safya; Hallaire, Vincent; Cluzeau, Daniel; Heddadj, Djilali; Cotinet, Patrice; Manceau, Olivier; Pulleman, Mirjam

    2017-04-01

    In the current context of soil degradation, reduced tillage systems (including reduced soil disturbance, use of cover crops and crop rotation, and improved organic matter management) are expected to be good alternatives to conventional system which have led to a decrease of soil multi-functionality. Many studies worldwide have analysed the impact of tillage systems on different soil functions, but overran integrated view of the impact of these systems is still lacking. The SUSTAIN project (European SNOWMAN programme), performed in France and the Netherlands, proposes an interdisciplinary collaboration. The goals of SUSTAIN are to assess the multi-functionality of soil and to study how reduced-tillage systems impact on multiple ecosystem services such as soil biodiversity regulation (earthworms, nematodes, microorganisms), soil structure maintenance (aggregate stability, compaction, soil erosion), water regulation (run-off, transfer of pesticides) and food production. Moreover, a socio-economic study on farmer networks has been carried out to identify the drivers of adoption of reduced-tillage systems. Data have been collected in long-term experimental fields (5 - 13 years), representing conventional and organic farming strategies, and were complemented with data from farmer networks. The impact of different reduced tillage systems (direct seeding, minimum tillage, non-inverse tillage, superficial ploughing) were analysed and compared to conventional ploughing. Measurements (biological, chemical, physical, agronomical, water and element transfer) have been done at several dates which allow an overview of the evolution of the soil properties according to climate variation and crop rotation. A sociological approach was performed on several farms covering different production types, different courses (engagement in reduced tillage systems) and different geographical locations. Focusing on French trials, this multiple ecosystem services approach clearly showed that

  7. Sustained stimulation of soil respiration after 10 years of experimental warming

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reth, S; Graf, W; Reichstein, M; Munch, J C

    2009-01-01

    A number of forest and grassland studies indicated that stimulation of the soil respiration by soil warming ceases after a couple of years (Luo et al 2001 Nature 413 622-5). Here we present results from a long-term soil warming lysimeter experiment in southern Germany showing sustained stimulation of soil respiration after 10 years. Moreover, both warmed and control treatments exhibited a similar temperature response of soil respiration, indicating that adaptation in terms of temperature sensitivity was absent. Carbon dioxide concentration measurements within the profiles are supporting these findings. The increased soil respiration occurred although vegetation productivity in the warmed treatment was not higher than in the control plots. These findings strongly contrast with current soil carbon modeling concepts, where carbon pools decay according to first-order kinetics, and thus a depletion of labile soil carbon pools leads to an apparent down-regulation of microbial respiration (Knorr et al 2005 Nature 433 298-301). Consequently, the potential for positive climate carbon cycle feedback may be larger than represented in current models of soil carbon turnover.

  8. Soil biota enhance agricultural sustainability by improving crop yield, nutrient uptake and reducing nitrogen leaching losses

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bender, S.F.; van der Heijden, M.G.A.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/240923901

    2015-01-01

    Efficient resource use is a key factor for sustainable production and a necessity for meeting future global food demands. However, the factors that control resource use efficiency in agro-ecosystems are only partly understood. We investigated the influence of soil biota on nutrient leaching,

  9. Sustainability likelihood of remediation options for metal-contaminated soil/sediment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Season S; Taylor, Jessica S; Baek, Kitae; Khan, Eakalak; Tsang, Daniel C W; Ok, Yong Sik

    2017-05-01

    Multi-criteria analysis and detailed impact analysis were carried out to assess the sustainability of four remedial alternatives for metal-contaminated soil/sediment at former timber treatment sites and harbour sediment with different scales. The sustainability was evaluated in the aspects of human health and safety, environment, stakeholder concern, and land use, under four different scenarios with varying weighting factors. The Monte Carlo simulation was performed to reveal the likelihood of accomplishing sustainable remediation with different treatment options at different sites. The results showed that in-situ remedial technologies were more sustainable than ex-situ ones, where in-situ containment demonstrated both the most sustainable result and the highest probability to achieve sustainability amongst the four remedial alternatives in this study, reflecting the lesser extent of off-site and on-site impacts. Concerns associated with ex-situ options were adverse impacts tied to all four aspects and caused by excavation, extraction, and off-site disposal. The results of this study suggested the importance of considering the uncertainties resulting from the remedial options (i.e., stochastic analysis) in addition to the overall sustainability scores (i.e., deterministic analysis). The developed framework and model simulation could serve as an assessment for the sustainability likelihood of remedial options to ensure sustainable remediation of contaminated sites. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Light Water Reactor Sustainability Program Advanced Seismic Soil Structure Modeling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bolisetti, Chandrakanth [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Coleman, Justin Leigh [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)

    2015-06-01

    Risk calculations should focus on providing best estimate results, and associated insights, for evaluation and decision-making. Specifically, seismic probabilistic risk assessments (SPRAs) are intended to provide best estimates of the various combinations of structural and equipment failures that can lead to a seismic induced core damage event. However, in some instances the current SPRA approach has large uncertainties, and potentially masks other important events (for instance, it was not the seismic motions that caused the Fukushima core melt events, but the tsunami ingress into the facility). SPRA’s are performed by convolving the seismic hazard (this is the estimate of all likely damaging earthquakes at the site of interest) with the seismic fragility (the conditional probability of failure of a structure, system, or component given the occurrence of earthquake ground motion). In this calculation, there are three main pieces to seismic risk quantification, 1) seismic hazard and nuclear power plants (NPPs) response to the hazard, 2) fragility or capacity of structures, systems and components (SSC), and 3) systems analysis. Two areas where NLSSI effects may be important in SPRA calculations are, 1) when calculating in-structure response at the area of interest, and 2) calculation of seismic fragilities (current fragility calculations assume a lognormal distribution for probability of failure of components). Some important effects when using NLSSI in the SPRA calculation process include, 1) gapping and sliding, 2) inclined seismic waves coupled with gapping and sliding of foundations atop soil, 3) inclined seismic waves coupled with gapping and sliding of deeply embedded structures, 4) soil dilatancy, 5) soil liquefaction, 6) surface waves, 7) buoyancy, 8) concrete cracking and 9) seismic isolation The focus of the research task presented here-in is on implementation of NLSSI into the SPRA calculation process when calculating in-structure response at the area

  11. Management of soil physical properties of lowland puddled rice soil for sustainable food production

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bhagat, R.M.

    2004-01-01

    About 3 billion people who rely on rice as their staple food today will have multiplied to some 4.4 billion by the middle of this century. With rice demand growing at an average rate of about 3 percent annually, 70 percent more rice has to be produced in next 30 years compared to present day production levels. More rice has to come from less favorable environments, with less water and nutrients. Agricultural population densities on Asia's rice producing lands are among the highest in the world and continue to increase at a remarkable rate. Rice has widely adapted itself: to the hot Australian and Egyptian deserts, to the cool Himalayan foothills of Nepal. Hill tribes in Southeast Asia plant it on slash-and-burned forest slopes; that's upland rice. However, low lying areas in Asia, which are subject to uncontrolled flooding, are home to more than 100 million poor farmers. Puddling or wet tillage in rice, decreases total soil porosity only slightly, but markedly changes porosity distribution with both storage and residual porosity increasing at the expanse of transmission porosity. Soil texture plays an important role in soil water retention following soil disturbance. Cracking pattern of the soils is studied after six years of different levels of regular addition of residue. Cracking pattern at a soil surface affects the hydrodynamic properties of soil. Cracking extends the soil-air interface into the soil profile and thereby may increase the moisture loss through evaporation

  12. Improving water use efficiency in drylands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stroosnijder, L.; Moore, D.; Alharbi, A.; Argaman, E.; Elsen, van den H.G.M.

    2012-01-01

    Drylands cover 41% of the global terrestrial area and 2 billion people use it for grazing and cropping. Food security is low owing to institutional and technical constraints. Absolute water scarcity and also the inability of crops to use available water are major technical issues. Significant

  13. Remote sensing of vegetation dynamics in drylands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tian, Feng; Brandt, Martin Stefan; Liu, Yi Y.

    2016-01-01

    Monitoring long-term biomass dynamics in drylands is of great importance for many environmental applications including land degradation and global carbon cycle modeling. Biomass has extensively been estimated based on the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) as a measure of the vegetatio...

  14. Sustainability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Chein-Chi; DiGiovanni, Kimberly; Mei, Ying; Wei, Li

    2016-10-01

    This review on Sustainability covers selected 2015 publications on the focus of Sustainability. It is divided into the following sections : • Sustainable water and wastewater utilities • Sustainable water resources management • Stormwater and green infrastructure • Sustainability in wastewater treatment • Life cycle assessment (LCA) applications • Sustainability and energy in wastewater industry, • Sustainability and asset management.

  15. Soil engineering in vivo: harnessing natural biogeochemical systems for sustainable, multi-functional engineering solutions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeJong, Jason T; Soga, Kenichi; Banwart, Steven A; Whalley, W Richard; Ginn, Timothy R; Nelson, Douglas C; Mortensen, Brina M; Martinez, Brian C; Barkouki, Tammer

    2011-01-06

    Carbon sequestration, infrastructure rehabilitation, brownfields clean-up, hazardous waste disposal, water resources protection and global warming-these twenty-first century challenges can neither be solved by the high-energy consumptive practices that hallmark industry today, nor by minor tweaking or optimization of these processes. A more radical, holistic approach is required to develop the sustainable solutions society needs. Most of the above challenges occur within, are supported on, are enabled by or grown from soil. Soil, contrary to conventional civil engineering thought, is a living system host to multiple simultaneous processes. It is proposed herein that 'soil engineering in vivo', wherein the natural capacity of soil as a living ecosystem is used to provide multiple solutions simultaneously, may provide new, innovative, sustainable solutions to some of these great challenges of the twenty-first century. This requires a multi-disciplinary perspective that embraces the science of biology, chemistry and physics and applies this knowledge to provide multi-functional civil and environmental engineering designs for the soil environment. For example, can native soil bacterial species moderate the carbonate cycle in soils to simultaneously solidify liquefiable soil, immobilize reactive heavy metals and sequester carbon-effectively providing civil engineering functionality while clarifying the ground water and removing carbon from the atmosphere? Exploration of these ideas has begun in earnest in recent years. This paper explores the potential, challenges and opportunities of this new field, and highlights one biogeochemical function of soil that has shown promise and is developing rapidly as a new technology. The example is used to propose a generalized approach in which the potential of this new field can be fully realized.

  16. Soil engineering in vivo: harnessing natural biogeochemical systems for sustainable, multi-functional engineering solutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeJong, Jason T.; Soga, Kenichi; Banwart, Steven A.; Whalley, W. Richard; Ginn, Timothy R.; Nelson, Douglas C.; Mortensen, Brina M.; Martinez, Brian C.; Barkouki, Tammer

    2011-01-01

    Carbon sequestration, infrastructure rehabilitation, brownfields clean-up, hazardous waste disposal, water resources protection and global warming—these twenty-first century challenges can neither be solved by the high-energy consumptive practices that hallmark industry today, nor by minor tweaking or optimization of these processes. A more radical, holistic approach is required to develop the sustainable solutions society needs. Most of the above challenges occur within, are supported on, are enabled by or grown from soil. Soil, contrary to conventional civil engineering thought, is a living system host to multiple simultaneous processes. It is proposed herein that ‘soil engineering in vivo’, wherein the natural capacity of soil as a living ecosystem is used to provide multiple solutions simultaneously, may provide new, innovative, sustainable solutions to some of these great challenges of the twenty-first century. This requires a multi-disciplinary perspective that embraces the science of biology, chemistry and physics and applies this knowledge to provide multi-functional civil and environmental engineering designs for the soil environment. For example, can native soil bacterial species moderate the carbonate cycle in soils to simultaneously solidify liquefiable soil, immobilize reactive heavy metals and sequester carbon—effectively providing civil engineering functionality while clarifying the ground water and removing carbon from the atmosphere? Exploration of these ideas has begun in earnest in recent years. This paper explores the potential, challenges and opportunities of this new field, and highlights one biogeochemical function of soil that has shown promise and is developing rapidly as a new technology. The example is used to propose a generalized approach in which the potential of this new field can be fully realized. PMID:20829246

  17. Farmers' Perception of Integrated Soil Fertility and Nutrient Management for Sustainable Crop Production: A Study of Rural Areas in Bangladesh

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farouque, Md. Golam; Takeya, Hiroyuki

    2007-01-01

    This study aimed to determine farmers' perception of integrated soil fertility and nutrient management for sustainable crop production. Integrated soil fertility (ISF) and nutrient management (NM) is an advanced approach to maintain soil fertility and to enhance crop productivity. A total number of 120 farmers from eight villages in four districts…

  18. Changing Forestry Policy by Integrating Water Aspects into Forest/Vegetation Restoration in Dryland Areas in China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Yanhui; Mike Bonell; Karl-Heinz Feger; YU Pengtao; XIONG Wei; XU Lihong

    2012-01-01

    Restoration forestry (forest rehabilitation) or re-vegetation is one effective measure to solve environmental problems, notably soil erosion. It may be further stimulated by the Clean Development Mechanism for carbon sequestration. However, there is an intensive and on-going debate about the adverse effects arising from afforestation in dryland areas, such as soil drying up which may cause further damage to the success of forest restoration, and the water yield reduction from watershed which may harm the regional development. On other hand, some preliminary studies showed a possibility that these adverse effects may be diminished more or less by properly designing the system structure and spatial distribution of forest/vegetation in a watershed. However, it is urgent to develop an evidence-based and sustainable new forestry policy for harmonizing forest-water interrelation. As a leading country in afforestation, China is beginning to develop a more trans-disciplinary and cross-sectoral forestry policy for harmonizing forestry development with water management. The main points of the changing new forestry policy should include: (1) Establishing a regional development strategy focusing on harmonized forest-water relations; (2) Taking forest-water interactions as an important part of evaluation; (3) Reducing the 'eco-water' quota of forests through technical advancement; (4) Developing and extending water-adaptive forest management practices; (S) Strengthening forest ecohydrological research and decision support ability.

  19. Local to Global Scale Time Series Analysis of US Dryland Degradation Using Landsat, AVHRR, and MODIS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Washington-Allen, R. A.; Ramsey, R. D.; West, N. E.; Kulawardhana, W.; Reeves, M. C.; Mitchell, J. E.; Van Niel, T. G.

    2011-12-01

    Drylands cover 41% of the terrestrial land surface and annually generate $1 trillion in ecosystem goods and services for 38% of the global population, yet estimates of the global extent of Dryland degradation is uncertain with a range of 10 - 80%. It is currently understood that Drylands exhibit topological complexity including self-organization of parameters of different levels-of-organization, e.g., ecosystem and landscape parameters such as soil and vegetation pattern and structure, that gradually or discontinuously shift to multiple basins of attraction in response to herbivory, fire, and climatic drivers at multiple spatial and temporal scales. Our research has shown that at large geographic scales, contemporaneous time series of 10 to 20 years for response and driving variables across two or more spatial scales is required to replicate and differentiate between the impact of climate and land use activities such as commercial grazing. For example, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) is a major driver of Dryland net primary productivity (NPP), biodiversity, and ecological resilience with a 10-year return interval, thus 20 years of data are required to replicate its impact. Degradation is defined here as a change in physiognomic composition contrary to management goals, a persistent reduction in vegetation response, e.g., NPP, accelerated soil erosion, a decline in soil quality, and changes in landscape configuration and structure that lead to a loss of ecosystem function. Freely available Landsat, Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) and Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradimeter (MODIS) archives of satellite imagery exist that provide local to global spatial coverage and time series between 1972 to the present from which proxies of land degradation can be derived. This paper presents time series assessments between 1972 and 2011 of US Dryland degradation including early detection of dynamic regime shifts in the Mojave and landscape pattern and

  20. Sustainable Agriculture Evaluation for Red Soil Hill Region of Southeast China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHAO Qi-Guo; XU Meng-Jie

    2004-01-01

    Agricultural sustainability for economic development is important and a complex issue throughout the world; however,it is difficult to synthetically evaluate its use in the policy making process. The objective of this study was to evaluate sustainable agriculture in the red soil hill region of Southeast China through a newly proposed method combining four separate sub-systems: regional population (P), resource (R), environmental (E), and socio-economic (S). This new index system was proposed to appraise synthetically the agricultural sustainability of the red soil hill region from 1988 to 1996 with a two-step method assessing: a) the agricultural sustainability in each province independently and b) the relative sustainability of each province to the whole region. The first step only provided a development trend for each province based on its original situation, while the second step provided additional information on the comparative status of each province in agricultural development to the region as a whole. Higher index scores were found for the economy and resource categories denoting improvement. However, lower scores in the environment category indicated the improvement was achieved at the cost of deteriorating ecological surroundings due to an increasing population that demanded more from the agro-ecosystem and put heavier pressures on it. Results also showed that water and soil losses in this region were the major obstacles encountered in sustainable agriculture development. The assessment results were verified when compared with results from another method. This suggested that the new assessment system was reliable and credible in evaluating agricultural sustainability on a regional scale.

  1. New findings and setting the research agenda for soil and water conservation for sustainable land management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keesstra, Saskia; Argaman, Eli; Gomez, Jose Alfonso; Quinton, John

    2014-05-01

    The session on soil and water conservation for sustainable land management provides insights into the current research producing viable measures for sustainable land management and enhancing the lands role as provider of ecosystem services. The insights into degradation processes are essential for designing and implementing feasible measures to mitigate against degradation of the land resource and adapt to the changing environment. Land degradation occurs due to multiple pressures on the land, such as population growth, land-use and land-cover changes, climate change and over exploitation of resources, often resulting in soil erosion due to water and wind, which occurs in many parts of the world. Understanding the processes of soil erosion by wind and water and the social and economic constraints faced by farmers forms an essential component of integrated land development projects. Soil and water conservation measures are only viable and sustainable if local environmental and socio-economic conditions are taken into account and proper enabling conditions and policies can be achieved. Land degradation increasingly occurs because land use, and farming systems are subject to rapid environmental and socio-economic changes without implementation of appropriate soil and water conservation technologies. Land use and its management are thus inextricably bound up with development; farmers must adapt in order to sustain the quality of their, and their families, lives. In broader perspective, soil and water conservation is needed as regulating ecosystem service and as a tool to enhance food security and biodiversity. Since land degradation occurs in many parts of the world and threatens food production and environmental stability it affects those countries with poorer soils and resilience in the agriculture sector first. Often these are the least developed countries. Therefore the work from researchers from developing countries together with knowledge from other disciplines

  2. Management and conservation of tropical acid soils for sustainable crop production. Proceedings of a consultants meeting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2000-06-01

    Forests of the tropics are invaluable ecosystems of global, regional and local importance, particularly in terms of protection and conservation of biodiversity and water resources. The indiscriminate conversion of tropical forests into agricultural land as a result of intense human activities - logging and modem shifting cultivation - continues to cause soil erosion and degradation. However, the acid savannahs of the world, such as the cerrado of Brazil, the Llanos in Venezuela and Colombia, the savannahs of Africa, and the largely anthropic savannahs of tropical Asia, encompass vast areas of potentially arable land. The acid soils of the savannahs are mostly considered marginal because of low inherent fertility and susceptibility to rapid degradation. These constraints for agricultural development are exacerbated by the poverty of new settlers who try to cultivate such areas after deforestation. Low- or minimum-input systems are not sustainable on these tropical acid soils but, with sufficient investment and adequate technologies, they can be highly productive. Thus, there is a need to develop management practices for sustainable agricultural production systems on such savannah acid soils. The Soil and Water Management and Crop Nutrition Sub-programme of the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture strongly supports an integrated approach to soil, water and nutrient management within cropping systems. In this context, nuclear and related techniques can be used to better understand the processes and factors influencing the productivity of agricultural production systems, and improve them through the use of better soil, water and nutrient management practices. A panel of experts actively engaged in field projects on acid soils of savannah agro-ecosystems in the humid and sub-humid tropics convened in March 1999 in Vienna to review and discuss recent research progress, along the following main lines of investigation: (i) utilization of

  3. Sustainable stabilization of sulfate-bearing soils with expansive soil-rubber technology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-03-01

    The beneficial use of scrap tire rubber mixed with expansive soils is of interest to civil engineering : applications since the swell percent and the swell pressure can be potentially reduced with no deleterious : effect to the shear strength of the ...

  4. Soil-water salinity pollution: extent, management and potential impacts on agricultural sustain ability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Javid, M.A.; Ali, K.; Javed, M.; Mahmood, A.

    1999-01-01

    One of the significant environmental hazards of irrigated agriculture is the accumulation of salts in the soil. The presence of large quantities of certain soluble salts badly affects the physical, chemical, biological and fertility characteristics of the soils. This pollution of soil salinity and its toxic degradation directly affects plants, hence impacting the air filters of nature. The soil and water salinity has adversely reduced the yield of our major agricultural crops to an extent that agricultural sustainability is being threatened. Salinity has also dwindled the survival of marine life, livestock, in addition to damaging of construction works. The problem can be estimated from the fact that out of 16.2 m.ha of irrigated land of Pakistan, 6.3 . ha are salt affected in the Indus Plain. The state of water pollution can further be assessed from the fact that presently about 106 MAF of water is diverted from the rivers into the canals of the Indus Plain which contains 28 MT of salts. Due to soil and water pollution more than 40,000 ha of good irrigated land goes out of cultivation every year. This it has drastically reduced the potential of our agricultural lands. Hence, an estimated annual loss of Rs. 14,000 million has been reported due to this soil-water salinity pollution in Pakistan. Some management options to mitigate the soil - water salinity pollution are proposed. (author)

  5. 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

  6. Optimizing root system architecture in biofuel crops for sustainable energy production and soil carbon sequestration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    To, Jennifer Pc; Zhu, Jinming; Benfey, Philip N; Elich, Tedd

    2010-09-08

    Root system architecture (RSA) describes the dynamic spatial configuration of different types and ages of roots in a plant, which allows adaptation to different environments. Modifications in RSA enhance agronomic traits in crops and have been implicated in soil organic carbon content. Together, these fundamental properties of RSA contribute to the net carbon balance and overall sustainability of biofuels. In this article, we will review recent data supporting carbon sequestration by biofuel crops, highlight current progress in studying RSA, and discuss future opportunities for optimizing RSA for biofuel production and soil carbon sequestration.

  7. Uncertainty indication in soil function maps – transparent and easy-to-use information to support sustainable use of soil resources

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Greiner

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Spatial information on soil function fulfillment (SFF is increasingly being used to inform decision-making in spatial planning programs to support sustainable use of soil resources. Soil function maps visualize soils abilities to fulfill their functions, e.g., regulating water and nutrient flows, providing habitats, and supporting biomass production based on soil properties. Such information must be reliable for informed and transparent decision-making in spatial planning programs. In this study, we add to the transparency of soil function maps by (1 indicating uncertainties arising from the prediction of soil properties generated by digital soil mapping (DSM that are used for soil function assessment (SFA and (2 showing the response of different SFA methods to the propagation of uncertainties through the assessment. For a study area of 170 km2 in the Swiss Plateau, we map 10 static soil sub-functions for agricultural soils for a spatial resolution of 20 × 20 m together with their uncertainties. Mapping the 10 soil sub-functions using simple ordinal assessment scales reveals pronounced spatial patterns with a high variability of SFF scores across the region, linked to the inherent properties of the soils and terrain attributes and climate conditions. Uncertainties in soil properties propagated through SFA methods generally lead to substantial uncertainty in the mapped soil sub-functions. We propose two types of uncertainty maps that can be readily understood by stakeholders. Cumulative distribution functions of SFF scores indicate that SFA methods respond differently to the propagated uncertainty of soil properties. Even where methods are comparable on the level of complexity and assessment scale, their comparability in view of uncertainty propagation might be different. We conclude that comparable uncertainty indications in soil function maps are relevant to enable informed and transparent decisions on the sustainable use of soil

  8. Introduction of Microbial Biopolymers in Soil Treatment for Future Environmentally-Friendly and Sustainable Geotechnical Engineering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ilhan Chang

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Soil treatment and improvement is commonly performed in the field of geotechnical engineering. Methods and materials to achieve this such as soil stabilization and mixing with cementitious binders have been utilized in engineered soil applications since the beginning of human civilization. Demand for environment-friendly and sustainable alternatives is currently rising. Since cement, the most commonly applied and effective soil treatment material, is responsible for heavy greenhouse gas emissions, alternatives such as geosynthetics, chemical polymers, geopolymers, microbial induction, and biopolymers are being actively studied. This study provides an overall review of the recent applications of biopolymers in geotechnical engineering. Biopolymers are microbially induced polymers that are high-tensile, innocuous, and eco-friendly. Soil–biopolymer interactions and related soil strengthening mechanisms are discussed in the context of recent experimental and microscopic studies. In addition, the economic feasibility of biopolymer implementation in the field is analyzed in comparison to ordinary cement, from environmental perspectives. Findings from this study demonstrate that biopolymers have strong potential to replace cement as a soil treatment material within the context of environment-friendly construction and development. Moreover, continuing research is suggested to ensure performance in terms of practical implementation, reliability, and durability of in situ biopolymer applications for geotechnical engineering purposes.

  9. Application of municipal biosolids to dry-land wheat fields - A monitoring program near Deer Trail, Colorado (USA). A presentation for an international conference: "The Future of Agriculture: Science, Stewardship, and Sustainability", August 7-9, 2006, Sacramento, CA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crock, James G.; Smith, David B.; Yager, Tracy J.B.

    2006-01-01

    Since late 1993, Metro Wastewater Reclamation District of Denver (Metro District), a large wastewater treatment plant in Denver, Colorado, has applied Grade I, Class B biosolids to about 52,000 acres of non-irrigated farmland and rangeland near Deer Trail, Colorado. In cooperation with the Metro District in 1993, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) began monitoring ground water at part of this site. In 1999, the USGS began a more comprehensive study of the entire site to address stakeholder concerns about the chemical effects of biosolids applications. This more comprehensive monitoring program has recently been extended through 2010. Monitoring components of the more comprehensive study included biosolids collected at the wastewater treatment plant, soil, crops, dust, alluvial and bedrock ground water, and stream bed sediment. Streams at the site are dry most of the year, so samples of stream bed sediment deposited after rain were used to indicate surface-water effects. This presentation will only address biosolids, soil, and crops. More information about these and the other monitoring components are presented in the literature (e.g., Yager and others, 2004a, b, c, d) and at the USGS Web site for the Deer Trail area studies at http://co.water.usgs.gov/projects/CO406/CO406.html. Priority parameters identified by the stakeholders for all monitoring components, included the total concentrations of nine trace elements (arsenic, cadmium, copper, lead, mercury, molybdenum, nickel, selenium, and zinc), plutonium isotopes, and gross alpha and beta activity, regulated by Colorado for biosolids to be used as an agricultural soil amendment. Nitrogen and chromium also were priority parameters for ground water and sediment components. In general, the objective of each component of the study was to determine whether concentrations of priority parameters (1) were higher than regulatory limits, (2) were increasing with time, or (3) were significantly higher in biosolids

  10. Bioavailable soil P as a main key for sustainable agriculture: its functional model determined using isotopic tracers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fardeau, J.C.; Guiraud, G.; Marol, C.

    1994-12-31

    Sustainable agriculture is defined in many ways. In all of them, two main complementary concepts appear: this agriculture must firstly satisfy the human needs of foods for the present and secondly must not compromise the ability for the future generations to meet their needs. Therefore, concerning P, the sustainability in an ecosystem can be maintained if, and only if: (i) bioavailable soil P is not a limiting factor of crop yields in the considered conditions; (ii) all the parameters describing the available soil P will be unmodified each time that P is simultaneously taken by crops and returned to soils; (iii) P inputs and outputs must be without negative consequences on environment. Whatever the ecosystem, P nutrition can be described in terms of fluxes of P between soil and plant roots. The isotopic exchange method gives informations not only on bioavailable soil P but also on potential fluxes of P between soil and soil-solution. As roots take phosphorus in the soil solution it is concluded that this method can be used to predict not only potential P uptake by plants or crops in native soils but also the contribution to crop nutrition of a P application in soil. Isotopic tracers of P seem to be, at the present time, the simplest tool useful to describe, with a high accuracy, the main link of P cycle in sustainable agriculture: the bioavailable soil P. (authors). 9 refs., 1 fig., 1 tab. (authors).

  11. Bioavailable soil P as a main key for sustainable agriculture: its functional model determined using isotopic tracers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fardeau, J.C.; Guiraud, G.; Marol, C.

    1994-01-01

    Sustainable agriculture is defined in many ways. In all of them, two main complementary concepts appear: this agriculture must firstly satisfy the human needs of foods for the present and secondly must not compromise the ability for the future generations to meet their needs. Therefore, concerning P, the sustainability in an ecosystem can be maintained if, and only if: (i) bioavailable soil P is not a limiting factor of crop yields in the considered conditions; (ii) all the parameters describing the available soil P will be unmodified each time that P is simultaneously taken by crops and returned to soils; (iii) P inputs and outputs must be without negative consequences on environment. Whatever the ecosystem, P nutrition can be described in terms of fluxes of P between soil and plant roots. The isotopic exchange method gives informations not only on bioavailable soil P but also on potential fluxes of P between soil and soil-solution. As roots take phosphorus in the soil solution it is concluded that this method can be used to predict not only potential P uptake by plants or crops in native soils but also the contribution to crop nutrition of a P application in soil. Isotopic tracers of P seem to be, at the present time, the simplest tool useful to describe, with a high accuracy, the main link of P cycle in sustainable agriculture: the bioavailable soil P. (authors). 9 refs., 1 fig., 1 tab. (authors)

  12. Multifunctional Dryland Forestry: Accumulating Experience From the East-Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osem, Y.; Shachack, M.; Moshe, I.

    2014-12-01

    Although small in size the landscapes of East Mediterranean Israel extend over a wide geo-climatic gradient ranging from dry sub-humid to hyper-arid lands. Thousands of years under intense human exploitation in this region, involving cutting, livestock grazing, agricultural practice and fire have resulted in severe degradation of these water limited ecosystems. The highly degraded state of the native vegetation as found by the new settlers coming to Israel in the beginning of the previous century, has provided the basic motivation for an extensive afforestation enterprise carried out during the last 100 years. This talk will present an overview on the accumulating experience in establishing and managing multifunctional forests in this dryland region. Given their very limited timber value, dryland forests are designed and managed under various goals the important of which are landscape aesthetics, recreation opportunities, grazing land, ecosystem restoration and soil conservation. Being subjected to water scarcity of high temporal and spatial variation, these manmade systems are managed to withstand water deficiency of unpredictable magnitude through the manipulation of both water input and water consumption. In the dry subhumid regions, forest management focuses mainly on controlling water consumption through the manipulation of vegetation structure using thinning and livestock grazing as primary silvicultural tools. Going into the semiarid zone, practices of rainfall redistribution and runoff harvesting become crucial for tree establishment and growth. The implementation of these practices varies depending on topography, rainfall amount and forest goals. The talk will provide a brief description of these unique silvicultural systems, review some of the recent scientific work in them and refer to critical gaps in knowledge. The relevancy to intercrop agroforestry in rainfed ecosystems will be discussed.

  13. Primary Succession on a Hawaiian Dryland Chronosequence

    OpenAIRE

    Kinney, Kealohanuiopuna M.; Asner, Gregory P.; Cordell, Susan; Chadwick, Oliver A.; Heckman, Katherine; Hotchkiss, Sara; Jeraj, Marjeta; Kennedy-Bowdoin, Ty; Knapp, David E.; Questad, Erin J.; Thaxton, Jarrod M.; Trusdell, Frank; Kellner, James R.

    2015-01-01

    We used measurements from airborne imaging spectroscopy and LiDAR to quantify the biophysical structure and composition of vegetation on a dryland substrate age gradient in Hawaii. Both vertical stature and species composition changed during primary succession, and reveal a progressive increase in vertical stature on younger substrates followed by a collapse on Pleistocene-aged flows. Tall-stature Metrosideros polymorpha woodlands dominated on the youngest substrates (hundreds of years), and ...

  14. Phosphate fertilisers and management for sustainable crop production in tropical acid soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chien, S.H.; Friesen, D.K.

    2000-01-01

    Extensive research has been conducted over the past 25 years on the management of plant nutrients, especially N and P, for crop production on acidic infertile tropical soils. Under certain conditions, the use of indigenous phosphate rock (PR) and modified PR products, such as partially acidulated PR or compacted mixtures of PR with superphosphates, are attractive alternatives, both agronomically and economically, to the use of conventional water-soluble P fertilisers for increasing crop productivity on Oxisols and Ultisols. A combination of the effects of proper P and N management including biological N 2 fixation, judicious use of lime, and the use of acid-soil tolerant and/or P-efficient cultivars in cropping systems that enhance nutrient cycling and use efficiency, can provide an effective technology to sustainably increase crop productivity and production in tropical agro-ecosystems dominated by these acid soils. (author)

  15. Consequences of More Intensive Forestry for the Sustainable Management of Forest Soils and Waters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Ring

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Additions of nutrients, faster growing tree varieties, more intense harvest practices, and a changing climate all have the potential to increase forest production in Sweden, thereby mitigating climate change through carbon sequestration and fossil fuel substitution. However, the effects of management strategies for increased biomass production on soil resources and water quality at landscape scales are inadequately understood. Key knowledge gaps also remain regarding the sustainability of shorter rotation periods and more intensive biomass harvests. This includes effects of fertilization on the long-term weathering and supply of base cations and the consequences of changing mineral availability for future forest production. Furthermore, because soils and surface waters are closely connected, management efforts in the terrestrial landscape will potentially have consequences for water quality and the ecology of streams, rivers, and lakes. Here, we review and discuss some of the most pertinent questions related to how increased forest biomass production in Sweden could affect soils and surface waters, and how contemporary forestry goals can be met while minimizing the loss of other ecosystem services. We suggest that the development of management plans to promote the sustainable use of soil resources and water quality, while maximizing biomass production, will require a holistic ecosystem approach that is placed within a broader landscape perspective.

  16. Evaluation of soil resources for sustained vegetative cover of cut-slopes along I-70 near Straight Creek.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-01

    Revegetation of high elevation decomposed granite cut-slopes often requires repeated applications of soil : amendments to attain sustained vegetative cover. Plant transects from slopes west of the Eisenhower Tunnel from : 2007 to 2012 showed that cov...

  17. Abiotic and biotic controls over biogeochemical cycles in drylands: Insights from climate change and nitrogen deposition experiments on the Colorado Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, S.; Ferrenberg, S.; Tucker, C.; Rutherford, W. A.; Wertin, T. M.; McHugh, T. A.; Morrissey, E.; Kuske, C.; Mueller, R.; Belnap, J.

    2016-12-01

    As for all ecosystems, biogeochemical cycling in drylands represents numerous intricate connections between biotic and abiotic controls. However, patterns of many fundamental ecosystem processes that generally hold across global gradients fall apart at the arid and semiarid end of the spectrum, and data point to an exceptionally strong role for abiotic controls in explaining these patterns. Further, there are multiple dryland characteristics - such as extreme aridity and high UV radiation, as well as specialized biological communities - which can point to a conclusion that "drylands are different". Indeed, drylands are often characterized by their harsh environment, by the diverse classes of biota representing a range of traits aimed at surviving such harsh conditions, and, more recently, by the suggestion of dramatic biotic responses to seemingly subtle changes in abiotic factors. In this talk, we will explore a range of biotic and abiotic controls over fundamental biogeochemical cycling in drylands using data from a suite of manipulation experiments on the Colorado Plateau, USA. We will present results from field treatments that speak to the effects of increasing temperature, altered precipitation regimes, increased nitrogen availability via deposition, and the effects of altered litterfall inputs. Biogeochemical processes we explore will include plant photosynthesis, soil photosynthesis and respiration (with a focus on biological soil crusts), litter decomposition, and nutrient cycling. In addition, we will assess how treatments alter dryland community composition, as well as the resultant feedbacks of community shifts to environmental change. Taken together we will use these diverse datasets to ask questions about what makes drylands different or, instead, if a holistic joining of biotic and abiotic perspectives suggests they are not so different after all. These data will not only lend insight into the partitioning of and balance between biotic and abiotic

  18. Soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Freudenschuss, A.; Huber, S.; Riss, A.; Schwarz, S.; Tulipan, M.

    2001-01-01

    For Austria there exists a comprehensive soil data collection, integrated in a GIS (geographical information system). The content values of pollutants (cadmium, mercury, lead, copper, mercury, radio-cesium) are given in geographical charts and in tables by regions and by type of soil (forests, agriculture, greenland, others) for the whole area of Austria. Erosion effects are studied for the Austrian region. Legal regulations and measures for an effective soil protection, reduction of soil degradation and sustainable development in Austria and the European Union are discussed. (a.n.)

  19. Quantification of Plasmodiophora brassicae Using a DNA-Based Soil Test Facilitates Sustainable Oilseed Rape Production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallenhammar, Ann-Charlotte; Gunnarson, Albin; Hansson, Fredrik; Jonsson, Anders

    2016-04-22

    Outbreaks of clubroot disease caused by the soil-borne obligate parasite Plasmodiophora brassicae are common in oilseed rape (OSR) in Sweden. A DNA-based soil testing service that identifies fields where P. brassicae poses a significant risk of clubroot infection is now commercially available. It was applied here in field surveys to monitor the prevalence of P. brassicae DNA in field soils intended for winter OSR production and winter OSR field experiments. In 2013 in Scania, prior to planting, P. brassicae DNA was detected in 60% of 45 fields on 10 of 18 farms. In 2014, P. brassicae DNA was detected in 44% of 59 fields in 14 of 36 farms, in the main winter OSR producing region in southern Sweden. P. brassicae was present indicative of a risk for >10% yield loss with susceptible cultivars (>1300 DNA copies g soil(-1)) in 47% and 44% of fields in 2013 and 2014 respectively. Furthermore, P. brassicae DNA was indicative of sites at risk of complete crop failure if susceptible cultivars were grown (>50 000 copies g(-1) soil) in 14% and 8% of fields in 2013 and 2014, respectively. A survey of all fields at Lanna research station in western Sweden showed that P. brassicae was spread throughout the farm, as only three of the fields (20%) showed infection levels below the detection limit for P.brassicae DNA, while the level was >50,000 DNA copies g(-1) soil in 20% of the fields. Soil-borne spread is of critical importance and soil scraped off footwear showed levels of up to 682 million spores g(-1) soil. Soil testing is an important tool for determining the presence of P. brassicae and providing an indication of potential yield loss, e.g., in advisory work on planning for a sustainable OSR crop rotation. This soil test is gaining acceptance as a tool that increases the likelihood of success in precision agriculture and in applied research conducted in commercial oilseed fields and at research stations. The present application highlights the importance of prevention of

  20. Categorisation of typical vulnerability patterns in global drylands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sietz, D.; Lûdeke, M.K.B.; Walther, C.

    2011-01-01

    Drylands display specific vulnerability-creating mechanisms which threaten ecosystems and human well-being. The upscaling of successful interventions to reduce vulnerability arises as an important, but challenging aim, since drylands are not homogenous. To support this aim, we present the first

  1. Woody plants in drylands: plastic responses to environmental stress

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Xu, L.

    2012-01-01

    Plants in drylands are exposed to a suite of stress factors. The most obvious stress factor is drought stress induced by a strongly negative balance between precipitation and potential evapotranspiration. Drylands are increasingly being used for grazing livestock and with increasing human

  2. Sustained effects of atmospheric [CO2] and nitrogen availability on forest soil CO2 efflux.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oishi, A Christopher; Palmroth, Sari; Johnsen, Kurt H; McCarthy, Heather R; Oren, Ram

    2014-04-01

    Soil CO2 efflux (Fsoil ) is the largest source of carbon from forests and reflects primary productivity as well as how carbon is allocated within forest ecosystems. Through early stages of stand development, both elevated [CO2] and availability of soil nitrogen (N; sum of mineralization, deposition, and fixation) have been shown to increase gross primary productivity, but the long-term effects of these factors on Fsoil are less clear. Expanding on previous studies at the Duke Free-Air CO2 Enrichment (FACE) site, we quantified the effects of elevated [CO2] and N fertilization on Fsoil using daily measurements from automated chambers over 10 years. Consistent with previous results, compared to ambient unfertilized plots, annual Fsoil increased under elevated [CO2] (ca. 17%) and decreased with N (ca. 21%). N fertilization under elevated [CO2] reduced Fsoil to values similar to untreated plots. Over the study period, base respiration rates increased with leaf productivity, but declined after productivity saturated. Despite treatment-induced differences in aboveground biomass, soil temperature and water content were similar among treatments. Interannually, low soil water content decreased annual Fsoil from potential values - estimated based on temperature alone assuming nonlimiting soil water content - by ca. 0.7% per 1.0% reduction in relative extractable water. This effect was only slightly ameliorated by elevated [CO2]. Variability in soil N availability among plots accounted for the spatial variability in Fsoil , showing a decrease of ca. 114 g C m(-2) yr(-1) per 1 g m(-2) increase in soil N availability, with consistently higher Fsoil in elevated [CO2] plots ca. 127 g C per 100 ppm [CO2] over the +200 ppm enrichment. Altogether, reflecting increased belowground carbon partitioning in response to greater plant nutritional needs, the effects of elevated [CO2] and N fertilization on Fsoil in this stand are sustained beyond the early stages of stand development and

  3. The BonaRes Centre - A virtual institute for soil research in the context of a sustainable bio-economy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wollschläger, Ute; Helming, Katharina; Heinrich, Uwe; Bartke, Stephan; Kögel-Knabner, Ingrid; Russell, David; Eberhardt, Einar; Vogel, Hans-Jörg

    2016-04-01

    Fertile soils are central resources for the production of biomass and provision of food and energy. A growing world population and latest climate targets lead to an increasing demand for both, food and bio-energy, which require preserving and improving the long-term productivity of soils as a bio-economic resource. At the same time, other soil functions and ecosystem services need to be maintained. To render soil management sustainable, we need to establish a scientific knowledge base about complex soil system processes that allows for the development of model tools to quantitatively predict the impact of a multitude of management measures on soil functions. This, finally, will allow for the provision of site-specific options for sustainable soil management. To face this challenge, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research recently launched the funding program "Soil as a Natural Resource for the Bio-Economy - BonaRes". In a joint effort, ten collaborative projects and the coordinating BonaRes Centre are engaged to close existing knowledge gaps for a profound and systemic understanding of soil functions and their sensitivity to soil management. This presentation provides an overview of the concept of the BonaRes Centre which is responsible for i) setting up a comprehensive data base for soil-related information, ii) the development of model tools aiming to estimate the impact of different management measures on soil functions, and iii) establishing a web-based portal providing decision support tools for a sustainable soil management. A specific focus of the presentation will be laid on the so-called "knowledge-portal" providing the infrastructure for a community effort towards a comprehensive meta-analysis on soil functions as a basis for future model developments.

  4. Assessing the influence of sustainable trail design and maintenance on soil loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marion, Jeff; Wimpey, Jeremy

    2017-01-01

    Natural-surfaced trail systems are an important infrastructure component providing a means for accessing remote protected natural area destinations. The condition and usability of trails is a critical concern of land managers charged with providing recreational access while preserving natural conditions, and to visitors seeking high quality recreational opportunities and experiences. While an adequate number of trail management publications provide prescriptive guidance for designing, constructing, and maintaining natural-surfaced trails, surprisingly little research has been directed at providing a scientific basis for this guidance. Results from a review of the literature and three scientific studies are presented to model and clarify the influence of factors that substantially influence trail soil loss and that can be manipulated by trail professionals to sustain high traffic while minimizing soil loss over time. Key factors include trail grade, slope alignment angle, tread drainage features, and the amount of rock in tread substrates. A new Trail Sustainability Rating is developed and offered as a tool for evaluating or improving the sustainability of existing or new trails.

  5. Assessing the influence of sustainable trail design and maintenance on soil loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marion, Jeffrey L; Wimpey, Jeremy

    2017-03-15

    Natural-surfaced trail systems are an important infrastructure component providing a means for accessing remote protected natural area destinations. The condition and usability of trails is a critical concern of land managers charged with providing recreational access while preserving natural conditions, and to visitors seeking high quality recreational opportunities and experiences. While an adequate number of trail management publications provide prescriptive guidance for designing, constructing, and maintaining natural-surfaced trails, surprisingly little research has been directed at providing a scientific basis for this guidance. Results from a review of the literature and three scientific studies are presented to model and clarify the influence of factors that substantially influence trail soil loss and that can be manipulated by trail professionals to sustain high traffic while minimizing soil loss over time. Key factors include trail grade, slope alignment angle, tread drainage features, and the amount of rock in tread substrates. A new Trail Sustainability Rating is developed and offered as a tool for evaluating or improving the sustainability of existing or new trails. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  6. Quantification of Plasmodiophora brassicae Using a DNA-Based Soil Test Facilitates Sustainable Oilseed Rape Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ann-Charlotte Wallenhammar

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Outbreaks of clubroot disease caused by the soil-borne obligate parasite Plasmodiophora brassicae are common in oilseed rape (OSR in Sweden. A DNA-based soil testing service that identifies fields where P. brassicae poses a significant risk of clubroot infection is now commercially available. It was applied here in field surveys to monitor the prevalence of P. brassicae DNA in field soils intended for winter OSR production and winter OSR field experiments. In 2013 in Scania, prior to planting, P. brassicae DNA was detected in 60% of 45 fields on 10 of 18 farms. In 2014, P. brassicae DNA was detected in 44% of 59 fields in 14 of 36 farms, in the main winter OSR producing region in southern Sweden. P. brassicae was present indicative of a risk for >10% yield loss with susceptible cultivars (>1300 DNA copies g soil−1 in 47% and 44% of fields in 2013 and 2014 respectively. Furthermore, P. brassicae DNA was indicative of sites at risk of complete crop failure if susceptible cultivars were grown (>50 000 copies g−1 soil in 14% and 8% of fields in 2013 and 2014, respectively. A survey of all fields at Lanna research station in western Sweden showed that P. brassicae was spread throughout the farm, as only three of the fields (20% showed infection levels below the detection limit for P.brassicae DNA, while the level was >50,000 DNA copies g−1 soil in 20% of the fields. Soil-borne spread is of critical importance and soil scraped off footwear showed levels of up to 682 million spores g−1 soil. Soil testing is an important tool for determining the presence of P. brassicae and providing an indication of potential yield loss, e.g., in advisory work on planning for a sustainable OSR crop rotation. This soil test is gaining acceptance as a tool that increases the likelihood of success in precision agriculture and in applied research conducted in commercial oilseed fields and at research stations. The present application highlights the importance of

  7. Fertility Island Formation and Evolution in Dryland Ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luca Ridolfi

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Vast dryland regions around the world are affected by the encroachment of woody vegetation, with important environmental and economical implications. Grassland-to-shrubland conversions are often triggered by disturbance of grassland vegetation, and the consequent formation of barren areas prone to erosion-induced nutrient losses. Inhibition of encroachment by erosion-induced depletion of soil nutrients contributes to the emergence of highly heterogeneous landscapes with shrub-dominated fertility islands surrounded by nutrient-poor bare soil. Here, we develop a process-based simplistic model thataccounts for the two competing processes of resource depletion and shrub encroachment by a non-linear diffusion mechanism. The proposed model is able to generate stable vegetation patterns with the same statistical properties as those observed in areas with well-developed fertility islands. We also show how a subsequent disturbance of shrubland vegetation can shift the dynamics toward states with smaller vegetation biomass. The process of land degradation may then occur through a number of irreversible intermediate transitions associated with losses in ecosystem function.

  8. Integrated Soil, Water and Nutrient Management for Sustainable Rice–Wheat Cropping Systems in Asia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2016-08-01

    The rice-wheat system is a predominant cropping system in Asia providing food, employment and income, ensuring the livelihoods of about 1 billion of resource poor rural and urban people. However, the productivity of the current rice-wheat systems is seriously threatened by increasing land degradation and scarcity of water and labour, inefficient cropping practices and other emerging socio economic and environmental drivers. Responding to the need to develop alternate crop establishment methods and improved cropping practices, this publication summarizes the results from a joint FAO/IAEA coordinated research project on optimizing productivity and sustainability of rice-wheat cropping systems. It provides relevant information on how to modify existing water and nutrient management systems and improve soil management in both traditional and emerging crop establishment methods for sustainable intensification of cereal production in Asia

  9. Role of Pigeonpea Cultivation on Soil Fertility and Farming System Sustainability in Ghana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Adjei-Nsiah

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The productivity of the smallholder farming system in Ghana is under threat due to soil fertility decline. Mineral fertilizer is sparingly being used by smallholder farmers because of prohibitive cost. Grain legumes such as pigeonpea can play a complementary or alternative role as a source of organic fertilizer due to its ability to enhance soil fertility. Despite its importance, the potential of pigeonpea as a soil fertility improvement crop has not been exploited to any appreciable extent and the amount of land cultivated to pigeonpea in Ghana is vey negligible. This paper synthesizes recent studies that have been carried out on pigeonpea in Ghana and discusses the role of pigeonpea cultivation in soil fertility management and its implication for farming system sustainability. The paper shows that recent field studies conducted in both the semi-deciduous forest and the forest/savanna transitional agro-ecological zones of Ghana indicate that pigeonpea/maize rotations can increase maize yield by 75–200%. Barrier to widespread adoption of pigeonpea include land tenure, market, and accessibility to early maturing and high yielding varieties. The paper concludes among other things that in order to promote the cultivation of pigeonpea in Ghana, there is the need to introduce varieties that combine early maturity with high yields and other desirable traits based on farmers preferences.

  10. Towards sustainability: artificial intelligent based approach for soil stabilization using various pozzolans

    KAUST Repository

    Ouf, M. S.

    2012-07-03

    Due to the gradual depletion in the conventional resources, searching for a more rational road construction approach aimed at reducing the dependence on imported materials while improving the quality and durability of the roads is necessary. A previous study carried out on a sample of Egyptian soil aimed at reducing the road construction cost, protect the environment and achieving sustainability. RoadCem, ground granulated blast furnace slag (GGBS), lime and ordinary Portland cement (OPC) were employed to stabilise the Egyptian clayey soil. The results revealed that the unconfined compressive strength (UCS) of the test soil increased while the free swelling percent (FSP) decreased with an increase in the total stabiliser and the curing period. This paper discusses attempts to reach optimum stabilization through: (1) Recognizing the relationship between the UCS/FSP of stabilized soil and the stabilization parameters using artificial neural network (ANN); and (2) Performing a backward optimization on the developed (ANN) model using general algorithm (GA) to meet practical design preferences. © 2012 WIT Press.

  11. Landscape management for sustainable supplies of bio energy feedstock and enhanced soil quality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Douglas, K.; Muth, D.

    2013-01-01

    Agriculture can simultaneously address global food, feed, fiber, and energy challenges provided our soil, water, and air resources are not compromised in doing so. Our objective is to present a landscape management concept as an approach for integrating multiple bio energy feedstock sources into current crop production systems. This is done to show how multiple, increasing global challenges can be met in a sustainable manner. We discuss how collaborative research among Usda-Agricultural Research Service (ARS), US Department of Energy (DOE) Idaho National Laboratory (INL), several university extension and research partners, and industry representatives [known as the Renewable Energy Assessment Project (Reap) team] has led to the development of computer-based decision aids for guiding sustainable bio energy feedstock production. The decision aids, known initially as the Corn Stover Tool and more recently as the Landscape Environmental Assessment Framework (Leaf) are tools designed to recognize the importance of nature s diversity and can therefore be used to guide sustainable feedstock production without having negative impacts on critical ecosystem services. Using a 57 ha farm site in central Iowa, USA, we show how producer decisions regarding corn (Zea mays L.) stover harvest within the US Corn Belt can be made in a more sustainable manner. This example also supports Reap team conclusions that stover should not be harvested if average grain yields are less than 11 Mg ha-1 unless more balanced landscape management practices are implemented. The tools also illustrate the importance of sub-field management and site-specific stover harvest strategies

  12. Developing Sustainable Agromining Systems in Agricultural Ultramafic Soils for Nickel Recovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petra Susan Kidd

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Ultramafic soils are typically enriched in nickel (Ni, chromium (Cr, and cobalt (Co and deficient in essential nutrients, making them unattractive for traditional agriculture. Implementing agromining systems in ultramafic agricultural soils represent an ecological option for the sustainable management and re-valorisation of these low-productivity landscapes. These novel agroecosystems cultivate Ni-hyperaccumulating plants which are able to bioaccumulate this metal in their aerial plant parts; harvested biomass can be incinerated to produce Ni-enriched ash or “bio-ore” from which Ni metal, Ni ecocatalysts or pure Ni salts can be recovered. Nickel hyperaccumulation has been documented in ~450 species, and in temperate latitudes these mainly belong to the family Brassicaceae and particularly to the genus Odontarrhena (syn. Alyssum pro parte. Agromining allows for sustainable metal recovery without causing the environmental impacts associated with conventional mining activities, and at the same time, can improve soil fertility and quality and provide essential ecosystem services. Parallel reductions in Ni phytotoxicity over time would also permit cultivation of conventional agricultural crops. Field studies in Europe have been restricted to Mediterranean areas and these only evaluated the Ni-hyperaccumulator Odontarrhena muralis s.l. Two recent EU projects (Agronickel and LIFE-Agromine have established a network of agromining field sites in ultramafic regions with different edapho-climatic characteristics across Albania, Austria, Greece and Spain. Soil and crop management practices are being developed so as to optimize the Ni agromining process; field studies are evaluating the potential benefits of fertilization regimes, crop selection and cropping patterns, and bioaugmentation with plant-associated microorganisms. Hydrometallurgical processes are being up-scaled to produce nickel compounds and energy from hyperaccumulator biomass. Exploratory

  13. Biological Soil Crust Web Site

    Science.gov (United States)

    www.soilcrust.org Crust 101 Advanced Gallery References CCERS site Links Biological Soil Crusts Textbook Corrections Level of Development Index Biological soil crusts are the community of organisms , mosses, liverworts and lichens. A Field Guide to Biological Soil Crusts of Western U.S. Drylands: Common

  14. Primary Succession on a Hawaiian Dryland Chronosequence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kealohanuiopuna M Kinney

    Full Text Available We used measurements from airborne imaging spectroscopy and LiDAR to quantify the biophysical structure and composition of vegetation on a dryland substrate age gradient in Hawaii. Both vertical stature and species composition changed during primary succession, and reveal a progressive increase in vertical stature on younger substrates followed by a collapse on Pleistocene-aged flows. Tall-stature Metrosideros polymorpha woodlands dominated on the youngest substrates (hundreds of years, and were replaced by the tall-stature endemic tree species Myoporum sandwicense and Sophora chrysophylla on intermediate-aged flows (thousands of years. The oldest substrates (tens of thousands of years were dominated by the short-stature native shrub Dodonaea viscosa and endemic grass Eragrostis atropioides. We excavated 18 macroscopic charcoal fragments from Pleistocene-aged substrates. Mean radiocarbon age was 2,002 years and ranged from < 200 to 7,730. Genus identities from four fragments indicate that Osteomeles spp. or M. polymorpha once occupied the Pleistocene-aged substrates, but neither of these species is found there today. These findings indicate the existence of fires before humans are known to have occupied the Hawaiian archipelago, and demonstrate that a collapse in vertical stature is prevalent on the oldest substrates. This work contributes to our understanding of prehistoric fires in shaping the trajectory of primary succession in Hawaiian drylands.

  15. Corn Belt soil carbon and macronutrient budgets with projected sustainable stover harvest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Zhengxi; Liu, Shu-Guang

    2015-01-01

    Corn (Zea mays L.) stover has been identified as a prime feedstock for biofuel production in the U.S. Corn Belt because of its perceived abundance and availability, but long-term stover harvest effects on regional nutrient budgets have not been evaluated. We defined the minimum stover requirement (MSR) to maintain current soil organic carbon levels and then estimated current and future soil carbon (C), nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) budgets for various stover harvest scenarios. Analyses for 2006 through 2010 across the entire Corn Belt indicated that currently, 28 Tg or 1.6 Mg ha−1 of stover could be sustainably harvested from 17.95 million hectares (Mha) with N, P, and K removal of 113, 26, and 47 kg ha−1, respectively, and C removal for that period was estimated to be 4.55 Mg C ha−1. Assuming continued yield increases and a planted area of 26.74 Mha in 2050, 77.4 Tg stover (or 2.4 Mg ha−1) could be sustainably harvested with N, P, and K removal of 177, 37, and 72 kg ha−1, respectively, along with C removal of ∼6.57 Mg C ha−1. Although there would be significant variation across the region, harvesting only the excess over the MSR under current fertilization rates would result in a small depletion of soil N (−5 ± 27 kg ha−1) and K (−20 ± 31 kg ha−1) and a moderate surplus of P (36 ± 18 kg ha−1). Our 2050 projections based on continuing to keep the MSR, but having higher yields indicate that soil N and K deficits would become larger, thus emphasize the importance of balancing soil nutrient supply with crop residue removal.

  16. Sustainability of US Organic Beef and Dairy Production Systems: Soil, Plant and Cattle Interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathy J. Soder

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available In 2010, the National Organic Program implemented a rule for the US stating that pasture must be a significant source of feed in organic ruminant systems. This article will focus on how the pasture rule has impacted the management, economics and nutritional value of products derived from organic ruminant systems and the interactions of grazing cattle with pasture forages and soils. The use of synthetic fertilizers is prohibited in organic systems; therefore, producers must rely on animal manures, compost and cover crops to increase and maintain soil nitrogen content. Rotational and strip grazing are two of the most common grazing management practices utilized in grazing ruminant production systems; however, these practices are not exclusive to organic livestock producers. For dairy cattle, grazing reduces foot and leg problems common in confinement systems, but lowers milk production and exposes cows to parasites that can be difficult to treat without pharmaceuticals. Organic beef cattle may still be finished in feedlots for no more than 120 days in the US, but without growth hormones and antibiotics, gains may be reduced and illnesses increased. Grazing reduces the use of environmentally and economically costly concentrate feeds and recycles nutrients back to the soil efficiently, but lowers the rate of beef liveweight gain. Increased use of pasture can be economically, environmentally and socially sustainable if forage use efficiency is high and US consumers continue to pay a premium for organic beef and dairy products.

  17. Nitrogen fixation in four dryland tree species in central Chile

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ovalle, C.; Arredondo, S.; Aronson, J.; Longeri, L.; Avendano, J.

    1998-01-01

    Results are presented from a 5-year experiment using 15 N-enriched fertilizer to determine N 2 fixation in four tree species on degraded soils in a Mediterranean-climate region of central Chile in which there are 5 months of drought. Species tested included three slow-growing but long-lived savannah trees native to southers South America, (acacia caven, Prosopic alba and P. chilensis; Mimosoideae), and Tagasaste (Chamaecytisus proliferus ssp. palmensis; Papilonoideae), a fast-growing but medium-lived tree from the Canary Islands. Tagasaste produced four- to twenty-fold more biomass than the other species, but showed declining N 2 fixation and biomass accumulation during the 5th year, corresponding to the juvenile-to-adult developmental transition. Nitrogen content was significantly higher in Tagasaste and Acacia caven than in the other species. The data revealed inter-specific differences in resource allocation and phenology of N 2 fixation rarely detailed for woody plants in dryland regions. (author)

  18. Effects of different agricultural management on a stagnic Luvisol in Lower Saxony, Germany - Factors for sustainable soil protection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenz, Marco; Brunotte, Joachim; Ortmeier, Berthold

    2017-04-01

    Regarding increasing pressures by global societal and climate change, for example, the assessment of the impact of land use and land management practices on land productivity, land degradation and the related decrease in sustainable food production and the provision of ecosystem services gains increasing interest. Regarding international research on land use and soil threats, main problems in agricultural land use on global scale are erosion by water and wind, soil organic matter loss, salinization, depletion of nutrients, chemical and physical deterioration, including e.g. soil compaction. When coming to soil sciences, basically soil functions are affected negatively by intensive food production and field traffic. Management based negative changes in soil functions and a suboptimal soil structure have multiple negative effects on physical, biological and chemical soil functions, like a poor water balance, air and water permeability, disturbed soil fauna, impeded root penetration etc. and in consequence on the achievable yields. The presentation deals with the multiple effects of different agricultural machinery and technologies and different agricultural soil tillage (e.g. no-till, conservation tillage, ploughing), on various soil properties of a stagnic Luvisol in Lower Saxony, Germany. These are e.g. bulk density, air capacity, saturated water permeability, changes in pore size distribution and water retention curve as well as crop yields. Furthermore results of a long term study of bulk density and total pore size on more then 20 farms in Lower Saxony since the year 1952 will be presented. Finally, key factors and first recommendations for sustainable agricultural soil protection will be derived from the results.

  19. Soil nitrogen balance assessment and its application for sustainable agriculture and environment

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Rabindra; Nath; Roy

    2005-01-01

    .M.A.,Stoorvogel,J.J.,Windmeijer,P.N.,Calculating soil nutrient balances in Africa at different scales:Ⅱ,District scale.Fert.Res.,1993,35:237-250.[18]Van der Pol,F.,Soil mining:An Unseen Contributor to Farm Income in Southern Mali,Amsterdam:The Royal Tropical Institute,1992.[19]Van der Pol,F.,Traore,B.,Soil nutrient depletion by agricultural production in southern Mali,Fert.Res.,1993,36:79-90.[20]Pieri,C.,Fertilité des terres de savanes.bilan de trente arns de recherche et de développement agricoles au sud du Sahara,Paris:Ministère de la Coopération et CIRAD-IRAT,1989.[21]Frissel,M.J.,Cycling of mineral nutrients in agricultural ecosystems,London:Elsevier,1978.[22]Smaling,E.M.A.,Fresco,L.O.,A decision support model for monitoring nutrient balances under agricultural land use (NUTMON),Geoderma,1993,60:235-256.[23]Smaling,E.M.A.,An agro-ecological framework for integrated nutrient management with special reference to Kenya,Ph.D.Thesis:Wageningen Agricultural University,1993.[24]Wendt,J.,Assessing systems sustainability through high-precision evaluation for soil nutrient capital.Paper presented at "Scaling soil nutrient balances" workshop,Nairobi,2003.[25]Shepherd,K.D.,Walsh,M.G.,Development of reflectance spectral libraries for characterization of soil properties,Soil Sci.Soc.Am.,2002,66(3):988-998.[26]Roy,R.N.,Misra,R.V.,Lesschen,J.P.et al.,Assessment of soil nutrient balance-Approaches and methodologies,Fertilizer and Plant Nutrition Bull.,2004,14,,[27]Roy,R.N.,Misra,R.V.,Montanez,A.,Decreasing reliance on mineral nitrogen-Yet more food,Ambio,2002,31 (2):177-183.[28]Roy,R.N.,Integrated plant nutrition systems-Basic concepts,development and results of the trial network,initiation of project activities in AGLN,and need for cooperation,in Integrated Plant Nutrition Systems,Fertilizer and Plant Nutrition Bull.,1995,12.[29]Peltonen,J.,New Fertilìzer Products,Proc,IFA-FAO Agriculture Conference "Global Food Security and the Role of Sustainable Fertilization",Rome,2003.[30]Roy,R.N.,Misra,R.V.,Economic and

  20. Climate change-induced vegetation shifts lead to more ecological droughts despite projected rainfall increases in many global temperate drylands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tietjen, Britta; Schlaepfer, Daniel R; Bradford, John B; Lauenroth, William K; Hall, Sonia A; Duniway, Michael C; Hochstrasser, Tamara; Jia, Gensuo; Munson, Seth M; Pyke, David A; Wilson, Scott D

    2017-07-01

    Drylands occur worldwide and are particularly vulnerable to climate change because dryland ecosystems depend directly on soil water availability that may become increasingly limited as temperatures rise. Climate change will both directly impact soil water availability and change plant biomass, with resulting indirect feedbacks on soil moisture. Thus, the net impact of direct and indirect climate change effects on soil moisture requires better understanding. We used the ecohydrological simulation model SOILWAT at sites from temperate dryland ecosystems around the globe to disentangle the contributions of direct climate change effects and of additional indirect, climate change-induced changes in vegetation on soil water availability. We simulated current and future climate conditions projected by 16 GCMs under RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5 for the end of the century. We determined shifts in water availability due to climate change alone and due to combined changes of climate and the growth form and biomass of vegetation. Vegetation change will mostly exacerbate low soil water availability in regions already expected to suffer from negative direct impacts of climate change (with the two RCP scenarios giving us qualitatively similar effects). By contrast, in regions that will likely experience increased water availability due to climate change alone, vegetation changes will counteract these increases due to increased water losses by interception. In only a small minority of locations, climate change-induced vegetation changes may lead to a net increase in water availability. These results suggest that changes in vegetation in response to climate change may exacerbate drought conditions and may dampen the effects of increased precipitation, that is, leading to more ecological droughts despite higher precipitation in some regions. Our results underscore the value of considering indirect effects of climate change on vegetation when assessing future soil moisture conditions in water

  1. Climate change-induced vegetation shifts lead to more ecological droughts despite projected rainfall increases in many global temperate drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tietjen, Britta; Schlaepfer, Daniel R.; Bradford, John B.; Laurenroth, William K.; Hall, Sonia A.; Duniway, Michael C.; Hochstrasser, Tamara; Jia, Gensuo; Munson, Seth M.; Pyke, David A.; Wilson, Scott D.

    2017-01-01

    Drylands occur world-wide and are particularly vulnerable to climate change since dryland ecosystems depend directly on soil water availability that may become increasingly limited as temperatures rise. Climate change will both directly impact soil water availability, and also change plant biomass, with resulting indirect feedbacks on soil moisture. Thus, the net impact of direct and indirect climate change effects on soil moisture requires better understanding.We used the ecohydrological simulation model SOILWAT at sites from temperate dryland ecosystems around the globe to disentangle the contributions of direct climate change effects and of additional indirect, climate change-induced changes in vegetation on soil water availability. We simulated current and future climate conditions projected by 16 GCMs under RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5 for the end of the century. We determined shifts in water availability due to climate change alone and due to combined changes of climate and the growth form and biomass of vegetation.Vegetation change will mostly exacerbate low soil water availability in regions already expected to suffer from negative direct impacts of climate change (with the two RCP scenarios giving us qualitatively similar effects). By contrast, in regions that will likely experience increased water availability due to climate change alone, vegetation changes will counteract these increases due to increased water losses by interception. In only a small minority of locations, climate change induced vegetation changes may lead to a net increase in water availability. These results suggest that changes in vegetation in response to climate change may exacerbate drought conditions and may dampen the effects of increased precipitation, i.e. leading to more ecological droughts despite higher precipitation in some regions. Our results underscore the value of considering indirect effects of climate change on vegetation when assessing future soil moisture conditions in water

  2. An investigation of artificial pasture establishment under dryland ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    user

    2011-01-31

    Jan 31, 2011 ... high quality forage than native ranges since a lot of the undesirable .... determinated weight of species' seed ratios in mixtures were calculated using the ..... Holzworth L, Mosley J, Cash D, Koch D, Crane K (2003). Dryland.

  3. Biomass, Bioenergy and the Sustainability of Soils and Climate: What Role for Biochar?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sohi, Saran

    2013-04-01

    Biochar is the solid, carbon rich product of heating biomass with the exclusion of air (pyrolysis). Whereas charcoal is derived from wood, biochar is a co-product of energy capture and can derive from waste or non-waste, virgin or non-virgin biomass resources. But also, biochar is not a fuel - rather it is intended for the beneficial amendment of soil in agriculture, forestry and horticulture. This results in long-term storage of plant-derived carbon that could improve yield or efficiency of crop production, and/or mitigate trace gas emissions from the land. Life cycle analysis (LCA) shows that pyrolysis bioenergy with biochar production should offer considerably more carbon abatement than combustion, or gasification of the same feedstock. This has potential to link climate change mitigation to bioenergy and sustainable use of soil. But, in economic terms, the opportunity cost of producing biochar (reflecting the calorific value of its stored carbon) is inflated by bioenergy subsidies. This, combined with a lack of clear regulatory position and no mature pyrolysis technologies at large scale, means that pyrolysis-biochar systems (PBS) remain largely conceptual at the current time. Precise understanding of its function and an ability to predict its impact on different soils and crops with certainty, biochar should acquire a monetary value. Combining such knowledge with a system that monetizes climate change mitigation potential (such as carbon markets), could see schemes for producing and using biochar escalate - including a context for its deployment in biomass crops, or through pyrolysis of residues from other bioenergy processes. This talk explores the opportunity, challenges and risks in pursuing biochar production in various bioenergy contexts including enhanced sustainability of soil use in biomass crop production, improving the carbon balance and value chain in biofuel production, and using organic waste streams more effectively (including the processing of

  4. The Balance of N, P, and Manure Fertilizer Dosage on Growth and Yield of Peanuts in Alfisols Dryland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suryono

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Peanuts cultivation in Alfisols dryland limited by low levels of soil fertility. An agricultural intensification that could be done is application of organic and inorganic fertilizer. This research aimed to study the balance of N, P, and manure fertilizer dosage on growth and yield of peanuts in alfisols dryland. The research was done in April 2014 - September 2014 in Sukosari, Jumantono, Karanganyar. This research was compiled using a Randomized Completely Block Design (RCBD factorial with three factors, there are dose of urea, SP-36 and cow manure fertilizer. The results showed that the dose combinations of urea, SP-36, and cow manure fertilizer have no interaction affected all of variable plant. The application of 300 kg ha-1 SP-36 fertilizer increased the number of pods and weight of pods, while the weight of 1000 seeds was improved by application of 150 kg ha-1 urea fertilizer.

  5. Influence of Conservation Tillage and Soil Water Content on Crop Yield in Dryland Compacted Alfisol of Central Chile Influencia de la Labranza de Conservación y el Contenido de Agua sobre el Rendimiento del Cultivo en un Alfisol compactado del Secano Central de Chile

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ingrid Martinez G

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Chilean dryland areas of the Mediterranean climate region are characterized by highly degraded and compacted soils, which require the use of conservation tillage systems to mitigate water erosion as well as to improve soil water storage. An oat (Avena sativa L. cv. Supernova-INIA - wheat (Triticum aestivum L. cv. Pandora-INIA crop rotation was established under the following conservation systems: no tillage (Nt, Nt + contour plowing (Nt+Cp, Nt + barrier hedge (Nt+Bh, and Nt + subsoiling (Nt+Sb, compared to conventional tillage (Ct to evaluate their influence on soil water content (SWC in the profile (10 to 110 cm depth, the soil compaction and their interaction with the crop yield. Experimental plots were established in 2007 and lasted 3 yr till 2009 in a compacted Alfisol. At the end of the growing seasons, SWC was reduced by 44 to 51% in conservation tillage systems and 60% in Ct. Soil water content had a significant (p En Chile, las zonas de clima mediterráneo se caracterizan por suelos altamente degradados y compactados por erosión, lo que requiere el uso de sistemas de labranza conservacionista para mitigar la erosión hídrica, así como incrementar el contenido de agua en el suelo. Se evaluó una rotación avena (Avena sativa L. cv. Supernova-INIA - trigo (Triticum aestivum L. cv. Pandora-INIA establecida bajo los siguientes sistemas conservacionistas: cero labranza (Nt, Nt + curvas de nivel (Nt+Cp, Nt + franjas vivas (Nt+Bh y Nt + subsolado (Nt+Sb, las que fueron comparadas al sistema de labranza convencional (Ct, para evaluar su influencia en el contenido de agua en el suelo (SWC en el perfil (10 a 110 cm profundidad, la compactación del suelo y su interacción con el rendimiento del cultivo. Las parcelas experimentales fueron establecidas 3 años seguidos (2007 al 2009 en un Alfisol compactado. Al final de la temporada, el SWC disminuyó 44 a 51% en los sistemas conservacionistas y 60% en el sistema convencional. El sistema de

  6. A method for modeling the effects of climate and land use changes on erosion and sustainability of soil in a Mediterranean watershed (Languedoc, France).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paroissien, Jean-Baptiste; Darboux, Frédéric; Couturier, Alain; Devillers, Benoît; Mouillot, Florent; Raclot, Damien; Le Bissonnais, Yves

    2015-03-01

    Global climate and land use changes could strongly affect soil erosion and the capability of soils to sustain agriculture and in turn impact regional or global food security. The objective of our study was to develop a method to assess soil sustainability to erosion under changes in land use and climate. The method was applied in a typical mixed Mediterranean landscape in a wine-growing watershed (75 km(2)) within the Languedoc region (La Peyne, France) for two periods: a first period with the current climate and land use and a second period with the climate and land use scenarios at the end of the twenty-first century. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change A1B future rainfall scenarios from the Météo France General circulation model was coupled with four contrasting land use change scenarios that were designed using a spatially-explicit land use change model. Mean annual erosion rate was estimated with an expert-based soil erosion model. Soil life expectancy was assessed using soil depth. Soil erosion rate and soil life expectancy were combined into a sustainability index. The median simulated soil erosion rate for the current period was 3.5 t/ha/year and the soil life expectancy was 273 years, showing a low sustainability of soils. For the future period with the same land use distribution, the median simulated soil erosion rate was 4.2 t/ha/year and the soil life expectancy was 249 years. The results show that soil erosion rate and soil life expectancy are more sensitive to changes in land use than to changes in precipitation. Among the scenarios tested, institution of a mandatory grass cover in vineyards seems to be an efficient means of significantly improving soil sustainability, both in terms of decreased soil erosion rates and increased soil life expectancies. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. In situ olive mill residual co-composting for soil organic fertility restoration and by-product sustainable reuse

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teresa Casacchia

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The addition of organic matter in the form of compost improves overall physical, chemical and biological properties of soils but, to be really sustainable, the composting process should be carried out using the by-products available in situ. Two different soils of a Mediterranean olive orchard, one managed traditionally (NAS and the other amended with compost (AS, were investigated in a two-year experiment. Increases in total organic matter, total nitrogen and pH, were detected in AS if compared to NAS. Significant increases in total and specific microbial counts were observed in AS, with a clear amelioration of microbiological soil quality. The results demonstrated that soil amendment using compost deriving from olive mill by-products can be an important agricultural practice for supporting and stimulating soil microorganisms and, at the same time, for re-using these byproducts, so avoiding their negative environmental impact.

  8. Managing Soil Biota-Mediated Decomposition and Nutrient Mineralization in Sustainable Agroecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joann K. Whalen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Transformation of organic residues into plant-available nutrients occurs through decomposition and mineralization and is mediated by saprophytic microorganisms and fauna. Of particular interest is the recycling of the essential plant elements—N, P, and S—contained in organic residues. If organic residues can supply sufficient nutrients during crop growth, a reduction in fertilizer use is possible. The challenge is synchronizing nutrient release from organic residues with crop nutrient demands throughout the growing season. This paper presents a conceptual model describing the pattern of nutrient release from organic residues in relation to crop nutrient uptake. Next, it explores experimental approaches to measure the physical, chemical, and biological barriers to decomposition and nutrient mineralization. Methods are proposed to determine the rates of decomposition and nutrient release from organic residues. Practically, this information can be used by agricultural producers to determine if plant-available nutrient supply is sufficient to meet crop demands at key growth stages or whether additional fertilizer is needed. Finally, agronomic practices that control the rate of soil biota-mediated decomposition and mineralization, as well as those that facilitate uptake of plant-available nutrients, are identified. Increasing reliance on soil biological activity could benefit crop nutrition and health in sustainable agroecosystems.

  9. Innovative biocatalytic production of soil substrate from green waste compost as a sustainable peat substitute.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kazamias, Georgios; Roulia, Maria; Kapsimali, Ioanna; Chassapis, Konstantinos

    2017-12-01

    In the present work, a new simple and quick eco-friendly method is discussed to handle effectively the green wastes and produce a sustainable peat substitute of high quality on the large scale. Principal physicochemical parameters, i.e., temperature, moisture, specific weight, pH, electrical conductivity and, also, microorganisms, organic matter, humic substances, total Kjeldahl nitrogen and total organic carbon, C/N ratio, ash, metal content and phytotoxicity, were monitored systematically. Humic substances content values were interrelated to both C/N ratio and pH values and, similarly, bulk density, TOC, TKN, C/N, GI, ash and organic matter were found interconnected to each other. A novel biocatalyst, extremely rich in soil microorganisms, prepared from compost extracts and peaty lignite, accelerated the biotransformation. Zeolite was also employed. The compost does not demonstrate any phytotoxicity throughout the entire biotransformation process and has increased humic substances content. Both humic substances content and germination index can be employed as maturation indices of the compost. Addition of compost, processed for 60 days only, in cultivations of grass plants led to a significant increase in the stem mass and root size, annotating the significant contribution of the compost to both growth and germination. The product obtained is comparable to peat humus, useful as peat substitute and can be classified as a first class soil conditioner suitable for organic farming. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Development of web-based GIS services for sustainable soil resource management at farm level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papadopoulos, Antonis; Kolovos, Chronis; Troyanos, Yerasimos; Doula, Maria

    2017-09-01

    Modern farms situated in urban or suburban areas, include various and in most cases diverse land covers. Land uses in such farms may serve residential, structured, aesthetic and agricultural purposes, usually delimited inside the boundaries of a single property. The environmental conditions across a farm, especially if it is situated on an irregular terrain, can be highly differentiated. Managing soil resources in a small scale diverse farm environment in a holistic and sustainable way should have spatial and temporal reference and take advantage of cut-edge geospatial technologies. In present study, an 8 hectare farm with various land uses in the southern suburbs of Attica Prefecture, Greece was systematically monitored regarding its soil, water and plant resources. Almost 80% of the farm's area is covered with trees, shrubs and low vegetation planted in a mosaic of parterres. Farm data collected concerned soil and water physicochemical characteristics, plant species, topographical features, irrigation network, valves and infrastructure. All data were imported and developed in a GIS geodatabase. Furthermore, web GIS services and a mobile GIS app were developed in order to monitor, update and synchronize present status and future changes performed in the farm. Through the web services and using the mobile GIS app, the user has access to all data stored in the geodatabase and according to access rights he can view or edit the spatial entities. The user can easily make query to specific features, combine their properties with other overlaying spatial data and reach accurate decisions. The app can be downloaded and implemented in mobile devices like smartphones and tablets for extending its functionality. As proven in this study, web GIS services and mobile GIS apps constitute an attractive suite of methodologies for effective and user friendly management of natural resources at farm level.

  11. Source of sustained voltage difference between the xylem of a potted Ficus benjamina tree and its soil.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher J Love

    Full Text Available It has long been known that there is a sustained electrical potential (voltage difference between the xylem of many plants and their surrounding soil, but the mechanism behind this voltage has remained controversial. After eliminating any extraneous capacitive or inductive couplings and ground-mediated electric current flows, we have measured sustained differences of 50-200 mV between the xylem region of a Faraday-caged, intact, potted Ficus benjamina tree and its soil, as well as between its cut branches and soils and ionic solutions standardized to various pH values. Using identical platinum electrodes, no correlation between the voltage and time of day, illumination, sap flow, electrode elevation, or ionic composition of soil was found, suggesting no direct connection to simple dissimilar-metal redox reactions or transpirational activity. Instead, a clear relationship between the voltage polarity and magnitude and the pH difference between xylem and soil was observed. We attribute these sustained voltages to a biological concentration cell likely set up by the homeostatic mechanisms of the tree. Potential applications of this finding are briefly explored.

  12. Global changes in dryland vegetation dynamics (1988–2008 assessed by satellite remote sensing: comparing a new passive microwave vegetation density record with reflective greenness data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Andela

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Drylands, covering nearly 30% of the global land surface, are characterized by high climate variability and sensitivity to land management. Here, two satellite-observed vegetation products were used to study the long-term (1988–2008 vegetation changes of global drylands: the widely used reflective-based Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI and the recently developed passive-microwave-based Vegetation Optical Depth (VOD. The NDVI is sensitive to the chlorophyll concentrations in the canopy and the canopy cover fraction, while the VOD is sensitive to vegetation water content of both leafy and woody components. Therefore it can be expected that using both products helps to better characterize vegetation dynamics, particularly over regions with mixed herbaceous and woody vegetation. Linear regression analysis was performed between antecedent precipitation and observed NDVI and VOD independently to distinguish the contribution of climatic and non-climatic drivers in vegetation variations. Where possible, the contributions of fire, grazing, agriculture and CO2 level to vegetation trends were assessed. The results suggest that NDVI is more sensitive to fluctuations in herbaceous vegetation, which primarily uses shallow soil water, whereas VOD is more sensitive to woody vegetation, which additionally can exploit deeper water stores. Globally, evidence is found for woody encroachment over drylands. In the arid drylands, woody encroachment appears to be at the expense of herbaceous vegetation and a global driver is interpreted. Trends in semi-arid drylands vary widely between regions, suggesting that local rather than global drivers caused most of the vegetation response. In savannas, besides precipitation, fire regime plays an important role in shaping trends. Our results demonstrate that NDVI and VOD provide complementary information and allow new insights into dryland vegetation dynamics.

  13. Progress towards the use of publicly available data networks to conduct cross-scale historical reconstructions of carbon dynamics in US Drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Washington-Allen, R. A.; Landolt, K.; Emanuel, R. E.; Therrell, M. D.; Nagle, N.; Grissino-Mayer, H. D.; Poulter, B.

    2016-12-01

    Emergent scale properties of water-limited or Dryland ecosystem's carbon flux are unknown at spatial scales from local to global and time scales of 10 - 1000 years or greater. The width of a tree ring is a metric of production that has been correlated with the amount of precipitation. This relationship has been used to reconstruct rainfall and fire histories in the Drylands of the southwestern US. The normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) is globally measured by selected satellite sensors and is highly correlated with the fraction of solar radiation which is absorbed for photosynthesis by plants (FPAR), as well as with vegetation biomass, net primary productivity (NPP), and tree ring width. Publicly available web-based archives of free NDVI and tree ring data exist and have allowed historical temporal reconstructions of carbon dynamics for the past 300 to 500 years. Climate and tree ring databases have been used to spatially reconstruct drought dynamics for the last 500 years in the western US. In 2007, we hypothesized that NDVI and tree ring width could be used to spatially reconstruct carbon dynamics in US Drylands. In 2015, we succeeded with a 300-year historical spatial reconstruction of NPP in California using a Blue Oak tree ring chronology. Online eddy covariance flux tower measures of NPP are well correlated with satellite measures of NPP. This suggests that net ecosystem exchange (NEE = NPP - soil Respiration) could be historically reconstructed across Drylands. Ongoing research includes 1) scaling historical spatial reconstruction to US Drylands, 2) comparing the use of single versus multiple tree ring species (r2 = 68) and 3) use of the eddy flux tower network, remote sensing, and tree ring data to historically spatially reconstruct Dryland NEE.

  14. Ecohydrological implications of aeolian sediment trapping by sparse vegetation in drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzales, Howell B.; Ravi, Sujith; Li, Junran; Sankey, Joel B.

    2018-01-01

    Aeolian processes are important drivers of ecosystem dynamics in drylands, and important feedbacks exist among aeolian – hydrological processes and vegetation. The trapping of wind-borne sediments by vegetation may result in changes in soil properties beneath the vegetation, which, in turn, can alter hydrological and biogeochemical processes. Despite the relevance of aeolian transport to ecosystem dynamics, the interactions between aeolian transport and vegetation in shaping dryland landscapes where sediment distribution is altered by relatively rapid changes in vegetation composition such as shrub encroachment, is not well understood. Here, we used a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling framework to investigate the sediment trapping efficiencies of vegetation canopies commonly found in a shrub-grass ecotone in the Chihuahuan Desert (New Mexico, USA) and related the results to spatial heterogeneity in soil texture and infiltration measured in the field. A CFD open-source software package was used to simulate aeolian sediment movement through three-dimensional architectural depictions of Creosote shrub (Larrea tridentata) and Black Grama grass (Bouteloua eriopoda) vegetation types. The vegetation structures were created using a computer-aided design software (Blender), with inherent canopy porosities, which were derived using LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) measurements of plant canopies. Results show that considerable heterogeneity in infiltration and soil grain size distribution exist between the microsites, with higher infiltration and coarser soil texture under shrubs. Numerical simulations also indicate that the differential trapping of canopies might contribute to the observed heterogeneity in soil texture. In the early stages of encroachment, the shrub canopies, by trapping coarser particles more efficiently, might maintain higher infiltration rates leading to faster development of the microsites (among other factors) with enhanced ecological

  15. Dryland responses to global change suggest the potential for rapid non-linear responses to some changes but resilience to others

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, S.; Ferrenberg, S.; Tucker, C.; Rutherford, W. A.; Wertin, T. M.; McHugh, T. A.; Morrissey, E.; Kuske, C.; Belnap, J.

    2017-12-01

    Drylands represent our planet's largest terrestrial biome, making up over 35% of Earth's land surface. In the context of this vast areal extent, it is no surprise that recent research suggests dryland inter-annual variability and responses to change have the potential to drive biogeochemical cycles and climate at the global-scale. Further, the data we do have suggest drylands can respond rapidly and non-linearly to change. Nevertheless, our understanding of the cross-system consistency of and mechanisms behind dryland responses to a changed environment remains relatively poor. This poor understanding hinders not only our larger understanding of terrestrial ecosystem function, but also our capacity to forecast future global biogeochemical cycles and climate. Here we present data from a series of Colorado Plateau manipulation experiments - including climate, land use, and nitrogen deposition manipulations - to explore how vascular plants, microbial communities, and biological soil crusts (a community of mosses, lichens, and/or cyanobacteria living in the interspace among vascular plants in arid and semiarid ecosystems worldwide) respond to a host of environmental changes. These responses include not only assessments of community composition, but of their function as well. We will explore photosynthesis, net soil CO2 exchange, soil carbon stocks and chemistry, albedo, and nutrient cycling. The experiments were begun with independent questions and cover a range of environmental change drivers and scientific approaches, but together offer a relatively holistic picture of how some drylands can change their structure and function in response to change. In particular, the data show very high ecosystem vulnerability to particular drivers, but surprising resilience to others, suggesting a multi-faceted response of these diverse systems.

  16. Adapting a regularized canopy reflectance model (REGFLEC) for the retrieval challenges of dryland agricultural systems

    KAUST Repository

    Houborg, Rasmus

    2016-08-20

    A regularized canopy reflectance model (REGFLEC) is applied over a dryland irrigated agricultural system in Saudi Arabia for the purpose of retrieving leaf area index (LAI) and leaf chlorophyll content (Chll). To improve the robustness of the retrieved properties, REGFLEC was modified to 1) correct for aerosol and adjacency effects, 2) consider foliar dust effects on modeled canopy reflectances, 3) include spectral information in the red-edge wavelength region, and 4) exploit empirical LAI estimates in the model inversion. Using multi-spectral RapidEye imagery allowed Chll to be retrieved with a Mean Absolute Deviation (MAD) of 7.9 μg cm− 2 (16%), based upon in-situ measurements conducted in fields of alfalfa, Rhodes grass and maize over the course of a growing season. LAI and Chll compensation effects on canopy reflectance were largely avoided by informing the inversion process with ancillary LAI inputs established empirically on the basis of a statistical machine learning technique. As a result, LAI was reproduced with good accuracy, with an overall MAD of 0.42 m2 m− 2 (12.5%). Results highlighted the considerable challenges associated with the translation of at-sensor radiance observations to surface bidirectional reflectances in dryland environments, where issues such as high aerosol loadings and large spatial gradients in surface reflectance from bright desert soils to dark vegetated fields are often present. Indeed, surface reflectances in the visible bands were reduced by up to 60% after correction for such adjacency effects. In addition, dust deposition on leaves required explicit modification of the reflectance sub-model to account for its influence. By implementing these model refinements, REGFLEC demonstrated its utility for within-field characterization of vegetation conditions over the challenging landscapes typical of dryland agricultural regions, offering a means through which improvements can be made in the management of these globally

  17. Agro-Forestry system in West Africa: integrating a green solution to cope with soil depletion towards agricultural sustainability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monteiro, Filipa; Vidigal, Patricia; Romeiras, Maria Manuel; Ribeiro, Ana; Abreu, Maria Manuela; Viegas, Wanda; Catarino, Luís

    2017-04-01

    During the last decades, agriculture in West Africa has been marked by dramatic shifts with the coverage of single crops, increasing pressure over the available arable land. Yet, West African countries are still striving to achieve sustainable production at an increased scale for global market needs. Market-driven rapid intensification is often a major cause for cropland area expansion at the expense of deforestation and soil degradation, especially to export commodities in times of high prices. Cashew (Anacardium occidentale L.) is nowadays an important export-oriented crop, being produced under intensive cultivation regimes in several tropical regions. Particularly, among the main cashew production areas, West Africa is the most recent and dynamic in the world, accounting for 45% of the world cashew nuts production in 2015. Considering its global market values, several developing countries rely on cashew nuts as national economy revenues, namely in Guinea-Bissau. Considering the intensive regime of cashew production in Guinea-Bissau, and as widely recognized, intensive agriculture linked with extensification can negatively impact ecosystems, affecting natural resources availability, soil erosion and arability compromised by excessive salinity. Ultimately this will result in the disruption of carbon - nitrogen cycle, important to the agricultural ecosystem sustainability. As such, tree intercropped with legumes as cover crops, offers a sustainable management of the land area, thus creating substantial benefits both economically and environmentally, as it enhances diversification of products outputs and proving to be more sustainable than forestry and/or agricultural monocultures. Soil fertility improvement is a key entry point for achieving food security, and also increment agriculture commodities of the agro-system. Without using inorganic fertilizers, the green solution for improving soil management is to incorporate adapted multi-purpose legumes as cover crops

  18. Expanding dryland ecosystem flux datasets enable novel quantification of water availability and carbon exchange in Southwestern North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biederman, J. A.; Scott, R. L.; Smith, W. K.; Litvak, M. E.; MacBean, N.

    2017-12-01

    Global-scale studies suggest that water-limited dryland ecosystems dominate the increasing trend in magnitude and interannual variability of the land CO2 sink. However, the terrestrial biosphere models and remote sensing models used in large-scale analyses are poorly constrained by flux measurements in drylands, which are under-represented in global datasets. In this talk, I will address this gap with eddy covariance data from 30 ecosystems across the Southwest of North America with observed ranges in annual precipitation of 100 - 1000 mm, annual temperatures of 2 - 25 °C, and records of 3 - 10 years each (160 site-years). This extensive dryland dataset enables new approaches including 1) separation of temporal and spatial patterns to infer fast and slow ecosystem responses to change, and 2) partitioning of precipitation into hydrologic losses, evaporation, and ecosystem-available water. I will then compare direct flux measurements with models and remote sensing used to scale fluxes regionally. Combining eddy covariance and streamflow measurements, I will show how evapotranspiration (ET), which is the efflux of soil moisture remaining after hydrologic losses, is a better metric than precipitation of water available to drive ecosystem CO2 exchange. Furthermore, I will present a novel method to partition ET into evaporation and transpiration using the tight coupling of transpiration and photosynthesis. In contrast with typical carbon sink function in wetter, more-studied regions, dryland sites express an annual net carbon uptake varying from -350 to +330 gC m-2. Due to less respiration losses relative to photosynthesis gains during winter, declines in winter precipitation across the Southwest since 1999 are reducing annual net CO2 uptake. Interannual variability of net uptake is larger than for wetter regions, and half the sites pivot between sinks in wet years to sources in dry years. Biospheric and remote sensing models capture only 20-30 % of interannual

  19. Dryland Landscapes: Forest Management, Gender and Social Diversity in Asia and Africa’

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bose, P.; Dijk, van J.W.M.

    2016-01-01

    Drylands cover 40 % of the earth’s surface and provide the basis for the livelihoods of 2 billion people, many of whom belong to the poorest of the world. Dryland forests provide these people with woods, fruits, fibre and pasture. Drylands are among the poorest and most problem-ridden areas of the

  20. The assessment of soil conservation technologies for sustainable agricultural production. Report of the FAO/IAEA consultants meeting. Working material

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2001-01-01

    A Consultants' Meeting on 'The assessment of soil conservation technologies for sustainable agricultural production' was held in Vienna at the IAEA Headquarters from May 28-30, 2001. The consultants' presentations reviewed recent advances in the use of fallout radionuclides to measure soil erosion as well as approaches and technologies applied for soil conservation worldwide. Also, activities and experiences of FAO and UNEP in the field of land degradation, soil conservation and related issues were presented. Based on the information provided by the Scientific Secretary, a full project proposal was prepared during the second part of the Consultants' Meeting. The consultants also provided recommendations on the formulation and implementation of a future CRP on the subject

  1. Integrated phytobial remediation for sustainable management of arsenic in soil and water.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, Madhumita; Giri, Ashok K; Dutta, Sourav; Mukherjee, Pritam

    2015-02-01

    Arsenic (As), cited as the most hazardous substance by the U.S. Agency for Toxic Substance and Disease Registry (ATSDR, 2005), is an ubiquitous metalloid which when ingested for prolonged periods cause extensive health effects leading to ultimate untimely death. Plants and microbes can help mitigate soil and groundwater As problem since they have evolved elaborate detoxification machineries against this toxic metalloid as a result of their coexistence with this since the origin of life on earth. Utilization of the phytoremediation and bioremediation potential of the plants and microbes, respectively, is now regarded as two innovative tools that encompass biology, geology, biotechnology and allied sciences with cutting edge applications for sustainable mitigation of As epidemic. Discovery of As hyperaccumulating plants that uptake and concentrate large amounts of this toxic metalloid in their shoots or roots offered new hope to As phytoremediation, solar power based nature's own green remediation. This review focuses on how phytoremediation and bioremediation can be merged together to form an integrated phytobial remediation which could synergistically achieve the goal of large scale removal of As from soil, sediment and groundwater and overcome the drawbacks of the either processes alone. The review also points to the feasibility of the introduction of transgenic plants and microbes that bring new hope for more efficient treatment of As. The review identifies one critical research gap on the importance of remediation of As contaminated groundwater not only for drinking purpose but also for irrigation purpose and stresses that more research should be conducted on the use of constructed wetland, one of the most suitable areas of application of phytobial remediation. Finally the review has narrowed down on different phytoinvestigation and phytodisposal methods, which constitute the most essential and the most difficult part of pilot scale and field scale applications

  2. A Spanner in the Works: Human–Elephant Conflict Complicates the Food–Water–Energy Nexus in Drylands of Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mwangi Githiru

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The two major conservation issues for drylands of Africa are habitat loss or degradation and habitat fragmentation, largely from agriculture, charcoal production, and infrastructural development. A key question for management is how these landscapes can retain their critical ecological functions and services, while simultaneously supporting resilient livelihoods. It is a clear nexus question involving food (agriculture, water, and energy (fuelwood, which is complicated by human–wildlife conflicts. While these could appear disparate issues, they are closely connected in dryland forest landscapes of Africa where elephants occur close to areas of human habitation. For instance, crop failure, whether due to weather or wildlife damage, is a key driver for rural farmers seeking alternative livelihoods and incomes, one of the commonest being charcoal production. Similarly, heavy reliance on wood-based energy often leads to degradation of wildlife habitat, which heightens competition with wildlife for food and water, increasing the possibility of crop-raiding. So, for multifunctional landscapes where elephants occur in close proximity with humans, any food–water–energy nexus activities toward achieving sustainability and resilience should consider human–elephant conflicts (HECs. Here, we broach these food–water–energy nexus issues with a focus on dryland areas of Africa and HECs. We highlight an ongoing study attempting to address this nexus holistically by employing a climate-smart agriculture (CSA and agro-forestry based design, augmented by an elephant deterrent study and an eco-charcoal production venture.

  3. Crop and irrigation management strategies for saline-sodic soils and waters aimed at environmentally sustainable agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qadir, M; Oster, J D

    2004-05-05

    Irrigation has long played a key role in feeding the expanding world population and is expected to play a still greater role in the future. As supplies of good-quality irrigation water are expected to decrease in several regions due to increased municipal-industrial-agricultural competition, available freshwater supplies need to be used more efficiently. In addition, reliance on the use and reuse of saline and/or sodic drainage waters, generated by irrigated agriculture, seems inevitable for irrigation. The same applies to salt-affected soils, which occupy more than 20% of the irrigated lands, and warrant attention for efficient, inexpensive and environmentally acceptable management. Technologically and from a management perspective, a couple of strategies have shown the potential to improve crop production under irrigated agriculture while minimizing the adverse environmental impacts. The first strategy, vegetative bioremediation--a plant-assisted reclamation approach--relies on growing appropriate plant species that can tolerate ambient soil salinity and sodicity levels during reclamation of salt-affected soils. A variety of plant species of agricultural significance have been found to be effective in sustainable reclamation of calcareous and moderately sodic and saline-sodic soils. The second strategy fosters dedicating soils to crop production systems where saline and/or sodic waters predominate and their disposal options are limited. Production systems based on salt-tolerant plant species using drainage waters may be sustainable with the potential of transforming such waters from an environmental burden into an economic asset. Such a strategy would encourage the disposal of drainage waters within the irrigated regions where they are generated rather than exporting these waters to other regions via discharge into main irrigation canals, local streams, or rivers. Being economically and environmentally sustainable, these strategies could be the key to future

  4. Phenology of Succession: Tracking the Recovery of Dryland Forests after Wildfire Events

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, J.; Brown, J. F.; Sankey, J. B.; Wallace, C.; Weltzin, J. F.

    2016-12-01

    The frequency, size, and intensity of forest wildfires in the U.S. Southwest have increased over the past 30 years. In the coming decades, burn effects and altered climatic conditions may increasingly divert vegetation recovery trajectories from pre-disturbance forested ecosystems toward grassland or shrub woodlands. Dryland herbaceous and woody vegetation species exhibit different phenological responses to precipitation, resulting in temporal and spatial shifts in landscape phenology patterns as the proportions of plant functional groups change over time. We have developed time series of Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and Soil-Adjusted Vegetation Index (SAVI) greenness measures derived from satellite imagery from 1984 - 2015 to record the phenological signatures that characterize recovery trajectories towards predominantly grassland, shrubland, or forest land cover types. We leveraged the data and computational resources available through the Google Earth Engine cloud-based platform to analyze time series of Landsat Thematic Mapper and Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus imagery collected over maturing (40 years or more post-fire) dryland forests in Arizona and New Mexico, USA. These time series provided the basis for long-term comparisons of phenology behavior in different successional trajectories and enabled the assessment of climatic influence on the eventual outcomes.

  5. Identifying optimal remotely-sensed variables for ecosystem monitoring in Colorado Plateau drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poitras, Travis; Villarreal, Miguel; Waller, Eric K.; Nauman, Travis; Miller, Mark E.; Duniway, Michael C.

    2018-01-01

    Water-limited ecosystems often recover slowly following anthropogenic or natural disturbance. Multitemporal remote sensing can be used to monitor ecosystem recovery after disturbance; however, dryland vegetation cover can be challenging to accurately measure due to sparse cover and spectral confusion between soils and non-photosynthetic vegetation. With the goal of optimizing a monitoring approach for identifying both abrupt and gradual vegetation changes, we evaluated the ability of Landsat-derived spectral variables to characterize surface variability of vegetation cover and bare ground across a range of vegetation community types. Using three year composites of Landsat data, we modeled relationships between spectral information and field data collected at monitoring sites near Canyonlands National Park, UT. We also developed multiple regression models to assess improvement over single variables. We found that for all vegetation types, percent cover bare ground could be accurately modeled with single indices that included a combination of red and shortwave infrared bands, while near infrared-based vegetation indices like NDVI worked best for quantifying tree cover and total live vegetation cover in woodlands. We applied four models to characterize the spatial distribution of putative grassland ecological states across our study area, illustrating how this approach can be implemented to guide dryland ecosystem management.

  6. Integrating knowledge exchange and the assessment of dryland management alternatives - A learning-centered participatory approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bautista, Susana; Llovet, Joan; Ocampo-Melgar, Anahí; Vilagrosa, Alberto; Mayor, Ángeles G; Murias, Cristina; Vallejo, V Ramón; Orr, Barron J

    2017-06-15

    The adoption of sustainable land management strategies and practices that respond to current climate and human pressures requires both assessment tools that can lead to better informed decision-making and effective knowledge-exchange mechanisms that facilitate new learning and behavior change. We propose a learning-centered participatory approach that links land management assessment and knowledge exchange and integrates science-based data and stakeholder perspectives on both biophysical and socio-economic attributes. We outline a structured procedure for a transparent assessment of land management alternatives, tailored to dryland management, that is based on (1) principles of constructivism and social learning, (2) the participation of stakeholders throughout the whole assessment process, from design to implementation, and (3) the combination of site-specific indicators, identified by local stakeholders as relevant to their particular objectives and context conditions, and science-based indicators that represent ecosystem services of drylands worldwide. The proposed procedure follows a pattern of eliciting, challenging, and self-reviewing stakeholder perspectives that aims to facilitate learning. The difference between the initial baseline perspectives and the final self-reviewed stakeholder perspectives is used as a proxy of learning. We illustrate the potential of this methodology by its application to the assessment of land uses in a Mediterranean fire-prone area in East Spain. The approach may be applied to a variety of socio-ecological systems and decision-making and governance scales. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. The charcoal-degradation nexus: contested 'fuelscapes' in the sub-Saharan drylands of northern Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergmann, Christoph; Petersen, Maike; Roden, Paul; Nüsser, Marcus

    2017-04-01

    Charcoal ranks amongst the most commercialized but least regulated commodities in sub-Saharan Africa. Despite its prevalence as an energy source for cooking and heating, localized environmental and livelihood impacts of charcoal production are poorly understood so far. The identified research deficit is amplified by widespread negative views of this activity as a poverty-driven cause of deforestation and land degradation. However, the charcoal-degradation nexus is apparently more complicated, not least because the extraction of biomass from already degraded woodlands can also be interpreted as an appropriate option under given management regimes. In order to better calibrate existing research agendas to site-specific geographies of charcoal production, we propose a re-conceptualization of such energy landscapes as 'fuelscapes' with complex material and social dimensions. The concept is tested with reference to a case study in Central Pokot, northern Kenya, where charcoal production only began in the early 1990's. Based on the assumption that the fine line between sustainable land management and degradation in dryland energy landscapes is not only highly variable but also increasingly contested, our study combines the knowledge input of different stakeholders with longitudinal time series of remote sensing data. Based on the results of our interdisciplinary analyses, we outline an integrated tool for the co-operative monitoring and management of prevailing degradation processes against the background of diversified livelihood activities in sub-Saharan drylands.

  8. 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...

  9. Moderating Climate Hazard Risk through Cooperation in Asian Drylands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Troy Sternberg

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Asia drylands face increasing climate hazard risk, changing socio-economic forces, and environmental challenges that affect community viability. As home to >1 billion residents, deserts are at the centre of the continent’s climate-human predicament. Extreme water scarcity, dependence on food imports and now conflict increase hazard exposure across shared drylands, yet management differs from state to state. This paper argues that a more coherent strategy for mitigating risk would be based on natural environments. Linking hazards with livelihoods and social stability identifies how recent drought events disrupted ecosystems and societies. This results in borders rather than geography defining risk and response. Developing a dryland perspective across the continent can be an effective approach to reduce hazard risk and improve cooperation across Asia’s extensive arid lands.

  10. Action plan to counteract soil acidification and to promote sustainable use of forest land

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2002-04-01

    This report consists of the National Board of Forestry's proposals on a plan to counteract soil acidification and to promote sustainable use of forest land. In 1989 the government requested the National Board of Forestry to start experimental activities to find measures to counteract soil acidification. In 1997 the Board presented a proposal for liming and vitalisation of forest land. An Environmental Impact Assessment of the proposal was submitted in 1999, after which a revision of the plan was started. In order to obtain better basic knowledge of the situation, the Board of Forestry commissioned nine reports that dealt with different aspects of soil acidification and corrective measures. Major emphasis has also been placed on the national environmental quality goals and the national plan for liming of lakes and waterways. The report is divided into three parts. The first part explains the Board of Forestry's proposals on measures to counteract soil acidification, and the second part, the description of the situation today, presents the conditions for the design of the plan such as political goals and guidelines that affect the plan and its design, the knowledge available today on soil acidification, its effects, possibilities for recovery, and possible measures that can be used. The third and final part contains brief summaries of the responses to the plan when circulated for comments. The action plan allows a return of the buffering capacity of the most acidified forest land, mainly in southern and southwestern Sweden. The Board of Forestry proposes that the spreading of ashes and lime is done within drainage areas where the natural recovery is assessed to be slow and insufficient, and where the leaching of toxic aluminium from forest land is hazardous to the aquatic ecosystem. In the assessments made by the Board, between 200,000 and 350,000 hectares of forest land may require measures of this kind. The Board of Forestry is of the opinion that a three

  11. Long-term manure applications improve soil productivity and sustain high crop yield for acidic red soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Intensive use of chemical nitrogen (N) fertilizers has resulted in severely reduced productivity of red soils (Ferralic Cambisol) due to accelerated acidification. Manure has been shown to be effective in improving soil productivity by preventing or reversing the acidification process, but little in...

  12. From Theory to Rural Farms: Testing the Efficacy of the Dryland Development Paradigm of Desertification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, J. F.; Herrick, J.; Huber-Sannwald, E.; Ayarza, M.

    2011-12-01

    The social and economic systems of humans (H) are inextricably linked with environmental (E) systems. This tight coupling is especially relevant in drylands, where ecosystem goods and services vital to sustaining the livelihoods of human populations are constantly changing over time. The Dryland Development Paradigm (DDP; Reynolds et al. 2007, Science 316, 847-851) was proposed as an integrated framework for dealing with the enormous complexity associated with coupled H-E systems. The DDP consists of five principles: (1) the structure, function and interrelationships that characterize H-E systems are always changing so both H and E factors must always be considered simultaneously; (2) a limited suite of "slow" variables are critical determinants of H-E dynamics; (3) thresholds in both H and E systems are vital: if a key slow variable crosses a threshold this can lead to a different state or condition (a switch in culture resistance to the introduction of new technology such as tractors to plow fields); (4) H-E systems are hierarchical in nature and because of the many cross-scale linkages and feedbacks, adaptation, surprises and self-organization are the norm; and (5) lastly, "solving" land degradation problems cannot be accomplished without drawing upon the firsthand experience and insights (local knowledge) of local stakeholders. For the past 7 years, ARIDnet-AMERICAS, an NSF-supported coordination research network, has applied these five principles via 11 case studies at diverse locations in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Columbia, Honduras, Mexico and the United States with the goal to compare and contrast the causes and processes of land degradation and their effects on the balance between the demand for, and supply of, ecosystem services. We present a summary of our initial synthesis. The causal human-environmental processes driving land degradation (e.g., overgrazing, government policies, international markets) are often similar but with differing levels of

  13. USE OF ORGANIC RESIDUES FOR THE RECOVERY OF SOIL AND ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonia Galvez

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this work was to investigate the effects of different organic residues on soil fertility and climate change, through the evaluation of soil organic matter mineralisation, greenhouse gas emission, nutrient availability and soil microbial biomass content and activity. A degraded agricultural soil was amended with three different organic residues (pig slurry digestate, rapeseed meal, and compost at three different doses (0.1, 0.25 and 0.5% w/w and incubated for 30 days at 20 ºC. During incubation, soil CO2 and N2O emissions, K2SO4 extractable organic C, N, NH4+, NO3- and P, soil microbial biomass and some enzymatic activities were determined. Results obtained showed that rapeseed meal and pig slurry are best suited to improve soil chemical and biological fertility, while compost is more appropriate for the enhancement of soil organic matter content and to promote soil C sequestration.

  14. [Effect of long-term application of NPK fertilizer on maize yield and yellow soil nutrients sustainability in Guizhou, China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yan Ling; Li, Yu; Zhang, Ya Rong; Huang, Xing Cheng; Zhang, Wen An; Jiang, Tai Ming

    2017-11-01

    A long-term fertilization field experiment was conducted to investigate the effect of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) fertilizer on maize relative yield, yield-increasing effect and the changes of nutrients in yellow soil in Guizhou Province. Five fertilizer combinations were evaluated, including balanced fertilization (NPK) and nutrient deficiency treatments (N, NK, NP, and PK). The maize relative yield, contribution efficiency of N, P, K fertilizer application, sustainability index of soil N, P, K nutrients, and other indicators were measured. The results revealed that the balanced fertilization (NPK) significantly increased maize yield, and the average yield under each treatment ranked as: NPK>NP>NK>PK>CK. The contribution efficiency and agronomic efficiency of N, P, K fertilizer application was N>P>K. The fertilization dependence was ranked as: combined application of N, P and K>N>P>K. But in the lack of P treatment (NK), the maize relative yield significantly decreased at a speed of 1.4% per year, with the contribution efficiency and fertilization dependence of applied P significantly increasing at a speed of 2.3% per year and 1.4% per year, respectively. Over time, the effect of P fertilizer on maize yield gradually became equal to that of N fertilizer. The pH and soil organic matter content were the lowest in the P-lack treatment (NK), while they were higher in the N-lack treatment (PK). The application of chemical P significantly improved the sustainability index of soil P, but the application of chemical N and K did not significantly change the sustainability index of soil N and K nutrients compared to the N- and K-lack treatments, respectively. In summary, the use of balanced fertilizer application is critical for achieving high maize yield in typical yellow soil regions in Guizhou Province. P and N fertilizers are equally important for improving maize yield, and long-term application of unbalanced chemical fertilizer, especially the lack

  15. Spatial and temporal estimation of soil loss for the sustainable management of a wet semi-arid watershed cluster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rejani, R; Rao, K V; Osman, M; Srinivasa Rao, Ch; Reddy, K Sammi; Chary, G R; Pushpanjali; Samuel, Josily

    2016-03-01

    using farm ponds and percolation tanks. This methodology can be adopted for estimating the soil loss from similar ungauged watersheds with deficient data and for planning suitable soil and water conservation interventions for the sustainable management of the watersheds.

  16. Assessment of Relationships between Earthworms and Soil Abiotic and Biotic Factors as a Tool in Sustainable Agricultural

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Radoslava Kanianska

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Earthworms are a major component of soil fauna communities. They influence soil chemical, biological, and physical processes and vice versa, their abundance and diversity are influenced by natural characteristics or land management practices. There is need to establish their characteristics and relations. In this study earthworm density (ED, body biomass (EB, and diversity in relation to land use (arable land—AL, permanent grasslands—PG, management, and selected abiotic (soil chemical, physical, climate related and biotic (arthropod density and biomass, ground beetle density, carabid density indicators were analysed at seven different study sites in Slovakia. On average, the density of earthworms was nearly twice as high in PG compared to AL. Among five soil types used as arable land, Fluvisols created the most suitable conditions for earthworm abundance and biomass. We recorded a significant correlation between ED, EB and soil moisture in arable land. In permanent grasslands, the main climate related factor was soil temperature. Relationships between earthworms and some chemical properties (pH, available nutrients were observed only in arable land. Our findings indicate trophic interaction between earthworms and carabids in organically managed arable land. Comprehensive assessment of observed relationships can help in earthworm management to achieve sustainable agricultural systems.

  17. Restoration of degraded arid farmland at Project Wadi Attir: Impact of conservation on biological productivity and soil organic matter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mor-Mussery, Amir; Helman, David; Ben Eli, Michael; Leu, Stefan

    2017-04-01

    The Israeli Negev Desert, as most Mediterranean drylands, is profoundly degraded. We have been documenting degradation and successful rehabilitation approaches in recent research, aiming at maximizing environmental and economic benefits while restoring healthy dryland soils and perennial vegetation to act as carbon sinks. These methods have been implemented for rehabilitation of Project Wadi Attir's. 50 hectares of heavily degraded farmland suffering from intensive soil erosion (expressed in dense gullies net and massive overland flow). Project Wadi Attir is a groundbreaking initiative of the Bedouin community in the Negev, for establishing a model sustainable agricultural operation. The project was initiated by the US-based Sustainability Laboratory and the Hura Municipal Council. The project is designed to demonstrate implementation of holistic sustainability principles developed by The Lab. The project's ecosystem restoration component involves site development, erosion control, soil conservation and improvement, planting of native and agroforestry trees, together with conservation and protection of biodiversity hotspots and avoiding grazing have, within three years, revealed the high biodiversity and productivity potential of this arid/semi-arid landscape. A number of shrublands and loess plots were subject to strict conservation, avoiding tilling and grazing. Soil fertility, productivity and biodiversity of these conserved plots inside the farm boundaries was compared to similar unprotected plots outside the farm fences by sampling in the field and by using satellite imaging. Our findings indicate a gradual improvement of SOM content specifically in the conserved shrubland area. Water infiltration, herbaceous biomass productivity and ants' activity of the protected plots also significantly increased within 3 years compared to the unprotected control areas. Starting from similar soil organic matter content in 2013 (3.3%) in the rocky slopes, in 2016 1% higher

  18. Overview of the Sustainable Uses of Peat Soil in Malaysia with Some Relevant Geotechnical Assessments

    OpenAIRE

    Rashidah Adon; Ismail Bakar; Devapriya Chitral Wijeyesekera; Adnan Zainorabidin

    2013-01-01

    Peat soil is an important ecosystem that provides a significant contribution to the global climate stability. In Malaysia, peat soils are considered as a soil with little economic benefit, apart from it being used for agricultural activity. The total world coverage of peat soil is about thirty million hectares with Canada and Russia having the largest distribution of peat (Zainorabiddin,2010). More than sixty percent of the world’s tropical peat lands are found in South-East Asia (Lette,2006...

  19. Desertification, land use, and the transformation of global drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desertification is an escalating concern in global drylands, yet assessments to guide management and policy responses are limited by ambiguity concerning what this term means and what processes are involved. In order to provide greater clarity, we propose that desertification assessments be placed w...

  20. The complemental role of dryland cultivated pastures in market ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The complemental role of dryland cultivated pastures in market-related beef production from semi-arid rangeland. ... Abstract. Rangeland condition is a decisive factor in determining the income/cost ratio of production hence in the profitability of any beef production enterprise. Cultivated pastures can play an important role in ...

  1. Earth Observation of Vegetation Dynamics in Global Drylands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tian, Feng

    Land degradation in global drylands has been a concern related to both the local livelihoods and the changes in terrestrial biosphere, especially in the context of substantial global environmental changes. Earth Observation (EO) provides a unique way to assess the vegetation dynamics over the past...

  2. Total evaporation estimates from a Renosterveld and dryland wheat ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Accurate quantification of the water balance, in particular evapotranspiration, is fundamental in managing water resources, especially in semi-arid areas. The objective of this study was to compare evaporation from endemic vegetation – Renosterveld – and a dryland wheat/fallow cropping system. The study was carried out ...

  3. Rainfall probability and EONR for dryland corn in Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nitrogen fertilizer costs have increased 70% in the last 6 yrs in the Central Great Plains Region (CGPR). This cost increase coincides with a decrease in dryland grain yields due to drought. How does the economic optimum N rate (EONR) change with grain price and fertilizer cost? Here we evaluated 11...

  4. Climate contributions to vegetation variations in Central Asian drylands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhou, Yu; Zhang, Li; Fensholt, Rasmus

    2015-01-01

    Central Asia comprises a large fraction of the world's drylands, known to be vulnerable to climate change. We analyzed the inter-annual trends and the impact of climate variability in the vegetation greenness for Central Asia from 1982 to 2011 using GIMMS3g normalized difference vegetation index...

  5. A morphometric analysis of vegetation patterns in dryland ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mander, Luke; Dekker, Stefan C.; Li, Mao; Mio, Washington; Punyasena, Surangi W.; Lenton, Timothy M.

    2017-02-01

    Vegetation in dryland ecosystems often forms remarkable spatial patterns. These range from regular bands of vegetation alternating with bare ground, to vegetated spots and labyrinths, to regular gaps of bare ground within an otherwise continuous expanse of vegetation. It has been suggested that spotted vegetation patterns could indicate that collapse into a bare ground state is imminent, and the morphology of spatial vegetation patterns, therefore, represents a potentially valuable source of information on the proximity of regime shifts in dryland ecosystems. In this paper, we have developed quantitative methods to characterize the morphology of spatial patterns in dryland vegetation. Our approach is based on algorithmic techniques that have been used to classify pollen grains on the basis of textural patterning, and involves constructing feature vectors to quantify the shapes formed by vegetation patterns. We have analysed images of patterned vegetation produced by a computational model and a small set of satellite images from South Kordofan (South Sudan), which illustrates that our methods are applicable to both simulated and real-world data. Our approach provides a means of quantifying patterns that are frequently described using qualitative terminology, and could be used to classify vegetation patterns in large-scale satellite surveys of dryland ecosystems.

  6. Development of sorghum varieties and hybrids for dryland areas of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Mo

    second to tef as injera (leavened local flat bread) making cereal. In the dryland areas of Ethiopia which covers 66 per cent of the total area, it is the major cereal crop grown. In these areas crop production is mainly rain-fed. Because of the low amount, uneven distribution and erratic nature of the rainfall crop production is ...

  7. Environmental drivers of human migration in drylands - A spatial picture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Neumann, K.; Sietz, D.; Hilderink, H.; Janssen, P.; Kok, M.; Dijk, van H.

    2015-01-01

    It is widely accepted that environmental change can influence human migration. In particular, the environment plays a role in migration processes in drylands, in which environmental change—including increasing variability of rainfall, increasing frequency of droughts, chronic water shortage, and

  8. Syndromes of dryland degradation in southern Africa | Scholes ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Dryland degradation (in other words, desertification) is defined for the purposes of this paper as a persistent decrease in the capacity of an arid or semiarid ecosystem to supply a range of services, including (but not restricted to) forage, fuel, timber, crops, fresh water, wild-harvested foods, biodiversity habitat and tourism ...

  9. Soil and Land Resources Information System (SLISYS-Tarim) for Sustainable Management of River Oases along the Tarim River, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Othmanli, Hussein; Zhao, Chengyi; Stahr, Karl

    2017-04-01

    according to field management, soil type and salinity level, where soil salinity was the main limiting factor. Furthermore, the calibrated and validated EPIC model was run under several scenarios of climate conditions and land management practices to estimate the effect of climate change on cotton production and sustainability of agriculture systems in the basin. The application of SLISYS-Tarim showed that this database can be a suitable framework for storage and retrieval of soil and terrain data at various scales. The simulation with the EPIC model can assess the impact of climate change and management strategies. Therefore, SLISYS-Tarim can be a good tool for regional planning and serve the decision support system on regional and national scale.

  10. Diagnosis of GLDAS LSM based aridity index and dryland identification for socioeconomic aspect of water resources management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghazanfari, S.; Pande, S.; Hashemy, M.; Naseri M., M.

    2012-04-01

    Water resources scarcity plays an important role in socioeconomic aspect of livelihood pattern in dryland areas. Hydrological perspective of aridity is required for social and economic coping Strategies. Identification of dryland areas is crucial to guide policy aimed at intervening in water stressed areas and addressing its perennial livelihood or food insecurity. Yet, prevailing aridity indices are beset with methodological limitations that restrict their use in delineating drylands and, might be insuffient for decision making frameworks. Palmer's Drought Severity index (PDSI) reports relative soil moisture deviations from long term means, which does not allow cross comparisons, while UNEP's aridity index, the ratio of annual evaporative demand to rainfall supply, ignores site specific soil and vegetation characteristics that are needed for appropriate water balance assessment. We propose to refine UNEP's aridity index by accounting for site specific soil and vegetation to partition precipitation into competing demands of evaporation and runoff. We create three aridity indices at a 1 x 1 degree spatial resolution based on 3 decades of soil moisture time series from three GLDAS Land Surface Models (LSM's): VIC, MOSAIC and NOAH. We compare each LSM model aridity map with the UNEP aridity map which was created based on LSM data forcing. Our approach is to extract the first Eigen function from Empirical Orthogonal Function (EOF) analysis that represents the dominant spatial template of soil moisture conditions of the three LSM's. Frequency of non-exceedence of this dominant soil moisture mode for a location by all other locations is used as our proposed aridity index. The EOF analysis reveals that the first Eigen function explains, respectively, 33%, 43% and 47% of the VIC, NOAH and MOSAIC models. The temporal coefficients associated with the first OF (Orthogonal Function) for all three LSMS clearly show seasonality with a discrete jump in trend around the year 1999

  11. Adaptive livelihood strategies for coping with water scarcity in the drylands of central Tanzania

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liwenga, Emma T.

    In this paper, it is argued that local knowledge for adapting to water scarcity is important for integrated resource management by taking into consideration both the natural and social constraints in a particular setting based on accumulated experience. The paper examines the relevance of local knowledge in sustaining agricultural production in the semiarid areas of central Tanzania. The paper specifically focuses on how water scarcity, as the major limiting factor, is addressed in the study area using local knowledge to sustain livelihoods of its people. The study was conducted in four villages; Mzula, Ilolo, Chanhumba and Ngahelezi, situation in Mvumi Division in Dodoma Region. The study mainly employed qualitative data collection techniques. Participatory methods provided a means of exploring perceptions and gaining deeper insights regarding natural resource utilization in terms of problems and opportunities. The main data sources drawn upon in this study were documentation, group interviews and field observations. Group interviews involved discussions with a group of 6-12 people selected on the basis of gender, age and socio-economic groups. Data analysis entailed structural and content analysis within the adaptive livelihood framework in relation to management of water scarcity using local knowledge. The findings confirm that rainfall is the main limiting factor for agricultural activities in the drylands of Central Tanzania. As such, local communities have developed, through time, indigenous knowledge to cope with such environments utilizing seasonality and diversity of landscapes. Use of this local knowledge is therefore effective in managing water scarcity by ensuring a continuous production of crops throughout the year. This practice implies increased food availability and accessibility through sales of such agricultural products. Local innovations for water management, such as cultivation in sandy rivers, appear to be very important means of accessing

  12. Natural ecosystem mimicry in traditional dryland agroecosystems: Insights from an empirical and holistic approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanco, Julien; Michon, Geneviève; Carrière, Stéphanie M

    2017-12-15

    While the aim of Ecological Intensification is to enable the design of more sustainable and productive agricultural systems, it is not suited to dryland agroecosystems that are driven by non-equilibrium dynamics and intrinsic variability. Instead, a model based on mobility and variability management has been proposed for these agroecosystems. However, this model remains under-applied in southern Morocco where there have been few studies on the functioning of traditional agroecosystems. This paper focuses on an agroecosystem in the Moroccan Saharan fringe zone that combines agriculture and pastoralism in an acacia parkland. A grounded theory approach was used over a three-year investigation period (i) to highlight how agro-pastoral activities interface with environmental variability, and (ii) to analyze the formal and informal institutions that support these activities. Results show that farmers interface with rainfall variability through (i) an opportunistic agricultural calendar, (ii) a variation of cultivated areas, and (iii) crop diversification. Herders combine macro-mobility (nomads move over long distances to track rainfall) and micro-mobility (nomadic and sedentary herds are driven on a daily basis around settlements) to optimize the exploitation of ecological heterogeneity. During droughts, they also resort to State-subsidized forage supplies. Both cultivation and pastoral activities tend to interface with ecological dynamics and to mimic nature, resulting in a human-modified parkland that could be considered as a 'green agroecosystem'. The sustainability of natural resource use relies on flexible property rights, backed up by a social and cultural norm-based regulation system, that allow crop-livestock integration and landscape collective management. Despite encouraging results, the agroecosystem appears to be threatened by current agricultural policies, rural exodus and the lack of social recognition of nomadism. Nevertheless, because ecosystem mimicry of

  13. Organic vs. organic - soil arthropods as bioindicators of ecological sustainability in greenhouse system experiment under Mediterranean conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madzaric, Suzana; Ceglie, F G; Depalo, L; Al Bitar, L; Mimiola, G; Tittarelli, F; Burgio, G

    2017-11-23

    Organic greenhouse (OGH) production is characterized by different systems and agricultural practices with diverse environmental impact. Soil arthropods are widely used as bioindicators of ecological sustainability in open field studies, while there is a lack of research on organic production for protected systems. This study assessed the soil arthropod abundance and diversity over a 2-year crop rotation in three systems of OGH production in the Mediterranean. The systems under assessment differed in soil fertility management: SUBST - a simplified system of organic production, based on an input substitution approach (use of guano and organic liquid fertilizers), AGROCOM - soil fertility mainly based on compost application and agroecological services crops (ASC) cultivation (tailored use of cover crops) as part of crop rotation, and AGROMAN - animal manure and ASC cultivation as part of crop rotation. Monitoring of soil fauna was performed by using pitfall traps and seven taxa were considered: Carabidae, Staphylinidae, Araneae, Opiliones, Isopoda, Myriapoda, and Collembola. Results demonstrated high potential of ASC cultivation as a technique for beneficial soil arthropod conservation in OGH conditions. SUBST system was dominated by Collembola in all crops, while AGROMAN and AGROCOM had more balanced relative abundance of Isopoda, Staphylinidae, and Aranea. Opiliones and Myriapoda were more affected by season, while Carabidae were poorly represented in the whole monitoring period. Despite the fact that all three production systems are in accordance with the European Union regulation on organic farming, findings of this study displayed significant differences among them and confirmed the suitability of soil arthropods as bioindicators in protected systems of organic farming.

  14. Predicting soil properties for sustainable agriculture using vis-NIR spectroscopy: a case study in northern Greece

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsakiridis, Nikolaos L.; Tziolas, Nikolaos; Dimitrakos, Agathoklis; Galanis, Georgios; Ntonou, Eleftheria; Tsirika, Anastasia; Terzopoulou, Evangelia; Kalopesa, Eleni; Zalidis, George C.

    2017-09-01

    Soil Spectral Libraries facilitate agricultural production taking into account the principles of a low-input sustainable agriculture and provide more valuable knowledge to environmental policy makers, enabling improved decision making and effective management of natural resources in the region. In this paper, a comparison in the predictive performance of two state of the art algorithms, one linear (Partial Least Squares Regression) and one non-linear (Cubist), employed in soil spectroscopy is conducted. The comparison was carried out in a regional Soil Spectral Library developed in the Eastern Macedonia and Thrace region of Northern Greece, comprised of roughly 450 Entisol soil samples from soil horizons A (0-30 cm) and B (30-60 cm). The soil spectra were acquired in the visible - Near Infrared Red region (vis- NIR, 350nm-2500nm) using a standard protocol in the laboratory. Three soil properties, which are essential for agriculture, were analyzed and taken into account for the comparison. These were the Organic Matter, the Clay content and the concentration of nitrate-N. Additionally, three different spectral pre-processing techniques were utilized, namely the continuum removal, the absorbance transformation, and the first derivative. Following the removal of outliers using the Mahalanobis distance in the first 5 principal components of the spectra (accounting for 99.8% of the variance), a five-fold cross-validation experiment was considered for all 12 datasets. Statistical comparisons were conducted on the results, which indicate that the Cubist algorithm outperforms PLSR, while the most informative transformation is the first derivative.

  15. Sustainable Soil Washing: Shredded Card Filtration of Potentially Toxic Elements after Leaching from Soil Using Organic Acid Solutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ash, Christopher; Drábek, Ondřej; Tejnecký, Václav; Jehlička, Jan; Michon, Ninon; Borůvka, Luboš

    2016-01-01

    Shredded card (SC) was assessed for use as a sorbent of potentially toxic elements (PTE) carried from contaminated soil in various leachates (oxalic acid, formic acid, CaCl2, water). We further assessed SC for retention of PTE, using acidified water (pH 3.4). Vertical columns and a peristaltic pump were used to leach PTE from soils (O and A/B horizons) before passing through SC. Sorption onto SC was studied by comparing leachates, and by monitoring total PTE contents on SC before and after leaching. SC buffers against acidic soil conditions that promote metals solubility; considerable increases in solution pH (+4.49) were observed. Greatest differences in solution PTE content after leaching with/without SC occurred for Pb. In oxalic acid, As, Cd, Pb showed a high level of sorption (25, 15, and 58x more of the respective PTE in leachates without SC). In formic acid, Pb sorption was highly efficient (219x more Pb in leachate without SC). In water, only Pb showed high sorption (191x more Pb in leachate without SC). In desorption experiments, release of PTE from SC varied according to the source of PTE (organic/mineral soil), and type of solvent used. Arsenic was the PTE most readily leached in desorption experiments. Low As sorption from water was followed by fast release (70% As released from SC). A high rate of Cd sorption from organic acid solutions was followed by strong retention (~12% Cd desorption). SC also retained Pb after sorption from water, with subsequent losses of ≤8.5% of total bound Pb. The proposed use of this material is for the filtration of PTE from extract solution following soil washing. Low-molecular-mass organic acids offer a less destructive, biodegradable alternative to strong inorganic acids for soil washing. PMID:26900684

  16. Sustainable Soil Washing: Shredded Card Filtration of Potentially Toxic Elements after Leaching from Soil Using Organic Acid Solutions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher Ash

    Full Text Available Shredded card (SC was assessed for use as a sorbent of potentially toxic elements (PTE carried from contaminated soil in various leachates (oxalic acid, formic acid, CaCl2, water. We further assessed SC for retention of PTE, using acidified water (pH 3.4. Vertical columns and a peristaltic pump were used to leach PTE from soils (O and A/B horizons before passing through SC. Sorption onto SC was studied by comparing leachates, and by monitoring total PTE contents on SC before and after leaching. SC buffers against acidic soil conditions that promote metals solubility; considerable increases in solution pH (+4.49 were observed. Greatest differences in solution PTE content after leaching with/without SC occurred for Pb. In oxalic acid, As, Cd, Pb showed a high level of sorption (25, 15, and 58x more of the respective PTE in leachates without SC. In formic acid, Pb sorption was highly efficient (219x more Pb in leachate without SC. In water, only Pb showed high sorption (191x more Pb in leachate without SC. In desorption experiments, release of PTE from SC varied according to the source of PTE (organic/mineral soil, and type of solvent used. Arsenic was the PTE most readily leached in desorption experiments. Low As sorption from water was followed by fast release (70% As released from SC. A high rate of Cd sorption from organic acid solutions was followed by strong retention (~12% Cd desorption. SC also retained Pb after sorption from water, with subsequent losses of ≤8.5% of total bound Pb. The proposed use of this material is for the filtration of PTE from extract solution following soil washing. Low-molecular-mass organic acids offer a less destructive, biodegradable alternative to strong inorganic acids for soil washing.

  17. An econometric investigation of impacts of sustainable land management practices on soil carbon and yield risk: A potential for climate change mitigation

    OpenAIRE

    Kato, Edward; Nkonya, Ephraim; Place, Frank; Mwanjalolo, Majaliwa

    2010-01-01

    We investigate the impacts of sustainable land management practices on soil carbon stocks and also impacts of soil carbon on the mean and variance of crop production using econometric tools. Using a cross-sectional plot-level dataset collected from three agroecological zones of Uganda with soil carbon measured at a depth of 0 to 15 centimeters, our results have robustly shown that irrigation, fertilizers, improved fallow, crop residues, mulching, and trash lines are positively and significant...

  18. Quantification of Plasmodiophora brassicae Using a DNA-Based Soil Test Facilitates Sustainable Oilseed Rape Production

    OpenAIRE

    Ann-Charlotte Wallenhammar; Albin Gunnarson; Fredrik Hansson; Anders Jonsson

    2016-01-01

    Outbreaks of clubroot disease caused by the soil-borne obligate parasite Plasmodiophora brassicae are common in oilseed rape (OSR) in Sweden. A DNA-based soil testing service that identifies fields where P. brassicae poses a significant risk of clubroot infection is now commercially available. It was applied here in field surveys to monitor the prevalence of P. brassicae DNA in field soils intended for winter OSR production and winter OSR field experiments. In 2013 in Scania, prior to plantin...

  19. Pedotransfer functions to estimate soil water content at field capacity ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    20

    available scarce water resources in dry land agriculture, but direct measurement thereof for multiple locations in the field is not always feasible. Therefore, pedotransfer functions (PTFs) were developed to estimate soil water retention at FC and PWP for dryland soils of India. A soil database available for Arid Western India ...

  20. Knowledge, conservation and sustainable use of soil: physic and morphological aspects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcello Pagliai

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available The main aspects of environmental degradation can be ascribed to soil (erosion, soil compaction, soil crusting, deterioration of soil structure, flooding, losses of organic matter, salinisation, onsite and offsite damages, etc. following the impact of human activities. Since agricultural conventional production systems have resulted in excessive erosion and soil degradation, there is need to control and fight such degradation. Scientific results have clearly showed that the agricultural management systems can play an important role in preventing soil degradation provide that appropriate management practices are adopted. Long-term field experiments in different types of soils have shown that alternative tillage systems, like minimum tillage, ripper subsoiling, etc., improve the soil structural quality. The continuous conventional tillage causes a decrease of soil organic matter content that is associated to a decrease of aggregate stability, leading, as a consequence, to the formation of surface crusts, with an increase of runoff and erosion risks. Other aspects of very dangerous soil degradation (erosion in the hilly environments are represented by land levelling and scraping. After levelling, slopes being prepared for plantation (in particularly vineyard are almost always characterised by the presence of large amounts of incoherent earth materials accumulated with scraper. In this vulnerable condition, a few summer storms can easily cause soil losses exceeding 500 Mg ha-1y-1. Moreover, the land levelling and the following soil loss causes drastic alteration of the landscape and loss of the cultural value of soil. Subsoil compaction is strongly under evaluated, even though the presence of a ploughpan at the lower limit of cultivation is largely widespread in the alluvial soils of the plains cultivated by monoculture and it is responsible of the frequent flooding of such plains in occasion of heavy rains concentrated in a short time (rainstorm

  1. Proceedings of the 25. Brazilian congress on soil science: the soil on the great morpho climatic dominion in Brazil and the sustained development. v. 2; Anais do 25. Congresso brasileiro de ciencia do solo: O solo nos grandes dominios morfoclimaticos do Brasil e o desenvolvimento sustentado. v. 2

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1995-12-31

    This congress discussed soil`s science with emphasis in the Brazilian morphoclimatics dominion and the sustained development. Topics related to soil`s physics, chemical, biology, fertility, classification, nutrition, mineralogy, soil`s and water conservation, fertilizers, pollution and environmental quality were discussed. In the second volume of the abstracts are presented papers related to soil`s fertility and plants nutrition are discussed where nuclear methods of analysis are presented

  2. Proceedings of the 25. Brazilian congress on soil science: the soil on the great morpho climatic dominion in Brazil and the sustained development. v. 1; Anais do 25. Congresso brasileiro de ciencia do solo: O solo nos grandes dominios morfoclimaticos do Brasil e o desenvolvimento sustentado. v. 1

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1995-12-31

    This congress discussed soil`s science with emphasis in the Brazilian morphoclimatics dominion and the sustained development. Topics related to soil`s physics, chemical, biology, fertility, classification, nutrition, mineralogy, soil`s and water conservation,fertilizers, pollution and environmental quality were discussed. In the first volume of the abstracts are presented papers related to soil`s physics and biology where nuclear methods of analysis were utilized

  3. The contribution of Japanese Soil Science Societies to scientific knowledge, education and sustainability: Good practices in the International Year of Soils 2015 towards the International Decade of Soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kosaki, Takashi; Matoh, Toru; Inubushi, Kazuyuki; Sakurai, Katsutoshi

    2017-04-01

    The soil science community in Japan includes ca. 15,000 individuals from a variety of sectors, i.e. research, education, extension, business, national and local government, practitioners, non-governmental or non-profit organizations, etc., who have mostly (multi-)membership(s) in some of the academic societies. Among those societies, the Japanese Society of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, the Japanese Society of Soil Microbiology and the Japanese Society of Pedology played a leading role in the promotion of the International Year of Soils 2015. The activities, many of which were jointly organized and executed by the above three, can be summarized as follows; Scientific symposiums/workshops not only within the societies but together with other disciplines such as geosciences, quaternary research, biogeochemistry, ecology, biosciences, geotechnology, etc. in national as well as international gatherings, Symposiums, (mobile) exhibitions, photo contests, science cafes, talk shows, field days, agricultural fairs, edutainment programs for school children, etc. for promoting the public awareness of soil and soil science, Publication of the books and booklets on the topics of soils, soil science, soil and environment (and/or food, life, human security, etc.), targeting the moderately educated public, Articles in selected newspapers, Distribution or sale of the novelty/memorial goods and items, e.g. soil globe, logo stickers, specially brewed Sake wines, etc. Translation of "Vienna Soil Declaration" of the IUSS into Japanese language and its distribution to the public, and Scientific and action proposal and its international dispatch of "The need to reinforce soil science research and the information basis to respond to both gradual and sudden changes in our environment" together with the Science Council of Japan. Scientific forums and gatherings as symposiums and workshops with other disciplines were successful and satisfied by most of the participants. Those for the

  4. Lignin decomposition is sustained under fluctuating redox conditions in humid tropical forest soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steven J. Hall; Whendee L. Silver; Vitaliy I. Timokhin; Kenneth E. Hammel

    2015-01-01

    Lignin mineralization represents a critical flux in the terrestrial carbon (C) cycle, yet little is known about mechanisms and environmental factors controlling lignin breakdown in mineral soils. Hypoxia is thought to suppress lignin decomposition, yet potential effects of oxygen (O2) variability in surface soils have not been explored. Here, we...

  5. Sustained effects of atmospheric [CO2] and nitrogen availability on forest soil CO2 efflux

    Science.gov (United States)

    A. Christopher Oishi; Sari Palmroth; Kurt H. Johnsen; Heather R. McCarthy; Ram. Oren

    2014-01-01

    Soil CO2 efflux (Fsoil) is the largest source of carbon from forests and reflects primary productivity as well as how carbon is allocated within forest ecosystems. Through early stages of stand development, both elevated [CO2] and availability of soil nitrogen (N; sum of mineralization, deposition, and fixation) have been shown to increase gross primary productivity,...

  6. Effects of Zero Tillage (No-Till) Conservation Agriculture on soil physical and biological properties and their contributions to sustainability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landers, John N.; Rass, Gerard; de Freitas, Pedro L.; Basch, Gottlieb; González Sanchez, Emilio J.; Tabaglio, Vincenzo; Kassan, Amir; Derpsch, Rolf; Friedrich, Theodor; Giupponi, Luca

    2013-04-01

    : Europés ZT/CA area is 1.35 million hectares, while the world area is now some 125 million and growing at a rate of 7 million hectares per year. More scientific measurements of the benefits of this system are required, both to assist adoption and to trigger policy measures. In the EEC, CAP reform (greening) needs to consider making environmental services payments for these social benefits since a reduction in single farm payments is ineluctable and carbon footprint reduction is of the essence, in the face of constantly-rising fuel prices and the need to cut GHG emissions. Therefore, as the principal farm tool which offers an effective and immediate solution towards positive changes in soil quality, productivity and sustainability, ZT/CA adoption needs financial incentives, which have high economic and environmental returns to society.

  7. Forest soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charles H. (Hobie) Perry; Michael C. Amacher

    2009-01-01

    Productive soils are the foundation of sustainable forests throughout the United States. Forest soils are generally subjected to fewer disturbances than agricultural soils, particularly those that are tilled, so forest soils tend to have better preserved A-horizons than agricultural soils. Another major contrast between forest and agricultural soils is the addition of...

  8. Plant species richness and ecosystem multifunctionality in global drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maestre, Fernando T.; Quero, Jose L.; Gotelli, Nicholas J.; Escudero, Adrian; Ochoa, Victoria; Delgado-Baquerizo, Manuel; Garcia-Gomez, Miguel; Bowker, Matthew A.; Soliveres, Santiago; Escolar, Cristina; Garcia-Palacios, Pablo; Berdugo, Miguel; Valencia, Enrique; Gozalo, Beatriz; Gallardo, Antonio; Aguilera, Lorgio; Arredondo, Tulio; Blones, Julio; Boeken, Bertrand; Bran, Donaldo; Conceicao, Abel A.; Cabrera, Omar; Chaieb, Mohamed; Derak, Mchich; Eldridge, David J.; Espinosa, Carlos I.; Florentino, Adriana; Gaitan, Juan; Gatica, M. Gabriel; Ghiloufi, Wahida; Gomez-Gonzalez, Susana; Gutie, Julio R.; Hernandez, Rosa M.; Huang, Xuewen; Huber-Sannwald, Elisabeth; Jankju, Mohammad; Miriti, Maria; Monerris, Jorge; Mau, Rebecca L.; Morici, Ernesto; Naseri, Kamal; Ospina, Abelardo; Polo, Vicente; Prina, Anibal; Pucheta, Eduardo; Ramirez-Collantes, David A.; Romao, Roberto; Tighe, Matthew; Torres-Diaz, Cristian; Val, James; Veiga, Jose P.; Wang, Deli; Zaady, Eli

    2012-01-01

    Experiments suggest that biodiversity enhances the ability of ecosystems to maintain multiple functions, such as carbon storage, productivity, and the buildup of nutrient pools (multifunctionality). However, the relationship between biodiversity and multifunctionality has never been assessed globally in natural ecosystems. We report here on a global empirical study relating plant species richness and abiotic factors to multifunctionality in drylands, which collectively cover 41% of Earth's land surface and support over 38% of the human population. Multifunctionality was positively and significantly related to species richness. The best-fitting models accounted for over 55% of the variation in multifunctionality and always included species richness as a predictor variable. Our results suggest that the preservation of plant biodiversity is crucial to buffer negative effects of climate change and desertification in drylands.

  9. Bacteria Associated to Plants Naturally Selected in a Historical PCB Polluted Soil Show Potential to Sustain Natural Attenuation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vergani, Lorenzo; Mapelli, Francesca; Marasco, Ramona; Crotti, Elena; Fusi, Marco; Di Guardo, Antonio; Armiraglio, Stefano; Daffonchio, Daniele; Borin, Sara

    2017-01-01

    according to in vitro assays. PGP tested in vivo on tomato plants using eleven selected bacterial isolates, confirmed the promotion and protection potential of the rhizosphere bacteria. Different spontaneous plant species naturally selected in a historical chronically polluted site showed to determine the enrichment of peculiar bacterial communities in the soil fractions associated to the roots. All the rhizosphere communities, nevertheless, hosted bacteria with degradation/detoxification and PGP potential, putatively sustaining the natural attenuation process.

  10. Bacteria Associated to Plants Naturally Selected in a Historical PCB Polluted Soil Show Potential to Sustain Natural Attenuation

    KAUST Repository

    Vergani, Lorenzo

    2017-07-25

    according to in vitro assays. PGP tested in vivo on tomato plants using eleven selected bacterial isolates, confirmed the promotion and protection potential of the rhizosphere bacteria. Different spontaneous plant species naturally selected in a historical chronically polluted site showed to determine the enrichment of peculiar bacterial communities in the soil fractions associated to the roots. All the rhizosphere communities, nevertheless, hosted bacteria with degradation/detoxification and PGP potential, putatively sustaining the natural attenuation process.

  11. Bacteria Associated to Plants Naturally Selected in a Historical PCB Polluted Soil Show Potential to Sustain Natural Attenuation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorenzo Vergani

    2017-07-01

    among the isolates according to in vitro assays. PGP tested in vivo on tomato plants using eleven selected bacterial isolates, confirmed the promotion and protection potential of the rhizosphere bacteria. Different spontaneous plant species naturally selected in a historical chronically polluted site showed to determine the enrichment of peculiar bacterial communities in the soil fractions associated to the roots. All the rhizosphere communities, nevertheless, hosted bacteria with degradation/detoxification and PGP potential, putatively sustaining the natural attenuation process.

  12. Towards sustainability: artificial intelligent based approach for soil stabilization using various pozzolans

    KAUST Repository

    Ouf, M. S.

    2012-01-01

    . This paper discusses attempts to reach optimum stabilization through: (1) Recognizing the relationship between the UCS/FSP of stabilized soil and the stabilization parameters using artificial neural network (ANN); and (2) Performing a backward optimization

  13. Global questions, local answers: soil management and sustainable intensification in diverse socioeconomic contexts of Cuba

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    McCune, N.; Ruiz Gonzalez, Y.; Alcantara, E.A.; Fernandez Martinez, O.; Onelio Fundaro, C.; Castillo Arzola, N.; Cairo Cairo, P.; Haese, D' M.; Neve, De S.; Guevara Hernandez, F.

    2011-01-01

    In the complex context of global food and agricultural systems, research in agriculture must respond to multidisciplinary questions of economic development, ecological sustainability and food justice. With the objective of responding to several of the most important questions facing agriculture

  14. Cumulative drought and land-use impacts on perennial vegetation across a North American dryland region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munson, Seth M.; Long, A. Lexine; Wallace, Cynthia; Webb, Robert H.

    2016-01-01

    Question The decline and loss of perennial vegetation in dryland ecosystems due to global change pressures can alter ecosystem properties and initiate land degradation processes. We tracked changes of perennial vegetation using remote sensing to address the question of how prolonged drought and land-use intensification have affected perennial vegetation cover across a desert region in the early 21st century? Location Mojave Desert, southeastern California, southern Nevada, southwestern Utah and northwestern Arizona, USA. Methods We coupled the Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer Enhanced Vegetation Index (MODIS-EVI) with ground-based measurements of perennial vegetation cover taken in about 2000 and about 2010. Using the difference between these years, we determined perennial vegetation changes in the early 21st century and related these shifts to climate, soil and landscape properties, and patterns of land use. Results We found a good fit between MODIS-EVI and perennial vegetation cover (2000: R2 = 0.83 and 2010: R2 = 0.74). The southwestern, far southeastern and central Mojave Desert had large declines in perennial vegetation cover in the early 21st century, while the northeastern and southeastern portions of the desert had increases. These changes were explained by 10-yr precipitation anomalies, particularly in the cool season and during extreme dry or wet years. Areas heavily impacted by visitor use or wildfire lost perennial vegetation cover, and vegetation in protected areas increased to a greater degree than in unprotected areas. Conclusions We find that we can extrapolate previously documented declines of perennial plant cover to an entire desert, and demonstrate that prolonged water shortages coupled with land-use intensification create identifiable patterns of vegetation change in dryland regions.

  15. The soil information system of Rwanda: a useful tool to identify guidelines towards sustainable land management

    OpenAIRE

    A. Verdoodt; E. Van Ranst

    2006-01-01

    On the steep lands of Rwanda, overpopulation and degradation of the land resources are acute problems, especially against the background of present and future populations, food and agricultural demands, and opportunities and constraints. The ability of the land to produce is limited with the limits to production being set by climate, soil and landform conditions, and the use and management applied. Knowledge of the soils, their properties and their spatial distribution, is indispensable for t...

  16. Phytostabilization of semiarid soils residually contaminated with trace elements using by-products: Sustainability and risks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perez-de-Mora, Alfredo, E-mail: perezdemora@gmail.com [Instituto de Recursos Naturales y Agrobiologia de Sevilla (IRNAS), CSIC, PO Box 1052, 41080 Sevilla (Spain); Madejon, Paula; Burgos, Pilar; Cabrera, Francisco [Instituto de Recursos Naturales y Agrobiologia de Sevilla (IRNAS), CSIC, PO Box 1052, 41080 Sevilla (Spain); Lepp, Nicholas W. [35, Victoria Road, Formby, Liverpool L37 7DH (United Kingdom); Madejon, Engracia [Instituto de Recursos Naturales y Agrobiologia de Sevilla (IRNAS), CSIC, PO Box 1052, 41080 Sevilla (Spain)

    2011-10-15

    We investigated the efficiency of various by-products (sugarbeet lime, biosolid compost and leonardite), based on single or repeated applications to field plots, on the establishment of a vegetation cover compatible with a stabilization strategy on a multi-element (As, Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn) contaminated soil 4-6 years after initial amendment applications. Results indicate that the need for re-treatment is amendment- and element-dependent; in some cases, a single application may reduce trace element concentrations in above-ground biomass and enhance the establishment of a healthy vegetation cover. Amendment performance as evaluated by % cover, biomass and number of colonizing taxa differs; however, changes in plant community composition are not necessarily amendment-specific. Although the translocation of trace elements to the plant biotic compartment is greater in re-vegetated areas, overall loss of trace elements due to soil erosion and plant uptake is usually smaller compared to that in bare soil. - Highlights: > By-products enhance vegetation dynamics in contaminated semiarid soils. > Depending on the situation single or repeated incorporations may be required. > The structure of the plant community established is not amendment-dependent. > Phytostabilization reduces overall loss of trace elements in semiarid soils. - Phytostabilization using by-products as amendments is a suitable approach for long-term immobilization of various trace elements in semiarid contaminated soils.

  17. Phytostabilization of semiarid soils residually contaminated with trace elements using by-products: Sustainability and risks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perez-de-Mora, Alfredo; Madejon, Paula; Burgos, Pilar; Cabrera, Francisco; Lepp, Nicholas W.; Madejon, Engracia

    2011-01-01

    We investigated the efficiency of various by-products (sugarbeet lime, biosolid compost and leonardite), based on single or repeated applications to field plots, on the establishment of a vegetation cover compatible with a stabilization strategy on a multi-element (As, Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn) contaminated soil 4-6 years after initial amendment applications. Results indicate that the need for re-treatment is amendment- and element-dependent; in some cases, a single application may reduce trace element concentrations in above-ground biomass and enhance the establishment of a healthy vegetation cover. Amendment performance as evaluated by % cover, biomass and number of colonizing taxa differs; however, changes in plant community composition are not necessarily amendment-specific. Although the translocation of trace elements to the plant biotic compartment is greater in re-vegetated areas, overall loss of trace elements due to soil erosion and plant uptake is usually smaller compared to that in bare soil. - Highlights: → By-products enhance vegetation dynamics in contaminated semiarid soils. → Depending on the situation single or repeated incorporations may be required. → The structure of the plant community established is not amendment-dependent. → Phytostabilization reduces overall loss of trace elements in semiarid soils. - Phytostabilization using by-products as amendments is a suitable approach for long-term immobilization of various trace elements in semiarid contaminated soils.

  18. Establishment of a constructed wetland in extreme dryland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tencer, Yoram; Idan, Gil; Strom, Marjorie; Nusinow, Uri; Banet, Dorit; Cohen, Eli; Schröder, Peter; Shelef, Oren; Rachmilevitch, Shimon; Soares, Ines; Gross, Amit; Golan-Goldhirsh, Avi

    2009-11-01

    The project was set to construct an extensive wetland in the southernmost region of Israel at Kibbutz Neot Smadar (30 degree 02'45" N and 35 degree 01'19" E). The results of the first period of monitoring, summary, and perspectives are presented. The constructed wetland (CW) was built and the subsequent monitoring performed in the framework of the Southern Arava Sustainable Waste Management Plan, funded by the EU LIFE Fund. The specific aims were: (1) To end current sewage disposal and pollution of the ground, the aquifer, and the dry river bed (wadi) paths by biologically treating the sewage as part of the creation of a sustainable wetland ecosystem. (2) Serve as an example of CW in the Negev highlands and the Arava Valley climates for neighboring communities and as a test ground for plants and building methods appropriate to hyper arid climate. (3) Serve as an educational resource and tourist attraction for groups to learn about water reuse, recycling, local wildlife and migrating birds, including serving the heart of a planned Ecological-Educational Bird Park. This report is intended to allow others who are planning similar systems in hyper arid climates to learn from our experience. The project is located in an extreme arid desert with less than 40 mm of rain annually and temperature ranges of -5 degree C to +42 degree C. The site receives 165-185 m3 of municipal and agricultural wastes daily, including cowshed and goat wastes and winery outflow. The CW establishment at Neot Smadar was completed in October 2006. For 8 months, clean water flowed through the system while the plants were taking root. In June 2007, the wetland was connected to the oxidation pond and full operation began. Because of seepage and evaporation, during the first several months, the water level was not high enough to allow free flow from one bed to the next. To bed A, the water was pumped periodically from the oxidation pond (Fig. 1) and from there flowed by gravitation through the rest

  19. Biophysical risks to carbon sequestration and storage in Australian drylands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nolan, Rachael H; Sinclair, Jennifer; Eldridge, David J; Ramp, Daniel

    2018-02-15

    Carbon abatement schemes that reduce land clearing and promote revegetation are now an important component of climate change policy globally. There is considerable potential for these schemes to operate in drylands which are spatially extensive. However, projects in these environments risk failure through unplanned release of stored carbon to the atmosphere. In this review, we identify factors that may adversely affect the success of vegetation-based carbon abatement projects in dryland ecosystems, evaluate their likelihood of occurrence, and estimate the potential consequences for carbon storage and sequestration. We also evaluate management strategies to reduce risks posed to these carbon abatement projects. Identified risks were primarily disturbances, including unplanned fire, drought, and grazing. Revegetation projects also risk recruitment failure, thereby failing to reach projected rates of sequestration. Many of these risks are dependent on rainfall, which is highly variable in drylands and susceptible to further variation under climate change. Resprouting vegetation is likely to be less vulnerable to disturbance and have faster recovery rates upon release from disturbance. We conclude that there is a strong impetus for identifying management strategies and risk reduction mechanisms for carbon abatement projects. Risk mitigation would be enhanced by effective co-ordination of mitigation strategies at scales larger than individual abatement project boundaries, and by implementing risk assessment throughout project planning and implementation stages. Reduction of risk is vital for maximising carbon sequestration of individual projects and for reducing barriers to the establishment of new projects entering the market. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Soil, land use time, and sustainable intensification of agriculture in the Brazilian Cerrado region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trabaquini, Kleber; Galvão, Lênio Soares; Formaggio, Antonio Roberto; de Aragão, Luiz Eduardo Oliveira E Cruz

    2017-02-01

    The Brazilian Cerrado area is in rapid decline because of the expansion of modern agriculture. In this study, we used extensive field data and a 30-year chronosequence of Landsat images (1980-2010) to assess the effects of time since conversion of Cerrado into agriculture upon soil chemical attributes and soybean/corn yield in the Alto do Rio Verde watershed. We determined the rates of vegetation conversion into agriculture, the agricultural land use time since conversion, and the temporal changes in topsoil (0-20 cm soil depth) and subsurface (20-40 cm) chemical attributes of the soils. In addition, we investigated possible associations between fertilization/over-fertilization and land use history detected from the satellites. The results showed that 61.8% of the native vegetation in the Alto do Rio Verde watershed was already converted into agriculture with 31% of soils being used in agriculture for more than 30 years. While other fertilizers in cultivated soils (e.g., Ca +2 , Mg +2 , and P) have been compensated over time by soil management practices to keep crop yield high, large reductions in C org (38%) and N tot (29%) were observed in old cultivated areas. Furthermore, soybean and cornfields having more than 10 years of farming presented higher values of P and Mg +2 than the ideal levels necessary for plant development. Therefore, increased risks of over-fertilization of the soils and environmental contamination with these macronutrients were associated with soybean and cornfields having more than 10 years of farming, especially those with more than 30 years of agricultural land use.

  1. 3D Visualization Tools to Support Soil Management In Relation to Sustainable Agriculture and Ecosystem Services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Chen

    2017-04-01

    Visualization tools [1][2][6] have been used increasingly as part of information, consultation, and collaboration in relation to issues of global significance. Visualization techniques can be used in a variety of different settings, depending on their association with specific types of decision. Initially, they can be used to improve awareness of the local community and landscape, either individually or in groups [5]. They can also be used to communicate different aspects of change, such as digital soil mapping, ecosystem services and climate change [7][8]. A prototype 3D model was developed to present Tarland Catchment on the North East Scotland which includes 1:25000 soil map data and 1:50000 land capability for agriculture (LCA) data [4]. The model was used to identify issues arising between the growing interest soil monitoring and management, and the potential effects on existing soil characteristics. The online model was also created which can capture user/stakeholder comments they associate with soil features. In addition, people are located physically within the real-world bounds of the current soil management scenario, they can use Augmented Reality to see the scenario overlaid on their immediate surroundings. Models representing alternative soil use and management were used in the virtual landscape theatre (VLT) [3]with electronic voting designed to elicit public aspirations and concerns regarding future soil uses, and to develop scenarios driven by local input. Preliminary findings suggest positive audience responses to the relevance of the inclusion of soil data within a scene when considering questions regarding the impact of land-use change, such as woodland, agricultural land and open spaces. A future development is the use of the prototype virtual environment in a preference survey of scenarios of changes in land use, and in stakeholder consultations on such changes.END Rua, H. and Alvito, P. (2011) Living the past: 3D models, virtual reality and

  2. Plant species richness sustains higher trophic levels of soil nematode communities after consecutive environmental perturbations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cesarz, Simone; Ciobanu, Marcel; Wright, Alexandra J; Ebeling, Anne; Vogel, Anja; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Eisenhauer, Nico

    2017-07-01

    The magnitude and frequency of extreme weather events are predicted to increase in the future due to ongoing climate change. In particular, floods and droughts resulting from climate change are thought to alter the ecosystem functions and stability. However, knowledge of the effects of these weather events on soil fauna is scarce, although they are key towards functioning of terrestrial ecosystems. Plant species richness has been shown to affect the stability of ecosystem functions and food webs. Here, we used the occurrence of a natural flood in a biodiversity grassland experiment that was followed by a simulated summer drought experiment, to investigate the interactive effects of plant species richness, a natural flood, and a subsequent summer drought on nematode communities. Three and five months after the natural flooding, effects of flooding severity were still detectable in the belowground system. We found that flooding severity decreased soil nematode food-web structure (loss of K-strategists) and the abundance of plant feeding nematodes. However, high plant species richness maintained higher diversity and abundance of higher trophic levels compared to monocultures throughout the flood. The subsequent summer drought seemed to be of lower importance but reversed negative flooding effects in some cases. This probably occurred because the studied grassland system is well adapted to drought, or because drought conditions alleviated the negative impact of long-term soil waterlogging. Using soil nematodes as indicator taxa, this study suggests that high plant species richness can maintain soil food web complexity after consecutive environmental perturbations.

  3. Sustainable food production in marginal lands—Case of GDLA member countries

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shabbir A. Shahid

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Sustainable food production in the changing climate and dwindling water resources in the Global Dry Land Alliance (GDLA member countries is a real challenge, especially when considering marginal lands in dryland systems. The definition of marginal land is very vague and defined from different perspectives (pragmatism about marginal lands. Dryland itself indicates "marginality" due to water stress. In general, the abandoned agriculture land where food production is not economical, and has low inherent productivity potential is considered marginal; however, a land may be marginal for agriculture but vital for grazing. In this paper attempts have been made to give review of literature (water stress, extent of marginal saline lands, marginality. Policy matters (development of soil, water and agriculture strategies that GDLA and member countries should consider for future sustainable food production in their countries, including but not limited to, assessment of land resources for agriculture potential, defining, mapping and characterizing marginal lands, and use of innovative technologies (conservation agriculture, climate smart agriculture, integrated soil reclamation program and capacity building for food production, are discussed. The international perception (FAO, UNEP, CGIAR on marginal lands is also described. An innovative approach of using national biocapacity and ecological footprint is used to assess marginality of GDLA member countries. Ecological overshoot (using 1.5 earth planets and biocapacity debtor and creditor countries are highlighted. Challenges and best management practices for food production in marginal lands are included. Other important issues, like leasing land abroad, GDLA strategic food reserves and best management practices, innovative ideas for food production are shared. Finally recommendations are drafted for actions by GDLA, its member countries and the partners.

  4. Dataset of the use of tannin of néré (parkia-biglobosa as a solution for the sustainability of the soil constructions in West Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sinko Banakinao

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Soil is the main material of construction in African rural areas. Sustainability of construction with soil is a thorny problem to any builder. Finding ways to improve the durability of soil is not only essential but also salutary for the African rural community that mostly lives in soil-built houses that are very often short-lived. The present data assessed the resistance to simple compression and the resistance to bad weather by simulating rainfall alternations through a test of cycles of alternate watering and drying of blocks built from four types of different soils without binder, along with blocks built from the same soils. Keywords: Parkia-biglobosa, Bipinnateleaves, Mimosaceae

  5. A Review on Recycling of Sunflower Residue for Sustaining Soil Health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Subhash Babu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Modern agriculture is now at the crossroads ecologically, economically, technologically, and socially due to soil degradation. Critical analysis of available information shows that problems of degradation of soil health are caused due to imbalanced, inadequate and promacronutrient fertilizer use, inadequate use or no use of organic manures and crop residues, and less use of good quality biofertilizers. Although sizeable amount of crop residues and manure is produced in farms, it is becoming increasingly complex to recycle nutrients, even within agricultural systems. Therefore, there is a need to use all available sources of nutrients to maintain the productivity and fertility at a required level. Among the available organic sources of plant nutrients, crop residue is one of the most important sources for supplying nutrients to the crop and for improving soil health. Sunflower is a nontraditional oil seed crop produced in huge amount of crop residue. This much amount of crop residues is neither used as feed for livestock nor suitable for fuel due to low energy value per unit mass. However, its residue contains major plant nutrients in the range from 0.45 to 0.60% N, 0.15 to 0.22% P, and 1.80 to 1.94% K along with secondary and micronutrients, so recycling of its residue in the soil may be one of the best alternative practices for replenishing the depleted soil fertility and improving the physical, chemical, and biological properties of the soil in the present era of production. However, some researchers have reported allelopathic effects of sunflower residue on different crops. So, selection of suitable crops and management practices may play an important role to manage the sunflower residue at field level.

  6. Metarhizium brunneum (Ascomycota; Hypocreales) Treatments Targeting Olive Fly in the Soil for Sustainable Crop Production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yousef, Meelad; Alba-Ramírez, Carmen; Garrido Jurado, Inmaculada; Mateu, Jordi; Raya Díaz, Silvia; Valverde-García, Pablo; Quesada-Moraga, Enrique

    2018-01-01

    Soil treatments with Metarhizium brunneum EAMa 01/58-Su strain conducted in both Northern and Southern Spain reduced the olive fly ( Bactrocera oleae ) population density emerging from the soil during spring up to 70% in treated plots compared with controls. A model to determine the influence of rainfall on the conidial wash into different soil types was developed, with most of the conidia retained at the first 5 cm, regardless of soil type, with relative percentages of conidia recovered ranging between 56 and 95%. Furthermore, the possible effect of UV-B exposure time on the pathogenicity of this strain against B. oleae adults coming from surviving preimaginals and carrying conidia from the soil at adult emergence was also evaluated. The UV-B irradiance has no significant effect on M. brunneum EAMa 01/58-Su pathogenicity with B. oleae adult mortalities of 93, 90, 79, and 77% after 0, 2, 4, and 6 of UV-B irradiance exposure, respectively. In a next step for the use of these M. brunneum EAMa 01/58-Sun soil treatments within a B. oleae IPM strategy, its possible effect of on the B. oleae cosmopolitan parasitoid Psyttalia concolor , its compatibility with the herbicide oxyfluorfen 24% commonly used in olive orchards and the possible presence of the fungus in the olive oil resulting from olives previously placed in contact with the fungus were investigated. Only the highest conidial concentration (1 × 10 8 conidia ml - ) caused significant P. concolor adult mortality (22%) with enduing mycosis in 13% of the cadavers. There were no fungal propagules in olive oil samples resulting from olives previously contaminated by EAMa 01/58-Su conidia. Finally, the strain was demonstrated to be compatible with herbicide since the soil application of the fungus reduced the B. oleae population density up to 50% even when it was mixed with the herbicide in the same tank. The fungal inoculum reached basal levels 4 months after treatments (1.6 × 10 3 conidia g soil -1 ). These results

  7. Dryland ecosystem responses to precipitation extremes and wildfire at a long-term rainfall manipulation experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, R. F.; Collins, S. L.

    2017-12-01

    Climate is becoming increasingly more variable due to global environmental change, which is evidenced by fewer, but more extreme precipitation events, changes in precipitation seasonality, and longer, higher severity droughts. These changes, combined with a rising incidence of wildfire, have the potential to strongly impact net primary production (NPP) and key biogeochemical cycles, particularly in dryland ecosystems where NPP is sequentially limited by water and nutrient availability. Here we utilize a ten-year dataset from an ongoing long-term field experiment established in 2007 in which we experimentally altered monsoon rainfall variability to examine how our manipulations, along with naturally occurring events, affect NPP and associated biogeochemical cycles in a semi-arid grassland in central New Mexico, USA. Using long-term regional averages, we identified extremely wet monsoon years (242.8 mm, 2013), and extremely dry monsoon years (86.0 mm, 2011; 80.0 mm, 2015) and water years (117.0 mm, 2011). We examined how changes in precipitation variability and extreme events affected ecosystem processes and function particularly in the context of ecosystem recovery following a 2009 wildfire. Response variables included above- and below-ground plant biomass (ANPP & BNPP) and abundance, soil nitrogen availability, and soil CO2 efflux. Mean ANPP ranged from 3.6 g m-2 in 2011 to 254.5 g m-2 in 2013, while BNPP ranged from 23.5 g m-2 in 2015 to 194.2 g m-2 in 2013, demonstrating NPP in our semi-arid grassland is directly linked to extremes in both seasonal and annual precipitation. We also show increased nitrogen deposition positively affects NPP in unburned grassland, but has no significant impact on NPP post-fire except during extremely wet monsoon years. While soil respiration rates reflect lower ANPP post-fire, patterns in CO2 efflux have not been shown to change significantly in that efflux is greatest following large precipitation events preceded by longer drying

  8. Soil quality is key for planning and managing urban allotments intended for the sustainable production of home-consumption vegetables.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bretzel, F; Calderisi, M; Scatena, M; Pini, R

    2016-09-01

    The growing importance of urban allotments in planning and managing urban areas is due to the combined positive effects on ecosystem services, the economy and human well-being, especially of groups of the urban population that can be vulnerable (e.g. the elderly, immigrants, low-income families). Some studies have highlighted the potential risk of contamination by metals of vegetables grown in urban areas and the lack of appropriate site-specific risk assessments. However, surveys are still lacking on the possibilities of using urban soil as a good substrate to produce vegetables for home consumption. We assessed the soil quality in two areas in Pisa (Italy), one intended for urban horticulture and the other already cultivated for that purpose. We analysed the soils for the main chemical and physical characteristics (texture, bulk density, water stability index, pH, cation exchange capacity, organic carbon, total nitrogen, phosphorous) and elements (Pb, Cu, Ni, Cr, Zn, Cd, As, K, Al and Mn). Our results showed that both areas had physical and chemical heterogeneity due to the effects of urbanization and to the different cultivation techniques employed. The metal content was lower than the guidelines limits, and the soil conditions (pH = 8) greatly reduced the metal mobility. Copper concentration in some of the cultivated area samples was higher than the limits, representing a possible stress factor for the microbial biodiversity and fauna. Our findings demonstrate that site-specific surveys are necessary before planning urban cultivation areas, and educating urban gardeners regarding sustainable cultivation techniques is a priority for a safe environment.

  9. Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emily Moghaddas; Ken Hubbert

    2014-01-01

    When managing for resilient forests, each soil’s inherent capacity to resist and recover from changes in soil function should be evaluated relative to the anticipated extent and duration of soil disturbance. Application of several key principles will help ensure healthy, resilient soils: (1) minimize physical disturbance using guidelines tailored to specific soil types...

  10. Estimation of livestock appropriation of net primary productivity in Texas Drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert Washington-Allen; Jody Fitzgerald; Stephanie Grounds; Faisar Jihadi; John Kretzschmar; Kathryn Ramirez; John Mitchell

    2009-01-01

    The ecological state of US Drylands is unknown. This research is developing procedures to determine the impact of the ecological footprint of grazing livestock on the productive capacity of US Drylands. A pilot geodatabase was developed for the state of Texas that includes 2002 data for county boundaries, net primary productivity (NPP) derived from the Moderate...

  11. Rainwater harvesting for dryland agriculture in the Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Temesgen, B.B.

    2012-01-01

    The Ethiopian drylands occupy about 65% of the total land mass (close to 700,000km2) of the country. The predominantly rainfed agriculture in these drylands is highly constrained due to erratic rainfall, long dry-spells and excessive loss of rainwater through non-productive pathways

  12. Assessment of vegetation trends in drylands from time series of earth observation data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fensholt, R.; Horion, S.; Tagesson, T.; Ehammer, A.; Grogan, K.; Tian, F.; Huber, S.; Verbesselt, J.; Prince, S.D.; Tucker, C.J.; Rasmussen, K.

    2015-01-01

    This chapter summarizes approaches to the detection of dryland vegetation change and methods for observing spatio-temporal trends from space. An overview of suitable long-term Earth Observation (EO) based datasets for assessment of global dryland vegetation trends is provided and a status map of

  13. Phytoextraction with Brassica napus L.: A tool for sustainable management of heavy metal contaminated soils.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grispen, V.M.J.; Nelissen, H.J.M.; Verkleij, J.A.C.

    2006-01-01

    Phytoextraction is a promising tool to extract metals from contaminated soils and Brassica napus L. seems to be a possible candidate species for this purpose. To select accessions with the ability to accumulate cadmium, hydroponically grown 21 day old seedlings of 77 B. napus L. accessions were

  14. Long-term risks of inadequate management practices on the sustainability of agricultural soils

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vries, de W.; Groenenberg, J.E.; Murányi, A.; Curlík, J.; Sefcík, P.; Römkens, P.F.A.M.; Reinds, G.J.; Bril, J.; Modin, A.K.; Sverdrup, H.U.; Alloway, B.J.

    2003-01-01

    This report describes the major result of a research project funded by the INCO-Copernicus programma of European Commission under Contract number ERB-IC15-CT98-0133. The study focused on the long-term environmental risk of soil acidification on: (i) mobilisation and leaching and (ii) plant uptake of

  15. Ecological thresholds as a basis for defining management triggers for National Park Service vital signs: case studies for dryland ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowker, Matthew A.; Miller, Mark E.; Belote, R. Travis; Garman, Steven L.

    2013-01-01

    Threshold concepts are used in research and management of ecological systems to describe and interpret abrupt and persistent reorganization of ecosystem properties (Walker and Meyers, 2004; Groffman and others, 2006). Abrupt change, referred to as a threshold crossing, and the progression of reorganization can be triggered by one or more interactive disturbances such as land-use activities and climatic events (Paine and others, 1998). Threshold crossings occur when feedback mechanisms that typically absorb forces of change are replaced with those that promote development of alternative equilibria or states (Suding and others, 2004; Walker and Meyers, 2004; Briske and others, 2008). The alternative states that emerge from a threshold crossing vary and often exhibit reduced ecological integrity and value in terms of management goals relative to the original or reference system. Alternative stable states with some limited residual properties of the original system may develop along the progression after a crossing; an eventual outcome may be the complete loss of pre-threshold properties of the original ecosystem. Reverting to the more desirable reference state through ecological restoration becomes increasingly difficult and expensive along the progression gradient and may eventually become impossible. Ecological threshold concepts have been applied as a heuristic framework and to aid in the management of rangelands (Bestelmeyer, 2006; Briske and others, 2006, 2008), aquatic (Scheffer and others, 1993; Rapport and Whitford 1999), riparian (Stringham and others, 2001; Scott and others, 2005), and forested ecosystems (Allen and others, 2002; Digiovinazzo and others, 2010). These concepts are also topical in ecological restoration (Hobbs and Norton 1996; Whisenant 1999; Suding and others, 2004; King and Hobbs, 2006) and ecosystem sustainability (Herrick, 2000; Chapin and others, 1996; Davenport and others, 1998). Achieving conservation management goals requires the

  16. New Tools to Estimate Runoff, Soil Erosion, and Sustainability of Rangeland Plant Communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rangelands are the largest land cover type in the world. Degradation from mismanagement, desertification, and drought impact more than 50% of rangelands across the globe. The USDA Agricultural Research Service has been evaluating sustainability of rangeland for over 40-years by conducted rangeland r...

  17. Metarhizium brunneum (Ascomycota; Hypocreales Treatments Targeting Olive Fly in the Soil for Sustainable Crop Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meelad Yousef

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Soil treatments with Metarhizium brunneum EAMa 01/58-Su strain conducted in both Northern and Southern Spain reduced the olive fly (Bactrocera oleae population density emerging from the soil during spring up to 70% in treated plots compared with controls. A model to determine the influence of rainfall on the conidial wash into different soil types was developed, with most of the conidia retained at the first 5 cm, regardless of soil type, with relative percentages of conidia recovered ranging between 56 and 95%. Furthermore, the possible effect of UV-B exposure time on the pathogenicity of this strain against B. oleae adults coming from surviving preimaginals and carrying conidia from the soil at adult emergence was also evaluated. The UV-B irradiance has no significant effect on M. brunneum EAMa 01/58-Su pathogenicity with B. oleae adult mortalities of 93, 90, 79, and 77% after 0, 2, 4, and 6 of UV-B irradiance exposure, respectively. In a next step for the use of these M. brunneum EAMa 01/58-Sun soil treatments within a B. oleae IPM strategy, its possible effect of on the B. oleae cosmopolitan parasitoid Psyttalia concolor, its compatibility with the herbicide oxyfluorfen 24% commonly used in olive orchards and the possible presence of the fungus in the olive oil resulting from olives previously placed in contact with the fungus were investigated. Only the highest conidial concentration (1 × 108 conidia ml− caused significant P. concolor adult mortality (22% with enduing mycosis in 13% of the cadavers. There were no fungal propagules in olive oil samples resulting from olives previously contaminated by EAMa 01/58-Su conidia. Finally, the strain was demonstrated to be compatible with herbicide since the soil application of the fungus reduced the B. oleae population density up to 50% even when it was mixed with the herbicide in the same tank. The fungal inoculum reached basal levels 4 months after treatments (1.6 × 103 conidia g soil−1

  18. Genomic footprints of dryland stress adaptation in Egyptian fat-tail sheep and their divergence from East African and western Asia cohorts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mwacharo, Joram M; Kim, Eui-Soo; Elbeltagy, Ahmed R; Aboul-Naga, Adel M; Rischkowsky, Barbara A; Rothschild, Max F

    2017-12-15

    African indigenous sheep are classified as fat-tail, thin-tail and fat-rump hair sheep. The fat-tail are well adapted to dryland environments, but little is known on their genome profiles. We analyzed patterns of genomic variation by genotyping, with the Ovine SNP50K microarray, 394 individuals from five populations of fat-tail sheep from a desert environment in Egypt. Comparative inferences with other East African and western Asia fat-tail and European sheep, reveal at least two phylogeographically distinct genepools of fat-tail sheep in Africa that differ from the European genepool, suggesting separate evolutionary and breeding history. We identified 24 candidate selection sweep regions, spanning 172 potentially novel and known genes, which are enriched with genes underpinning dryland adaptation physiology. In particular, we found selection sweeps spanning genes and/or pathways associated with metabolism; response to stress, ultraviolet radiation, oxidative stress and DNA damage repair; activation of immune response; regulation of reproduction, organ function and development, body size and morphology, skin and hair pigmentation, and keratinization. Our findings provide insights on the complexity of genome architecture regarding dryland stress adaptation in the fat-tail sheep and showcase the indigenous stocks as appropriate genotypes for adaptation planning to sustain livestock production and human livelihoods, under future climates.

  19. Sustainable measures for sewage sludge treatment - evaluating the effects on P reaction in soils and plant P uptake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shenker, Moshe; Einhoren, Hana

    2016-04-01

    Wastewater treatment, whether for water reusing or for releasing into the environment, results in sewage sludge rich in organic matter and nutrients. If free of pathogens and pollutants, this waste material is a widely used as soil amendment and source of valuable nutrients for agronomic use. Nevertheless, its P/N ratio largely exceeds plant P/N demand. Limiting its application rates according to the P demand of crops will largely limit its application rates and its beneficial effect as a soil amendment and as a source for other nutrients. An alternative approach, in which P is stabilized before application, was evaluated in this study. Anaerobically digested fresh sewage sludge (FSS) was stabilized by aluminum sulfate, ferrous sulfate, and calcium oxide (CaO), as well as by composting with shredded woody yard-waste to produce Al-FSS, Fe-FSS, CaO-FSS, and FSS-compost, respectively. Defined organic-P sources (glucose-1-phosphate and inositol-hexa-phosphate) and a P fertilizer (KH2PO4) were included as well and a control with no P amendments was included as a reference. Each material was applied at a fixed P load of 50 mg kg-1 to each of three soils and P speciation and plants P uptake were tested along 112 days of incubation at moderate (near field capacity) water content. Tomato seedlings were used for the P uptake test. The large set of data was used to evaluate the effect of each treatment on P reactions and mechanisms of retention in the tested soils and to correlate various P indices to P availability for plants. Plant P uptake was highly correlated to Olsen-P as well as to water-soluble inorganic-P, but not to water-soluble organic-P and not to total P or other experimentally-defined stable P fractions. We conclude that the P stabilization in the sludge will allow beneficial and sustainable use of sewage sludge as a soil amendment and source of nutrients, but the stabilization method should be selected in accordance with the target soil properties.

  20. Sustainable management of agriculture activity on areas with soil vulnerability to compaction trough a developed decision support system (DSS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moretto, Johnny; Fantinato, Luciano; Rasera, Roberto

    2017-04-01

    One of the main environmental effects of agriculture is the negative impacts on areas with soil vulnerability to compaction and undersurface water derived from inputs and treatment distributions. A solution may represented from the "Precision Farming". Precision Farming refers to a management concept focusing on (near-real time) observation, measurement and responses to inter- and intra-variability in crops, fields and animals. Potential benefits may include increasing crop yields and animal performance, cost and labour reduction and optimisation of process inputs, all of which would increase profitability. At the same time, Precision Farming should increase work safety and reduce the environmental impacts of agriculture and farming practices, thus contributing to the sustainability of agricultural production. The concept has been made possible by the rapid development of ICT-based sensor technologies and procedures along with dedicated software that, in the case of arable farming, provides the link between spatially-distributed variables and appropriate farming practices such as tillage, seeding, fertilisation, herbicide and pesticide application, and harvesting. Much progress has been made in terms of technical solutions, but major steps are still required for the introduction of this approach over the common agricultural practices. There are currently a large number of sensors capable of collecting data for various applications (e.g. Index of vegetation vigor, soil moisture, Digital Elevation Models, meteorology, etc.). The resulting large volumes of data need to be standardised, processed and integrated using metadata analysis of spatial information, to generate useful input for decision-support systems. In this context, a user-friendly IT applications has been developed, for organizing and processing large volumes of data from different types of remote sensing and meteorological sensors, and for integrating these data into user-friendly farm management support

  1. Urban Land-Cover Change and Its Impact on the Ecosystem Carbon Storage in a Dryland City

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan Yan

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Lack of research into the complexity in urban land conversion, and paucity of observational data of soil organic carbon (SOC beneath impervious surface area (ISA limit our understanding of the urbanization effects on carbon (C pools in dryland cities. Employing Landsat TM images acquired in 1990 and 2010, a hybrid classification method consisting of Linear Spectral Mixture Analysis and decision tree classification was applied to retrieve the land cover (water, ISA, greenspace, cropland, and remnant desert of the largest dryland city in China—Urumqi. Based on vegetation carbon (VEGC and SOC density data determined through field observations and literature reviews, we developed Urumqi’s C pool maps in 1990 and 2010, and assessed the urbanization impacts on ecosystem C. Our results showed that ISA tripled from 1990 to 2010 displacing remnant desert and cropland. The urban landscape, especially the greenspaces, became obviously fragmented. In 2010, more than 95% of the urban ecosystem C was SOC, 48% of which under the ISA. The city lost 19% of C stock from 1990 to 2010. About 82% of the ecosystem C loss was caused by the conversion of remnant desert and cropland into ISA, mainly in the northern city.

  2. Nuclear techniques in soil-plant studies for sustainable agriculture and environmental preservation. Proceedings of an international symposium held in Vienna, 17-21 October 1994

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1995-01-01

    The papers presented at the symposium have been grouped in 8 Sessions: Recent developments in analytical methods and equipment (3 papers), Fertilizer use and management studies (8 papers), Biological nitrogen fixation in sustainable cropping systems (7 papers), Soil organic matter studies and nutrient cycling (7 papers), Water use and management studies (7 papers), Plant physiological aspects in crop production (8 papers), Environmental pollution and preservation (5 papers), Soil conservation, soil erosion and desertification (3 papers). 25 papers have been presented in a poster session. A separate abstract was prepared for each paper. Refs, figs and tabs

  3. Rehabilitating soils remain intact functions: strategic objective for sustainable remediation contaminated areas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cremisini, Carlo; Sprocati, Anna Rosa

    2015-01-01

    The importance assumed in recent decades from contamination the soil, for levels and by extension space, requires an assessment of the scale of ecosystem with a scenario level approach real, so that you can explicitly correlate the type and degree of contamination with potential risk it poses to others environmental media (primarily water, but implicitly biodiversity) and activities human to these connected, between which the system agri food is of peculiar significance, for the direct implications for human health. [it

  4. Degradation of sustainable mulch materials in two types of soil under laboratory conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villena, Jaime; González, Sara; Moreno, Carmen; Aceituno, Patricia; Campos, Juan; Meco, Ramón; María Moreno, Marta

    2017-04-01

    Mulching is a technique used in cultivation worldwide, especially for vegetable crops, for reducing weed growth, minimising or eliminating soil erosion, and often for enhancing total yields. Manufactured plastic films, mainly polyethylene (PE), have been widely used for this purpose due to their excellent mechanical properties, light weight and relatively low prices in recent years. However, the use of PE is associated with serious environmental problems related to its petrochemical origin and its long shelf-life, which causes a waste problem in our crop fields. For this reason, the use of biodegradable mulch materials (biopolymers and papers) as alternative to PE is increasing nowadays, especially in organic farming. However, these materials can suffer an undesirable early degradation (and therefore not fulfilling their function successfully), greatly resulting from the type of soil. For this reason, this study aimed to analyse the degradation pattern of different mulch materials buried in two types of soils, clay and sand, under laboratory conditions (25°C, dark surroundings, constant humidity). The mulch materials used were: 1) black polyethylene (15 µm); black biopolymers (15 µm): 2) maize starch-based, 3) potato starch-based, 4) polylactic acid-based, 5) black paper, 85 g/m2. Periodically (every 15-20 days), the weight and surface loss of the different materials were recorded. The results indicate that mulch degradation was earlier and higher in the clay soil, especially in the paper and in the potato starch-based materials, followed by the maize starch-based mulch, while polylactic acid-based suffered the least and the latest degradation. Keywords: mulch, biodegradable, biopolymer, paper, degradation. Acknowledgements: the research was funded by Project RTA2011-00104-C04-03 from the INIA (Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness).

  5. Viewpoint: Sustainability of piñon-juniper ecosystems - A unifying perspective of soil erosion thresholds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davenport, David W.; Breshears, D.D.; Wilcox, B.P.; Allen, Craig D.

    1998-01-01

    Many pinon-juniper ecosystem in the western U.S. are subject to accelerated erosion while others are undergoing little or no erosion. Controversy has developed over whether invading or encroaching pinon and juniper species are inherently harmful to rangeland ecosystems. We developed a conceptual model of soil erosion in pinon-jumper ecosystems that is consistent with both sides of the controversy and suggests that the diverse perspectives on this issue arise from threshold effects operating under very different site conditions. Soil erosion rate can be viewed as a function of (1) site erosion potential (SEP), determined by climate, geomorphology and soil erodibility; and (2) ground cover. Site erosion potential and cove act synergistically to determine soil erosion rates, as evident even from simple USLE predictions of erosion. In pinon-juniper ecosystem with high SEP, the erosion rate is highly sensitive to ground cover and can cross a threshold so that erosion increases dramatically in response to a small decrease in cover. The sensitivity of erosion rate to SEP and cover can be visualized as a cusp catastrophe surface on which changes may occur rapidly and irreversibly. The mechanisms associated with a rapid shift from low to high erosion rate can be illustrated using percolation theory to incorporate spatial, temporal, and scale-dependent patterns of water storage capacity on a hillslope. Percolation theory demonstrates how hillslope runoff can undergo a threshold response to a minor change in storage capacity. Our conceptual model suggests that pinion and juniper contribute to accelerated erosion only under a limited range of site conditions which, however, may exist over large areas.

  6. Soil engineering in vivo: harnessing natural biogeochemical systems for sustainable, multi-functional engineering solutions

    OpenAIRE

    DeJong, Jason T.; Soga, Kenichi; Banwart, Steven A.; Whalley, W. Richard; Ginn, Timothy R.; Nelson, Douglas C.; Mortensen, Brina M.; Martinez, Brian C.; Barkouki, Tammer

    2010-01-01

    Carbon sequestration, infrastructure rehabilitation, brownfields clean-up, hazardous waste disposal, water resources protection and global warming—these twenty-first century challenges can neither be solved by the high-energy consumptive practices that hallmark industry today, nor by minor tweaking or optimization of these processes. A more radical, holistic approach is required to develop the sustainable solutions society needs. Most of the above challenges occur within, are supported on, ar...

  7. Sustainable Lang Use in Hilly Red Soil Region of Southeastern China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANGTAO-LIN; ZHAOQI-GUO; 等

    1995-01-01

    In the present work,an integrated analysis of natural and socio-economic conditions in the hilly red soil region of southeastern China is made by means of a Geographic Information System.Particular emphasis lies on soil degradation and other adverse ecological and environmental effects of the prevalent and irrational land-use systems of mono-and valley-agriculture in the region.Moreover,taking into account the simultaneous existence of enormous potentials and serious constraints and the high diversity and complexity of the biophysical and socio-economic environments,a set of strategies and countermeasures are also proposed for appropriate management of environmental resources,in terms of maintaining harmony between utilization and coservation of the natural environment,including 1) adjustment of the agricultural structure and optimization of ecological patterns of stereo-agriculture;2) improvement and integrated exploitation of the low-yield lands and wastelands;3) ehabilitation and conservation of soil and water resources;and 4) establishment of production bases of tropical and subtropical cash crops and fruits.

  8. Proceedings of the 25. Brazilian congress on soil science: The soil in the great morpho climatic dominion in Brazil and the sustained development. v. 3; Anais do 25 congresso brasileiro de ciencia do solo: O solo nos grandes dominios morfoclimaticos do Brasil e o desenvolvimento sustentado. v. 3

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1995-12-31

    This congress discussed soil science with emphasis in the Brazilian morpho climatic dominion and the sustained development. Topics related to soil`s physics, chemical, biology, fertility, classification, nutrition, mineralogy, soil`s and water conservation, fertilizers, pollution and environmental quality were discussed. In the third volume of the abstracts are presented papers related to physics and chemical characteristics of building soils in coal mines areas

  9. The geomorphology of wetlands in drylands: Resilience, nonresilience, or …?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tooth, Stephen

    2018-03-01

    Over the last decade, much attention has focused on wetland resilience to disturbances such as extreme weather events, longer climate change, and human activities. In geomorphology and cognate disciplines, resilience is defined in various ways and has physical and socioeconomic dimensions but commonly is taken to mean the ability of a system to (A) withstand disturbance, (B) recover from disturbance, or (C) adapt and evolve in response to disturbance to a more desirable (e.g., stable) configuration. Most studies of wetland resilience have tended to focus on the more-or-less permanently saturated humid region wetlands, but whether the findings can be readily transferred to wetlands in drylands remains unclear. Given the natural climatic variability and overall strong moisture deficit characteristic of drylands, are such wetlands likely to be more resilient or less resilient? Focusing on wetlands in the South African drylands, this paper uses existing geomorphological, sedimentological, and geochronological data sets to provide the spatial (up to 50 km2) and temporal (late Quaternary) framework for an assessment of geomorphological resilience. Some wetlands have been highly resilient to environmental (especially climate) change, but others have been nonresilient with marked transformations in channel-floodplain structure and process connectivity having been driven by natural factors (e.g., local base-level fall, drought) or human activities (e.g., channel excavation, floodplain drainage). Key issues related to the assessment of wetland resilience include channel-floodplain dynamics in relation to geomorphological thresholds, wetland geomorphological 'life cycles', and the relative roles of natural and human activities. These issues raise challenges for the involvement of geomorphologists in the practical application of the resilience concept in wetland management. A key consideration is how geomorphological resilience interfaces with other dimensions of resilience

  10. Biofertilizers function as key player in sustainable agriculture by improving soil fertility, plant tolerance and crop productivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhardwaj, Deepak; Ansari, Mohammad Wahid; Sahoo, Ranjan Kumar; Tuteja, Narendra

    2014-05-08

    Current soil management strategies are mainly dependent on inorganic chemical-based fertilizers, which caused a serious threat to human health and environment. The exploitation of beneficial microbes as a biofertilizer has become paramount importance in agriculture sector for their potential role in food safety and sustainable crop production. The eco-friendly approaches inspire a wide range of application of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs), endo- and ectomycorrhizal fungi, cyanobacteria and many other useful microscopic organisms led to improved nutrient uptake, plant growth and plant tolerance to abiotic and biotic stress. The present review highlighted biofertilizers mediated crops functional traits such as plant growth and productivity, nutrient profile, plant defense and protection with special emphasis to its function to trigger various growth- and defense-related genes in signaling network of cellular pathways to cause cellular response and thereby crop improvement. The knowledge gained from the literature appraised herein will help us to understand the physiological bases of biofertlizers towards sustainable agriculture in reducing problems associated with the use of chemicals fertilizers.

  11. Biofertilizers function as key player in sustainable agriculture by improving soil fertility, plant tolerance and crop productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Current soil management strategies are mainly dependent on inorganic chemical-based fertilizers, which caused a serious threat to human health and environment. The exploitation of beneficial microbes as a biofertilizer has become paramount importance in agriculture sector for their potential role in food safety and sustainable crop production. The eco-friendly approaches inspire a wide range of application of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs), endo- and ectomycorrhizal fungi, cyanobacteria and many other useful microscopic organisms led to improved nutrient uptake, plant growth and plant tolerance to abiotic and biotic stress. The present review highlighted biofertilizers mediated crops functional traits such as plant growth and productivity, nutrient profile, plant defense and protection with special emphasis to its function to trigger various growth- and defense-related genes in signaling network of cellular pathways to cause cellular response and thereby crop improvement. The knowledge gained from the literature appraised herein will help us to understand the physiological bases of biofertlizers towards sustainable agriculture in reducing problems associated with the use of chemicals fertilizers. PMID:24885352

  12. Stratification of soil chemical and microbial properties under no-till management after lime amendment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adoption of no-till (NT) technology in the dryland cropping region of the inland Pacific Northwest (iPNW) has dramatically reduced soil erosion compared to conventional tillage. Soils under continuous NT, however, often produce stratified soil acidification compared with conventional tillage due to ...

  13. Effects of biochar addition on evaporation in the five typical Loess Plateau soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soil evaporation is the main route of soil moisture loss and often exceeds precipitation in the arid and semi-arid regions of the Loess Plateau. This study was conducted to determine whether biochar addition could reduce soil evaporation in drylands. We measured the evaporative loss in five typical ...

  14. The Problem of Soil Erosion in Developing Countries--Direct and Indirect Causes and Recommendations for Reducing It to a Sustainable Level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Middlebrook, Cathy H.; Goode, Pamela M.

    1992-01-01

    Presents direct and indirect causes of erosion in developing countries. Identifies soil conservation developments ranging from major international policy reforms to small-scale, local farming programs. Suggests that strategies at all levels, and the political will to implement them, are needed if erosion is to be reduced to a sustainable rate. (23…

  15. Phytoextraction with Brassica napus L.: A tool for sustainable management of heavy metal contaminated soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Grispen, Veerle M.J.; Nelissen, Hans J.M.; Verkleij, Jos A.C.

    2006-01-01

    Phytoextraction is a promising tool to extract metals from contaminated soils and Brassica napus L. seems to be a possible candidate species for this purpose. To select accessions with the ability to accumulate cadmium, hydroponically grown 21 day old seedlings of 77 B. napus L. accessions were exposed to 0.2 μM CdSO 4 for an additional 10 days. The effects of Cd on several parameters were quantified i.e.; shoot Cd concentration ([Cd] shoot ), total amount of Cd in shoots (Total Cd) and the shoot to root Cd concentration ratio (S/R ratio). Though generally natural variation was low for [Cd] shoot , Total Cd and S/R ratio, a number of accessions could be selected. Our results indicated that Total Cd and S/R ratio are independent parameters for Cd accumulation and translocation. The selected varieties were then tested in field experiments on two locations nearby metal smelters. The two locations differed in extractable soil Cd, Zn, Ca concentration and pH levels. On both locations B. napus L. accessions showed significant differences in [Cd] shoot and Total Cd. Furthermore we found significant correlations between Cd and Zn accumulation in shoots. There were site-specific effects with respect to Cd accumulation in the B. napus L. accessions, however, two accessions seem to perform equally well on both sites. The results of the field experiment suggest that certain B. napus L. accessions are suitable for phytoextraction of moderately heavy metal contaminated soils. - A screening for natural variation in Cd accumulated by 77 Brassica napus L. yielded candidate phytoextraction accessions for agricultural practice

  16. Phytoextraction with Brassica napus L.: A tool for sustainable management of heavy metal contaminated soils

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grispen, Veerle M.J. [Department of Ecology and Physiology of Plants, Vrije Universiteit, De Boelelaan 1085, NL-1081 HV Amsterdam (Netherlands); Nelissen, Hans J.M. [Department of Ecology and Physiology of Plants, Vrije Universiteit, De Boelelaan 1085, NL-1081 HV Amsterdam (Netherlands); Verkleij, Jos A.C. [Department of Ecology and Physiology of Plants, Vrije Universiteit, De Boelelaan 1085, NL-1081 HV Amsterdam (Netherlands)]. E-mail: jos.verkleij@falw.vu.nl

    2006-11-15

    Phytoextraction is a promising tool to extract metals from contaminated soils and Brassica napus L. seems to be a possible candidate species for this purpose. To select accessions with the ability to accumulate cadmium, hydroponically grown 21 day old seedlings of 77 B. napus L. accessions were exposed to 0.2 {mu}M CdSO{sub 4} for an additional 10 days. The effects of Cd on several parameters were quantified i.e.; shoot Cd concentration ([Cd]{sub shoot}), total amount of Cd in shoots (Total Cd) and the shoot to root Cd concentration ratio (S/R ratio). Though generally natural variation was low for [Cd]{sub shoot}, Total Cd and S/R ratio, a number of accessions could be selected. Our results indicated that Total Cd and S/R ratio are independent parameters for Cd accumulation and translocation. The selected varieties were then tested in field experiments on two locations nearby metal smelters. The two locations differed in extractable soil Cd, Zn, Ca concentration and pH levels. On both locations B. napus L. accessions showed significant differences in [Cd]{sub shoot} and Total Cd. Furthermore we found significant correlations between Cd and Zn accumulation in shoots. There were site-specific effects with respect to Cd accumulation in the B. napus L. accessions, however, two accessions seem to perform equally well on both sites. The results of the field experiment suggest that certain B. napus L. accessions are suitable for phytoextraction of moderately heavy metal contaminated soils. - A screening for natural variation in Cd accumulated by 77 Brassica napus L. yielded candidate phytoextraction accessions for agricultural practice.

  17. Integrated Soil, Water and Nitrogen Management For Sustainable Rice–Wheat Cropping System in Pakistan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hussain, F.; Yasin, M.; Gurmani, A.R.; Zia, M.S.

    2016-01-01

    The area under the rice–wheat (R–W) cropping system in Pakistan is about 2.2 Mha and despite its great importance as staple foods for the local population, the productivity of the system is poor due to several constraints. Rice (Oryza sativa L.) and wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) are normally grown in sequence on the same land in the same year. Field experiments with rice and wheat were conducted during four years on a Typic Halorthid soil at Lahore, in the alluvial plain of Punjab, Pakistan to assess nitrogen use efficiency and water productivity under both traditional and emerging crop establishment methods (raised beds, unpuddled soil, direct seeding). The climate in this region is semiarid. The experimental design was a randomized complete block design with five crop establishment methods as treatments and four replications. One micro-plot was laid down in each main plot to apply 15 N labelled urea (5 atom % 15 N). Both wheat and rice received a uniform application of 120 kg N ha -1 as urea, 30 kg P ha -1 as triple super phosphate, 50 kg K ha -1 as potassium sulphate and 5 kg Zn ha -1 as zinc sulphate. Pooled data of wheat grown in 2002–03, 2004–05 and 2005–06 showed that the highest wheat grain yield (3.89 t ha -1 ) was produced with conventional flatbed sowing (well pulverised soil) followed by raised bed sowing (3.79–3.82 t ha -1 ), whereas the lowest yield (3.45 t ha -1 ) was obtained in flat bed sowing with zero till rice in sequence. The highest rice paddy yield (4.15 t ha -1 ) was achieved with conventional flooded transplanted rice at 20 × 20 cm spacing and the lowest paddy yield (3.57 t ha -1 ) was recorded with direct seeding of rice in zero tilled soil. Total N uptake in wheat was maximum (117 kg ha -1 ) with conventional flatbed sowing and it was lowest with zero tilled soil. The highest total N uptake by rice (106 kg ha -1 ) was recorded with conventional flooded transplanted rice at 20 × 20 cm spacing and the lowest (89 kg ha -1 ) with

  18. Soil resources management – the fundamental basis for sustainable development in the Republic of Moldova

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiana TOFAN

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Integrated management of soil resources and local community infrastructure of the Republic of Moldova can be resolved at the state level with strengthen the efforts of all participants from administrative, scientific and industrial sectors. The benefits of this action can be obtained by aggregation of factors and consequences that have or may be held as a result of regulatory decisions in order to create a favorable climate for management in the structure of local government, with optimal results for the development of national economy.

  19. Straw-to-soil or straw-to-energy? An optimal trade off in a long term sustainability perspective

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Monteleone, Massimo; Cammerino, Anna Rita Bernadette; Garofalo, Pasquale; Delivand, Mitra Kami

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • Energy balance and GHG savings of a straw-to-electricity value chain were determined. • An “expanded” LCA was performed, from farm field to electricity delivery. • Both direct and indirect factors of land use change have been considered in the analysis. • No-tillage and crop rotation significantly improved the system performance. • A win–win, sustainable solution for the energy use of straw has been identified. - Abstract: This study examined some management strategies of wheat cultivation system and its sustainability in using straw as an energy feedstock. According to the EU regulatory framework on biofuels, no GHG emissions should be assigned to straws when they are used for energy. Given this relevance in the current energy policy, it is advisable to include all possible marginal effects related to land use, resource utilization and management changes in the comparison of different biomass options. Coherently, an expanded life cycle assessment (LCA) was applied to include the upstream cultivation phase and to make a comparison between “straw to soil” and “straw to energy”. Different crop management conditions in Southern Italy were simulated, by using the CropSyst model, to estimate the long-term soil organic carbon and annual N 2 O soil emissions. Three wheat cropping systems were considered: the conventional single wheat system without straw removal (W0) and with partial straw removal (W1), together with a no-tillage “wheat-wheat-herbage” rotation system with partial straw removal (W2). The results of the simulations were integrated in the LCA to compare fossil energy consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of straw-to-electricity with respect to the fossil-based electricity system. The “improved” rotational wheat cropping system (W2) gave the best performance in terms both of GHG savings and fossil displacement, thus stressing that straw use for energy generation in parallel with the optimization of the

  20. Territorial Systems, Regional Disparities and Sustainability: Economic Structure and Soil Degradation in Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luca Salvati

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The present study was devoted to identify the evolutionary path of a number of local systems in a Mediterranean country vulnerable to soil degradation (SD in the last decades. A multivariate analysis was used to evaluate the socio-ecological conditions and to estimate rapidity-of-change of local systems by considering 6 bio-physical factors predisposing soil to degradation and 23 socioeconomic indicators over fifty years (1960–2010. Results indicate that systems’ development paths diverged during the investigated time period reflecting changes in the spatial organization and in the economic base of entire regions. Interestingly, economic performance and environmental quality do not seem to follow opposite trajectories. Local systems characterized by low per-capita income, agricultural specialization and population ageing, seem not to be associated with better and more stable ecological conditions. Local systems in affluent areas, featuring a mix of socioeconomic conditions with the prevalence of services in the economy and tourism specialization, showed relatively good ecological conditions and moderate-to-low SD vulnerability. Thus, affluent local systems do not necessarily reflect a higher pressure on the environment. These findings suggest that areas with a changing socio-demographic profile and a dynamic economic structure are compatible with low and stable levels of SD vulnerability.

  1. Sustainable Land Use, Soil Protection and Phosphorus Management from a Cross-National Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica Stubenrauch

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available The scarcity of phosphorus (P is a global concern that is not restricted to western industrialized nations. Until now, most countries in the world are highly dependent on importing mineral P fertilizers for agriculture. The industrialized nation of Germany, the emerging economy of Costa Rica, and the developing country of Nicaragua are examined with regard to their legislation in the field of environmental protection and agriculture, in particular with regard to soil protection and fertilizer law. Based on the structure of agriculture in each country, control weaknesses in legislation in the individual countries, which is largely determined by command-and-control law, are identified and compared. It becomes clear that soil protection in all three countries has not yet been adequately standardised in law and at the same time the efficient use of organic or recycled P fertilizers instead of (finite mineral P fertilizers is inadequately regulated. In particular, frugality, i.e., the strategy of lower (and not only more efficient consumption of P fertilizers, has so far played no regulatory role in land-use governance.

  2. 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.

  3. The impact of dry-land sprint start training on the short track speed skating start.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haug, William B; Drinkwater, Eric J; Cicero, Nicholas J; Barthell, J Anthony; Chapman, Dale W

    2017-05-05

    This investigation sought to determine the effects of dry-land sprint start training on short track speed skating (STSS) start performance. Nine highly trained short track athletes completed a control period of normal STSS training followed by a four-week training intervention. Before and after the control and intervention periods, athletes performed three electronically timed dry-land and on-ice 14.43 m maximal sprint start efforts. The intervention consisted of two sprint sessions per week consisting of nine electronically timed 14.43 m dry-land sprint starts in addition to normal STSS training. The control period resulted in no substantial change in on-ice start performance (Mean Δ: -0.01 s, 95% Confidence Limits (CL): -0.08 to 0.05 s; Effect Size (ES): -0.05; Trivial) however, a small change was observed in dry-land start performance (Mean Δ: -0.07 s, 95% CL: -0.13 to -0.02 s; ES: -0.49). Following brief specific dry-land sprint start training a small improvement was observed in both on-ice (Mean Δ: -0.07 s, 95% CL: -0.13 to -0.01 s; ES: -0.33) and dry-land (Mean Δ: -0.04 s, 95% CL: -0.09 to 0.00 s; ES: -0.29) start performance. This investigation suggests STSS start performance can be improved through a brief dry-land sprint start training program.

  4. Effects of Conservation Agriculture and Fertilization on Soil Microbial Diversity and Activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johan Habig

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Soil microbial communities perform critical functions in ecosystem processes. These functions can be used to assess the impact of agricultural practices on sustainable crop production. In this five-year study, the effect of various agricultural practices on soil microbial diversity and activity was investigated in a summer rainfall area under South African dryland conditions. Microbial diversity and activity were measured in the 0–15 cm layer of a field trial consisting of two fertilizer levels, three cropping systems, and two tillage systems. Using the Shannon–Weaver and Evenness diversity indices, soil microbial species richness and abundance were measured. Microbial enzymatic activities: β-glucosidase, phosphatase and urease, were used to evaluate ecosystem functioning. Cluster analysis revealed a shift in soil microbial community diversity and activity over time. Microbial diversity and activity were higher under no-till than conventional tillage. Fertilizer levels seemed to play a minor role in determining microbial diversity and activity, whereas the cropping systems played a more important role in determining the activity of soil microbial communities. Conservation agriculture yielded the highest soil microbial diversity and activity in diversified cropping systems under no-till.

  5. Applying Limestone or Basalt in Combination with Bio-Fertilizer to Sustain Rice Production on an Acid Sulfate Soil in Malaysia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qurban Ali Panhwar

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available A study was conducted to determine the efficacy of applying ground magnesium limestone (GML or ground basalt in combination with bio-fertilizer to sustain rice production on an acid sulfate soil in Malaysia. Soils from Kelantan Plains, Malaysia, were treated with GML, ground basalt, bio-fertilizer, GML + bio-fertilizer, and ground basalt + bio-fertilizer (4 t·ha−1 each. Results showed that soil fertility was improved by applying the soil amendments. GML and basalt contain some Zn and Cu; thus, application of these amendments would increase their contents in the soil needed for the healthy growth of rice. Basalt applied in combination with bio-fertilizer appeared to be the best agronomic option to improve the fertility of acid sulfate soils for sustainable rice production in the long run. In addition to increasing Ca, Mg, Zn, and Cu reserves in the soil, water pH increased and precipitated Al3+ and/or Fe2+. Ground basalt is cheaper than GML, but basalt dissolution in the acidic soil was slow. As such, its ameliorative effects could only be seen significantly from the second season onwards. The specially-formulated bio-fertilizer for alleviating the infertility of acid sulfate soil could also enhance rice growth. The use of the bio-fertilizer fortified with N2-fixing bacteria is a green technology that would help reduce NO3− and/or NO2− pollution and reduce the cost of rice production. The phosphate-solubilizing bacteria (PSB present in the bio-fertilizer not only increased the available P, but also helped release organic acids that would inactivate Al3+ and/or Fe2+ via the process of chelation.

  6. Drylands face potential threat under 2 °C global warming target

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Jianping; Yu, Haipeng; Dai, Aiguo; Wei, Yun; Kang, Litai

    2017-06-01

    The Paris Agreement aims to limit global mean surface warming to less than 2 °C relative to pre-industrial levels. However, we show this target is acceptable only for humid lands, whereas drylands will bear greater warming risks. Over the past century, surface warming over global drylands (1.2-1.3 °C) has been 20-40% higher than that over humid lands (0.8-1.0 °C), while anthropogenic CO2 emissions generated from drylands (~230 Gt) have been only ~30% of those generated from humid lands (~750 Gt). For the twenty-first century, warming of 3.2-4.0 °C (2.4-2.6 °C) over drylands (humid lands) could occur when global warming reaches 2.0 °C, indicating ~44% more warming over drylands than humid lands. Decreased maize yields and runoff, increased long-lasting drought and more favourable conditions for malaria transmission are greatest over drylands if global warming were to rise from 1.5 °C to 2.0 °C. Our analyses indicate that ~38% of the world's population living in drylands would suffer the effects of climate change due to emissions primarily from humid lands. If the 1.5 °C warming limit were attained, the mean warming over drylands could be within 3.0 °C therefore it is necessary to keep global warming within 1.5 °C to prevent disastrous effects over drylands.

  7. Spatial Characteristics, Health Risk Assessment and Sustainable Management of Heavy Metals and Metalloids in Soils from Central China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fei Li

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The contents of seven toxic metals (Cu, Cr, Cd, Zn, Pb, Hg and As in soils from Central China, including Henan Province, Hubei Province and Hunan Province, were collected from published papers from 2007 to 2017. The geoaccumulation index, health risk assessment model and statistics were adopted to study the spatial contamination pattern, to assess the human health risks and to identify the priority control pollutants. The concentrations of soil metals in Central China, especially Cd (1.31 mg/kg, Pb (44.43 mg/kg and Hg (0.19 mg/kg, surpassed their corresponding background values, and the Igeo values of Cd and Hg varied the most, ranging from the unpolluted level to the extremely polluted level. The concentrations of toxic metals were higher in the southern and northern parts of Central China, contrasting to the lowest contents in the middle parts. For non-carcinogenic risk, the hazard index (HI values for the children in Hubei Province (1.10 and Hunan Province (1.41 exceeded the safe level of one, with higher health risks to children than adults, and the hazard quotient (HQ values of the three exposure pathways for both children and adults in Central China decreased in the following order: ingestion > dermal contact > inhalation. For carcinogenic risk (CR, the CR values for children in Hubei Province (2.55 × 10−4, Hunan Province (3.44 × 10−4 and Henan Province (1.69 × 10−4, and the CR for adults in Hubei Province (3.67 × 10−5, Hunan Province (4.92 × 10−5 and Henan Province (2.45 × 10−5 exceeded the unacceptable level (10−4 and acceptable level (10−6, respectively. Arsenic (As appeared to be the main metalloid for both children and adults causing the high carcinogenic risk. For sustainable development in Central China, special attention should be paid to Cd, Hg, Cr, Pb and As, identified as the priority control soil metals. Importance should also be attached to public education, source control, and the remediation of the

  8. Sedimentary links between hillslopes and channels in a dryland basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollings, R.

    2016-12-01

    The interface between hillslopes and channels is recognised as playing an important role in basin evolution and functioning. However, this interaction has not been described well in landscapes such as drylands, in which the diffuse process of runoff-driven sediment transport is important for sediment communication to the channel and to the basin outlet. This paper combines field measurements of surface sediment grain sizes in channels and on hillslopes with high resolution topography, >60 years of rainfall and runoff data from the Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed (WGEW) in Arizona, and simple calculations of spatial stress distributions for various hydrologic scenarios to explore the potential for sediment to move from hillslopes to channels and through channels across the entire basin. Here we generalise the net movement of sediment in to or out of channel reaches, at high resolution in WGEW, as the balance between hillslope sediment supply to the channel and channel evacuation, in response to a variety of storms and discharge events. Our results show that downstream of small, unit source area watersheds, the balance in the channel often switches from being supply-dominated to being evacuation dominated for all scenarios. The low frequency but high discharge event in the channel seems to control the long term evolution of the channel, as stress is far greater for this scenario than other scenarios tested. The results draw on the high variability of rainfall characteristics to drive runoff events and so provides a physical explanation for long-term evolution of the channel network in drylands.

  9. REMEDIATION OF THE SERBIAN SOILS CONTAMINATED BY RADIONUCLIDES IN THE FUNCTION OF THE SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Stojanović

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Phosphate-induced metal stabilization (PIMS using apatite stabilizes uranium in situ, by chemically binding it into the new low-solubility (Ksp=10-49 phase. Uranium-phosphate-autunite is stable across a wide range of geological conditions for millions of years. A large area of contaminated soil is suitable for insitu remediation that involves minimizing the mobility of the uranium. Laboratory study was conducted to quantify different forms of apatite sequestration of uranium contaminant. The experiment was done with natural phosphate from Lisina deposit (14.43 % P2O5, with non-treated samples, phosphate concentrate samples with 34.95 % P2O5 and mechanochemically activated of natural apatite. Different concentration of P2O5 in apatite, pH, reaction time, solid/liquid ratio was investigated. The concentrate at pH 5.5 for 7 days sorbed around 93,64 % and nature apatite, with 14,43 % P2O5, for 30 days sorbed 94.54 % of the uranium from the water solution, concentration 100 μg U/ml. The results show that mineral apatite “Lisina” is very effective for the treatment of contaminated soils - in situ immobilization of U. Mechanochemical activation of natural apatite in vibration mill immobilized 85.37 % of uranium in the 7-day period of acting. This research on natural apatite from the deposit “Lisina” for immobilization of uranium was the first one of this type in our country.

  10. Upscaling Self-Sustaining Treatment for Active Remediation (STAR): Experimental Study of Scaling Relationships for Smouldering Combustion to Remediate Soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kinsman, L.; Gerhard, J.; Torero, J.; Scholes, G.; Murray, C.

    2013-12-01

    Self-sustaining Treatment for Active Remediation (STAR) is a relatively new remediation approach for soil contaminated with organic industrial liquids. This technology uses smouldering combustion, a controlled, self-sustaining burning reaction, to destroy nonaqueous phase liquids (NAPLs) and thereby render soil clean. While STAR has been proven at the bench scale, success at industrial scales requires the process to be scaled-up significantly. The objective of this study was to conduct an experimental investigation into how liquid smouldering combustion phenomena scale. A suite of detailed forward smouldering experiments were conducted in short (16 cm dia. x 22 cm high), intermediate (16 cm dia. x 127 cm high), and large (97 cm dia. x 300 cm high; a prototype ex-situ reactor) columns; this represents scaling of up to 530 times based on the volume treated. A range of fuels were investigated, with the majority of experiments conducted using crude oil sludge as well as canola oil as a non-toxic surrogate for hazardous contaminants. To provide directly comparable data sets and to isolate changes in the smouldering reaction which occurred solely due to scaling effects, sand grain size, contaminant type, contaminant concentration and air injection rates were controlled between the experimental scales. Several processes could not be controlled and were identified to be susceptible to changes in scale, including: mobility of the contaminant, heat losses, and buoyant flow effects. For each experiment, the propagation of the smouldering front was recorded using thermocouples and analyzed by way of temperature-time and temperature-distance plots. In combination with the measurement of continuous mass loss and gaseous emissions, these results were used to evaluate the fundamental differences in the way the reaction front propagates through the mixture of sand and fuel across the various scales. Key governing parameters were compared between the small, intermediate, and large

  11. The Coupling of Ecosystem Productivity and Water Availability in Dryland Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, R. L.; Biederman, J. A.; Barron-Gafford, G.

    2014-12-01

    Land cover and climatic change will alter biosphere-atmosphere exchanges of water vapor and carbon dioxide depending, in part, on feedbacks between biotic activity and water availability. Eddy covariance observations allow us to estimate ecosystem-scale productivity and respiration, and these datasets are now becoming sufficiently mature to advance understanding of these ecohydrological interactions. Here we use a network of sites in semiarid western North America representing gradients of water availability and functional plant type. We examine how precipitation (P) controls evapotranspiration (ET), net ecosystem production (NEP), and its component fluxes of ecosystem respiration (Reco) and gross ecosystem production (GEP). Despite the high variability in seasonal and annual precipitation timing and amounts that we expect to influence ecosystem function, we find persistent overall relationships between P or ET and the fluxes of NEP, Reco and GEP across the network, indicating a commonality and resilience in ecosystem soil and plant response to water availability. But we also observe several important site differences such as prior seasonal legacy effects on subsequent fluxes which vary depending on dominant plant functional type. For example, multiyear droughts, episodic cool-season droughts, and hard winter freezes seem to affect the herbaceous species differently than the woody ones. Nevertheless, the overall, strong coupling between hydrologic and ecologic processes at these sites bolsters our ability to predict the response of dryland ecosystems to future precipitation change.

  12. Modeling ecohydrological dynamics of smallholder strategies for food production in dryland agricultural systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gower, Drew B.; Dell'Angelo, Jampel; McCord, Paul F.; Caylor, Kelly K.; Evans, Tom P.

    2016-11-01

    In dryland environments, characterized by low and frequently variable rainfall, smallholder farmers must take crop water sensitivity into account along with other characteristics like seed availability and market price when deciding what to plant. In this paper we use the results of surveys conducted among smallholders located near Mount Kenya to identify clusters of farmers devoting different fractions of their land to subsistence and market crops. Additionally, we explore the tradeoffs between water-insensitive but low-value subsistence crops and a water-sensitive but high-value market crop using a numerical model that simulates soil moisture dynamics and crop production over multiple growing seasons. The cluster analysis shows that most farmers prefer to plant either only subsistence crops or only market crops, with a minority choosing to plant substantial fractions of both. The model output suggests that the value a farmer places on a successful growing season, a measure of risk aversion, plays a large role in whether the farmer chooses a subsistence or market crop strategy. Furthermore, access to irrigation, makes market crops more appealing, even to very risk-averse farmers. We then conclude that the observed clustering may result from different levels of risk aversion and access to irrigation.

  13. Assimilation and water relations of dryland castor at different intensities of solar radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Balasubramanian, V.; Venkateswarlu, S.

    1995-01-01

    Primary racemes of dryland castor develop during later part of rainy season and secondaries and tertiaries develop during post-rainy season. The reproductive phase is therefore subjected to variation in soil moisture availability and solar radiation intensity. The objective of the study was to find out the influence of fluctuation in solar radiation intensity on photosynthetic rate, transpiration rate, transpiration efficiency, stomatal conductance and leaf water potential during early and late reproductive phase of castor. When photosynthetically active radiation was less than 1000 mu-mol m-2s-1, transpiration efficiency decreased because reduction in photosynthesis rate was more than that in transpiration rate. Transpiration efficiency also decreased, when radiation was above 1500 mu-mol m-2s-1 because of increase only in transpiration rate. Leaf water potential was higher during early than during late reproductive phase at similar radiation intensity. Transpiration rate was lower and transpiration efficiency was more during early phase when radiation was above 1500 mu-mol m-2s-1. Photosynthetically active radiation and leaf water potential were inversely related

  14. GIS Modelling for Site-Specific Nitrogen Fertilization towards Soil Sustainability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonis Papadopoulos

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Farmers need to make decisions that in most cases incorporate the concept of prediction and can hardly be revoked. One such decision is the application of fertilizing inputs. During past crop management and decision-making on fertilizing practices, many significant errors have been recorded, which have led and continue to lead to reduced production and environmental burden. The methodology followed in this paper involves the use of GIS, fuzzy logic and expert knowledge, in order to model physical processes associated with nitrogen balance in cultivated ecosystems and to evaluate the capabilities of or limitations on the use of certain fertilizers, based on spatial criteria. An original spatial decision support system was designed, developed and applied in a given study area. The system is composed of two modules (“fertilizing rate” and “fertilizing type”, making use of soil, climate and cultivation practices’ data, as recorded in the area of interest in quantitative or categorical form. The results of the application spatially classify the involved area according to its demand for nitrogen on the basis of the characteristics of each sub-region. The “fertilizing rate” module suggests reduced fertilizing doses of nitrogenous fertilizers compared to those already applied in the area. The system further divides the area into zones where specific types of fertilizers should be applied, giving a certain prescription for the method and time of application.

  15. Soil and Terrain Database for Cuba, primary data (version 1.0) - scale 1:1 million (SOTER_Cuba)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dijkshoorn, J.A.; Huting, J.R.M.

    2014-01-01

    The Soil and Terrain database for Cuba primary data (version 1.0), at scale 1:1 million (SOTER_Cuba), was compiled of enhanced soil informtion within the framework of the FAO's program Land Degradation Assessment in Drylands (LADA). Primary soil and terrain data for Cuba were obtained from the

  16. Vegetation in drylands: Effects on wind flow and aeolian sediment transport

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drylands are characterised by patchy vegetation, erodible surfaces and erosive aeolian processes. Empirical and modelling studies have shown that vegetation elements provide drag on the overlying airflow, thus affecting wind velocity profiles and altering erosive dynamics on desert surfaces. However...

  17. The role of refuges in the persistence of Australian dryland mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavey, Chris R; Addison, Jane; Brandle, Rob; Dickman, Chris R; McDonald, Peter J; Moseby, Katherine E; Young, Lauren I

    2017-05-01

    Irruptive population dynamics are characteristic of a wide range of fauna in the world's arid (dryland) regions. Recent evidence indicates that regional persistence of irruptive species, particularly small mammals, during the extensive dry periods of unpredictable length that occur between resource pulses in drylands occurs as a result of the presence of refuge habitats or refuge patches into which populations contract during dry (bust) periods. These small dry-period populations act as a source of animals when recolonisation of the surrounding habitat occurs during and after subsequent resource pulses (booms). The refuges used by irruptive dryland fauna differ in temporal and spatial scale from the refugia to which species contract in response to changing climate. Refuges of dryland fauna operate over timescales of months and years, whereas refugia operate on timescales of millennia over which evolutionary divergence may occur. Protection and management of refuge patches and refuge habitats should be a priority for the conservation of dryland-dwelling fauna. This urgency is driven by recognition that disturbance to refuges can lead to the extinction of local populations and, if disturbance is widespread, entire species. Despite the apparent significance of dryland refuges for conservation management, these sites remain poorly understood ecologically. Here, we synthesise available information on the refuges of dryland-dwelling fauna, using Australian mammals as a case study to provide focus, and document a research agenda for increasing this knowledge base. We develop a typology of refuges that recognises two main types of refuge: fixed and shifting. We outline a suite of models of fixed refuges on the basis of stability in occupancy between and within successive bust phases of population cycles. To illustrate the breadth of refuge types we provide case studies of refuge use in three species of dryland mammal: plains mouse (Pseudomys australis), central rock

  18. Soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Freudenschuss, A.; Huber, S.; Riss, A.; Schwarz, S.; Tulipan, M.

    2002-01-01

    Environmental soil surveys in each province of Austria have been performed, soils of about 5,000 sites were described and analyzed for nutrients and pollutants, the majority of these data are recorded in the soil information system of Austria (BORIS) soil database, http://www.ubavie.gv.at/umweltsituation/boden/boris), which also contains a soil map of Austria, data from 30 specific investigations mainly in areas with industry and results from the Austria - wide cesium investigation. With respect to the environmental state of soils a short discussion is given, including two geographical charts, one showing which sites have soil data (2001) and the other the cadmium distribution in top soils according land use (forest, grassland, arable land, others). Information related to the soil erosion, Corine land cover (Europe-wide land cover database), evaluation of pollutants in soils (reference values of As, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Hg, Mo, Ni, Se, Pb, Tl, Va, Zn, AOX, PAH, PCB, PCDD/pcdf, dioxin), and relevant Austrian and European standards and regulations is provided. Figs. 2, Tables 4. (nevyjel)

  19. Making rainfed agriculture sustainable through environmental friendly technologies in Pakistan: A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mirza B. Baig

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Pakistan is an agricultural country spreading over an area of about 79. 6 million hectares (Mha with an arid and semi arid climate. Of 79. 6 Mha, about 23 Mha is suitable for crop production and nearly 25 percent of the total cultivated area is designated for rainfed agriculture. Unfortunately, rain-fed agriculture is constrained with multifarious problems such as moisture stress, soil erosion and crusting, nutrient deficiency, depletion and poor nutrient use efficiency, and weed infestation limiting the yield potential of these lands. In addition, deforestation and poor crop husbandry techniques are commonly noticed features. To meet the food requirements, farmers bring all the available pieces of lands under plough including steep slopes. Farming on steep slopes if not managed on scientific lines, results in severe erosion. The problems faced by the farmers are due to the unsustainable practices they adopt to practice dryland agriculture, limiting the productive potential of these important ecosystems. However, their potential can be improved by adopting suitable rainwater harvesting techniques; employing scientific soil and water conservation methods and using sustainable agricultural practices. This paper highlights some important issues associated with the rainfed agriculture of Pakistan. Working strategies for realizing optimum and sustainable yields have been outlined while conserving both land and water resources.

  20. Salinity controls on plant transpiration and soil water balance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perri, S.; Molini, A.; Suweis, S. S.; Viola, F.; Entekhabi, D.

    2017-12-01

    Soil salinization and aridification represent a major threat for the food security and sustainable development of drylands. The two problems are deeply connected, and their interplay is expected to be further enhanced by climate change and projected population growth. Salt-affected land is currently estimated to cover around 1.1 Gha, and is particularly widespread in semi-arid to hyper-arid climates. Over 900 Mha of these saline/sodic soils are potentially available for crop or biomass production. Salt-tolerant plants have been recently proposed as valid solution to exploit or even remediate salinized soils. However the effects of salinity on evapotranspiration, soil water balance and the long-term salt mass balance in the soil, are still largely unexplored. In this contribution we analyze the feedback of evapotranspiration on soil salinization, with particular emphasis on the role of vegetation and plant salt-tolerance. The goal is to introduce a simple modeling framework able to shed some light on how (a) soil salinity controls plant transpiration, and (b) salinization itself is favored/impeded by different vegetation feedback. We introduce at this goal a spatially lumped stochastic model of soil moisture and salt mass dynamics averaged over the active soil depth, and accounting for the effect of salinity on evapotranspiration. Here, the limiting effect of salinity on ET is modeled through a simple plant response function depending on both salt concentration in the soil and plant salt-tolerance. The coupled soil moisture and salt mass balance is hence used to obtain the conditional steady-state probability density function (pdf) of soil moisture for given salt tolerance and salinization level, Our results show that salinity imposes a limit in the soil water balance and this limit depends on plant salt-tolerance mainly through the control of the leaching occurrence (tolerant plants exploit water more efficiently than the sensitive ones). We also analyzed the

  1. Legacies of flood reduction on a dryland river

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stromberg, J.C.; Shafroth, P.B.; Hazelton, A.F.

    2012-01-01

    The Bill Williams (Arizona) is a regulated dryland river that is being managed, in part, for biodiversity via flow management. To inform management, we contrasted riparian plant communities between the Bill Williams and an upstream free-flowing tributary (Santa Maria). Goals of a first study (1996-1997) were to identify environmental controls on herbaceous species richness and compare richness among forest types. Analyses revealed that herbaceous species richness was negatively related to woody stem density, basal area and litter cover and positively related to light levels. Introduced Tamarix spp. was more frequent at the Bill Williams, but all three main forest types (Tamarix, Salix/Populus, Prosopis) had low understory richness, as well as high stem density and low light, on the Bill Williams as compared to the Santa Maria. The few edaphic differences between rivers (higher salinity at Bill Williams) had only weak connections with richness. A second study (2006-2007) focused on floristic richness at larger spatial scales. It revealed that during spring, and for the study cumulatively (spring and fall samplings combined), the riparian zone of the unregulated river had considerably more plant species. Annuals (vs. herbaceous perennials and woody species) showed the largest between-river difference. Relative richness of exotic (vs. native) species did not differ. We conclude that: (1) The legacy of reduced scouring frequency and extent at the Bill Williams has reduced the open space available for colonization by annuals; and (2) Change in forest biomass structure, more so than change in forest composition, is the major driver of changes in plant species richness along this flow-altered river. Our study informs dryland river management options by revealing trade-offs that exist between forest biomass structure and plant species richness. ?? 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  2. Lights and shadows of sustainable development and combat against desertification: economic rationalities in the eye of the storm. Case study involving goat producers in drylands (Mendoza, Argentina Claroscuros del desarrollo sustentable y la lucha contra la desertificación: las racionalidades económicas en el ojo de la tormenta: Estudio de caso con productores caprinos de tierras secas [Mendoza, Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Torres

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available This work analyses the conflict situation present in the province's drylands between goat producers and programmes to combat desertification regarding production practices and the use producers make of natural resources. The case study tackled comprises the north-eastern extreme of Mendoza province. The , which is the hyperarid spot of the region, severely affected by desertification processes, covering an extent of 10,007 km2, and with 3015 inhabitants, where small goat breeding farms predominate. Previous studies indicate that the major causes of desertification in the area are logging of the native woodland and overgrazing which have led to improper livestock production practices. In response to this, the actions to combat desertification commonly point out the need to "raise awareness" and "build capacities" of the producers by initiating processes of change in the production systems. The proposals insist that, if the current level of pressure on resources is maintained, the already serious poverty conditions will grow worse in the future. Nevertheless, despite the efforts and funds invested, the producers seem to stubbornly persist in their present production strategies and in the dynamics of natural resource use derived from them. How to explain their refusal to consider other production options likely to result in higher profit and better environmental balance? How to explain that they act, at least apparently, against their own benefits? Against the explanations that place the producers' "culture" is the most important problem, the present work seeks to cooperate in clarifying these questions through an analysis of the different rationalities that, held by different actors, converge in the area. By using a mixed methodology, the paper analyse three dimensions: 1- The environmental resource supply, which is the basis of production activities, 2- The income attained by goat production units, and 3- The expenditures they face in terms of

  3. Evaluation of multiple satellite evaporation products in two dryland regions using GRACE

    KAUST Repository

    Lopez, Oliver

    2015-12-01

    Remote sensing has become a valuable tool for monitoring the water cycle variables in areas that lack the availability of ground-based measurements. Integrating multiple remote sensing-based estimates of evaporation, precipitation, and the terrestrial water storage changes with local measurements of streamflow into a consistent estimate of the regional water budget is a challenge, due to the scale mismatch among the retrieved variables. Evapotranspiration, including soil evaporation, interception losses and canopy transpiration, has received special focus in a number of recent studies that aim to provide global or regional estimates of evaporation at regular time intervals using a variety of remote sensing input. In arid and semi-arid regions, modeling of evaporation is particularly challenging due to the relatively high role of the soil evaporation component in these regions and the variable nature of rainfall events that drive the evaporation process. In this study, we explore the hydrological consistency of remote sensing products in terms of water budget closure and the correlation among spatial patterns of precipitation (P), evaporation (E) and terrestrial water storage, using P-E as a surrogate of water storage changes, with special attention to the evaporation component. The analysis is undertaken within two dryland regions that have presented recent significant changes in climatology (Murray-Darling Basin in Australia) and water storage (the Saq aquifer in northern Saudi Arabia). Water storage changes were derived from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) spherical harmonic (SH) coefficients. Six remote sensing-based evaporation estimates were subtracted from the Global Precipitation Climatology Project (GPCP)-based precipitation estimates and were compared with GRACE-derived water storage changes. Our results suggest that it is not possible to close the water balance by using satellite data alone, even when adopting a spherical harmonic

  4. Adapting forest to climate change in drylands: the Portuguese case-study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Branquinho, Cristina; Príncipe, Adriana; Nunes, Alice; Kobel, Melanie; Soares, Cristina; Vizinho, André; Serrano, Helena Cristina; Pinho, Pedro

    2017-04-01

    The recent expansion of the semiarid climate to all the region of the south of Portugal and the growing impact of climate change demands local adaptation. The growth of the native forest represents a strategy at the ecosystem level to adapt to climate change since it increases resilience and increases also de delivery of ecosystem services such as the increment of organic matter in the soil, carbon and nitrogen, biodiversity, water infiltration, etc. Moreover, decreases susceptibility to desertification. For that reason, large areas have been reforested in the south of Portugal with the native species holm oak and cork oak but with a low rate of effectiveness. Our goal in this work is to show how the cost-benefit relation of the actions intended to expand the forest of the Portuguese semiarid can be lowered by taking into account the microclimatic conditions and high spatial resolution management. The potential of forest regeneration was modelled at the local and regional level in the semiarid area using information concerning the Potential Solar Radiation. This model gives us the rate of native forest regeneration after a disturbance with high spatial resolution. Based on this model the territory was classified in: i) easy regeneration areas; ii) areas with the need of assisted reforestation, using methods that increase water and soil conservation; iii) areas of difficult reforestation because of the costs. Additionally, a summary of the success of reforestations was made in the historical semiarid since the 60s based on the evaluation of a series of case studies, where we quantified the ecosystem services currently delivered by the reforested ecosystems. We will discuss and propose a strategy for forests to adapt to climate change scenario in dryland Portugal. Acknowledgement: Programa Adapt: financed by EEA Grants and Fundo Português de Carbono and by FCT-MEC project PTDC/AAG-GLO/0045/2014.

  5. Erodibility of calcareous soils as influenced by land use and intrinsic soil properties in a semiarid region of central Iran.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayoubi, Shamsollah; Mokhtari, Javad; Mosaddeghi, Mohammad Reza; Zeraatpisheh, Mojtaba

    2018-03-06

    The most important properties affecting the soil loss and runoff were investigated, and the effects of land use on the soil properties, together with the erodibility indices in a semiarid zone, central Iran, were evaluated. The locations of 100 positions were acquired by cLHS and 0-5-cm surface soil layer samples were used for laboratory analyses from the Borujen Region, Chaharmahal-Va-Bakhtiari Province, central Iran. To measure in situ runoff and soil erodibility of three different land uses comprising dryland, irrigated farming, and rangeland, a portable rainfall simulator was used. The results showed that the high variations (coefficient of variation, CV) were obtained for electrical conductivity (EC), mean weight diameter (MWD), soil organic carbon (SOC), and soil erodibility indices including runoff volume, soil loss, and sediment concentration (CV ~ 43.6-77.4%). Soil erodibility indices showed positive and significant correlations with bulk density and negative correlations with SOC, MWD, clay content, and soil shear strength in the area under investigation. The values of runoff in the dryland, irrigated farming, and rangeland were found 1.5, 28.9, and 58.7 cm 3 ; soil loss in the dryland, irrigated farming, and rangeland were observed 0.25, 2.96, and 76.8 g; and the amount of sediment concentration in the dryland, irrigated farming, and rangeland were found 0.01, 0.11, and 0.15 g cm -3 . It is suggested that further investigations should be carried out on soil erodibility and the potential of sediment yield in various land uses with varying topography and soil properties in semiarid regions of Iran facing the high risk of soil loss.

  6. Revisiting the paper “Using radiometric surface temperature for surface energy flux estimation in Mediterranean drylands from a two-source perspective”

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kustas, William P.; Nieto, Hector; Morillas, Laura

    2016-01-01

    The recent paper by Morillas et al. [Morillas, L. et al. Using radiometric surface temperature for surface energy flux estimation in Mediterranean drylands from a two-source perspective, Remote Sens. Environ. 136, 234–246, 2013] evaluates the two-source model (TSM) of Norman et al. (1995) with re......The recent paper by Morillas et al. [Morillas, L. et al. Using radiometric surface temperature for surface energy flux estimation in Mediterranean drylands from a two-source perspective, Remote Sens. Environ. 136, 234–246, 2013] evaluates the two-source model (TSM) of Norman et al. (1995......) with revisions by Kustas and Norman (1999) over a semiarid tussock grassland site in southeastern Spain. The TSM - in its current incarnation, the two-source energy balance model (TSEB) - was applied to this landscape using ground-based infrared radiometer sensors to estimate both the composite surface...... greenness and local leaf area index values as well as modifications to the coefficients of the soil resistance formulation to account for the very rough (rocky) soil surface conditions with a clumped canopy. This indicates that both limitations in remote estimates of biophysical indicators of the canopy...

  7. Early physiological flood tolerance is followed by slow post-flooding root recovery in the dryland riparian tree Eucalyptus camaldulensis subsp. refulgens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Argus, R E; Colmer, T D; Grierson, P F

    2015-06-01

    We investigated physiological and morphological responses to flooding and recovery in Eucalyptus camaldulensis subsp. refulgens, a riparian tree species from a dryland region prone to intense episodic floods. Seedlings in soil flooded for 88 d produced extensive adventitious roots, displayed stem hypertrophy (stem diameter increased by 93%) and increased root porosity owing to aerenchyma formation. Net photosynthesis (Pn) and stomatal conductance (gs) were maintained for at least 2 weeks of soil flooding, contrasting with previous studies of other subspecies of E. camaldulensis. Gradual declines followed in both gs (30% less than controls) and Pn (19% less). Total leaf soluble sugars did not differ between flooded and control plants. Root mass did not recover 32 d after flooding ceased, but gs was not lower than controls, suggesting the root system was able to functionally compensate. However, the limited root growth during recovery after flooding was surprising given the importance of extensive root systems in dryland environments. We conclude that early flood tolerance could be an adaptation to capitalize on scarce water resources in a water-limited environment. Overall, our findings highlight the need to assess flooding responses in relation to a species' fitness for particular flood regimes or ecological niches. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Proceedings of the 25. Brazilian congress on soil science: the soil on the great morpho climatic dominion in Brazil and the sustained development. v. 4; Anais do 25. Congresso brasileiro de ciencia do solo: O solo nos grandes dominios morfoclimaticos do Brasil e o desenvolvimento sustentado. v. 4

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1995-12-31

    This congress discussed soils science with emphasis in the Brazilian morpho climatic dominion and the sustained development. Topics related to soils physics, chemical, biology, fertility, classification, nutrition, mineralogy, soils and water conservation, fertilizers, pollution and environmental quality. In the fourth volume of the abstracts were presented papers related to use of fertilizers and herbicides

  9. Sustainable decontamination of an actual-site aged PCB-polluted soil through a biosurfactant-based washing followed by a photocatalytic treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Occulti, Fabio; Roda, Giovanni Camera; Berselli, Sara; Fava, Fabio

    2008-04-15

    A two phases process consisting of a soya lecithin (SL)-based soil washing process followed by the photocatalytic treatment of resulting effluents was developed and applied at the laboratory scale in the remediation of an actual-site soil historically contaminated by 0.65 g/kg of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Triton X-100 (TX) was employed in the same process as a control surfactant. SL and TX, both applied as 2.25 g/L aqueous solutions, displayed a comparable ability to remove PCBs from the soil. However, SL solution displayed a lower ecotoxicity, a lower ability to mobilize soil constituents and a higher soil detoxification capacity with respect to the TX one. The photocatalytic treatment resulted in marked depletions (from 50% to 70%) of total organic carbon (TOC) and PCBs initially occurring in the SL and TX contaminated effluents. Despite the ability of SL to adversely affect the rate of TOC and PCB photodegradation, higher PCB depletion and dechlorination yields along with lower increases of ecotoxicity were observed in SL-containing effluents with respect to the TX ones at the end of 15 days of treatment. The two phases process developed and tested for the first time in this study seems to have the required features to become, after a proper optimization and scale up, a challenging procedure for the sustainable remediation of actual site, poorly biotreatable PCB-contaminated soils. Copyright 2007 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. The Role of Soil Biological Function in Regulating Agroecosystem Services and Sustainability in the Quesungual Agroforestry System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fonte, S.; Pauli, N.; Rousseau, L.; SIX, J. W. U. A.; Barrios, E.

    2014-12-01

    The Quesungual agroforestry system from western Honduras has been increasingly promoted as a promising alternative to traditional slash-and-burn agriculture in tropical dry forest regions of the Americas. Improved residue management and the lack of burning in this system can greatly impact soil biological functioning and a number of key soil-based ecosystem services, yet our understanding of these processes has not been thoroughly integrated to understand system functionality as a whole that can guide improved management. To address this gap, we present a synthesis of various field studies conducted in Central America aimed at: 1) quantifying the influence of the Quesungual agroforestry practices on soil macrofauna abundance and diversity, and 2) understanding how these organisms influence key soil-based ecosystem services that ultimately drive the success of this system. A first set of studies examined the impact of agroecosystem management on soil macrofauna populations, soil fertility and key soil processes. Results suggest that residue inputs (derived from tree biomass pruning), a lack of burning, and high tree densities, lead to conditions that support abundant, diverse soil macrofauna communities under agroforestry, with soil organic carbon content comparable to adjacent forest. Additionally, there is great potential in working with farmers to develop refined soil quality indicators for improved land management. A second line of research explored interactions between residue management and earthworms in the regulation of soil-based ecosystem services. Earthworms are the most prominent ecosystem engineers in these soils. We found that earthworms are key drivers of soil structure maintenance and the stabilization of soil organic matter within soil aggregates, and also had notable impacts on soil nutrient dynamics. However, the impact of earthworms appears to depend on residue management practices, thus indicating the need for an integrated approach for

  11. Long-term effects of conservation soil management in Saria, Burkina Faso, West Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zacharie, Z.

    2011-01-01

    The negative degradation spiral that currently leads to deteriorating soil properties in African drylands is a serious problem that limits food production and threatensthe livelihoods of the people. Nutrient depletion and water and wind erosion are the main factors in soil degradation in Africa.

  12. Cadmium accumulation and tolerance of Macleaya cordata: a newly potential plant for sustainable phytoremediation in Cd-contaminated soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nie, Jian; Liu, Yunguo; Zeng, Guangming; Zheng, Bohong; Tan, Xiaofei; Liu, Huan; Xie, Jieli; Gan, Chao; Liu, Wei

    2016-05-01

    Heavy metal pollution is a major concern of the public due to their threats to the safety of food chains. A 60-day pot experiment was conducted using Macleaya cordata as plant material to investigate the phytoremediation potential and anti-oxidative responses of M. cordata under different Cd stress. Significant growth inhibition phenomenon and toxic symptoms were not detected in the experiment. The high biomass of the plant provided high accumulation capacity for Cd with an average dry weight of 3.6 g. The maximum extraction amount of Cd was 393 μg·plant(-1), suggesting that this species had potential for phytoremediation of Cd-contaminated soil. A slight increase of chlorophyll (CHL) content was observed in Cd10 treatment. The plant was confirmed to have relatively high tolerance to the Cd stress on the basis of tolerance indexes (TI), relative water content, and CHLa/CHLb ratio. M. cordata could maintain high level of superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity under Cd stress, indicating strong tolerance capacity for reactive oxygen species (ROS) in plant cells. Catalase (CAT) activity show a certain range of decline in the experiment compare to the control. And peroxidase (POD) activity in leaves changed irregularly when compared to the control. The malondialdehyde (MDA) content increased as Cd concentration elevated compared to the control. In addition, as an inedible crop with relatively high economic value, M. cordata have shown the advantage of high biomass and high tolerance under Cd stress, which can provide a new plant resource for sustainable phytoremediation.

  13. Sustainable Carbon Dioxide Sequestration as Soil Carbon to Achieve Carbon Neutral Status for DoD Lands

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-10-01

    26 4.6.3 Fertilizer ...5 Figure 3. Soil organic carbon sensitivity to...Industries Association ERDC TR-17-13 ix SOC Soil Organic Carbon SSURGO Soil Survey Geographic Database USACE U.S. Army Corps of Engineers USDA

  14. The Role of Soil Amendment on Tropical Post Tin Mining Area in Bangka Island Indonesia for Dignified and Sustainable Environment and Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agus, C.; Wulandari, D.; Primananda, E.; Hendryan, A.; Harianja, V.

    2017-08-01

    Openly tropical tin mining in Bangka Island Indonesia expose heavy metal that had been buried became a part of our environment and life. This has become a major cause of land degradation and severe local-global environmental damages. This study aims to accelerate reconsolidation of degraded ecosystems on the former tin mine land, to increase land productivity and dignified environment through appropriate rehabilitation technology on marginal land that is inexpensive, environmentally friendly and sustainable. This study is a part of a roadmap research activities on the rehabilitation of degraded land in tropical ecosystem, that consist of (a) characterization of degraded tin mining lands through the determination of chemistry, physics, biology and mineral soil properties, (b) introducing multi-function pioneers plant for acceleration of peak pioneer plant in the reestablishment of degraded tin mining ecosystem (c) management of natural soil amendment (volcanic ash, organic waste materials and legume cover crop as a material for soil amelioration to increase land productivity, (d) role of biotechnology through the application of local bio-fertilizer (mycorrhizae, phosphate soluble bacteria, rhizobium). Soil from post tropical tin mining acid soil (pH 4.97) that dominated by sand particles (88%) with very low cation exchange capacity, very low nutrient contents (available and total-N, P, K, Ca, Mg) and high toxicity of Zn, Cu, B, Cd and Ti, but still have low toxicity of Al, Fe, Mn, Mo, Pb, As. Soil amendment of biogas and volcanic ash could improve soil quality by increasing of better pH, high available-P and cation exchange capacity and maintained their low toxicity. The growth (high, diameter, biomass, top-root ratio) of exotic pioneer plant of Kemiri sunan (Reutealis trisperma) increased in the better soil quality that caused by application of proper soil amendment. The grand concept and appropriate technology for rehabilitation of degraded tin-mining land

  15. Soil and Terrain Database for Senegal and the Gambia (version 1.0) - scale 1:1 million (SOTER_Senegal_Gambia)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dijkshoorn, J.A.; Huting, J.R.M.

    2014-01-01

    The Soil and Terrain database for Senegal and The Gambia primary data (version 1.0), at scale 1:1 million (SOTER_Senegal_Gambia), was compiled of enhanced soil information within the framework of the FAO's program Land Degradation Assessment in Drylands (LADA). Primary soil and terrain data for

  16. Metal accumulation in plants with added economical value grown on metal contaminated soils: sustainable use of these soils for bio-energy production and possibilities for phyto extraction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vangronsveld, J.; Boulet, J.; Weyens, N.; Meers, E.; Meiresonne, L.; Colpaert, J.; Thewys, T.; Lelie, D. van der; Carleer, R.; Ruttens, A.

    2009-01-01

    Phyto remediation has been proposed as an economic alternative for remediation of metal contaminated soils. It can be applied over extended surface areas and targets the bioavailable soil fraction of heavy metals, which is the most relevant fraction from an environmental risk assessment perspective. The most important drawback is the long remediation period required (years to decades). (Author)

  17. Plant-plant interactions in the restoration of Mediterranean drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdecantos, Alejandro; Fuentes, David; Smanis, Athanasios

    2014-05-01

    Plant-plant interactions are complex and dependent of both local abiotic features of the ecosystem and biotic relationships with other plants and animals. The net result of these interactions may be positive, negative or neutral resulting in facilitation, competition or neutralism, respectively (role of phylogeny). It has been proposed that competition is stronger between those individuals that share functional traits than between unrelated ones. The relative interaction effect of one plant on a neighbour may change in relation to resource availability - especially water in drylands. In addition, plants develop above and belowground biomass with time increasing the level and, eventually, changing the intensity and/or the direction of the interaction. In the framework of the restoration of degraded drylands, many studies have focused on the positive (nurse) effects of adult trees, shrubs and even grasses on artificially planted seedlings by improving the microclimate or providing protection against herbivores, but little is known about the interactions between seedlings of different life traits planted together under natural field conditions. In 2010 we established planting plots in two contrasted sites under semiarid Mediterranean climate and introduced one year old seedlings in different combinations of three species, two shrubs (Olea europaea and Pistacia lentiscus) and one grass (Stipa tenacissima). Half of the planting holes in each site were implemented with low-cost ecotechnological inputs to increase water availability by forcing runoff production and promoting deep infiltration (small plastic fabric + dry well). This resulted in four levels of abiotic stress. Biotic interactions were assessed by monitoring seedling survival and growth for three years after planting. The Relative Interaction Index (RII) of S. tenacissima on O. europaea was almost flat and close to 0 along the stress gradient since the beginning of the study suggesting limited interaction

  18. Assessing Dryland Ecosystem Services in Xinjiang, Northwest China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siew, T. F.; Brauman, K. A.; Zuo, L.; Doll, P. M.

    2014-12-01

    Dryland ecosystems, including grassland, forest, and irrigated cropland, cover about 41% of earth's land area and are inhabited by over two billion people. In drylands, particularly arid and semiarid areas, the production of ecosystem services is primarily constrained by freshwater availability. Often, water allocated to production by one ecosystem or of one ecosystem service negatively impacts other ecosystems or ecosystem services (ESS). The challenge is to determine how much water should be allocated to which ecosystems (natural and manmade) such that multiple ESS are maximized, thus improving overall well-being. This strategic management decision must be supported by knowledge about spatial and temporal availability of water and its relationship to production (location and scale) of ESS that people receive. We assess the spatial and temporal relationships between water availability and ESS production in Xinjiang, Northwest China. We address four questions: (1) What services are produced by which ecosystems with water available? (2) Where are these services produced? (3) Who uses the services produced? (4) How the production of services changes with variability of water available? Using existing global, national, and regional spatial and statistical data, we assess food, fiber, livestock, and wood production as well as unique forest landscapes (as a proxy for aesthetic appreciation and habitats for unique animals and plants) and protection from dust storms. Irrigation is necessary for crop production in Xinjiang. The production of about 4.2 million tons of wheat and 500,000 tons of cotton requires more than 2 km3 of water each year. This is an important source of food and income for local residents, but the diverted water has negative and potentially costly impacts on downstream forests that potentially provide aesthetic services and protection from dust. Our analyses also show that cropland had increased by about 1.6 million ha from 1987 to 2010, while

  19. Restoration of degraded drylands in northern Chile: The need of local stakeholders' participation to prevent and combat desertification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jorquera-Jaramillo, Carmen; Yáñez-Acevedo, Marcia; Gutiérrez, Julio R.; Cortés-Bugueño, José Luis; Pastén-Marambio, Víctor; Barraza-Cepeda, Claudia

    2015-04-01

    Desertification is one of the main factors determining poverty, long-term socio-economic problems, natural resources depletion and disturbances in rural communities living at the Coquimbo Region drylands (North-Central Chile). The Chilean State, along with private initiatives, have invested 473.6 Million dollars (1976 to 2008) to recover degraded areas through afforestation and soil management of 1,373,758 hectares. However, there is no information about the impact of the practices and changes experienced by the local stakeholders. Therefore, there is a need for a comprehensive evaluation considering both socioeconomic and biophysical aspects. To this end, a Protocol on Integrated Assessment (IAPro, PRACTICE project) was applied in two rural communities, involving communal afforested sites and their adjacent degraded drylands: El Sauce (ES, Limarí province) and Las Cañas (LC, Choapa province), Coquimbo Region. Participatory afforestation and soil conservation projects were implemented at both sites by the Chilean National Forestry Service (CONAF) in agreement with each local community (Jiménez y Tapia Agricultural Community at ES and Las Cañas de Choapa Peasant's Community at LC). The protocol involved 7 steps: (1) Stakeholder platform identification and engagement; (2) Baseline assessment and selection of site-specific indicators; (3) Integration and weighting of common and site-specific indicators; (4) Data collection; (5) Integrating and perspectives on a MCDA (Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis); (6) Collective Integrated assessment and knowledge sharing; (7) Dissemination. Interviews involved local and institutional stakeholders related to both sites' implementation, administration and/or local impacts. For the ES site, 5 actions were defined and assessed: No action (control); fences; mechanic and biological practices (soil stabilization, runoff control on slopes); runoff control in micro-basins, gullies and ravines; and footpath for educational and

  20. Land Degradation States and Trends in the Northwestern Maghreb Drylands, 1998–2008

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriel del Barrio

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available States of ecological maturity and temporal trends of drylands in Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia north of 28°N are reported for 1998–2008. The input data were Normalized Difference Vegetation Index databases and corresponding climate fields, at a spatial resolution of 1 km and a temporal resolution of one month. States convey opposing dynamics of human exploitation and ecological succession. They were identified synchronically for the full period by comparing each location to all other locations in the study area under equivalent aridity. Rain Use Efficiency (RUE at two temporal scales was used to estimate proxies for biomass and turnover rate. Biomass trends were determined for every location by stepwise regression using time and aridity as predictors. This enabled human-induced degradation to be separated from simple responses to interannual climate variation. Some relevant findings include large areas of degraded land, albeit improving over time or fluctuating with climate, but rarely degrading further; smaller, but significant areas of mature and reference vegetation in most climate zones; very low overall active degradation rates throughout the area during the decade observed; biomass accumulation over time exceeding depletion in most zones; and negative feedback between land states and trends suggesting overall landscape persistence. Semiarid zones were found to be the most vulnerable. Those results can be disaggregated by country or province. The combination with existing land cover maps and national forest inventories leads to the information required by the two progress indicators associated with the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification strategic objective to improve the conditions of ecosystems and with the Sustainable Development Goal Target 15.3 to achieve land degradation neutrality. Beyond that, the results are also useful as a basis for land management and restoration.

  1. Restoration of soil fertility and improvement of cropping systems for sustainable development in the humid savannahs of Cote d'Ivoire

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bachmann, T.

    1999-01-01

    The present FAO-project addresses the soil fertility problems by combining organic with inorganic nutrient sources and actively involving farmers and other beneficiaries in an integrated, long-term development process. A major objective of the project is the participatory on-farm testing and validation of available technological innovations for soil fertility improvement. The results should fulfill two main requirements: (i) provide the farmer with a short-term production increase and (ii) improve/maintain soil fertility in the medium and long-term. The strategic framework of the project is based on the following three main elements: the need to take into account all aspects of soil fertility restoration including areas concerned, cost of fertility restoration, and economic profitability and sustainability; - the need to test all fertility improving measures at farm level in representative agro-ecozones of the humid and sub-humid savannas before their extension at large; the need to identify major macro-economic constraints (e.g. marketing) which impede sustainable agricultural development in the savannah region. The primary goal of the project is to replace traditional shifting cultivation in the humid savannas of the country by economically, ecologically and socially more sustainable production systems. In order to achieve this development objective the project focuses on the following main issues: restoration of soil fertility through improved land and crop management and more efficient use of mineral and organic fertilizers; crop diversification through more efficient use of water resources (irrigation); introduction of new cropping systems which have been successfully tested in countries with similar agro-ecological conditions; adapting traditional land tenure to the market economy; involving the private sector in all aspects of regional development assisted by Government through the creation of a favorable environment. Phase 1: constraint analysis and

  2. Sustainable biochar effects for low carbon crop production: A 5-crop season field experiment on a low fertility soil from Central China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, X.

    2014-12-01

    GHGs emission than with soil property and crop yield. Thus, our study suggested that biochar amended in dry land could sustain a low carbon production both of maize and wheat in terms of its efficient carbon sequestration, lower GHGs emission intensity and soil improvement over 5 crop seasons after a single amendment.

  3. Muscle Activity during Dryland Swimming while Wearing a Triathlon Wetsuit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ciro Agnelli

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Triathletes typically wear a wetsuit during the swim portion of an event, but it is not clear if muscle activity is influenced by wearing a wetsuit. Purpose: To investigate if shoulder muscle activity was influenced by wearing a full-sleeve wetsuit vs. no wetsuit during dryland swimming. Methods: Participants (n=10 males; 179.1±13.2 cm; 91.2±7.25 kg; 45.6±10.5 years completed two dry land swimming conditions on a swim ergometer: No Wetsuit (NW and with Wetsuit (W. Electromyography (EMG of four upper extremity muscles was recorded (Noraxon telemetry EMG, 500 Hz during each condition: Trapezius (TRAP, Triceps (TRI, Anterior Deltoid (AD and Posterior Deltoid (PD. Each condition lasted 90 seconds with data collected during the last 60 seconds. Resistance setting was self-selected and remained constant for both conditions. Stroke rate was controlled at 60 strokes per minute by having participants match a metronome. Average (AVG and Root Mean Square (RMS EMG were calculated over 45 seconds and each were compared between conditions using a paired t-test (α=0.05 for each muscle. Results: PD and AD AVG and RMS EMG were each greater (on average 40.0% and 66.8% greater, respectively during W vs. NW (p0.05. Conclusion: The greater PD and AD muscle activity while wearing a wetsuit might affect swimming performance and /or stroke technique on long distance event.

  4. Emerging migration flows in a changing climate in dryland Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kniveton, Dominic R.; Smith, Christopher D.; Black, Richard

    2012-06-01

    Fears of the movement of large numbers of people as a result of changes in the environment were first voiced in the 1980s (ref. ). Nearly thirty years later the numbers likely to migrate as a result of the impacts of climate change are still, at best, guesswork. Owing to the high prevalence of rainfed agriculture, many livelihoods in sub-Saharan African drylands are particularly vulnerable to changes in climate. One commonly adopted response strategy used by populations to deal with the resulting livelihood stress is migration. Here, we use an agent-based model developed around the theory of planned behaviour to explore how climate and demographic change, defined by the ENSEMBLES project and the United Nations Statistics Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs, combine to influence migration within and from Burkina Faso. The emergent migration patterns modelled support framing the nexus of climate change and migration as a complex adaptive system. Using this conceptual framework, we show that the extent of climate-change-related migration is likely to be highly nonlinear and the extent of this nonlinearity is dependent on population growth; therefore supporting migration policy interventions based on both demographic and climate change adaptation.

  5. Influence of sustainable irrigation regimes and agricultural practices on the soil CO2 fluxes from olive groves in SE Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marañón-Jiménez, Sara; Serrano-Ortíz, Penelope; Vicente-Vicente, Jose Luis; Chamizo, Sonia; Kowalski, Andrew S.

    2017-04-01

    Olive (Olea europaea) is the dominant agriculture plantation in Spain and its main product, olive oil, is vital to the economy of Mediterranean countries. Given the extensive surface dedicated to olive plantations, olive groves can potentially sequester large amounts of carbon and contribute to mitigate climate change. Their potential for carbon sequestration will, however, largely depend on the management and irrigation practices in the olive grove. Although soil respiration is the main path of C release from the terrestrial ecosystems to the atmosphere and a suitable indicator of soil health and fertility, the interaction of agricultural management practices with irrigation regimes on soil CO2 fluxes have not been assessed yet. Here we investigate the influence of the presence of herbaceous cover, use of artificial fertilizers and their interaction with the irrigation regime on the CO2 emission from the soil to the atmosphere. For this, the three agricultural management treatments were established in replicated plots in an olive grove in the SE of Spain: presence of herbaceous cover ("H"), exclusion of herbaceous cover by using herbicides ("NH"), and exclusion of herbaceous cover along with addition of artificial fertilizers (0.55 kg m-2 year-1 of N, P, K solid fertilizer in the proportion 20:10:10, "NHF"). Within each management treatment, three irrigation regimes were also implemented in a randomized design: no-irrigation ("NO") or rain fed, full irrigation (224 l week-1 per olive tree, "MAX"), and a 50% restriction (112 l week-1 per olive tree, "MED"). Soil respiration was measured every 2-3 weeks at 1, 3, and 5 meters from each olive tree together with soil temperature and soil moisture in order to account for the spatial and seasonal variability over the year. Soil respiration was higher when herbaceous cover was present compared to the herbaceous exclusion, whereas the addition of fertilizer did not exert any significant effect. Although the different

  6. Soils, people and policy: land resource management conundrum in the Okavango Delta, Botswana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oluwatoyin Dare Kolawole

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The multi-faceted aspects of natural resource governance underscore the complex nature of the subject. The intricacies associated with the skewed power relations between those who allocate these resources (land, in this case and those who access and use them vis à vis environmental conservation make the subject a daunting one. Based on preliminary field observations and farmers’ opinions on soil health conditions in the Okavango Delta, the paper assesses the nutrient status of selected farmers’ fields and how the smallholders and government respond to this peculiar ecological environment. It specifically analyses small farmers’ perceptions on the political ecology of soil management in the area. We used a multi-stage sampling procedure to sample 228 smallholder farmers. The smallholders were interviewed using interview schedules. Key informant interviews were used to collect qualitative data from farmers as well. Thirty-three (33 composite soil samples were collected from 30 farmers’ plots in three farming communities (Makalamabedi, Nokaneng and Mohembo. Laboratory analysis shows that most soils in the wetland and its dryland surroundings are generally acidic, low in essential nutients as well as in cation-exchange-capacity (CEC. However, the results of a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA conducted shows significant differences in soil nutrient levels in different locations within the Delta. While farming remains an important livelihood of rural communities, policies on natural resource governance particularly along the river channels delimit local farmers’ ability to engage in meaningful soil fertility management. The low CEC of the soils is an indication that holistic cultural practices, which are beyond mere chemical fertilizations are critical and more desirable for improved soil health and sustainable rural livelihoods in the Delta.

  7. Sorghum production under future climate in the Southwestern USA: model projections of yield, greenhouse gas emissions and soil C fluxes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duval, B.; Ghimire, R.; Hartman, M. D.; Marsalis, M.

    2016-12-01

    Large tracts of semi-arid land in the Southwestern USA are relatively less important for food production than the US Corn Belt, and represent a promising area for expansion of biofuel/bioproduct crops. However, high temperatures, low available water and high solar radiation in the SW represent a challenge to suitable feedstock development, and future climate change scenarios predict that portions of the SW will experience increased temperature and temporal shifts in precipitation distribution. Sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) is a valuable forage crop with promise as a biofuel feedstock, given its high biomass under semi-arid conditions, relatively lower N fertilizer requirements compared to corn, and salinity tolerance. To evaluate the environmental impact of expanded sorghum cultivation under future climate in the SW USA, we used the DayCent model in concert with a suite of downscaled future weather projections to predict biogeochemical consequences (greenhouse gas flux and impacts on soil carbon) of sorghum cultivation in New Mexico. The model showed good correspondence with yield data from field trials including both dryland and irrigated sorghum (measured vs. modeled; r2 = 0.75). Simulation experiments tested the effect of dryland production versus irrigation, low N versus high N inputs and delayed fertilizer application. Nitrogen application timing and irrigation impacted yield and N2O emissions less than N rate and climate. Across N and irrigation treatments, future climate simulations resulted in 6% increased yield and 20% lower N2O emissions compared to current climate. Soil C pools declined under future climate. The greatest declines in soil C were from low N input sorghum simulations, regardless of irrigation (>20% declines in SOM in both cases), and requires further evaluation to determine if changing future climate is driving these declines, or if they are a function of prolonged sorghum-fallow rotations in the model. The relatively small gain in yield for

  8. The utilization of microbial inoculants based on irradiated compost in dryland remediation to increase the growth of king grass and maize

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    TRD Larasati; N Mulyana; D Sudradjat

    2016-01-01

    This research was conducted to evaluate the capability of functional microbial inoculants to remediate drylands. The microbial inoculants used consist of hydrocarbon-degrading microbial inoculants and plant-growth-promoting microbial inoculants. Compost-based carrier was sterilized by a gamma irradiation dose of 25 kGy to prepare seed inoculants. The irradiated-compost-based hydrocarbon-degrading microbial inoculants and king grass (Pennisetum purpureum Schumach.) were used to remediate oil-sludge-contaminated soil using in-situ composting for 60 days. The results showed that they could reduce THP (total petroleum hydrocarbons) by up to 82.23%. Plant-growth-promoting microbial inoculants were able to increase the dry weight of king grass from 47.39 to 100.66 g/plant, N uptake from 415.53 to 913.67 mg/plant, and P uptake from 76.52 to 178.33 mg/plant. Cow dung and irradiated-compost-based plant-growth-promoting microbial inoculants were able to increase the dry weight of maize (Zea mays L.) from 5.75 to 6.63 ton/ha (12.54%) and dry weight of grain potential from 5.30 to 7.15 ton/ha (35.03%). The results indicate that irradiated-compost-based microbial inoculants are suitable for remediating a dryland and therefore increase potential resources and improve the quality of the environment. (author)

  9. Long-term no-till: A major driver of fungal communities in dryland wheat cropping systems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dipak Sharma-Poudyal

    Full Text Available In the dryland Pacific Northwest wheat cropping systems, no-till is becoming more prevalent as a way to reduce soil erosion and fuel inputs. Tillage can have a profound effect on microbial communities and soilborne fungal pathogens, such as Rhizoctonia. We compared the fungal communities in long-term no-till (NT plots adjacent to conventionally tilled (CT plots, over three years at two locations in Washington state and one location in Idaho, US. We used pyrosequencing of the fungal ITS gene and identified 422 OTUs after rarefication. Fungal richness was higher in NT compared to CT, in two of the locations. Humicola nigrescens, Cryptococcus terreus, Cadophora spp. Hydnodontaceae spp., and Exophiala spp. were more abundant in NT, while species of Glarea, Coniochaetales, Mycosphaerella tassiana, Cryptococcus bhutanensis, Chaetomium perlucidum, and Ulocladium chartarum were more abundant in CT in most locations. Other abundant groups that did not show any trends were Fusarium, Mortierella, Penicillium, Aspergillus, and Macroventuria. Plant pathogens such as Rhizoctonia (Ceratobasidiaceae were not abundant enough to see tillage differences, but Microdochium bolleyi, a weak root pathogen, was more abundant in NT. Our results suggest that NT fungi are better adapted at utilizing intact, decaying roots as a food source and may exist as root endophytes. CT fungi can utilize mature plant residues that are turned into the soil with tillage as pioneer colonizers, and then produce large numbers of conidia. But a larger proportion of the fungal community is not affected by tillage and may be niche generalists.

  10. Smallholders' soil fertility management in the Central Highlands of Ethiopia: implications for nutrient stocks, balances and sustainability of agroecosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Haileslassie, A.; Priess, J.A.; Veldkamp, E.; Lesschen, J.P.

    2006-01-01

    Low agricultural productivity caused by soil degradation is a serious problem in the Ethiopian Highlands. Here, we report how differences in soil fertility management between farming systems, based either on enset (Ensete ventricosum) or on teff (Eragrostis tef) as the major crops, affect the extent

  11. Perceived profitability and well-being in Australian dryland farmers and irrigators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peel, Dominic; Berry, Helen L; Schirmer, Jacki

    2015-08-01

    To describe the relationship between self-reported farm profitability and farmer well-being, and to explore potential implications for farmer assistance policy. Cross-sectional analysis of farmers from Regional Wellbeing Survey data (wave 1, 2013) and comparison between groups. Participants were 1172 dryland farmers (35% women) and 707 irrigators (24% women). The Personal Wellbeing Index and the Kessler 10-item measure of general psychological distress. There is a consistent and significant relationship between higher profitability, greater well-being and less distress among dryland farmers and irrigators. The relationship between farm profitability and the well-being of Australian dryland farmers and irrigators has the potential to inform farmer assistance policy. Assistance programs can be more effective if they explicitly incorporate a profitability assessment into their targeting and eligibility requirements and a well-being component into program design and delivery. Rural Australia. Not applicable. © 2015 National Rural Health Alliance Inc.

  12. Impact of runoff infiltration on contaminant accumulation and transport in the soil/filter media of Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems: A literature review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tedoldi, Damien; Chebbo, Ghassan; Pierlot, Daniel; Kovacs, Yves; Gromaire, Marie-Christine

    2016-11-01

    The increasing use of Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SUDS) for stormwater management raises some concerns about the fate of ubiquitous runoff micropollutants in soils and their potential threat to groundwater. This question may be addressed either experimentally, by sampling and analyzing SUDS soil after a given operating time, or with a modeling approach to simulate the fate and transport of contaminants. After briefly reminding the processes responsible for the retention, degradation, or leaching of several urban-sourced contaminants in soils, this paper presents the state of the art about both experimental and modeling assessments. In spite of noteworthy differences in the sampling protocols, the soil parameters chosen as explanatory variables, and the methods used to evaluate the site-specific initial concentrations, most investigations undoubtedly evidenced a significant accumulation of metals and/or hydrocarbons in SUDS soils, which in the majority of the cases appears to be restricted to the upper 10 to 30cm. These results may suggest that SUDS exhibit an interesting potential for pollution control, but antinomic observations have also been made in several specific cases, and the inter-site concentration variability is still difficult to appraise. There seems to be no consensus regarding the level of complexity to be used in models. However, the available data deriving from experimental studies is generally limited to the contamination profiles and a few parameters of the soil, as a result of which "complex" models (including colloid-facilitated transport for example) appear to be difficult to validate before using them for predictive evaluations. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Integrated soil, water and nutrient management for sustainable rice-wheat cropping systems in Asia. Report of a FAO/IAEA consultants' meeting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2000-01-01

    A Consultants' Meeting on 'Integrated soil, water and nutrient management for sustainable rice-wheat cropping systems in Asia' was held at FAO, Rome, August 22-25, 2000. Five consultants, together with one staff from IAEA headquarters, one staff from IAEA Laboratories, Seibersdorf, five staff from FAO headquarters, two staff from FAO regional offices, one observer from ACIAR, one observer from Cornell University with expertise in crop, nutrient, soil and water management, attended the meeting. The consultants presented reviews of the situation regarding studies of water and nutrient dynamics in rice-wheat systems in South Asia. These were complemented by a paper on the development of 15 N techniques to study the contribution of N from legumes. The consultants also provided recommendations on the formulation and implementation of an FAO/IAEA Co-ordinated Research Project (CRP). Refs, figs, tabs

  14. Tracer methods to quantify nutrient uptake from plough layer, sub-soil and fertilizer: implications on sustainable nutrient management

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Haak, E [Swedish Univ. of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala (Sweden). Dept. of Radioecology

    1996-07-01

    Two soils injection methods are presented. The first method consists of homogeneously labelling the whole plough layer with carrier free tracers. this is done in two treatments, (1) a reference treatment without connection with the sub-soil and (2) an experimental treatment where the sub-soil is freely accessible for root penetration. The second method, which is now under development, consists of using isotope labelled fertilizers instead of carrier free tracers. By application of the A-value concept it is possible to quantify (by the first method) the plant uptake of nutrients from plough layer and sub-soil, and from the second method, the uptake of nutrients from the applied fertilizer. A fertilizer strategy for phosphorus is discussed based on data obtained from tracer experiment in the field, and soil survey of specific field sites. (author). 7 refs, 2 figs, 1 tab.

  15. Tracer methods to quantify nutrient uptake from plough layer, sub-soil and fertilizer: implications on sustainable nutrient management

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Haak, E.

    1996-01-01

    Two soils injection methods are presented. The first method consists of homogeneously labelling the whole plough layer with carrier free tracers. this is done in two treatments, (1) a reference treatment without connection with the sub-soil and (2) an experimental treatment where the sub-soil is freely accessible for root penetration. The second method, which is now under development, consists of using isotope labelled fertilizers instead of carrier free tracers. By application of the A-value concept it is possible to quantify (by the first method) the plant uptake of nutrients from plough layer and sub-soil, and from the second method, the uptake of nutrients from the applied fertilizer. A fertilizer strategy for phosphorus is discussed based on data obtained from tracer experiment in the field, and soil survey of specific field sites. (author). 7 refs, 2 figs, 1 tab

  16. Pastoral mobility as a response to climate variability in African drylands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Adriansen, Hanne Kirstine

    1999-01-01

    The article outlines aspects of ‘the new paradigm’ for dryland ecosystems and pastoral production systems. Rationality of pastoralism was claimed by parts of the research community for decades, but especially among policy and development planners pastoralism was perceived as an irrational and des...... in West Africa. In an example from Ferlo, Senegal, different types of pastoral mobility are discussed with special focus on the importance of scale. It is concluded that pastoral mobility is a rational response to climate variability and unpredictability in African drylands....

  17. Sustentabilidad del riego complementario en suelos Udipsament Típico y Hapludol Entico de Argentina Complementary irrigation sustainability in Typic Udipsament and Entic Hapludol soils of Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mabel Vázquez

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available El riego complementario con aguas sódicas conduce a procesos dispersivos que deterioran el espacio poroso y con ello otras propiedades relacionadas. Esto podría producirse con bajos a medios niveles de RAS del agua, en suelos gruesos, cuando la illita domina la fracción arcilla. Se plantea la hipótesis de que el riego es capaz de provocar estados dispersivos en suelos de texturas medias a gruesas bajo estas condiciones, aun con aguas de baja a mediana sodicidad y períodos breves de la práctica, comprometiendo la sustentabilidad de sus sistemas productivos en el corto plazo. El objetivo de este trabajo es evaluar el grado de susceptibilidad a la dispersión y el efecto sobre la retención de agua y las propiedades hidráulicas de 2 suelos regados, Udipsament Típico y Hapludol Entico, en el Centro-E y NO, respectivamente, de la provincia de Buenos Aires, Argentina. La de agua en el suelo y los límites de Atterberg fueron superiores en las condiciones de riego en el suelo Udipsament Típico. La conductividad hidráulica disminuyó y el índice de dispersión fue superior para la situación de riego en ambos suelos. Estos resultados sugieren la no sustentabilidad del sistema de riego evaluado.The complementary irrigation with high level of sodium in water leads to dispersive processes that deteriorate the porous space and therefore, other related properties. This could take place with low to medium levels of SAR of water, in coarse soil in which the illite is predominant in the clay fraction. It is hypothesized that irrigation may cause dispersive states in soils of medium to coarse texture under these circumstances, even with water containing low to medium levels of sodium and during short periods of use, compromising the sustainability of land production systems in the short term. The aim of this study was to evaluate the degree of susceptibility to dispersion and the effect on the soil water retention and its hydraulic properties of two

  18. Exchange of soil moisture between patches of wild-olive and pasture sustains evapotranspiration of a Mediterranean ecosystem in both wet and dry seasons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curreli, M.; Montaldo, N.; Oren, R.

    2017-12-01

    Partitioning evapotranspiration in water-limited environments, such as Mediterranean ecosystems, could give information on vegetation and hydraulic dynamics. Indeed, in such ecosystems, trees may survive prolonged droughts by uptake of water by dimorphic root system: deep roots and shallower lateral roots, extending beyond the crown into inter-trees grassy areas. The water exchange between under canopy areas and treeless patches plays a crucial role on sustaining tree and grass physiological performance during droughts. The study has been performed at the Orroli site, Sardinia (Italy). The landscape is covered by patchy vegetation: wild olives trees in clumps and herbaceous species, drying to bare soil in summer. The climate is characterized by long droughts from May to October and rain events concentrated in the autumn and winter, whit a mean yearly rain of about 700 mm. A 10 m micrometeorological tower equipped with eddy-covariance system has been used for measuring water and energy surface fluxes, as well as key state variables (e.g. temperature, radiations, humidity and wind velocity). Soil moisture was measured with five soil water reflectometers (two below the olive canopy and three in the pasture). To estimate plant water use in the context of soil water dynamic, 33 Granier-type thermal dissipation probes were installed 40 cm aboveground, in representative trees over the eddy covariance footprint. Early analyses show that wild olive continue to transpire even as the soil dries and the pasture desiccates. This reveled hydraulic redistribution system through the plant and the soil, and allows to quantify the reliance of the system on horizontally and vertically differentiated soil compartments. Results shows that during light hours, until transpiration decreases in midday, shallow roots uptake deplete the shallow water content. As transpiration decreases, hydraulically redistributed water provides for both transpiration of wild olives and recharge of shallow

  19. Desertification, salinization, and biotic homogenization in a dryland river ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyazono, Seiji; Patiño, Reynaldo; Taylor, Christopher M

    2015-04-01

    This study determined long-term changes in fish assemblages, river discharge, salinity, and local precipitation, and examined hydrological drivers of biotic homogenization in a dryland river ecosystem, the Trans-Pecos region of the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo del Norte (USA/Mexico). Historical (1977-1989) and current (2010-2011) fish assemblages were analyzed by rarefaction analysis (species richness), nonmetric multidimensional scaling (composition/variability), multiresponse permutation procedures (composition), and paired t-test (variability). Trends in hydrological conditions (1970s-2010s) were examined by Kendall tau and quantile regression, and associations between streamflow and specific conductance (salinity) by generalized linear models. Since the 1970s, species richness and variability of fish assemblages decreased in the Rio Grande below the confluence with the Rio Conchos (Mexico), a major tributary, but not above it. There was increased representation of lower-flow/higher-salinity tolerant species, thus making fish communities below the confluence taxonomically and functionally more homogeneous to those above it. Unlike findings elsewhere, this biotic homogenization was due primarily to changes in the relative abundances of native species. While Rio Conchos discharge was>2-fold higher than Rio Grande discharge above their confluence, Rio Conchos discharge decreased during the study period causing Rio Grande discharge below the confluence to also decrease. Rio Conchos salinity is lower than Rio Grande salinity above their confluence and, as Rio Conchos discharge decreased, it caused Rio Grande salinity below the confluence to increase (reduced dilution). Trends in discharge did not correspond to trends in precipitation except at extreme-high (90th quantile) levels. In conclusion, decreasing discharge from the Rio Conchos has led to decreasing flow and increasing salinity in the Rio Grande below the confluence. This spatially uneven desertification and

  20. Desertification, salinization, and biotic homogenization in a dryland river ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyazono, S.; Patino, Reynaldo; Taylor, C.M.

    2015-01-01

    This study determined long-term changes in fish assemblages, river discharge, salinity, and local precipitation, and examined hydrological drivers of biotic homogenization in a dryland river ecosystem, the Trans-Pecos region of the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo del Norte (USA/Mexico). Historical (1977-1989) and current (2010-2011) fish assemblages were analyzed by rarefaction analysis (species richness), nonmetric multidimensional scaling (composition/variability), multiresponse permutation procedures (composition), and paired t-test (variability). Trends in hydrological conditions (1970s-2010s) were examined by Kendall tau and quantile regression, and associations between streamfiow and specific conductance (salinity) by generalized linear models. Since the 1970s, species richness and variability of fish assemblages decreased in the Rio Grande below the confluence with the Rio Conchos (Mexico), a major tributary, but not above it. There was increased representation of lower-flow/higher-salinity tolerant species, thus making fish communities below the confluence taxonomically and functionally more homogeneous to those above it. Unlike findings elsewhere, this biotic homogenization was due primarily to changes in the relative abundances of native species. While Rio Conchos discharge was > 2-fold higher than Rio Grande discharge above their confluence, Rio Conchos discharge decreased during the study period causing Rio Grande discharge below the confluence to also decrease. Rio Conchos salinity is lower than Rio Grande salinity above their confluence and, as Rio Conchos discharge decreased, it caused Rio Grande salinity below the confluence to increase (reduced dilution). Trends in discharge did not correspond to trends in precipitation except at extreme-high (90th quantile) levels. In conclusion, decreasing discharge from the Rio Conchos has led to decreasing flow and increasing salinity in the Rio Grande below the confluence. This spatially uneven desertification and

  1. Sediment transport by runoff on debris-mantled dryland hillslopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaelides, Katerina; Martin, Gareth J.

    2012-09-01

    Hillslopes supply sediment to river channels, and therefore impact drainage basin functioning and evolution. The relationship between hillslope attributes and sediment flux forms the basis of geomorphic transport laws used to model the long-term topographic evolution of drainage basins, but their specific interactions during individual storm events are not well understood. Runoff-driven erosion of coarse particles, prevalent in dryland environments, presents a particular set of conditions for sediment transport that is poorly resolved in current models. In order to address this gap, we developed a particle-based, force-balance model for sheetwash sediment transport on coarse, debris-mantled hillslopes within a rainfall-runoff model. We use the model to examine how the interplay between hillslope attributes (gradient, length and grain size distribution) and runoff characteristics affects sediment transport, grain-size changes on the hillslope, and sediment supply to the slope base. The relationship between sediment flux and hillslope gradient was found to transition from linear above a threshold to sigmoidal depending on hillslope length, initial grain sizes, and runoff characteristics. Grain sizes supplied to the slope base vary in a complex manner with hillslope attributes but an overall coarsening of the hillslopes is found to occur with increasing gradient, corroborating previous findings from field measurements. Intense, short duration storms result in within-hillslope sediment redistribution and equifinality in sediment supply for different hillslope characteristics, which explain the lack of field evidence for any systematic relationships. Our model findings provide insights into hillslope responses to climatic forcing and have theoretical implications for modeling hillslope evolution in dry lands.

  2. Bacteria Associated to Plants Naturally Selected in a Historical PCB Polluted Soil Show Potential to Sustain Natural Attenuation

    KAUST Repository

    Vergani, Lorenzo; Mapelli, Francesca; Marasco, Ramona; Crotti, Elena; Fusi, Marco; Di Guardo, Antonio; Armiraglio, Stefano; Daffonchio, Daniele; Borin, Sara

    2017-01-01

    The exploitation of the association between plants and microorganisms is a promising approach able to boost natural attenuation processes for soil clean-up in vast polluted areas characterized by mixed chemical contamination. We aimed to explore

  3. Spring maize yield, soil water use and water use efficiency under plastic film and straw mulches in the Loess Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Wen; Liu, Wenzhao; Xue, Qingwu

    2016-12-01

    To compare the soil water balance, yield and water use efficiency (WUE) of spring maize under different mulching types in the Loess Plateau, a 7-year field experiment was conducted in the Changwu region of the Loess Plateau. Three treatments were used in this experiment: straw mulch (SM), plastic film mulch (PM) and conventional covering without mulch (CK). Results show that the soil water change of dryland spring maize was as deep as 300 cm depth and hence 300 cm is recommended as the minimum depth when measure the soil water in this region. Water use (ET) did not differ significantly among the treatments. However, grain yield was significantly higher in PM compared with CK. WUE was significantly higher in PM than in CK for most years of the experiment. Although ET tended to be higher in PM than in the other treatments (without significance), the evaporation of water in the fallow period also decreased. Thus, PM is sustainable with respect to soil water balance. The 7-year experiment and the supplemental experiment thus confirmed that straw mulching at the seedling stage may lead to yield reduction and this effect can be mitigated by delaying the straw application to three-leaf stage.

  4. Improving sustainability in the remediation of contaminated soils by the use of compost and energy valorization by Paulownia fortunei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madejón, Paula; Domínguez, María Teresa; Díaz, Manuel Jesús; Madejón, Engracia

    2016-01-01

    The plantation of fast growing trees in contaminated sites, in combination with the use of organic wastes, could partially solve a dual environmental problem: the disposal of these wastes and the improvement of soil quality in these degraded soils. This study evaluated the effects of two compost on the quantity and quality of Paulownia fortunei biomass and on syngas production by biomass gasification, produced by plants growing on trace elements contaminated soils. Compost increased biomass production to values similar to those produced in non-contaminated soils, due to the improvement in plant nutritional status. Moreover, biomass quality for gasification was increased by compost addition. Trace element accumulation in the biomass was relatively low and not related to biomass production or the gas quality obtained through gasification. Thus, P. fortunei plantations could pose an opportunity to improve the economic balance of the revegetation of contaminated soils, given that other commercial uses such as food or fodder crop production is not recommended in these soils. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Farmer perceptions of plant-soil interactions can affect adoption of sustainable management practices in cocoa agroforests: a case study from Southeast Sulawesi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ariani C. Wartenberg

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Despite extensive research focused on increasing the sustainability and productivity of agricultural systems in the tropics, adoption rates of improved management solutions often remain low among smallholder farmers. To address this, we evaluated how local knowledge and perceptions influenced decision-making processes among smallholder cocoa farmers. We conducted individual semistructured interviews with 72 cocoa farmers in Southeast Sulawesi and documented local knowledge about soil fertility indicators, nutrient cycling processes, and the interactions among shade trees, cocoa trees, and soils in cocoa agroforests. We further collected data regarding farmers' fertilizer preferences, additional income sources, and perceived barriers to improved cocoa production. We found that farmers' understanding of biophysical interactions in Southeast Sulawesi was comprehensive, mostly accurately aligned with scientific literature, and sometimes provided additional complementary knowledge. Cocoa farmers in Southeast Sulawesi approached decision making in a holistic way, integrating personal observations, information from external sources, and socioeconomic limitations and priorities. This finding highlights the value of flexible conservation farming approaches that allow farmers to minimize trade-offs and prioritize their households' needs. Finally, we identify a "dual" knowledge gap on the part of farmers and scientists regarding the direct benefits of shade tree inclusion for improved yields and income security. Addressing this through further research and targeted knowledge dissemination could contribute to an increase in the long-term adoption rates of more sustainable cocoa cultivation practices.

  6. 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)

  7. Transforming Innovation for Sustainability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melissa Leach

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The urgency of charting pathways to sustainability that keep human societies within a "safe operating space" has now been clarified. Crises in climate, food, biodiversity, and energy are already playing out across local and global scales and are set to increase as we approach critical thresholds. Drawing together recent work from the Stockholm Resilience Centre, the Tellus Institute, and the STEPS Centre, this commentary article argues that ambitious Sustainable Development Goals are now required along with major transformation, not only in policies and technologies, but in modes of innovation themselves, to meet them. As examples of dryland agriculture in East Africa and rural energy in Latin America illustrate, such "transformative innovation" needs to give far greater recognition and power to grassroots innovation actors and processes, involving them within an inclusive, multi-scale innovation politics. The three dimensions of direction, diversity, and distribution along with new forms of "sustainability brokering" can help guide the kinds of analysis and decision making now needed to safeguard our planet for current and future generations.

  8. Estimation of soil erosion for a sustainable land use planning: RUSLE model validation by remote sensing data utilization in the Kalikonto watershed

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Andriyanto

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Technology of Geographic Information Systems (GIS and Remote Sensing (RS are increasingly used for planning and natural resources management. GIS and RS is based on pixels is used as a tool of spatial modeling for predicting the erosion. One of the methods developed for predicting the erosion is a Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE. RUSLE is the method used for predicting the erosion associated with runoff gained from five parameters, namely: rain erosivity (R, soil erodibility (K, length of slopes (L, slope (S, and land management (CP. The main constraint encountered in the process of operating the GIS is the calculation of the slope length factor (L.This study was designed to create a plan of sustainable land use and low erosion through the RULSE erosion modeling by utilizing the remote sensing data. With this approach, this study was divided into three activities, namely (1 the preparation and analysis of spatial data for the determination of the parameters and estimating the erosion by using RUSLE models, (2 the validation and calibration of the model of RUSLE by measuring soil erosion at the scale of plots on the field, and (3 Creating a plan of sustainable land use and low erosion with RUSLE. The validation erosion shows the value of R2 = 0.56 and r = 0.74. Results of this study showed that the RUSLE model could be used in the Kalikonto watershed. The erosions at the value of the actual estimation, spatial Plan (RTRW and land capability class in the Kalikonto watershed were 72t / ha / year, 62 t / ha / year and 58 t / ha / year, respectively.

  9. A New Perspective on Sustainable Soil Remediation—Case Study Suggests Novel Fungal Genera Could Facilitate in situ Biodegradation of Hazardous Contaminants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czaplicki, L.M.; Cooper, E.; Ferguson, P.L.; Stapleton, H.M.; Vilgalys, R.; Gunsch, C.K.

    2016-01-01

    Deciding upon a cost effective and sustainable method to address soil pollution is a challenge for many remedial project managers. High pressure to quickly achieve cleanup goals pushes for energy-intensive remedies that rapidly address the contaminants of concern with established technologies, often leaving little room for research and development especially for slower treatment technologies, such as bioremediation, for the more heavily polluted sites. In the present case study, new genomic approaches have been leveraged to assess fungal biostimulation potential in soils polluted with particularly persistent hydrophobic contaminants. This new approach provides insights into the genetic functions available at a given site in a way never before possible. In particular, this article presents a case study where next generation sequencing (NGS) has been used to categorize fungi in soils from the Atlantic Wood Industries Superfund site in Portsmouth, Virginia. Data suggest that original attempts to harness fungi for bioremediation may have focused on fungal genera poorly suited to survive under heavily polluted site conditions, and that more targeted approaches relying on native indigenous fungi which are better equipped to survive under site specific conditions may be more appropriate. PMID:27917031

  10. Milking drylands : gender networks, pastoral markets and food security in stateless Somalia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nori, M.

    2010-01-01

    The Milking Drylands research initiative addresses the critical issues of food security, market integration, gender roles and governance matters in a peculiar area of the world, the Somali ecosystem. The research aims at exploring interesting dynamics of ongoing social change, in order to stimulate

  11. Assessing woody vegetation trends in Sahelian drylands using MODIS based seasonal metrics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brandt, Martin Stefan; Hiernaux, Pierre; Rasmussen, Kjeld

    2016-01-01

    Woody plants play a major role for the resilience of drylands and in peoples' livelihoods. However, due to their scattered distribution, quantifying and monitoring woody cover over space and time is challenging. We develop a phenology driven model and train/validate MODIS (MCD43A4, 500 m) derived...

  12. Replacing fallow with forage triticale in dryland crop rotations increases profitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    A common dryland rotational cropping system in the semi-arid central Great Plains of the U.S. is wheat (Triticum aestivum L.)-corn (Zea mays L.)-fallow (WCF). However, the 12-month fallow period following corn production has been shown to be relatively inefficient in storing precipitation during the...

  13. Impacts of Global Change on Water Resources in Dryland East Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ge Sun; Xiaoming Feng; Jingfeng Xiao; Alex Shiklomanov; Shengping Wang; Zhiqiang Zhang; Nan Lu; Shuai Wang; Liding Chen; Bojie Fu; Yaning Chen; Jiquan Chen

    2013-01-01

    The vast Dryland East Asia (DEA) area consists of several large geographic regions including the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, Loess Plateau, and Mongolia Plateau. T he region is of great importance to the functioning of the earth system under a changing climate. In the past three decades, due to the unprecedented land use/land cover change, urbanization, industrialization...

  14. Fisheries in the drylands of Sub-Saharan Africa “Fish come with the Rains”

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kolding, Jeppe; Zwieten, van P.A.M.; Marttin, Felix; Poulain, Florence

    2016-01-01

    Dryland areas cover more than half of sub-Saharan Africa and are home to nearly 50 percent of
    its populations, who depend on agriculture (including livestock, crops and fisheries) as their main
    livelihood strategy. Sporadic and irregular rainfall patterns are the most important

  15. The Effect of Land use/cover change on Biomass Stock in Dryland ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The Effect of Land use/cover change on Biomass Stock in Dryland Areas of Eastern Uganda. ... Journal of Applied Sciences and Environmental Management ... Therefore, there is need for increased use of remote sensing and GIS to quantify change patterns at local scales for essential monitoring and assessment of land ...

  16. Back to Acid Soil Fields: The Citrate Transporter SbMATE Is a Major Asset for Sustainable Grain Yield for Sorghum Cultivated on Acid Soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geraldo Carvalho Jr

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Aluminum (Al toxicity damages plant roots and limits crop production on acid soils, which comprise up to 50% of the world’s arable lands. A major Al tolerance locus on chromosome 3, AltSB, controls aluminum tolerance in sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L. Moench] via SbMATE, an Al-activated plasma membrane transporter that mediates Al exclusion from sensitive regions in the root apex. As is the case with other known Al tolerance genes, SbMATE was cloned based on studies conducted under controlled environmental conditions, in nutrient solution. Therefore, its impact on grain yield on acid soils remains undetermined. To determine the real world impact of SbMATE, multi-trait quantitative trait loci (QTL mapping in hydroponics, and, in the field, revealed a large-effect QTL colocalized with the Al tolerance locus AltSB, where SbMATE lies, conferring a 0.6 ton ha–1 grain yield increase on acid soils. A second QTL for Al tolerance in hydroponics, where the positive allele was also donated by the Al tolerant parent, SC283, was found on chromosome 9, indicating the presence of distinct Al tolerance genes in the sorghum genome, or genes acting in the SbMATE pathway leading to Al-activated citrate release. There was no yield penalty for AltSB, consistent with the highly localized Al regulated SbMATE expression in the root tip, and Al-dependent transport activity. A female effect of 0.5 ton ha–1 independently demonstrated the effectiveness of AltSB in hybrids. Al tolerance conferred by AltSB is thus an indispensable asset for sorghum production and food security on acid soils, many of which are located in developing countries.

  17. Long-term effects of conservation soil management in Saria, Burkina Faso, West Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Zacharie, Z.

    2011-01-01

    The negative degradation spiral that currently leads to deteriorating soil properties in African drylands is a serious problem that limits food production and threatensthe livelihoods of the people. Nutrient depletion and water and wind erosion are the main factors in soil degradation in Africa. This thesis describes field research conducted from 2006 through 2008 to assess how changes in physical and hydrological soil properties, induced by differences in land management and macro-faunal bi...

  18. Biocrusts modulate warming and rainfall exclusion effects on soil respiration in a semi-arid grassland

    OpenAIRE

    Escolar, Cristina; Maestre, Fernando T.; Rey, Ana

    2015-01-01

    Soil surface communities composed of cyanobacteria, algae, mosses, liverworts, fungi, bacteria and lichens (biocrusts) largely affect soil respiration in dryland ecosystems. Climate change is expected to have large effects on biocrusts and associated ecosystem processes. However, few studies so far have experimentally assessed how expected changes in temperature and rainfall will affect soil respiration in biocrust-dominated ecosystems. We evaluated the impacts of biocrust development, increa...

  19. The role of non-rainfall water on physiological activation in desert biological soil crusts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Jiaoli; Peng, Chengrong; Li, Hua; Li, Shuangshuang; Huang, Shun; Hu, Yao; Zhang, Jinli; Li, Dunhai

    2018-01-01

    Non-rainfall water (NRW, e.g. fog and dew), in addition to rainfall and snowfall, are considered important water inputs to drylands. At the same time, biological soil crusts (BSCs) are important components of drylands. However, little information is available regarding the effect of NRW inputs on BSC activation. In this study, the effects of NRW on physiological activation in three BSC successional stages, including the cyanobacteria crust stage (Crust-C), moss colonization stage (Crust-CM), and moss crust stage (Crust-M), were studied in situ. Results suggest NRW inputs hydrated and activated physiological activity (Fv/Fm, carbon exchange, and nitrogen fixation) in BSCs but led to a negative carbon balance and low rates of nitrogen fixation in BSCs. One effective NRW event could hydrate BSCs for 7 h. Following simulated rainfall, the physiological activities recovered within 3 h, and net carbon gain occurred until 3 h after hydration, whereas NRW-induced physiological recovery processes were slower and exhibited lower activities, leading to a negative carbon balance. There were significant positive correlations between NRW amounts and the recovered values of Fv/Fm in all the three BSC stages (p < .001). The thresholds for Fv/Fm activation decreased with BSC succession, and the annual effective NRW events increased with BSC succession, with values of 29.8, 89.2, and 110.7 in Crust-C, Crust-CM and Crust-M, respectively. The results suggest that moss crust and moss-cyanobacteria crust use NRW to prolong metabolic activity and reduce drought stress more efficiently than cyanobacteria crusts. Therefore, these results suggest that BSCs utilize NRW to sustain life while growth and biomass accumulation require precipitation (rainfall) events over a certain threshold.

  20. Colocation opportunities for large solar infrastructures and agriculture in drylands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ravi, Sujith; Macknick, Jordan; Lobell, David; Field, Christopher; Ganesan, Karthik; Jain, Rishabh; Elchinger, Michael; Stoltenberg, Blaise

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • We explored the potential to colocate solar installations and agriculture. • Water use at solar installations are similar to amounts required for desert plants. • Co-located systems are economically viable in some areas. • Colocation can maximize land and water use efficiency in drylands. - Abstract: Solar energy installations in arid and semi-arid regions are rapidly increasing due to technological advances and policy support. Although solar energy provides several benefits such as reduction of greenhouse gases, reclamation of degraded land, and improved quality of life in developing countries, the deployment of large-scale renewable energy infrastructure may negatively impact land and water resources. Meeting the ever-expanding energy demand with limited land and water resources in the context of increasing demand for alternative uses such as agricultural and domestic consumption is a major challenge. The goal of this study was to explore opportunities to colocate solar infrastructures and agricultural crops to maximize the efficiency of land and water use. We investigated the energy inputs/outputs, water use, greenhouse gas emissions, and economics of solar installations in northwestern India in comparison to aloe vera cultivation, another widely promoted and economically important land use in these systems. The life cycle analyses show that the colocated systems are economically viable in some rural areas and may provide opportunities for rural electrification and stimulate economic growth. The water inputs for cleaning solar panels are similar to amounts required for annual aloe productivity, suggesting the possibility of integrating the two systems to maximize land and water use efficiency. A life cycle analysis of a hypothetical colocation indicated higher returns per m"3 of water used than either system alone. The northwestern region of India has experienced high population growth in the past decade, creating additional demand for land

  1. Contribution to the fight against the greenhouse effect carbon storage in the agricultural soils in France. A collective scientific expertise realized by the INRA for the Ministry of the Ecology and the sustainable development 15 january 2003

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2003-01-01

    The expertise realized by the INRA relatives the interest of storage carbon in agricultural soils in France: if the possibility of storage is not inconsiderable, its valorization in the framework of the Kyoto protocol is difficult. This storage should be considered in a broader framework, including all the greenhouse gases and integrated in a global plan on the sustainable agriculture and soils quality. (A.L.B.)

  2. Carbon Mineralization Can Be Sustained or Even Stimulated under Fluctuating Redox Conditions in Tropical and Temperate Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, W.; Hall, S. J.

    2017-12-01

    Soil carbon (C) mineralization is widely thought to be affected by O2 availability, and anaerobiosis represents a significant global mechanism of C stabilization. However, mineral-associated organic C (e.g. Fe-bound organic C) may be vulnerable to redox fluctuations due to release following Fe reduction, which could counteract protective effects of anaerobiosis. Many soils, including temperate Mollisols and tropical Oxisols, experience fluctuating redox conditions following moisture variations that could impact C cycling and stabilization. Here we incubated two soils with C4 leaf litter at different duration and frequencies of anaerobic periods for 128 days to investigate how redox fluctuations affect soil C mineralization. The treatments included static aerobic (control), and 2-, 4-, 8- and 12- day anaerobic followed by 4-day aerobic. We measured CO2, CH4, and their C isotope ratios. Longer durations of anaerobic conditions promoted greater Fe reduction and more DOC released. Notably, in both soils despite their large differences in composition, the production of CO2 and CH4 was stimulated under aerobic conditions following anaerobic conditions (relative to the control), which compensated for the decrease under anaerobic conditions. After 128 days, cumulative C mineralization in the control was similar between the Mollisol (9.7 mg C g-1) and the Oxisol (10.1 mg C g-1). The value in the Mollisol was significantly higher in the 12-day anaerobic treatment (11.2 mg C g-1) than the aerobic control and the 2-day anaerobic treatment (9.7 mg C g-1). In the Oxisol, cumulative C mineralization was not significantly affected by any of the fluctuating redox treatments relative to the control. Our findings challenge theory by showing that redox fluctuations can counteract the suppressive effects of O2 limitation on decomposition.

  3. Evaluation on Sustainability of Technological Dimension Biopore Absorption Hole Management for Soil Water Conservation in Semarang City

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elesvera Destry

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Biopore technology innovation is an easy and cheap technology that can be applied in any class of society. Biopore Absorption Hole (BAH is a cylincric vertical hole with a relatively small diameter. Eventhough the diameter is not so big, it is still effective to absorb groundwater.The dimension of technology reflected how this BAH tecnology is applied to the Management of BAH within the society of Semarang City.In order to achieve maximum results, an evaluation toward the sustainability of the dimension of BAH Management technology in Semarang City needs to be performed.The objectives of this research are to:1 studying the status of technology dimension in maintaining BAH, 2 studying sensitive attributes having influence toward index value and the sustainability status of technology dimension in maintaining BAH, as well as 3 formulating the priorities for policies applicable to technology in maintaining BAH in Semarang.The research took place in three administrative villages (Srondol Wetan, Jatingaleh, and Bendan Ngisor in the city of Semarang.Those three locations were chosen to represent upper, middle, and lower regions of Semarang as water absorption area.The analysis of status determining data and leveraging factor was conducted using RAP – biopore method, while the the making of policy priorities was performed by using Analitycal Hierarchy Process (AHP.Results suggest that the status of the sustainability of Semarang’s BAH Management technology dimension was on “less sustainable” status (25,01 – 50,00. The strategy of enhancing influential sensitive attributes to improve sustainability status was a great success in affecting the values and sustainability status.

  4. Groundwater recharge and sustainability in the High Plains aquifer in Kansas, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sophocleous, M.

    2005-01-01

    Sustainable use of groundwater must ensure not only that the future resource is not threatened by overuse, but also that natural environments that depend on the resource, such as stream baseflows, riparian vegetation, aquatic ecosystems, and wetlands are protected. To properly manage groundwater resources, accurate information about the inputs (recharge) and outputs (pumpage and natural discharge) within each groundwater basin is needed so that the long-term behavior of the aquifer and its sustainable yield can be estimated or reassessed. As a first step towards this effort, this work highlights some key groundwater recharge studies in the Kansas High Plains at different scales, such as regional soil-water budget and groundwater modeling studies, county-scale groundwater recharge studies, as well as field-experimental local studies, including some original new findings, with an emphasis on assumptions and limitations as well as on environmental factors affecting recharge processes. The general impact of irrigation and cultivation on recharge is to appreciably increase the amount of recharge, and in many cases to exceed precipitation as the predominant source of recharge. The imbalance between the water input (recharge) to the High Plains aquifer and the output (pumpage and stream baseflows primarily) is shown to be severe, and responses to stabilize the system by reducing water use, increasing irrigation efficiency, adopting water-saving land-use practices, and other measures are outlined. Finally, the basic steps necessary to move towards sustainable use of groundwater in the High Plains are delineated, such as improving the knowledge base, reporting and providing access to information, furthering public education, as well as promoting better understanding of the public's attitudinal motivations; adopting the ecosystem and adaptive management approaches to managing groundwater; further improving water efficiency; exploiting the full potential of dryland and

  5. Surplus, Scarcity and Soil Fertility in Pre-Industrial Austrian Agriculture—The Sustainability Costs of Inequality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Gizicki-Neundlinger

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper takes a Long-Term Socio-Ecological Research (LTSER perspective to integrate important aspects of social inequality into Socio-Ecological Metabolism (SEM research. SEM has dealt with biophysical features of pre-industrial agricultural systems from a largely apolitical perspective, neglecting social relations and conditions of peasant production and reproduction. One of the politically and economically most important manorial systems in Early Modern Austria (Grundherrschaft Grafenegg serves as a case study to reconstruct the unequal distribution of central resources between ruling landlords and subjected peasants. We show that peasant land use systems generated small surpluses only, whereas landlords enjoyed significant economies of scale. Furthermore, we explore what these conditions of landlord surplus and peasant scarcity implied for their respective agro-ecological sustainability. Finally, we argue that within pre-industrial agrarian systems sustainability costs of inequality were severely limiting margins for agricultural intensification and growth of peasant economies.

  6. Restoration of soil fertility and improvement of cropping systems for sustainable development in the humid savannahs of the Ivory Coast

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bachmann, T.

    2000-01-01

    In late 1998, FAO launched a Technical Co-operation Project to assist the government of the Ivory Coast in rural development by promoting agricultural production as the main source of economic growth, and by improving the management of natural resources. The sustainable development of the humid-savannah region and western highlands is being allotted primary consideration. The goal of the project is to replace traditional shifting cultivation with more-sustainable production systems. This paper describes the origins and scope of the problem and the research strategies being considered and employed. The project will be executed in three phases: constraint analysis and formulation of a pilot project, execution of the pilot project (1999-2003), and long-term extension (15 years) from 2004, based on the data generated in the pilot phase. (author)

  7. Restoration of soil fertility and improvement of cropping systems for sustainable development in the humid savannahs of the Ivory Coast

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bachmann, T [Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome (Italy)

    2000-06-01

    In late 1998, FAO launched a Technical Co-operation Project to assist the government of the Ivory Coast in rural development by promoting agricultural production as the main source of economic growth, and by improving the management of natural resources. The sustainable development of the humid-savannah region and western highlands is being allotted primary consideration. The goal of the project is to replace traditional shifting cultivation with more-sustainable production systems. This paper describes the origins and scope of the problem and the research strategies being considered and employed. The project will be executed in three phases: constraint analysis and formulation of a pilot project, execution of the pilot project (1999-2003), and long-term extension (15 years) from 2004, based on the data generated in the pilot phase. (author)

  8. Increasing land sustainability and productivity through soil-fertility management in the West African Sudano-Sahelian zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bationo, A.; Vanlauwe, B.; Kimetu, J.; Kihara, J.; Abdoulaye, M.S.; Adamou, A.; Tabo, R.; Koala, S.

    2005-01-01

    Food production has lagged behind population growth in most parts of the West African semi-arid tropics (WASAT). One of the reasons for low food production is decline in soil fertility as a consequence of continuous cropping without fertilization. As a result, there is a negative nutrient balance in most land-use systems in WASAT. The amount of nutrients leaving the soil, through crop uptake, leaching and erosion exceeds that returned through natural processes such as atmospheric deposition and biological nitrogen fixation or through additions of inorganic and organic fertilizers. Use of mineral fertilizers by many smallholder farmers remains low because of socio-economic constraints. Lack of adequate foreign exchange to import fertilizers, poor infrastructure and poor distribution mechanisms have hampered the use of inorganic fertilizers. Organic inputs such as manure, compost and crop residues are often proposed as alternatives to mineral fertilizers, however, it is important to recognize that in most cases the use of organic inputs is part of an internal flow of nutrients within the farm and does not add nutrient from outside the farm; also, quantities available are inadequate to meet nutrient needs over large areas because of limited availability, low nutrient content of the material, and high labour demands for processing and application. The beneficial effects of combined manure and inorganic nutrients on soil fertility have been repeatedly shown, yet there is need for more research on the establishment of the fertilizer equivalency of manures, in determining the optimum combination of these two plant nutrients and in taking into account the high variability in their quality. Such information is useful in formulating decision-support systems and in establishing simple guidelines for management and utilization of the resources. This paper highlights current research results on the management of nitrogen, phosphorus and organic matter and summarizes our

  9. Tackling soil degradation and environmental changes in Lake Manyara Basin, Tanzania to support sustainable landscape/ecosystem management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munishi, Linus; Mtei, Kelvin; Bode, Samuel; Dume, Bayu; Navas, Ana; Nebiyu, Amsalu; Semmens, Brice; Smith, Hugh; Stock, Brian; Boeckx, Pascal; Blake, Will

    2017-04-01

    The Lake Manyara Basin (LMB), which encompasses Lake Manyara National Park a world ranking World Biosphere Reserve, is of great ecological and socio-economic value because it hosts a small-holder rain fed and extensive irrigation agriculture, grazing grounds for pastoralists, terrestrial and aquatic habitat for wildlife and tourism business contributing to poverty alleviation. Despite these multiple ecosystem services that support the local communities, the LMB is threatened by; (a) siltation from eroded soil fed from the wider catchment and rift escarpment of the basin and (b) declining water levels due to water capture by agriculture and possibly climate change. These threats to the ecosystem and its services are augmented by increasing human population, pollution by agricultural pesticides, poaching, human encroachment and infrastructure development, and illegal fisheries. Despite these challenges, here is a dearth of information on erosion hotspots and to date soil erosion and siltation problems in LMB have been interpreted largely in qualitative terms, and no coherent interpretative framework of these records exists. Despite concerns that modern sediment fluxes to the Lake may exceed long-term fluxes, little is known about erosion sources, how erosion rates and processes vary across the landscape and how erosion rates are influenced by the strong climate gradients in the basin. This contribution describes a soil erosion and sediment management project that aims to deliver a demonstration dataset generated from inter-disciplinary sediment-source tracing technologies and approaches to assess erosion hotspots, processes and spatial patterns of erosion in the area. The work focuses on a sub basin, the Monduli Sub catchment, located within the greater LMB. This is part of efforts to establish an understanding of soil erosion and landscape degradation in the basin as a pathway for generating and developing knowledge, building capacity to assist conservationists

  10. Sensitivity of potential evapotranspiration estimation to the Thornthwaite and Penman-Monteith methods in the study of global drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Qing; Ma, Zhuguo; Zheng, Ziyan; Duan, Yawen

    2017-12-01

    Drylands are among those regions most sensitive to climate and environmental changes and human-induced perturbations. The most widely accepted definition of the term dryland is a ratio, called the Surface Wetness Index (SWI), of annual precipitation to potential evapotranspiration (PET) being below 0.65. PET is commonly estimated using the Thornthwaite (PET Th) and Penman-Monteith equations (PET PM). The present study compared spatiotemporal characteristics of global drylands based on the SWI with PET Th and PET PM. Results showed vast differences between PET Th and PET PM; however, the SWI derived from the two kinds of PET showed broadly similar characteristics in the interdecadal variability of global and continental drylands, except in North America, with high correlation coefficients ranging from 0.58 to 0.89. It was found that, during 1901-2014, global hyper-arid and semi-arid regions expanded, arid and dry sub-humid regions contracted, and drylands underwent interdecadal fluctuation. This was because precipitation variations made major contributions, whereas PET changes contributed to a much lesser degree. However, distinct differences in the interdecadal variability of semi-arid and dry sub-humid regions were found. This indicated that the influence of PET changes was comparable to that of precipitation variations in the global dry-wet transition zone. Additionally, the contribution of PET changes to the variations in global and continental drylands gradually enhanced with global warming, and the Thornthwaite method was found to be increasingly less applicable under climate change.

  11. Definition of different land uses and their effects on farmers income and soil sustainability using monte carlo simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stolte, J.; Ritsema, C. J.; Bouma, J.

    2003-04-01

    On the Loess Plateau in China, soil erosion amounts to between 10 000 and 25 000 tons/km^2 per year. The Chinese government acknowledges the erosion problem and promotes comprehensive erosion control. Erosion modeling might be a useful tool to understand and predict erosion and to ultimately find ways to prevent it. There is a growing awareness that successful research will have to take into account the farmers' objectives and constraints, and that it can benefit from their knowledge of local conditions. Erosion modeling as a tool in quantifying effects of alternative land uses requires knowledge of local biophysical parameters. Spatial and temporal variability of soil hydraulic conductivity are important parameters in soil erosion studies. A detailed investigation on the heterogeneity of the saturated conductivity and the implications for model outcome has to be carried out. The integrated goal of this study was to investigate the effect of different land use scenarios, based upon physical, economical and farmers points of view, on discharge and sediment losses, using stochastical distributions of measured field K_s values. The study area (Danangou catchment) is located in the middle part of the Loess Plateau in the northern part of Shaanxi Province. The catchment is about 3.5 km^2 in size, and drains directly into the Yanhe river. The elevation of the catchment ranges from 1085 to 1370 m above sea level. In the catchment, two villages, Leipingta and Danangou, are situated. In 1998, the total population in the catchment was 206 individuals belonging to 46 households. Average land area per household was about 1-2 ha, including small-scattered field plots. In this study, four land-use scenarios are identified: (i) current situation; (ii) an agricultural driven scenario; (iii) participatory planning-driven scenario; (iv) a soil physical driven scenario. In this study, the physically based hydrological and soil erosion model is used to quantify effects of land use on

  12. A study of the application of permeable pavements as a sustainable technique for the mitigation of soil sealing in cities: A case study in the south of Spain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez-Rojas, M I; Huertas-Fernández, F; Moreno, B; Martínez, G; Grindlay, A L

    2018-01-01

    The use of 'Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems' (SuDS) has become a more sustainable alternative for managing stormwater, greatly reducing the effects of soil sealing. However, the lack of monitored projects is a barrier to their implementation, as the companies which manage sewer systems cannot quantify the impact and cost-efficiency of SuDS. This paper presents a project developed in the south of Spain, in which the hydrological performance of 3 types of permeable pavements has been analyzed. The efficiencies obtained (over 70%), are higher than or similar to the efficiencies of vegetated SuDS, demonstrating the capacity of these pavements for delaying catchment area response and slow flow velocities, reducing the operating costs of sewer systems and the flood risk, while also ensuring service conditions for cities and safety for pedestrian and vehicular circulation. This pilot site has generated results which are sufficiently consistent so as to be representative, and serve as a reference for other cities with a similar climate. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Calibration of Soil Available Nitrogen and Water Content with Grain Yield of Dry land Wheat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Feiziasl

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Nitrogen (N is one of the most important growth-limiting nutrients for dryland wheat. Mineral nitrogen or ammonium (NH4+ and nitrate (NO3− are two common forms of inorganic nitrogen that can serve as limiting factors for plant growth. Nitrogen fertilization in dryland area can increase the use of soil moisture, and improve wheat yields to some extent. Many researchers have been confirmed interactions between water stress and nitrogen fertilizers on wheat, especially under field conditions. Because of water stress affects forms of nitrogen uptake that leads to disorder in plant metabolism, reduction in grain yield and crop quality in dryland condition. On the other hand, use of suitable methods for determining nitrogen requirement can increase dryland wheat production. However, nitrogen recommendations should be based on soil profile content or precipitation. An efficient method for nitrogen fertilizer recommendation involves choosing an effective soil extractant and calibrating soil nitrogen (Total N, NO3− andNH4+ tests against yield responses to applied nitrogen in field experiments. Soil testing enables initial N supply to be measured and N supply throughout the season due to mineralization to be estimated. This study was carried out to establish relationship between nitrogen forms (Total N, NO3− andNH4+ in soil and soil profile water content with plant response for recommendation of nitrogen fertilizer. Materials and Methods: This study was carried out in split-split plot in a RCBD in Dryland Agricultural Research Institute (DARI, Maragheh, Iranwhere N application times (fall, 2/3 in fall and 1/3 in spring were assigned to the main plots, N rates to sub plot (0, 30, 60 and 90 kg/ha, and 7 dryland wheat genotypes to sub-sub plots (Azar2, Ohadi, Rasad and 1-4 other genotypes in three replications in 2010-2011. Soil samples were collected from 0-20, 20-40, 40-60 and 60-80 cm in sub-sub plots in shooting stage (ZGS32. Ammonium

  14. Greening Kenya’s drylands through climate-smart agriculture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Quevenco, Rodolfo

    2015-01-01

    Arid and semi-arid lands account for almost 80 per cent of Kenya’s land area, and climate change is threatening this fragile ecosystem. In a country where suboptimal agricultural practices already result in poor crop growth, low vegetative cover, low crop yields and serious land degradation, weather conditions resulting from climate change and variability have made drought and water scarcity common. Using nuclear techniques, the IAEA is helping Kenya improve soil fertility and water management technologies, as part of the introduction of Integrated Soil Fertility Management, which can help maintain the right water, nutrient and carbon balance and maximize climate change adaptation in agricultural systems.

  15. From Patterns to Function in Living Systems: Dryland Ecosystems as a Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meron, Ehud

    2018-03-01

    Spatial patterns are ubiquitous in animate matter. Besides their intricate structure and beauty they generally play functional roles. The capacity of living systems to remain functional in changing environments is a question of utmost importance, but its intimate relationship to pattern formation is largely unexplored. Here, we address this relationship using dryland vegetation as a case study. Following a brief introduction to pattern-formation theory, we describe a mathematical model that captures several mechanisms of vegetation pattern formation and discuss ecological contexts that showcase different mechanisms. Using this model, we unravel the different vegetation patterns that keep dryland ecosystems viable along the rainfall gradient, identify multistability ranges where fronts separating domains of alternative stable states exist, and highlight the roles of front dynamics in mitigating or reversing desertification. The utility of satellite images in testing model predictions is discussed. An outlook on outstanding open problems concludes this paper.

  16. The Impacts of Soil Fertility and Salinity on Soil Nitrogen Dynamics Mediated by the Soil Microbial Community Beneath the Halophytic Shrub Tamarisk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwaoka, Chikae; Imada, Shogo; Taniguchi, Takeshi; Du, Sheng; Yamanaka, Norikazu; Tateno, Ryunosuke

    2018-05-01

    Nitrogen (N) is one of the most common limiting nutrients for primary production in terrestrial ecosystems. Soil microbes transform organic N into inorganic N, which is available to plants, but soil microbe activity in drylands is sometimes critically suppressed by environmental factors, such as low soil substrate availability or high salinity. Tamarisk (Tamarix spp.) is a halophytic shrub species that is widely distributed in the drylands of China; it produces litter enriched in nutrients and salts that are thought to increase soil fertility and salinity under its crown. To elucidate the effects of tamarisks on the soil microbial community, and thus N dynamics, by creating "islands of fertility" and "islands of salinity," we collected soil samples from under tamarisk crowns and adjacent barren areas at three habitats in the summer and fall. We analyzed soil physicochemical properties, inorganic N dynamics, and prokaryotic community abundance and composition. In soils sampled beneath tamarisks, the N mineralization rate was significantly higher, and the prokaryotic community structure was significantly different, from soils sampled in barren areas, irrespective of site and season. Tamarisks provided suitable nutrient conditions for one of the important decomposers in the area, Verrucomicrobia, by creating "islands of fertility," but provided unsuitable salinity conditions for other important decomposers, Flavobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria, and Deltaproteobacteria, by mitigating salt accumulation. However, the quantity of these decomposers tended to be higher beneath tamarisks, because they were relatively unaffected by the small salinity gradient created by the tamarisks, which may explain the higher N mineralization rate beneath tamarisks.

  17. A Correlational Analysis of Tethered Swimming, Swim Sprint Performance and Dry-land Power Assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loturco, I; Barbosa, A C; Nocentini, R K; Pereira, L A; Kobal, R; Kitamura, K; Abad, C C C; Figueiredo, P; Nakamura, F Y

    2016-03-01

    Swimmers are often tested on both dry-land and in swimming exercises. The aim of this study was to test the relationships between dry-land, tethered force-time curve parameters and swimming performances in distances up to 200 m. 10 young male high-level swimmers were assessed using the maximal isometric bench-press and quarter-squat, mean propulsive power in jump-squat, squat and countermovement jumps (dry-land assessments), peak force, average force, rate of force development (RFD) and impulse (tethered swimming) and swimming times. Pearson product-moment correlations were calculated among the variables. Peak force and average force were very largely correlated with the 50- and 100-m swimming performances (r=- 0.82 and -0.74, respectively). Average force was very-largely/largely correlated with the 50- and 100-m performances (r=- 0.85 and -0.67, respectively). RFD and impulse were very-largely correlated with the 50-m time (r=- 0.72 and -0.76, respectively). Tethered swimming parameters were largely correlated (r=0.65 to 0.72) with mean propulsive power in jump-squat, squat-jump and countermovement jumps. Finally, mean propulsive power in jump-squat was largely correlated (r=- 0.70) with 50-m performance. Due to the significant correlations between dry-land assessments and tethered/actual swimming, coaches are encouraged to implement strategies able to increase leg power in sprint swimmers. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  18. Land Degradation States and Trends in the Northwestern Maghreb Drylands, 1998–2008

    OpenAIRE

    Gabriel del Barrio; Maria E. Sanjuan; Azziz Hirche; Mohamed Yassin; Alberto Ruiz; Mohamed Ouessar; Jaime Martinez Valderrama; Bouajila Essifi; Juan Puigdefabregas

    2016-01-01

    States of ecological maturity and temporal trends of drylands in Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia north of 28°N are reported for 1998–2008. The input data were Normalized Difference Vegetation Index databases and corresponding climate fields, at a spatial resolution of 1 km and a temporal resolution of one month. States convey opposing dynamics of human exploitation and ecological succession. They were identified synchronically for the full period by comparing each location to all other locations...

  19. Phenological response of an Arizona dryland forest to short-term climatic extremes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Jessica; de Beurs, Kirsten; Wynne, Randolph

    2015-01-01

    Baseline information about dryland forest phenology is necessary to accurately anticipate future ecosystem shifts. The overarching goal of our study was to investigate the variability of vegetation phenology across a dryland forest landscape in response to climate alterations. We analyzed the influence of site characteristics and climatic conditions on the phenological patterns of an Arizona, USA, ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forest during a five-year period (2005 to 2009) that encompassed extreme wet and dry precipitation regimes. We assembled 80 synthetic Landsat images by applying the spatial and temporal adaptive reflectance fusion method (STARFM) to 500 m MODIS and 30 m Landsat-5 Thematic Mapper (TM) data. We tested relationships between site characteristics and the timing of peak Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) to assess the effect of climatic stress on the green-up of individual pixels during or after the summer monsoon. Our results show that drought-induced stress led to a fragmented phenological response that was highly dependent on microsite parameters, as both the spatial autocorrelation of peak timing and the number of significant site variables increased during the drought year. Pixels at lower elevations and with higher proportions of herbaceous vegetation were more likely to exhibit dynamic responses to changes in precipitation conditions. Our study demonstrates the complexity of responses within dryland forest ecosystems and highlights the need for standardized monitoring of phenology trends in these areas. The spatial and temporal variability of phenological signals may provide a quantitative solution to the problem of how to evaluate dryland land surface trends across time.

  20. Phenological Response of an Arizona Dryland Forest to Short-Term Climatic Extremes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica Walker

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Baseline information about dryland forest phenology is necessary to accurately anticipate future ecosystem shifts. The overarching goal of our study was to investigate the variability of vegetation phenology across a dryland forest landscape in response to climate alterations. We analyzed the influence of site characteristics and climatic conditions on the phenological patterns of an Arizona, USA, ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa forest during a five-year period (2005 to 2009 that encompassed extreme wet and dry precipitation regimes. We assembled 80 synthetic Landsat images by applying the spatial and temporal adaptive reflectance fusion method (STARFM to 500 m MODIS and 30 m Landsat-5 Thematic Mapper (TM data. We tested relationships between site characteristics and the timing of peak Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI to assess the effect of climatic stress on the green-up of individual pixels during or after the summer monsoon. Our results show that drought-induced stress led to a fragmented phenological response that was highly dependent on microsite parameters, as both the spatial autocorrelation of peak timing and the number of significant site variables increased during the drought year. Pixels at lower elevations and with higher proportions of herbaceous vegetation were more likely to exhibit dynamic responses to changes in precipitation conditions. Our study demonstrates the complexity of responses within dryland forest ecosystems and highlights the need for standardized monitoring of phenology trends in these areas. The spatial and temporal variability of phenological signals may provide a quantitative solution to the problem of how to evaluate dryland land surface trends across time.

  1. Understanding the coupled natural and human systems in Dryland East Asia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Qi Jiaguo; Chen Jiquan; Wan Shiqian; Ai Likun

    2012-01-01

    Stressors including regional climate change, economic development effects upon land use and an increasing demand for food production have resulted in significant impacts on the dryland ecosystems in the East Asia (DEA) region. Ecosystem services, such as its provisional services in providing forage for grazing as well as its functional services in regulating water and carbon fluxes, have been significantly altered over the past three decades. Conversely, changes in the landscape, particularly land cover types, have also been blamed for intensified climatic events such as dust storms and severe and frequent droughts within the region. The interactive nature of climate, ecosystems and society is complex and not fully understood, making it difficult, if not impossible, to develop effective adaptation strategies for the region. A special synthesis workshop on ‘Dryland Ecosystems in East Asia: State, Changes, Knowledge Gaps, and Future’ was held from 18–20 July 2011 in Kaifeng, Henan Province, China, with the aim of identifying knowledge gaps, quantifying impacts and developing a future research agenda for the region. The specific objectives of this workshop were to answer some key socio-environmental questions, including the following. (1) What do we know about the drylands in DEA? (2) What are the knowledge gaps? (3) What are the solutions to these issues? This paper provides a synthesis of the workshop consensus and findings on the state of knowledge and challenges in addressing these science issues for the DEA region. (letter)

  2. Application of ERICA index to evaluation of soil ecosystem health according to sustainability threshold for industry impact

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boriani, Elena; Badermo, Diego; Benfenatti, Emilio

    2013-01-01

    as safe for the environment following impact assessment. In this work we have added new indicators and scoring systems to be used in particular with attention for the soil compartment. Even though it partly starts to be considered by some legislations, there is still an open debate to assess if a compound...... added to a certain scenario will increase risk for human beings and the environment. The prolonged environmental occurrence introduces uncertainty regarding the presence and properties of degradation products and cumulative effects from multiple substances present in the environment. Tools capable...... lead to awareness by industries of minimizing the environmental impact of the whole production chain. In the present study we show how the instrument ERICA may work addressing multiple sources of exposure. An improved version of ERICA and in particular its parameter EF (fate and transport of chemical...

  3. Modelling impacts of atmospheric deposition, nutrient cycling and soil weathering on the sustainability of nine forest ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Salm, C. van der; Vries, W.de; Olsson, M.

    1999-01-01

    used: a business as usual scenario (BAU) and a restrictive critical load scenario (CL). The BAU scenario leads to a strong decrease in both Al concentrations and pH in the topsoil of the Dutch and the Danish sites due to a decrease in the amount of amorphous Al compounds. The decline in pH leads...... is predicted for northern Sweden as deposition levels are below critical loads. Soil chemistry at the recently replanted Swedish sites is dominated by changes in N cycling instead of by deposition. The CL scenario leads, especially after 2010, to a stronger decline in Al concentration compared with the BAU...... are still declining on the Danish and Dutch sites in 2090. It is concluded that deposition levels above critical loads lead to exhaustion of the pool of amorphous Al compounds and a decline in pH. Base saturation does not decline due to an increase in mineralization with stand age and an increase...

  4. Sustainable Agriculture: Cover Cropping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webster, Megan

    2018-01-01

    Sustainable agriculture practices are increasingly being used by farmers to maintain soil quality, increase biodiversity, and promote production of food that is environmentally safe. There are several types of sustainable agriculture practices such as organic farming, crop rotation, and aquaculture. This lesson plan focuses on the sustainable…

  5. Tropical Soil Chemistry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Borggaard, Ole K.

    and environmental protection. Tropical Soil Chemistry by Ole K. Borggaard provides an overview of the composition, occurrence, properties, processes, formation, and environmental vulnerability of various tropical soil types (using American Soil Taxonomy for classification). The processes and the external factors...... soil chemical issues are also presented to assess when, why, and how tropical soils differ from soils in other regions. This knowledge can help agricultural specialists in the tropics establish sustainable crop production. Readers are assumed to be familiar with basic chemistry, physics...

  6. Phenazine-1-carboxylic acid influences biofilm development and turnover of rhizobacterial biomass in a soil moisture-dependent manner

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhizobacterial biofilm development influences terrestrial carbon and nitrogen cycles with ramifications for crop and soil health. Phenazine-1-carboxylic acid (PCA) is a redox-active metabolite produced by rhizobacteria in dryland wheat fields of Washington and Oregon, USA. PCA promotes biofilm dev...

  7. Sustainability; Sustentabilidade

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2009-10-15

    This chapter analyses the production chain of ethanol, considering the impacts on the quality of the air, water supplies, soil occupation and biodiversity, and the efforts for the soil preservation. It is pointed out the activities of the production cycle and use of bio ethanol due to great uncertainties as far the environmental impacts is concerning and that will deserve more attention in future evaluations. At same time, the chapter highlights another activities where the present acknowledge is sufficient to assure the control and/or prediction of consequences of the desired intervention on the environment media to accommodate the sugar and ethanol production expansion. The consideration is not conservative but to promote the sustainable development.

  8. Impact of climate change on drylands with a focus on West Africa

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dietz, A.J.; Verhagen, A.; Ruben, R. (eds.) [Impact of Climate Change on Drylands ICCD, Wageningen (Netherlands)

    2001-07-01

    The research effort started with a geographical inventory of all tropical and sub-tropical drylands to map the diversity in aridity, land degradation, population densities and urbanisation of the world's drylands, and to put the <