Dynamic soil functions assessment employing land use and climate scenarios at regional scale

Jost, E., Schönhart, M., Skalský, R. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0983-6897, Balkovič, J. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2955-4931, Schmid, E., & Mitter, H. (2021). Dynamic soil functions assessment employing land use and climate scenarios at regional scale. Journal of Environmental Management 287 e112318. 10.1016/j.jenvman.2021.112318.

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Project: Coordination of International Research Cooperation on soil CArbon Sequestration in Agriculture (CIRCASA, H2020 774378)


Soils as key component of terrestrial ecosystems are under increasing pressures. As an advance to current static assessments, we present a dynamic soil functions assessment (SFA) to evaluate the current and future state of soils regarding their nutrient storage, water regulation, productivity, habitat and carbon sequestration functions for the case-study region in the Lower Austrian Mostviertel. Carbon response functions simulating the development of regional soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks until 2100 are used to couple established indicator-based SFA methodology with two climate and three land use scenarios, i.e. land sparing (LSP), land sharing (LSH), and balanced land use (LBA). Results reveal a dominant impact of land use scenarios on soil functions compared to the impact from climate scenarios and highlight the close link between SOC development and the quality of investigated soil functions, i.e. soil functionality. The soil habitat and soil carbon sequestration functions on investigated agricultural land are positively affected by maintenance of grassland under LSH (20 of the case-study region), where SOC stocks show a steady and continuous increase. By 2100 however, total regional SOC stocks are higher under LSP compared to LSH or LBA, due to extensive afforestation. The presented approach may improve integrative decision-making in land use planning processes. It bridges superordinate goals of sustainable development, such as climate change mitigation, with land use actions taken at local or regional scales. The dynamic SFA broadens the debate on LSH and LSP and can reduce trade-offs between soil functions through land use planning processes.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Dynamic soil functions assessment, Land use scenario, Climate change, Soil organic carbon, Regional case-study, Austria
Research Programs: Biodiversity and Natural Resources (BNR)
Biodiversity and Natural Resources (BNR) > Agriculture, Forestry, and Ecosystem Services (AFE)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 16 Mar 2021 13:52
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 17:34
URI: https://pure.iiasa.ac.at/17112

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