Journal cover Journal topic
Biogeosciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
Journal topic
Volume 12, issue 6
Biogeosciences, 12, 1635-1645, 2015
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-12-1635-2015
© Author(s) 2015. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Biogeosciences, 12, 1635-1645, 2015
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-12-1635-2015
© Author(s) 2015. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 16 Mar 2015

Research article | 16 Mar 2015

Soil organic carbon in the Sanjiang Plain of China: storage, distribution and controlling factors

D. H. Mao1, Z. M. Wang1, L. Li2, Z. H. Miao3, W. H. Ma4, C. C. Song1, C. Y. Ren1, and M. M. Jia1 D. H. Mao et al.
  • 1Key Laboratory of Wetland Ecology and Environment, Northeast Institute of Geography and Agroecology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130102, China
  • 2Department of Earth Sciences, Indiana University–Purdue University, Indianapolis 46202, USA
  • 3Jilin Province Water Resource and Hydropower Consultative Company of P. R. China, Changchun 130021, China
  • 4College of Life Science, Inner Mongolia University, Huhhot, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region 010021, China

Abstract. The accurate estimation of soil organic carbon (SOC) storage and determination of its pattern-controlling factors is critical to understanding the ecosystem carbon cycle and ensuring ecological security. The Sanjiang Plain, an important grain production base in China, is typical of ecosystems, yet its SOC storage and pattern has not been fully investigated because of insufficient soil investigation. In this study, 419 soil samples obtained in 2012 for each of the three soil depth ranges 0–30, 30–60, and 60–100 cm and a geostatistical method are used to estimate the total SOC storage and density (SOCD) of this region. The results give rise to 2.32 Pg C for the SOC storage and 21.20 kg m−2 for SOCD, which is higher than the mean value for the whole country. The SOCD shows notable changes in lateral and vertical distribution. In addition, vegetation, climate, and soil texture, as well as agricultural activities, are demonstrated to have remarkable impacts on the variation in SOCD of this region. Soil texture has stronger impacts on the distribution of SOCD than climate in the Sanjiang Plain. Specifically, clay content can explain the largest proportion of the SOC variations (21.2% in the top 30 cm) and is the most dominant environmental controlling factor. Additionally, the effects of both climate and soil texture on SOCD show a weakening with increasing soil layer depth. This study indicates that reducing the loss of SOC requires effective conservation and restoration efforts of wetlands and forestlands, as well as sensible fertilization. The results from this study provide the most up-to-date knowledge on the storage and pattern of SOC in the Sanjiang Plain and have important implications for the determination of ecosystem carbon budgets and understanding ecosystem services.

Publications Copernicus
Download
Short summary
The Sanjiang Plain of China, an important grain production base, is typical of ecosystems. In this study, 419 soil samples and a geostatistical method were used to estimate total SOC storage and to determine its pattern-controlling factors. The results from this study provide the most up-to-date knowledge on the storage and pattern of SOC in this plain, and the analysis conducted here could contribute to the determination of ecosystem carbon budgets and our understanding of ecosystem services.
The Sanjiang Plain of China, an important grain production base, is typical of ecosystems. In...
Citation
Share