Modelling soil carbon content in South Patagonia and evaluating changes according to climate, vegetation, desertification and grazing

Pablo Luis Peri, Yamina Micaela Rosas, Brenton Ladd, Santiago Toledo, Romina Gisele Lasagno, Guillermo Martínez Pastur

Resultado de la investigación: Contribución a una revistaArtículorevisión exhaustiva

23 Citas (Scopus)

Resumen

In Southern Patagonia, a long-term monitoring network has been established to assess bio-indicators as an early warning of environmental changes due to climate change and human activities. Soil organic carbon (SOC) content in rangelands provides a range of important ecosystem services and supports the capacity of the land to sustain plant and animal productivity. The objectives in this study were to model SOC (30 cm) stocks at a regional scale using climatic, topographic and vegetation variables, and to establish a baseline that can be used as an indicator of rangeland condition. For modelling, we used a stepwise multiple regression to identify variables that explain SOC variation at the landscape scale. With the SOC model, we obtained a SOC map for the entire Santa Cruz province, where the variables derived from the multiple linear regression models were integrated into a geographic information system (GIS). SOC stock to 30 cm ranged from 1.38 to 32.63 kg C m-2. The fitted model explained 76.4% of SOC variation using as independent variables isothermality, precipitation seasonality and vegetation cover expressed as a normalized difference vegetation index. The SOC map discriminated in three categories (low, medium, high) determined patterns among environmental and land use variables. For example, SOC decreased with desertification due to erosion processes. The understanding and mapping of SOC in Patagonia contributes as a bridge across main issues such as climate change, desertification and biodiversity conservation.

Idioma originalInglés
Número de artículo438
PublicaciónSustainability (Switzerland)
Volumen10
N.º2
DOI
EstadoPublicada - 8 feb. 2018

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