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Fates of eroded soil organic carbon: Mississippi Basin case study

Ecological Applications

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Abstract

We have developed a mass balance analysis of organic carbon (OC) across the five major river subsystems of the Mississippi (MS) Basin (an area of 3.2 ?? 106 km2). This largely agricultural landscape undergoes a bulk soil erosion rate of ???480 t??km -2??yr-1 (???1500 ?? 106 t/yr, across the MS Basin), and a soil organic carbon (SOC) erosion rate of ???7 t??km-2??yr-1 (???22 ?? 106 t/yr). Erosion translocates upland SOC to alluvial deposits, water impoundments, and the ocean. Soil erosion is generally considered to be a net source of CO2 release to the atmosphere in global budgets. However, our results indicate that SOC erosion and relocation of soil apparently can reduce the net SOC oxidation rate of the original upland SOC while promoting net replacement of eroded SOC in upland soils that were eroded. Soil erosion at the MS Basin scale is, therefore, a net CO2 sink rather than a source. ?? 2005 by the Ecological Society of America.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Fates of eroded soil organic carbon: Mississippi Basin case study
Series title:
Ecological Applications
Volume
15
Issue:
6
Year Published:
2005
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Ecological Applications
First page:
1929
Last page:
1940
Number of Pages:
12