Determining the spatial variability of wetland soil bulk density, organic matter, and the conversion factor between organic matter and organic carbon across coastal Louisiana, U.S.A.

Journal of Coastal Research
By: , and 

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Abstract

Soil bulk density (BD), soil organic matter (SOM) content, and a conversion factor between SOM and soil organic carbon (SOC) are often used in estimating SOC sequestration and storage. Spatial variability in BD, SOM, and the SOM–SOC conversion factor affects the ability to accurately estimate SOC sequestration, storage, and the benefits (e.g., land building area and vertical accretion) associated with wetland restoration efforts, such as marsh creation and sediment diversions. There are, however, only a few studies that have examined large-scale spatial variability in BD, SOM, and SOM–SOC conversion factors in coastal wetlands. In this study, soil cores, distributed across the entire coastal Louisiana (approximately 14,667 km2) were used to examine the regional-scale spatial variability in BD, SOM, and the SOM–SOC conversion factor. Soil cores for BD and SOM analyses were collected during 2006–09 from 331 spatially well-distributed sites in the Coastwide Reference Monitoring System network. Soil cores for the SOM–SOC conversion factor analysis were collected from 15 sites across coastal Louisiana during 2006–07. Results of a split-plot analysis of variance with incomplete block design indicated that BD and SOM varied significantly at a landscape level, defined by both hydrologic basins and vegetation types. Vertically, BD and SOM varied significantly among different vegetation types. The SOM–SOC conversion factor also varied significantly at the landscape level. This study provides critical information for the assessment of the role of coastal wetlands in large regional carbon budgets and the estimation of carbon credits from coastal restoration.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Determining the spatial variability of wetland soil bulk density, organic matter, and the conversion factor between organic matter and organic carbon across coastal Louisiana, U.S.A.
Series title Journal of Coastal Research
DOI 10.2112/JCOASTRES-D-16-00014.1
Volume 33
Issue 3
Year Published 2016
Language English
Publisher Coastal Education and Research Foundation
Contributing office(s) Wetland and Aquatic Research Center
Description 11 p.
First page 507
Last page 517
Country United States
State Louisiana