The significance of the erosion-induced terrestrial carbonsink

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Estimating carbon (C) balance in erosional and depositionallandscapes is complicated by the effects of soil redistribution on bothnet primary productivity (NPP) and decomposition. Recent studies arecontradictory as to whether soil erosion does or does not constitute a Csink. Here we clarify the conceptual basis for how erosion can constitutea C sink. Specifically, the criterion for an erosional C sink is thatdynamic replacement of eroded C, and reduced decomposition rates indepositional sites, must together more than compensate for erosionallosses. This criterion is in fact met in many erosional settings, andthus erosion and deposition can make a net positive contribution to Csequestration. ... continued below

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Berhe, A.A.; Harte, J.; Harden, J.W. & Torn, M.S. October 10, 2006.

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This article is part of the collection entitled: Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports and was provided by UNT Libraries Government Documents Department to Digital Library, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. It has been viewed 12 times , with 7 in the last month . More information about this article can be viewed below.

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Estimating carbon (C) balance in erosional and depositionallandscapes is complicated by the effects of soil redistribution on bothnet primary productivity (NPP) and decomposition. Recent studies arecontradictory as to whether soil erosion does or does not constitute a Csink. Here we clarify the conceptual basis for how erosion can constitutea C sink. Specifically, the criterion for an erosional C sink is thatdynamic replacement of eroded C, and reduced decomposition rates indepositional sites, must together more than compensate for erosionallosses. This criterion is in fact met in many erosional settings, andthus erosion and deposition can make a net positive contribution to Csequestration. We show that, in a cultivated Mississippi watershed and acoastal California watershed, the magnitude of the erosion-induced C sinkis likely to be on the order of 1 percent of NPP and 16 percent of erodedC. Although soil erosion has serious environmental impacts, the annualerosion-induced C sink offsets up to 10 percent of the global fossil fuelemissions of carbon dioxide for 2005.

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  • Journal Name: Bioscience; Journal Volume: 57; Journal Issue: 4; Related Information: Journal Publication Date: April 2007

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  • Report No.: LBNL--63322
  • Grant Number: DE-AC02-05CH11231
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 913307
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc883284

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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  • October 10, 2006

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  • Sept. 22, 2016, 2:13 a.m.

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Berhe, A.A.; Harte, J.; Harden, J.W. & Torn, M.S. The significance of the erosion-induced terrestrial carbonsink, article, October 10, 2006; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc883284/: accessed December 14, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.