Journal cover Journal topic
Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
doi:10.5194/acp-2017-430
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
10 May 2017
Review status
This discussion paper is under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).
Modeling soil organic carbon dynamics and its driving factors in global main cereal cropping systems
Guocheng Wang1, Wen Zhang1, Wenjuan Sun2, Tingting Li1, and Pengfei Han1 1State Key Laboratory of Atmospheric Boundary Layer Physics and Atmospheric Chemistry, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
2State Key Laboratory of Vegetation and Environmental Change, Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100093, China
Abstract. The net fluxes of carbon dioxide (CO2) between the atmosphere and agricultural systems are mainly characterized by the changes in soil carbon stock, which is determined by the balance between carbon input from organic materials and output through soil C decomposition. The spatiotemporal changes of cropland soil organic carbon (SOC) in response to different carbon (C) input management and environmental conditions across the global main cereal systems were studied using a modeling approach. We also identified the key variables driving SOC changes at a high spatial resolution (0.1° × 0.1°) and long time scale (54 years from 1961 to 2014). The widely used soil C turnover model (RothC) and the state-of-the-art databases of soil and climate were used in the present study. The model simulations suggested that, on a global average, the cropland SOC density increased at an annual rate of 0.22, 0.45 and 0.69 MgC ha−1 yr−1 under a crop residue retention rate of 30 %, 60 % and 90 %, respectively. Increased quantity of C input could enhance the soil C sequestration or reduce the soil C loss rate, depending largely on the local soil and climate conditions. Spatially, under a certain crop residue retention rate, a relatively higher soil C sink were generally found across the central parts of the United States, western Europe, northern regions of China, while a relatively smaller soil C sink generally occurred in regions at high latitudes of both northern and southern hemisphere, and SOC decreased across the equatorial zones of Asia, Africa and America. We found that SOC change was significantly influenced by the crop residue retention rate (linearly positive), and the edaphic variable of initial SOC content (linearly negative). Temperature had weakly negative effects, and precipitation had significantly negative impacts on SOC changes. The results can help target carbon input management for effectively mitigating climate change through cropland soil C sequestration on a global scale.

Citation: Wang, G., Zhang, W., Sun, W., Li, T., and Han, P.: Modeling soil organic carbon dynamics and its driving factors in global main cereal cropping systems, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., doi:10.5194/acp-2017-430, in review, 2017.
Guocheng Wang et al.
Guocheng Wang et al.
Guocheng Wang et al.

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Short summary
Cropland soil carbon sequestration contribute not only the climate change mitigation but also sustainable agricultural production. This manuscript investigates soil carbon dynamics across the global cereal cropping systems using a modeling approach based on the state-of-the-art databases of soil and climate. The study is the first attempt to quantify soil carbon changes in the global croplands at fine spatiotemporal resolutions.
Cropland soil carbon sequestration contribute not only the climate change mitigation but also...
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