Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 421525
Title Soil processes and functions in critical zone observatories: hypotheses and experimental design
Author(s) Banwart, S.; Bernasconi, S.M.; Bloem, J.; Blum, W.; Ruiter, P.C. de; Gaans, P. van; Riemsdijk, W.H. van
Source Vadose Zone Journal 10 (2011)3. - ISSN 1539-1663 - p. 974 - 987.
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.2136/vzj2010.0136
Department(s) SS - Soil Quality and Nutrients
Biometris (WU MAT)
Land Dynamics
Chair Soil Chemistry and Chemical Soil Quality
PE&RC
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2011
Keyword(s) solid-solution interface - physical quality - organic-matter - water-quality - river-basin - adsorption - catchments - (hydr)oxides - ecosystems - deposition
Abstract European Union policy on soil threats and soil protection has prioritized new research to address global soil threats. This research draws on the methodology of Critical Zone Observatories (CZOs) to focus a critical mass of international, multidisciplinary expertise at specific field sites. These CZOs were selected as part of an experimental design to study soil processes and ecosystem function along a hypothesized soil life cycle—from incipient soil formation where new parent material is being deposited, to highly degraded soils that have experienced millennia of intensive land use. Further CZOs have been selected to broaden the range of soil environments and data sets to test soil process models that represent the stages of the soil life cycle. The scientific methodology for this research focuses on the central role of soil structure and soil aggregate formation and stability in soil processes. Research methods include detailed analysis and mathematical modeling of soil properties related to aggregate formation and their relation to key processes of reactive transport, nutrient transformation, and C and food web dynamics in soil ecosystems. Within this program of research, quantification of soil processes across an international network of CZOs is focused on understanding soil ecosystem services including their quantitative monetary valuation within the soil life cycle. Further experimental design at the global scale is enabled by this type of international CZO network. One example is a proposed experiment to study soil ecosystem services along planetary-scale environmental gradients. This would allow scientists to gain insight into the responses of soil processes to increasing human pressures on Earth's critical zone that arise through rapidly changing land use and climate.
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