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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    Agronomic evaluation of biochar, compost and biochar-blended compost across different cropping systems: Perspective from the European project FERTIPLUS
    Sánchez-Monedero, Miguel A. ; Cayuela, María L. ; Sánchez-García, María ; Vandecasteele, Bart ; D’Hose, Tommy ; López, Guadalupe ; Martínez-Gaitán, Carolina ; Kuikman, Peter J. ; Sinicco, Tania ; Mondini, Claudio - \ 2019
    Agronomy 9 (2019)5. - ISSN 2073-4395
    Composting - Crop yield - Fertilization - Nutrient recycling - Organic waste management - Pyrolysis - Soil fertility - Soil organic matter

    This paper reports the results on the agronomic performance of organic amendments in the EU 7th FP project “FERTIPLUS—reducing mineral fertilizers and agro-chemicals by recycling treated organic waste as compost and bio-char”. Four case studies on field-scale application of biochar, compost and biochar-blended compost were established and studied for three consecutive years in four distinct cropping systems and under different agro-climatic conditions in Europe. These included the following sites: olive groves in Murcia (Spain), greenhouse grown tomatoes in Almeria (Spain), an arable crop rotation in Oost-Vlaanderen (Merelbeke, Belgium), and three vineyards in Friuli Venezia Giulia (Italy). A slow pyrolysis oak biochar was applied, either alone or in combination with organic residues: compost from olive wastes in Murcia (Spain), sheep manure in Almeria (Spain), and compost from biowaste and green waste in Belgium and Italy. The agronomical benefits were evaluated based on different aspects of soil fertility (soil total organic carbon (TOC), pH, nutrient cycling and microbial activity) and crop nutritional status and productivity. All amendments were effective in increasing soil organic C in all the field trials. On average, the increase with respect to the control was about 11% for compost, 20% for biochar-blended compost, and 36% for biochar. The amendments also raised the pH by 0.15–0.50 units in acidic soils. Only biochar had a negligible fertilization effect. On the contrary, compost and biochar-blended compost were effective in enhancing soil fertility by increasing nutrient cycling (25% mean increase in extractable organic C and 44% increase in extractable N), element availability (26% increase in available K), and soil microbial activity (26% increase in soil respiration and 2–4 fold enhancement of denitrifying activity). In general, the tested amendments did not show any negative effect on crop yield and quality. Furthermore, in vineyards and greenhouse grown tomatoes cropping systems, compost and biochar-blended compost were also effective in enhancing key crop quality parameters (9% increase in grape must acidity and 16% increase in weight, 9% increase in diameter and 8% increase in hardness of tomato fruits) important for the quality and marketability of the crops. The overall results of the project suggest that the application of a mixture of biochar and compost can benefit crops. Therefore, biochar-blended compost can support and maintain soil fertility.

    sPlot – A new tool for global vegetation analyses
    Bruelheide, Helge ; Dengler, Jürgen ; Jiménez-Alfaro, Borja ; Purschke, Oliver ; Hennekens, Stephan M. ; Chytrý, Milan ; Pillar, Valério D. ; Jansen, Florian ; Kattge, Jens ; Sandel, Brody ; Aubin, Isabelle ; Biurrun, Idoia ; Field, Richard ; Haider, Sylvia ; Jandt, Ute ; Lenoir, Jonathan ; Peet, Robert K. ; Peyre, Gwendolyn ; Sabatini, Francesco Maria ; Schmidt, Marco ; Schrodt, Franziska ; Winter, Marten ; Aćić, Svetlana ; Agrillo, Emiliano ; Alvarez, Miguel ; Ambarlı, Didem ; Angelini, Pierangela ; Apostolova, Iva ; Arfin Khan, Mohammed A.S. ; Arnst, Elise ; Attorre, Fabio ; Baraloto, Christopher ; Beckmann, Michael ; Berg, Christian ; Bergeron, Yves ; Bergmeier, Erwin ; Bjorkman, Anne D. ; Bondareva, Viktoria ; Borchardt, Peter ; Botta-Dukát, Zoltán ; Boyle, Brad ; Breen, Amy ; Brisse, Henry ; Byun, Chaeho ; Cabido, Marcelo R. ; Casella, Laura ; Cayuela, Luis ; Černý, Tomáš ; Chepinoga, Victor ; Csiky, János ; Curran, Michael ; Ćušterevska, Renata ; Dajić Stevanović, Zora ; Bie, Els De; Ruffray, Patrice de; Sanctis, Michele De; Dimopoulos, Panayotis ; Dressler, Stefan ; Ejrnæs, Rasmus ; El-Sheikh, Mohamed A.E.R.M. ; Enquist, Brian ; Ewald, Jörg ; Fagúndez, Jaime ; Finckh, Manfred ; Font, Xavier ; Forey, Estelle ; Fotiadis, Georgios ; García-Mijangos, Itziar ; Gasper, André Luis de; Golub, Valentin ; Gutierrez, Alvaro G. ; Hatim, Mohamed Z. ; He, Tianhua ; Higuchi, Pedro ; Holubová, Dana ; Hölzel, Norbert ; Homeier, Jürgen ; Indreica, Adrian ; Işık Gürsoy, Deniz ; Jansen, Steven ; Janssen, John ; Jedrzejek, Birgit ; Jiroušek, Martin ; Jürgens, Norbert ; Kącki, Zygmunt ; Kavgacı, Ali ; Kearsley, Elizabeth ; Kessler, Michael ; Knollová, Ilona ; Kolomiychuk, Vitaliy ; Korolyuk, Andrey ; Kozhevnikova, Maria ; Kozub, Łukasz ; Krstonošić, Daniel ; Kühl, Hjalmar ; Kühn, Ingolf ; Kuzemko, Anna ; Küzmič, Filip ; Landucci, Flavia ; Lee, Michael T. ; Levesley, Aurora ; Li, Ching Feng ; Liu, Hongyan ; Lopez-Gonzalez, Gabriela ; Lysenko, Tatiana ; Macanović, Armin ; Mahdavi, Parastoo ; Manning, Peter ; Marcenò, Corrado ; Martynenko, Vassiliy ; Mencuccini, Maurizio ; Minden, Vanessa ; Moeslund, Jesper Erenskjold ; Moretti, Marco ; Müller, Jonas V. ; Munzinger, Jérôme ; Niinemets, Ülo ; Nobis, Marcin ; Noroozi, Jalil ; Nowak, Arkadiusz ; Onyshchenko, Viktor ; Overbeck, Gerhard E. ; Ozinga, Wim A. ; Pauchard, Anibal ; Pedashenko, Hristo ; Peñuelas, Josep ; Pérez-Haase, Aaron ; Peterka, Tomáš ; Petřík, Petr ; Phillips, Oliver L. ; Prokhorov, Vadim ; Rašomavičius, Valerijus ; Revermann, Rasmus ; Rodwell, John ; Ruprecht, Eszter ; Rūsiņa, Solvita ; Samimi, Cyrus ; Schaminée, Joop H.J. ; Schmiedel, Ute ; Šibík, Jozef ; Šilc, Urban ; Škvorc, Željko ; Smyth, Anita ; Sop, Tenekwetche ; Sopotlieva, Desislava ; Sparrow, Ben ; Stančić, Zvjezdana ; Svenning, Jens Christian ; Swacha, Grzegorz ; Tang, Zhiyao ; Tsiripidis, Ioannis ; Turtureanu, Pavel Dan ; Uğurlu, Emin ; Uogintas, Domas ; Valachovič, Milan ; Vanselow, Kim André ; Vashenyak, Yulia ; Vassilev, Kiril ; Vélez-Martin, Eduardo ; Venanzoni, Roberto ; Vibrans, Alexander Christian ; Violle, Cyrille ; Virtanen, Risto ; Wehrden, Henrik von; Wagner, Viktoria ; Walker, Donald A. ; Wana, Desalegn ; Weiher, Evan ; Wesche, Karsten ; Whitfeld, Timothy ; Willner, Wolfgang ; Wiser, Susan ; Wohlgemuth, Thomas ; Yamalov, Sergey ; Zizka, Georg ; Zverev, Andrei - \ 2019
    Journal of Vegetation Science 30 (2019)2. - ISSN 1100-9233 - p. 161 - 186.
    biodiversity - community ecology - ecoinformatics - functional diversity - global scale - macroecology - phylogenetic diversity - plot database - sPlot - taxonomic diversity - vascular plant - vegetation relevé

    Aims: Vegetation-plot records provide information on the presence and cover or abundance of plants co-occurring in the same community. Vegetation-plot data are spread across research groups, environmental agencies and biodiversity research centers and, thus, are rarely accessible at continental or global scales. Here we present the sPlot database, which collates vegetation plots worldwide to allow for the exploration of global patterns in taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic diversity at the plant community level. Results: sPlot version 2.1 contains records from 1,121,244 vegetation plots, which comprise 23,586,216 records of plant species and their relative cover or abundance in plots collected worldwide between 1885 and 2015. We complemented the information for each plot by retrieving climate and soil conditions and the biogeographic context (e.g., biomes) from external sources, and by calculating community-weighted means and variances of traits using gap-filled data from the global plant trait database TRY. Moreover, we created a phylogenetic tree for 50,167 out of the 54,519 species identified in the plots. We present the first maps of global patterns of community richness and community-weighted means of key traits. Conclusions: The availability of vegetation plot data in sPlot offers new avenues for vegetation analysis at the global scale.

    Global trait–environment relationships of plant communities
    Bruelheide, Helge ; Dengler, Jürgen ; Purschke, Oliver ; Lenoir, Jonathan ; Jiménez-Alfaro, Borja ; Hennekens, Stephan M. ; Botta-Dukát, Zoltán ; Chytrý, Milan ; Field, Richard ; Jansen, Florian ; Kattge, Jens ; Pillar, Valério D. ; Schrodt, Franziska ; Mahecha, Miguel D. ; Peet, Robert K. ; Sandel, Brody ; Bodegom, Peter van; Altman, Jan ; Alvarez-Dávila, Esteban ; Arfin Khan, Mohammed A.S. ; Attorre, Fabio ; Aubin, Isabelle ; Baraloto, Christopher ; Barroso, Jorcely G. ; Bauters, Marijn ; Bergmeier, Erwin ; Biurrun, Idoia ; Bjorkman, Anne D. ; Blonder, Benjamin ; Čarni, Andraž ; Cayuela, Luis ; Černý, Tomáš ; Cornelissen, J.H.C. ; Craven, Dylan ; Dainese, Matteo ; Derroire, Géraldine ; Sanctis, Michele De; Díaz, Sandra ; Doležal, Jiří ; Farfan-Rios, William ; Feldpausch, Ted R. ; Fenton, Nicole J. ; Garnier, Eric ; Guerin, Greg R. ; Gutiérrez, Alvaro G. ; Haider, Sylvia ; Hattab, Tarek ; Henry, Greg ; Hérault, Bruno ; Ozinga, Wim A. - \ 2018
    Nature Ecology & Evolution 2 (2018)12. - ISSN 2397-334X - p. 1906 - 1917.

    Plant functional traits directly affect ecosystem functions. At the species level, trait combinations depend on trade-offs representing different ecological strategies, but at the community level trait combinations are expected to be decoupled from these trade-offs because different strategies can facilitate co-existence within communities. A key question is to what extent community-level trait composition is globally filtered and how well it is related to global versus local environmental drivers. Here, we perform a global, plot-level analysis of trait–environment relationships, using a database with more than 1.1 million vegetation plots and 26,632 plant species with trait information. Although we found a strong filtering of 17 functional traits, similar climate and soil conditions support communities differing greatly in mean trait values. The two main community trait axes that capture half of the global trait variation (plant stature and resource acquisitiveness) reflect the trade-offs at the species level but are weakly associated with climate and soil conditions at the global scale. Similarly, within-plot trait variation does not vary systematically with macro-environment. Our results indicate that, at fine spatial grain, macro-environmental drivers are much less important for functional trait composition than has been assumed from floristic analyses restricted to co-occurrence in large grid cells. Instead, trait combinations seem to be predominantly filtered by local-scale factors such as disturbance, fine-scale soil conditions, niche partitioning and biotic interactions.

    Crop pests and predators exhibit inconsistent responses to surrounding landscape composition
    Karp, Daniel S. ; Chaplin-Kramer, Rebecca ; Meehan, Timothy D. ; Martin, Emily A. ; Declerck, Fabrice ; Grab, Heather ; Gratton, Claudio ; Hunt, Lauren ; Larsen, Ashley E. ; Martínez-Salinas, Alejandra ; O’Rourke, Megan E. ; Rusch, Adrien ; Poveda, Katja ; Jonsson, Mattias ; Rosenheim, Jay A. ; Schellhorn, Nancy A. ; Tscharntke, Teja ; Wratten, Stephen D. ; Zhang, Wei ; Iverson, Aaron L. ; Adler, Lynn S. ; Albrecht, Matthias ; Alignier, Audrey ; Angelella, Gina M. ; Zubair Anjum, Muhammad ; Avelino, Jacques ; Batáry, Péter ; Baveco, Johannes M. ; Bianchi, Felix J.J.A. ; Birkhofer, Klaus ; Bohnenblust, Eric W. ; Bommarco, Riccardo ; Brewer, Michael J. ; Caballero-López, Berta ; Carrière, Yves ; Carvalheiro, Luísa G. ; Cayuela, Luis ; Centrella, Mary ; Ćetković, Aleksandar ; Henri, Dominic Charles ; Chabert, Ariane ; Costamagna, Alejandro C. ; La Mora, Aldo De; Kraker, Joop De; Desneux, Nicolas ; Diehl, Eva ; Diekötter, Tim ; Dormann, Carsten F. ; Eckberg, James O. ; Entling, Martin H. ; Fiedler, Daniela ; Franck, Pierre ; Veen, F.J.F. van; Frank, Thomas ; Gagic, Vesna ; Garratt, Michael P.D. ; Getachew, Awraris ; Gonthier, David J. ; Goodell, Peter B. ; Graziosi, Ignazio ; Groves, Russell L. ; Gurr, Geoff M. ; Hajian-Forooshani, Zachary ; Heimpel, George E. ; Herrmann, John D. ; Huseth, Anders S. ; Inclán, Diego J. ; Ingrao, Adam J. ; Iv, Phirun ; Jacot, Katja ; Johnson, Gregg A. ; Jones, Laura ; Kaiser, Marina ; Kaser, Joe M. ; Keasar, Tamar ; Kim, Tania N. ; Kishinevsky, Miriam ; Landis, Douglas A. ; Lavandero, Blas ; Lavigne, Claire ; Ralec, Anne Le; Lemessa, Debissa ; Letourneau, Deborah K. ; Liere, Heidi ; Lu, Yanhui ; Lubin, Yael ; Luttermoser, Tim ; Maas, Bea ; Mace, Kevi ; Madeira, Filipe ; Mader, Viktoria ; Cortesero, Anne Marie ; Marini, Lorenzo ; Martinez, Eliana ; Martinson, Holly M. ; Menozzi, Philippe ; Mitchell, Matthew G.E. ; Miyashita, Tadashi ; Molina, Gonzalo A.R. ; Molina-Montenegro, Marco A. ; O’Neal, Matthew E. ; Opatovsky, Itai ; Ortiz-Martinez, Sebaastian ; Nash, Michael ; Östman, Örjan ; Ouin, Annie ; Pak, Damie ; Paredes, Daniel ; Parsa, Soroush ; Parry, Hazel ; Perez-Alvarez, Ricardo ; Perović, David J. ; Peterson, Julie A. ; Petit, Sandrine ; Philpott, Stacy M. ; Plantegenest, Manuel ; Plećaš, Milan ; Pluess, Therese ; Pons, Xavier ; Potts, Simon G. ; Pywell, Richard F. ; Ragsdale, David W. ; Rand, Tatyana A. ; Raymond, Lucie ; Ricci, Benoît ; Sargent, Chris ; Sarthou, Jean-Pierre ; Saulais, Julia ; Schäckermann, Jessica ; Schmidt, Nick P. ; Schneider, Gudrun ; Schüepp, Christof ; Sivakoff, Frances S. ; Smith, Henrik G. ; Stack Whitney, Kaitlin ; Stutz, Sonja ; Szendrei, Zsofia ; Takada, Mayura B. ; Taki, Hisatomo ; Tamburini, Giovanni ; Thomson, Linda J. ; Tricault, Yann ; Tsafack, Noelline ; Tschumi, Matthias ; Valantin-Morison, Muriel ; Trinh, Mai Van; Werf, Wopke Van Der; Vierling, Kerri T. ; Werling, Ben P. ; Wickens, Jennifer B. ; Wickens, Victoria J. ; Woodcock, Ben A. ; Wyckhuys, Kris ; Xiao, Haijun ; Yasuda, Mika ; Yoshioka, Akira - \ 2018
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 115 (2018)33. - ISSN 0027-8424 - p. E7863 - E7870.
    IPM
    The idea that noncrop habitat enhances pest control and represents a win–win opportunity to conserve biodiversity and bolster yields has emerged as an agroecological paradigm. However, while noncrop habitat in landscapes surrounding farms sometimes benefits pest predators, natural enemy responses remain heterogeneous across studies and effects on pests are inconclusive. The observed heterogeneity in species responses to noncrop habitat may be biological in origin or could result from variation in how habitat and biocontrol are measured. Here, we use a pest-control database encompassing 132 studies and 6,759 sites worldwide to model natural enemy and pest abundances, predation rates, and crop damage as a function of landscape composition. Our results showed that although landscape composition explained significant variation within studies, pest and enemy abundances, predation rates, crop damage, and yields each exhibited different responses across studies, sometimes increasing and sometimes decreasing in landscapes with more noncrop habitat but overall showing no consistent trend. Thus, models that used landscape-composition variables to predict pest-control dynamics demonstrated little potential to explain variation across studies, though prediction did improve when comparing studies with similar crop and landscape features. Overall, our work shows that surrounding noncrop habitat does not consistently improve pest management, meaning habitat conservation may bolster production in some systems and depress yields in others. Future efforts to develop tools that inform farmers when habitat conservation truly represents a win–win would benefit from increased understanding of how landscape effects are modulated by local farm management and the biology of pests and their enemies.
    Tropical forest canopies and their relationships with climate and disturbance: results from a global dataset of consistent field-based measurements
    Pfeifer, Marion ; Gonsamo, Alemu ; Woodgate, William ; Cayuela, Luis ; Marshall, Andrew R. ; Ledo, Alicia ; Paine, Timothy C.E. ; Marchant, Rob ; Burt, Andrew ; Calders, Kim ; Courtney-mustaphi, Colin ; Cuni-sanchez, Aida ; Deere, Nicolas J. ; Denu, Dereje ; Gonzalez De Tanago Meñaca, J. ; Hayward, Robin ; Lau Sarmiento, A.I. ; Macía, Manuel J. ; Olivier, Pieter I. ; Pellikka, Petri ; Seki, Hamidu ; Shirima, Deo ; Trevithick, Rebecca ; Wedeux, Beatrice ; Wheeler, Charlotte ; Munishi, Pantaleo K.T. ; Martin, Thomas ; Mustari, Abdul ; Platts, Philip J. - \ 2018
    Forest Ecosystems 5 (2018). - ISSN 2095-6355 - 14 p.
    Background: Canopy structure, defined by leaf area index (LAI), fractional vegetation cover (FCover) and fraction of absorbed photosynthetically active radiation (fAPAR), regulates a wide range of forest functions and ecosystem services. Spatially consistent field-measurements of canopy structure are however lacking, particularly for the tropics. Methods: Here, we introduce the Global LAI database: a global dataset of field-based canopy structure measurements spanning tropical forests in four continents (Africa, Asia, Australia and the Americas). We use these measurements to test for climate dependencies within and across continents, and to test for the potential of anthropogenic disturbance and forest protection to modulate those dependences. Results: Using data collected from 887 tropical forest plots, we show that maximum water deficit, defined across the most arid months of the year, is an important predictor of canopy structure, with all three canopy attributes declining significantly with increasing water deficit. Canopy attributes also increase with minimum temperature, and with the protection of forests according to both active (within protected areas) and passive measures (through topography). Once protection and continent effects are accounted for, other anthropogenic measures (e.g. human population) do not improve the model. Conclusions: We conclude that canopy structure in the tropics is primarily a consequence of forest adaptation to the maximum water deficits historically experienced within a given region. Climate change, and in particular changes in drought regimes may thus affect forest structure and function, but forest protection may offer some resilience against this effect.
    Role of biochar as an additive in organic waste composting
    Sánchez-Monedero, M.A. ; Cayuela, M.L. ; Roig, A. ; Jindo, Keiji ; Mondini, C. ; Bolan, N.S. - \ 2018
    Bioresource Technology 247 (2018). - ISSN 0960-8524 - p. 1155 - 1164.
    The use of biochar in organic waste composting has attracted interest in the last decade due to the environmental and agronomical benefits obtained during the process. Biochar presents favourable physicochemical properties, such as large porosity, surface area and high cation exchange capacity, enabling interaction with major nutrient cycles and favouring microbial growth in the composting pile. The enhanced environmental conditions can promote a change in the microbial communities that can affect important microbially mediated biogeochemical cycles: organic matter degradation and humification, nitrification, denitrification and methanogenesis. The main benefits of the use of biochar in composting are reviewed in this article, with special attention to those related to the process performance, compost microbiology, organic matter degradation and humification, reduction of N losses and greenhouse gas emissions and fate of heavy metals.
    Strategies for greenhouse gas emissions mitigation in Mediterranean agriculture: A review
    Sanz-Cobena, A. ; Lassaletta, L. ; Aguilera, E. ; Prado, A. Del; Garnier, J. ; Billen, G. ; Iglesias, A. ; Sánchez, B. ; Guardia, G. ; Abalos Rodriguez, Diego ; Plaza-Bonilla, D. ; Puigdueta-bartolomé, I. ; Moral, R. ; Galán, E. ; Arriaga, H. ; Merino, P. ; Infante-Amate, J. ; Meijide, A. ; Pardo, G. ; Álvaro-Fuentes, J. ; Gilsanz, C. ; Báez, D. ; Doltra, J. ; González-Ubierna, S. ; Cayuela, M.L. ; Menéndez, S. ; Díaz-Pinés, E. ; Le-Noë, J. ; Quemada, M. ; Estellés, F. ; Calvet, S. ; Grinsven, H.J.M. Van; Westhoek, H. ; Sanz, M.J. ; Gimeno, B.S. ; Vallejo, A. ; Smith, P. - \ 2017
    Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment 238 (2017). - ISSN 0167-8809 - p. 5 - 24.
    An integrated assessment of the potential of different management practices for mitigating specific components of the total GHG budget (N2O and CH4 emissions and C sequestration) of Mediterranean agrosystems was performed in this study. Their suitability regarding both yield and environmental (e.g. nitrate leaching and ammonia volatilization) sustainability, and regional barriers and opportunities for their implementation were also considered. Based on its results best strategies to abate GHG emissions in Mediterranean agro-systems were proposed. Adjusting N fertilization to crop needs in both irrigated and rain-fed systems could reduce N2O emissions up to 50% compared with a non-adjusted practice. Substitution of N synthetic fertilizers by solid manure can be also implemented in those systems, and may abate N2O emissions by about 20% under Mediterranean conditions, with additional indirect benefits associated to energy savings and positive effects in crop yields. The use of urease and nitrification inhibitors enhances N use efficiency of the cropping systems and may mitigate N2O emissions up to 80% and 50%, respectively. The type of irrigation may also have a great mitigation potential in the Mediterranean region. Drip-irrigated systems have on average 80% lower N2O emissions than sprinkler systems and drip-irrigation combined with optimized fertilization showed a reduction in direct N2O emissions up to 50%. Methane fluxes have a relatively small contribution to the total GHG budget of Mediterranean crops, which can mostly be controlled by careful management of the water table and organic inputs in paddies. Reduced soil tillage, improved management of crop residues and agro-industry by-products, and cover cropping in orchards, are the most suitable interventions to enhance organic C stocks in Mediterranean agricultural soils. The adoption of the proposed agricultural practices will require farmers training. The global analysis of life cycle emissions associated to irrigation type (drip, sprinkle and furrow) and N fertilization rate (100 and 300 kg N ha−1 yr−1) revealed that these factors may outweigh the reduction in GHG emissions beyond the plot scale. The analysis of the impact of some structural changes on top-down mitigation of GHG emissions revealed that 3–15% of N2O emissions could be suppressed by avoiding food waste at the end-consumer level. A 40% reduction in meat and dairy consumption could reduce GHG emissions by 20–30%. Reintroducing the Mediterranean diet (i.e. ∼35% intake of animal protein) would therefore result in a significant decrease of GHG emissions from agricultural production systems under Mediterranean conditions.
    Direct nitrous oxide emissions in Mediterranean climate cropping systems : Emission factors based on a meta-analysis of available measurement data
    Cayuela, Maria L. ; Aguilera, Eduardo ; Sanz-Cobena, Alberto ; Adams, Dean C. ; Abalos Rodriguez, Diego ; Barton, Louise ; Ryals, Rebecca ; Silver, Whendee L. ; Alfaro, Marta A. ; Pappa, Valentini A. ; Bouwman, Lex ; Lassaletta, Luis - \ 2017
    Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment 238 (2017). - ISSN 0167-8809 - p. 25 - 35.
    Field studies - Greenhouse gases - Mitigation - NO - Systematic review

    Many recent reviews and meta-analyses of N2O emissions do not include data from Mediterranean studies. In this paper we present a meta-analysis of the N2O emissions from Mediterranean cropping systems, and propose a more robust and reliable regional emission factor (EF) for N2O, distinguishing the effects of water management, crop type, and fertilizer management. The average overall EF for Mediterranean agriculture (EFMed) was 0.5%, which is substantially lower than the IPCC default value of 1%. Soil properties had no significant effect on EFs for N2O. Increasing the N fertilizer rate led to higher EFs; when N was applied at rates greater than 400kgNha-1, the EF did not significantly differ from the 1% default value (EF: 0.82%). Liquid slurries led to emissions that did not significantly differ from 1%; the other fertilizer types were lower but did not significantly differ from each other. Rain-fed crops in Mediterranean regions have lower EFs (EF: 0.27%) than irrigated crops (EF: 0.63%). Drip irrigation systems (EF: 0.51%) had 44% lower EF than sprinkler irrigation methods (EF: 0.91%). Extensive crops, such as winter cereals (wheat, oat and barley), had lower EFs (EF: 0.26%) than intensive crops such as maize (EF: 0.83%). For flooded rice, anaerobic conditions likely led to complete denitrification and low EFs (EF: 0.19%). Our results indicate that N2O emissions from Mediterranean agriculture are overestimated in current national greenhouse gas inventories and that, with the new EF determined from this study, the effect of mitigation strategies such as drip irrigation or the use of nitrification inhibitors, even if highly significant, may be smaller in absolute terms.

    Construction and validation of a mCherry protein vector for promoter analysis in Lactobacillus acidophilus
    Mohedano, M.L. ; Garcia-Cayuela, T. ; Perez-Ramos, A. ; Gaiser, R.A. ; Requena, T. ; Lopez, P. - \ 2015
    Journal of Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology 42 (2015)2. - ISSN 1367-5435 - p. 247 - 253.
    lactic-acid bacteria - controlled gene-expression - streptococcus-pneumoniae - lactococcus-lactis - plasmid - cloning
    Lactobacilli are widespread in natural environments and are increasingly being investigated as potential health modulators. In this study, we have adapted the broad-host-range vector pNZ8048 to express the mCherry protein (pRCR) to expand the usage of the mCherry protein for analysis of gene expression in Lactobacillus. This vector is also able to replicate in Streptococcus pneumoniae and Escherichia coli. The usage of pRCR as a promoter probe was validated in Lactobacillus acidophilus by characterizing the regulation of lactacin B expression. The results show that the regulation is exerted at the transcriptional level, with lbaB gene expression being specifically induced by co-culture of the L. acidophilus bacteriocin producer and the S. thermophilus STY-31 inducer bacterium.
    The molar H: Corg ratio of biochar is a key factor in mitigating N2O emissions from soil
    Cayuela, M.L. ; Jeffery, S.L. ; Zwieten, L. van - \ 2015
    Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment 202 (2015). - ISSN 0167-8809 - p. 135 - 138.
    greenhouse-gas emissions - rice - impact - straw - co2 - carbon - china - paddy - plant - denitrification
    A previously published meta-analysis of biochar impacts on soil N2O emissions by Cayuela et al. (2014) found a “grand mean” reduction in N2O emissions of 54 ± 6% following biochar application to soil. Here we update this analysis to include 26 additional manuscripts bringing the total to 56 articles. The updated meta-analysis confirms that biochar reduces soil N2O emissions by 49 ± 5% (mean ± 95% confidence interval). Importantly, this meta-analysis has sufficient data to investigate the impact of biochar under field conditions, showing a statistically significant lower average reduction in the field (28 ± 16%) compared to controlled laboratory studies (54 ± 3%). A key finding is the importance of the molar H:Corg ratio of biochar in determining mitigation of N2O. Biochars with a molar H:Corg ratio 0.5 were less effective at 40 ± 16%. Together with previously published information, our new results suggest that a key mitigation mechanism is linked to the degree of polymerization and aromaticity of biochar.
    Biochar's role in mitigating soil nitrous oxide emissions: a review and meta-analysis
    Cayuela, M.L. ; Zwieten, L. van; Singh, B.P. ; Jeffery, S.L. ; Roig, A. ; Sánchez-Monedero, M.A. - \ 2014
    Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment 191 (2014). - ISSN 0167-8809 - p. 5 - 16.
    greenhouse-gas emissions - organic-matter mineralization - carbon-dioxide emissions - fast-pyrolysis biochar - 2 contrasting soils - n2o emissions - dairy-manure - black carbon - nitrifier denitrification - nitrate reduction
    More than two thirds of global nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions originate from soil, mainly associated with the extensive use of nitrogen (N) fertilizers in agriculture. Although the interaction of black carbon with the N cycle has been long recognized, the impact of biochar on N2O emissions has only recently been studied. Herein we reflect on proposed hypotheses to explain N2O decrease with biochar, linking them to specific mechanisms for N2O formation and consumption in soil. Moreover, to assist in elucidating key mechanisms in which biochar may act in mitigating emissions of N2O, we undertook a meta-analysis using published literature from 2007 to 2013. This quantitative analysis used 30 studies with 261 experimental treatments. Overall, we found that biochar reduced soil N2O emissions by 54% in laboratory and field studies. The biochar feedstock, pyrolysis conditions and C/N ratio were shown to be key factors influencing emissions of N2O while a direct correlation was found between the biochar application rate and N2O emission reductions. Interactions between soil texture and biochar and the chemical form of N fertilizer applied with biochar were also found to have a major influence on soil N2O emissions. While there is clear evidence that, in many cases, emissions of N2O are reduced, there is still a significant lack in understanding of the key mechanisms which result in these changed emissions. As such, we have guided readers with suggestions to address specific research gaps, which we anticipate will enhance our knowledge and understanding of biochar's N2O emission mitigation potential.
    Tracking C and N dynamics and stabilization in soil amended with wheat residue and its correponding bioethanol by-product: a 13C/15C study
    Cayuela, M.L. ; Kuikman, P.J. ; Bakker, R.R.C. ; Groenigen, J.W. van - \ 2014
    Global change biology Bioenergy 6 (2014)5. - ISSN 1757-1693 - p. 499 - 508.
    organic-matter - macroaggregate dynamics - carbon sequestration - microbial biomass - removal - network - quality - impact - inputs
    Removing agricultural cellulosic residues from fields for the production of ‘second generation biofuels'has the potential to profoundly alter C and N cycling in soil, increasing the risk of soil organic matter depletion and favoring soil–atmosphere gaseous exchanges. However, these negative impacts could potentially be offset by amending the soil with the solid by-product which is generated during bioethanol production. In a 100 days laboratory study, we investigated the fate of C and N after soil amendment with doubly labeled (13C, 15N) wheat residue (WR) and the corresponding bioethanol by-product (i.e. nonfermentable wheat residue NFWR) with and without extra N addition. Substituting WR with the corresponding amount of recovered bioethanol by-product partially compensated the C losses of full crop residue removal. When the equivalent amount of C was added as WR and NFWR, NFWR-derived C was found in significantly higher proportion in macroaggregates in soil (17.0 vs. 8.9%) after 100 days. Addition of both WR and NFWR reduced soil organic C (SOC) mineralization, i.e. it caused a negative priming effect in soil. However, this pattern was reversed when extra N was added. Both WR and NFWR increased the proportion of soil water-stable macroaggregates from 16% (in control) to 20–24% (in the different treatments). The results suggest that the more recalcitrant compounds derived from bioethanol production may stabilize more strongly and persist within the protected fractions of SOM pools. Our study demonstrates that NFWR, compared with WR application, neither increased N2O emissions nor had a negative impact on aggregate formation in the midterm. This demonstrates that NFWR has potential for replenishing SOC stocks
    Short term effects of bioenergy by-products on soil C and N dynamics, nutrient availability and biochemical properties
    Galvez, A. ; Sinicco, T. ; Cayuela, M.L. ; Mingorance, M.D. ; Fornasier, F. ; Mondini, C. - \ 2012
    Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment 160 (2012). - ISSN 0167-8809 - p. 3 - 14.
    nitrous-oxide emission - microbial biomass - enzyme-activities - crop residues - organic amendments - carbon - mineralization - management - decomposition - composts
    The shift towards a biobased economy will probably trigger the application of bioenergy by-products to the soil as either amendments or fertilizers. However, limited research has been done to determine how this will influence C and N dynamics and soil functioning. The aim of this work was to investigate the effects of different bioenergy by-products on C and N mineralisation, nutrient availability and microbial content and activity of amended soil and compare them to other more commonly used organic amendments. Two agricultural soils were amended (0.5% w/w) with four different bioenergy by-products (anaerobic digestate, rapeseed meal, bioethanol residue, biochar) and three other commonly used organic amendments (sewage sludge and two composts) and incubated at 20 degrees C in the laboratory for 30 days. During incubation, soil CO2 and N2O evolution were measured every 4 h by an automatic chromatographic system. After 2, 7 and 30 days of incubation, soil samples were analysed for K2SO4-extractable C, N, NO3-, NH4+ and P, microbial biomass C and three enzymatic activities (beta-glucosidase, alkaline phosphatase and leucine aminopeptidase). Soil amendment led to a general increase in soil respiration, available N and P and microbial content and activity, but with remarkably different dynamics and values. Particularly, rapeseed meal and the bioethanol by-product led to N2O emissions and the greatest increases in soil respiration, N availability and enzymatic activity compared with the other amendments. The exception was represented by biochar that did not cause any significant variation with respect to the control, but promoted C accumulation. According to their impact on soil biochemical properties, the materials can be ranked as follows: rapeseed meal, bioethanol residue > anaerobic digestate, sewage sludge > composts > biochar. For each measured parameter, soil properties did not affect the response pattern found for the different treatments, but modified the magnitude of the response. In particular, soil respiration and enzymatic activity were higher in the slightly acidic soil, while greater values of available P were found in the alkaline soil. This study clearly indicates that the impact on GHG emissions and soil functioning of bioenergy byproducts needs to be taken into account for a correct life cycle assessment of the bioenergy chain. Moreover, when properly managed, they may represent an effective alternative to usual amendments to improve the quality and nutrient balance of amended soils.
    Fluorescent protein vectors for promoter analysis in lactic acid bacteria and Escherichia coli
    García-Cayuela, T. ; Cadiñanos, L.P. de; Mohedano, M.L. ; Palencia, P.F. de; Boden, D. ; Wells, J. ; Peláez, C. ; López, P. ; Requena, T. - \ 2012
    Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology 96 (2012)1. - ISSN 0175-7598 - p. 171 - 181.
    lactococcus-lactis - streptococcus-pneumoniae - genetic tools - in-vitro - green - cremoris - red - transformation - expression - faecalis
    Fluorescent reporter genes are valuable tools for real-time monitoring of gene expression in living cells. In this study we describe the construction of novel promoter-probe vectors containing a synthetic mCherry fluorescent protein gene, codon-optimized for lactic acid bacteria, divergently linked, or not, to a gene encoding the S65T and F64L variant of the green fluorescent protein. The utility of the transcriptional fusion vectors was demonstrated by the cloning of a single or two divergent promoter regions and by the quantitative evaluation of fluorescence during growth of Lactococcus lactis, Enterococcus faecalis, and Escherichia coli.
    Bioenergy from cattle manure? Implications of anaerobic digestion and subsequent pyrolysis for carbon and nitrogen dynamics in soil
    Schouten, S. ; Groenigen, J.W. van; Oenema, O. ; Cayuela, M.L. - \ 2012
    Global change biology Bioenergy 4 (2012)6. - ISSN 1757-1693 - p. 751 - 760.
    greenhouse-gas emissions - black carbon - organic-matter - microbial biomass - slurry treatment - oxide emission - crop residues - by-products - pig slurry - biochar
    Cattle manure can be processed to produce bioenergy, resulting in by-products with different physicochemical characteristics. To evaluate whether application of such bioenergy by-products to soils would be beneficial compared with their unprocessed counterpart, we quantified differences in greenhouse gas emissions and carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) dynamics in soil. Three by-products (15N-labeled cattle manure, from which anaerobic digestate was obtained, which was subsequently pyrolysed) were applied to a loess and a sandy soil in a laboratory incubation study. The highest losses of soil C from biological activity (CO2 respiration) were observed in manure treatments (39% and 32% for loess and sandy soil), followed by digestate (31% and and 18%), and biochar (15% and and 7%). Emissions of nitrous oxide (N2O) ranged from 0.6% of applied N from biochar to 4.0% from manure. Isotope labeling indicated that manure N was most readily mineralized, contributing 50% to soil inorganic N. The anaerobic digestate was the only by-product increasing the mineral N pool, while reducing emissions of N2O compared with manure. In biochar treatments, less than 18.3% of soil mineral N derived from the biochar, while it did not constrain mineralization of native soil N. By-products of anaerobic digestion and pyrolysis revealed soil fertility in addition to environmental benefits. However, the reported advantages lessen when the declining yields of C and N over the bioenergy chain are considered.
    Residues of bioenergy production chains as soil amendments: Immediate and temporal phytotoxicity
    Gell, K. ; Groenigen, J.W. van; Cayuela, M.L. - \ 2011
    Journal of Hazardous Materials 186 (2011)2-3. - ISSN 0304-3894 - p. 2017 - 2025.
    seed-germination - risk-assessment - rapeseed meal - sewage-sludge - by-products - paper-mill - bio-oil - biochar - growth - pyrolysis
    The current shift towards bioenergy production increases streams of bioenergy rest-products (RPs), which are likely to end-up as soil amendments. However, their impact on soil remains unclear. In this study we evaluated crop phytotoxicity of 15 RPs from common bioenergy chains (biogas, biodiesel, bioethanol and pyrolysis). The RPs were mixed into a sandy soil and the seedling root and shoot elongation of lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.), radish (Raphanus sativus L.), and wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) were measured. Immediate phytotoxic effects were observed with biodiesel and bioethanol RPs (root elongation reduced to 14-60% for the three crops; P
    Bioenergy by-products as soil amendments? Implications for carbon sequestration and greenhuise gas emissions
    Cayuela, M.L. ; Oenema, O. ; Kuikman, P.J. ; Bakker, R.R. ; Groenigen, J.W. van - \ 2010
    Global change biology Bioenergy 2 (2010)4. - ISSN 1757-1693 - p. 201 - 213.
    dried distillers grains - feedlot cattle - part 2 - biofuels - wheat - biomass - decomposition - ethanol - energy - corn
    An important but little understood aspect of bioenergy production is its overall impact on soil carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) cycling. Increased energy production from biomass will inevitably lead to higher input of its by-products to the soil as amendments or fertilizers. However, it is still unclear how these by-products will influence microbial transformation processes in soil, and thereby its greenhouse gas (GHG) balance and organic C stocks. In this study, we assess C and N dynamics and GHG emissions following application of different bioenergy by-products to soil. Ten by-products were selected from different bioenergy chains: anaerobic digestion (manure digestates), first generation biofuel by-products (rapeseed meal, distilled dried grains with solubles), second-generation biofuel by-products (nonfermentables from hydrolysis of different lignocellulosic materials) and pyrolysis (biochars). These by-products were added at a constant N rate (150 kg N ha-1) to a sandy soil and incubated at 20 °C. After 60 days, >80% of applied C had been emitted as CO2 in the first-generation biofuel residue treatments. For second-generation biofuel residues this was approximately 60%, and for digestates 40%. Biochars were the most stable residues with the lowest CO2 loss (between 0.5% and 5.8% of total added C). Regarding N2O emissions, addition of first-generation biofuel residues led to the highest total N2O emissions (between 2.5% and 6.0% of applied N). Second-generation biofuel residues emitted between 1.0% and 2.0% of applied N, with the original feedstock material resulting in similar N2O emissions and higher C mineralization rates. Anaerobic digestates resulted in emissions
    Nitrous oxide and carbon dioxide emissions during initial decomposition of animal by-products applied as fertilisers to soils.
    Cayuela, M.L. ; Velthof, G.L. ; Mondini, C. ; Sinicco, T. ; Groenigen, J.W. van - \ 2010
    Geoderma 157 (2010)3-4. - ISSN 0016-7061 - p. 235 - 242.
    greenhouse-gas emissions - bone meal - mineralization dynamics - crop residues - n2o - amendments - ratios - plant
    The recycling of organic wastes as soil amendments is notably promoted in sustainable agricultural systems. However, for many animal by-products approved by organic farming regulations little is known about their effects on the greenhouse gas balance of the soil, in particular on N2O emissions. In this work we report on the N2O and CO2 emissions from six animal-derived wastes (horn and hoof meal, blood meal, hydrolysed leather, meat bone meal, chicken manure and a commercial organic mixed fertiliser). We compared these emissions to those from a mineral fertiliser (calcium ammonium nitrate) in a sandy and a loam soil during a three month laboratory incubation study. N2O flux dynamics varied strongly with residue category and soil type. In the sandy soil, cumulative N2O emissions correlated with soil NO3- content. Although the mineral fertiliser produced the highest total N2O emissions (5.7 mg N2O–N kg- 1 soil), the commercial organic fertiliser mixture led to statistically similar emissions (5.3 mg N2O–N kg- 1 soil). The other by-products emitted between 1.3–3.0 mg N2O–N kg- 1 soil, and only blood meal emitted less than 1 mg N2O–N kg- 1 soil. In the loam soil, N2O emissions never exceeded 1.0 mg N2O–N kg- 1 soil, and did not correlate with NO3- in soil. With regard to CO2 emissions and C storage potential, chicken manure was the only residue that significantly accumulated C in both soils during the course of our experiment. The addition of an extra easily available source of C (glucose) or N (NO3-) influenced N2O emissions differently depending on the residue applied. Our results showed that despite the extra amount of C added with the organic amendments, N2O emissions from animal-derived wastes were never higher than those from the mineral fertiliser
    Bioenergy residues as soil amendments: climate relevant C and N dynamics during decomposition
    Cayuela, M.L. ; Kuikman, P.J. ; Oenema, O. ; Bakker, R.B. ; Groenigen, J.W. van - \ 2009
    Bioenergy residues applied as soil amendments: N2O emissions and C sequestration potential
    Cayuela, M.L. ; Kuikman, P.J. ; Oenema, O. ; Bakker, R.B. ; Groenigen, J.W. van - \ 2009
    Biofuels have been proposed as environmentally benign substitutes to fossil fuels. There is, however, substantial uncertainty in the scientific literature about how an expanding bioenergy sector would interact with other land uses and what could be the environmental consequences. In the particular case of greenhouse gas balance, the magnitude of discrepancy is tremendously high among different studies. Such controversy has been often attributed to the way the co-products generated were accounted for. It is likely that the intensification of bioenergy production will lead to an increased input of these co-products to the soil as alternative amendments or fertilizers. However, limited research has been done to determine how this will influence microbial transformation processes in soil and thereby the emissions of greenhouse gases. Neither have related issues such as the stabilization of soil organic matter, soil structure and soil fertility been adequately studied. Here, we report a laboratory study on the effects of the application of bioenergy residues on C and N mineralization and greenhouse gas emissions in an agricultural soil. Ten co-products were selected from different energy sectors: anaerobic digestion (digestates), first generation biofuel residues (rapeseed meal, distilled dried grains with solubles), second generation biofuel residues (non-fermentables from hydrolysis of different lignocellulosic materials) and pyrolysis (biochars). They were added at the same N rate (150 kg N ha-1) to a moist (80% water filled pore space) sandy soil and incubated at 20 C for 60 days. Most residues followed fast mineralization dynamics with a flush of CO2 respiration within the first week. The biochars were the exception: they showed very low respiration rates. After 60 days, first generation biofuel residues had emitted more than 80% of added C as CO2. Around 60% was emitted in the case of second generation biofuel residues and 40% with digestates. Biochars were the most stable residues with the lowest CO2 loss between 0.5 and 5.8 % of total added C. Regarding N2O emissions, first generation biofuel residues led to the highest total N2O emissions (between 2.5 - 6.0% of added N). Second generation biofuel residues emitted between 1.0-2.0% of added N, whereas anaerobic digestates led to emissions lower than 1% of added N. The two biochars used in this study led to negative N2O emissions, i.e. lower than the blank soil. We conclude that, at least in the short term, the effects of biofuel residues on the combined greenhouse gas balance of the soil ranges from beneficial (biochar) via mixed (digestates, second generation biofuels) to manifestly detrimental (first generation biofuels). These effects should be taken into account in life cycle analyses of biofuel production.
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