See more from this Session: Soil Change: Characterization and Modeling Across Scales: I
Monday, November 1, 2010: 8:45 AM
Hyatt Regency Long Beach, Shoreline B, First Floor
It is increasingly recognized that anthropogenic activity impacts soils, altering soil natural capital stocks and ecosystem services derived from soils on human time scales. A major challenge is observing soil change in both space and time at regional scales. Britain’s Countryside Survey is a National effort, managed by the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, to measure the state of ecosystems in space, at regular time intervals (~10 yrs). Soils form an important component of this effort with the first national survey having been conducted in 1978 and subsequent surveys in 1998 and 2007. Results from this work are beginning to demonstrate important soil change across Britain. In particular, one of the most striking results has been the observed trend of increasing soil pH which is considered to have occurred as a result of policy changes in the 1970’s and tighter regulation through the clean air act, reducing wet and dry deposition of acidifying compounds. Other important results include the observation that no statistically significant change has occurred in the soil carbon stock over the period of the survey, which is in contrast to other work indicating a decline in the Britain’s carbon stock. Given the importance of soil change, the survey now includes physical, chemical and biological soil properties that serve as indicators of soil change in space and time.