The landscape of soil carbon data: Emerging questions, synergies and databases

Avni Malhotra*, Katherine Todd-Brown, Lucas E. Nave, Niels H. Batjes, James R. Holmquist, Alison M. Hoyt, Colleen M. Iversen, Robert B. Jackson, Kate Lajtha, Corey Lawrence, Olga Vindušková, William Wieder, Mathew Williams, Gustaf Hugelius, Jennifer Harden

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Soil carbon has been measured for over a century in applications ranging from understanding biogeochemical processes in natural ecosystems to quantifying the productivity and health of managed systems. Consolidating diverse soil carbon datasets is increasingly important to maximize their value, particularly with growing anthropogenic and climate change pressures. In this progress report, we describe recent advances in soil carbon data led by the International Soil Carbon Network and other networks. We highlight priority areas of research requiring soil carbon data, including (a) quantifying boreal, arctic and wetland carbon stocks, (b) understanding the timescales of soil carbon persistence using radiocarbon and chronosequence studies, (c) synthesizing long-term and experimental data to inform carbon stock vulnerability to global change, (d) quantifying root influences on soil carbon and (e) identifying gaps in model–data integration. We also describe the landscape of soil datasets currently available, highlighting their strengths, weaknesses and synergies. Now more than ever, integrated soil data are needed to inform climate mitigation, land management and agricultural practices. This report will aid new data users in navigating various soil databases and encourage scientists to make their measurements publicly available and to join forces to find soil-related solutions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)707-719
JournalProgress in Physical Geography
Volume43
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2019

Fingerprint

synergy
soil carbon
global change
soil
wetland
Arctic
persistence
vulnerability
carbon
climate change
chronosequence
productivity
agricultural practice
climate
land management
management practice
mitigation
health
management
timescale

Keywords

  • long-term ecological research
  • model–data integration
  • root traits
  • Soil carbon data
  • soil carbon stabilization
  • soil chronosequence
  • soil database
  • soil radiocarbon
  • wetland carbon

Cite this

Malhotra, A., Todd-Brown, K., Nave, L. E., Batjes, N. H., Holmquist, J. R., Hoyt, A. M., ... Harden, J. (2019). The landscape of soil carbon data: Emerging questions, synergies and databases. Progress in Physical Geography, 43(5), 707-719. https://doi.org/10.1177/0309133319873309
Malhotra, Avni ; Todd-Brown, Katherine ; Nave, Lucas E. ; Batjes, Niels H. ; Holmquist, James R. ; Hoyt, Alison M. ; Iversen, Colleen M. ; Jackson, Robert B. ; Lajtha, Kate ; Lawrence, Corey ; Vindušková, Olga ; Wieder, William ; Williams, Mathew ; Hugelius, Gustaf ; Harden, Jennifer. / The landscape of soil carbon data: Emerging questions, synergies and databases. In: Progress in Physical Geography. 2019 ; Vol. 43, No. 5. pp. 707-719.
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abstract = "Soil carbon has been measured for over a century in applications ranging from understanding biogeochemical processes in natural ecosystems to quantifying the productivity and health of managed systems. Consolidating diverse soil carbon datasets is increasingly important to maximize their value, particularly with growing anthropogenic and climate change pressures. In this progress report, we describe recent advances in soil carbon data led by the International Soil Carbon Network and other networks. We highlight priority areas of research requiring soil carbon data, including (a) quantifying boreal, arctic and wetland carbon stocks, (b) understanding the timescales of soil carbon persistence using radiocarbon and chronosequence studies, (c) synthesizing long-term and experimental data to inform carbon stock vulnerability to global change, (d) quantifying root influences on soil carbon and (e) identifying gaps in model–data integration. We also describe the landscape of soil datasets currently available, highlighting their strengths, weaknesses and synergies. Now more than ever, integrated soil data are needed to inform climate mitigation, land management and agricultural practices. This report will aid new data users in navigating various soil databases and encourage scientists to make their measurements publicly available and to join forces to find soil-related solutions.",
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author = "Avni Malhotra and Katherine Todd-Brown and Nave, {Lucas E.} and Batjes, {Niels H.} and Holmquist, {James R.} and Hoyt, {Alison M.} and Iversen, {Colleen M.} and Jackson, {Robert B.} and Kate Lajtha and Corey Lawrence and Olga Vinduškov{\'a} and William Wieder and Mathew Williams and Gustaf Hugelius and Jennifer Harden",
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Malhotra, A, Todd-Brown, K, Nave, LE, Batjes, NH, Holmquist, JR, Hoyt, AM, Iversen, CM, Jackson, RB, Lajtha, K, Lawrence, C, Vindušková, O, Wieder, W, Williams, M, Hugelius, G & Harden, J 2019, 'The landscape of soil carbon data: Emerging questions, synergies and databases', Progress in Physical Geography, vol. 43, no. 5, pp. 707-719. https://doi.org/10.1177/0309133319873309

The landscape of soil carbon data: Emerging questions, synergies and databases. / Malhotra, Avni; Todd-Brown, Katherine; Nave, Lucas E.; Batjes, Niels H.; Holmquist, James R.; Hoyt, Alison M.; Iversen, Colleen M.; Jackson, Robert B.; Lajtha, Kate; Lawrence, Corey; Vindušková, Olga; Wieder, William; Williams, Mathew; Hugelius, Gustaf; Harden, Jennifer.

In: Progress in Physical Geography, Vol. 43, No. 5, 01.10.2019, p. 707-719.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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T1 - The landscape of soil carbon data: Emerging questions, synergies and databases

AU - Malhotra, Avni

AU - Todd-Brown, Katherine

AU - Nave, Lucas E.

AU - Batjes, Niels H.

AU - Holmquist, James R.

AU - Hoyt, Alison M.

AU - Iversen, Colleen M.

AU - Jackson, Robert B.

AU - Lajtha, Kate

AU - Lawrence, Corey

AU - Vindušková, Olga

AU - Wieder, William

AU - Williams, Mathew

AU - Hugelius, Gustaf

AU - Harden, Jennifer

PY - 2019/10/1

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N2 - Soil carbon has been measured for over a century in applications ranging from understanding biogeochemical processes in natural ecosystems to quantifying the productivity and health of managed systems. Consolidating diverse soil carbon datasets is increasingly important to maximize their value, particularly with growing anthropogenic and climate change pressures. In this progress report, we describe recent advances in soil carbon data led by the International Soil Carbon Network and other networks. We highlight priority areas of research requiring soil carbon data, including (a) quantifying boreal, arctic and wetland carbon stocks, (b) understanding the timescales of soil carbon persistence using radiocarbon and chronosequence studies, (c) synthesizing long-term and experimental data to inform carbon stock vulnerability to global change, (d) quantifying root influences on soil carbon and (e) identifying gaps in model–data integration. We also describe the landscape of soil datasets currently available, highlighting their strengths, weaknesses and synergies. Now more than ever, integrated soil data are needed to inform climate mitigation, land management and agricultural practices. This report will aid new data users in navigating various soil databases and encourage scientists to make their measurements publicly available and to join forces to find soil-related solutions.

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KW - long-term ecological research

KW - model–data integration

KW - root traits

KW - Soil carbon data

KW - soil carbon stabilization

KW - soil chronosequence

KW - soil database

KW - soil radiocarbon

KW - wetland carbon

U2 - 10.1177/0309133319873309

DO - 10.1177/0309133319873309

M3 - Article

VL - 43

SP - 707

EP - 719

JO - Progress in Physical Geography

JF - Progress in Physical Geography

SN - 0309-1333

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