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COST 639
COST 639 - WG 2
WG 2 – Relation of land use, land-use change, and land-use history on soil C and N

In the first commitment period (2008-2012) of the Kyoto Protocol, different types of land use are treated separately (IPCC Good Practice Guidance). In order to avoid double accounting of GHG emissions and emission reductions across different forms of land use, a complex patchwork of reporting requirements has been established. It is anticipated that for future periods a transparent system, applicable to types of land use, types will be necessary. Soil experts for different types of ecosystems (peatland, agriculture, forestry) need to be prepared for this situation. The Action will provide a discussion platform, where expertise on key soil processes under specific forms of land use will be exchanged. That will foster the required mutual understanding for the seamless GHG accounting across different land-use forms. Within each type of land use we will quantify the effect of specific forms of management on soil C and N stocks (forestry: thinning, site amelioration, N fertilization, stand conversion, continuous forest cover, and drainage regime; agriculture: tillage/no tillage; unmanaged: conversion of peatland), for common changes in land use we will compile the impacts on GHG emissions (Afforestation of marginal agricultural land vs. grassland, conversion grassland/agricultural land). Land-use history has a strong effect on the soil C and N stocks. For the relevance of land-use changes for GHG reports, it needs to be shown, how long the transition periods after a land-use change are and how long an ecosystem can build up its C and N stocks in the soil until a new equilibrium is reached.

The aim of WG2 is to re-evaluate existing studies in the context of the questions that did arise with GHG reporting. Close collaborative links between WG1 and WG2 will ensure that the relevant interfaces between land-use types are established. The important of the contributions of the hot spots (WG1) for the soil GHG emissions in a particular form of land-use will be elaborated. Based on this analysis, suggestions for monitoring efforts for soil C and N stocks in specific regions will be made.

The data for WG 2 also already exist. In several countries forest soil scientists and agricultural soil experts have pursued projects side by side in regions that are of interest for the objectives of the work package, but the interface between the different forms of land use have never been established. Within the Action these data will be harmonized in order to allow for comparative studies. Moreover, the researchers of the Action have recognized the need for experiments across different forms of land use and yet unpublished data are available for the Action.
18.12.06 | Preier, P.
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