Soil carbon sequestration under Miscanthus x giganteus - Jesko Zimmermann

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  • 1. Soil carbon sequestration under Miscanthus x giganteusA large scale surveyJesko ZimmermannJens Dauber Michael B. Jones

2. MiscanthusMiscanthus x giganteus Ligno-cellulosic or second generation bioenergy crop Rhizomatous perennial grass with a C4 photosynthesis pathway Originates in Asia (tropics and subtropics) Remarkable adaptability to cool temperate climates Introduction subsidised in IrelandSoil carbon sequestration potential due to physiologicalfeatures and management practices Picture: Jens Dauber 3. Research questionsResearch on carbon sequestration mainly on experimental fields, however differences can be expected in commercial plotsThis study is focused on commercial large-scaleMiscanthus fields in south east Ireland, looking at: Soil carbon sequestration Initial soil carbon loss What is influencing the processes? Picture: Susannah Cass 4. Regional-scale study 5. Materials & MethodsSamplingNested sampling designA number of soil cores taken at threesubplots in a Miscanthus field and anadjacent control site representing theformer land-useCores divided into three depth and bulkedover the sub plot.Additional cores taken for bulk density 6. Materials & MethodsAnalysesThe bulked samples were processed in thelab and following measurements weretaken:Total organic carbon13C/12C stable isotope ratio to determinethe Miscanthus-derived carbon (13Cnatural abundance method)Soil bulk density, particle size distribution,and pH 7. SOC [Mg ha-1] SOC [Mg ha-1]-10.00 0.00 10.00 20.00 30.00 40.00-10.000.00 10.00 20.00 30.00 40.00 Control Control 10 10MiscanthusMiscanthus Control ControlDepth [cm]Depth [cm] 20 20MiscanthusMiscanthus Control Control C3-derived carbon C4-derived carbon 30 30MiscanthusMiscanthus Tillage GrasslandAfter Zimmermann et al., (2012) Global Change Biology Bioenergy, Vol. 4, Issue 4. 8. Field-scale studyPicture: Susannah Cass 9. MG14TCD_2_1Average patch area 4.357 m23.710 m2Standard deviation 8.702 25.245No. Patches901 1243Sum of patch area0.393 ha0.461 haOverall field size 4.390 ha3.982 haShare of field 8.95 %11.58 % Zimmermann et al. (in prep.) 10. Farm Area [m2] SD Radius [m]SDMT3 8.672 6.2871.519 0.691MT5 8.1514.111 1.570 0.372MT6 10.5956.0281.772 0.496MG1118.185 14.1092.233 0.923MG184.329 1.9651.146 0.264MG2010.4886.3351.751 0.537 11. MG11MG18MG20FarmMT3HighMT5MediumMT6Low-50-40-30-20 -100 Difference to area of a non-patch field [%] Zimmermann et al. (in prep.) 12. Miscanthus-derived carbon [Mg ha-1]-0.500.50 1.50 2.50 -0.500.501.502.50 1010 2020 High density 30Open patch30TillageGrasslandZimmermann et al. (in prep.) 13. Farm scale 14. High MT6_2Mean MT6_1Low MT5 MT3 MG20 MG18 MG11-40-30 -20 -10 0 Difference in Miscanthus-derived carbon to a no-patch field [%] 15. ConclusionsMeasurable soil carbon sequestration even 2 to 3years after planting MiscanthusNo significant loss of soil organic carbon due toplantationHigh variability between farmsCrop patchiness has significant impact on yield andsoil carbon sequestration 16. AcknowledgementsDavid BourkeSusannah CassKees-Jan van GroenigenKate HarteBas BootsThe Simbiosys TeamKatie WennigCatherine Fontana The land-owners for theirZeno Wong kind permission to work onMaximilian von Sternburgtheir landsErin Jo TiedekenSarah KimberleyThe EPA for funding the project

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