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1 May 2017 Determining the Spatial Variability of Wetland Soil Bulk Density, Organic Matter, and the Conversion Factor between Organic Matter and Organic Carbon across Coastal Louisiana, U.S.A.
Hongqing Wang, Sarai C. Piazza, Leigh A. Sharp, Camille L. Stagg, Brady R. Couvillion, Gregory D. Steyer, Thomas E. McGinnis
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Abstract

Wang, H.; Piazza, S.C.; Sharp, L.A.; Stagg, C.L.; Couvillion, B.R.; Steyer, G.D., and McGinnis, T.E., 2017. Determining the spatial variability of wetland soil bulk density, organic matter, and the conversion factor between organic matter and organic carbon across coastal Louisiana, U.S.A.

Soil bulk density (BD), soil organic matter (SOM) content, and a conversion factor between SOM and soil organic carbon (SOC) are often used in estimating SOC sequestration and storage. Spatial variability in BD, SOM, and the SOM–SOC conversion factor affects the ability to accurately estimate SOC sequestration, storage, and the benefits (e.g., land building area and vertical accretion) associated with wetland restoration efforts, such as marsh creation and sediment diversions. There are, however, only a few studies that have examined large-scale spatial variability in BD, SOM, and SOM–SOC conversion factors in coastal wetlands. In this study, soil cores, distributed across the entire coastal Louisiana (approximately 14,667 km2) were used to examine the regional-scale spatial variability in BD, SOM, and the SOM–SOC conversion factor. Soil cores for BD and SOM analyses were collected during 2006–09 from 331 spatially well-distributed sites in the Coastwide Reference Monitoring System network. Soil cores for the SOM–SOC conversion factor analysis were collected from 15 sites across coastal Louisiana during 2006–07. Results of a split-plot analysis of variance with incomplete block design indicated that BD and SOM varied significantly at a landscape level, defined by both hydrologic basins and vegetation types. Vertically, BD and SOM varied significantly among different vegetation types. The SOM–SOC conversion factor also varied significantly at the landscape level. This study provides critical information for the assessment of the role of coastal wetlands in large regional carbon budgets and the estimation of carbon credits from coastal restoration.

©Coastal Education and Research Foundation, Inc. 2017
Hongqing Wang, Sarai C. Piazza, Leigh A. Sharp, Camille L. Stagg, Brady R. Couvillion, Gregory D. Steyer, and Thomas E. McGinnis "Determining the Spatial Variability of Wetland Soil Bulk Density, Organic Matter, and the Conversion Factor between Organic Matter and Organic Carbon across Coastal Louisiana, U.S.A.," Journal of Coastal Research 33(3), 507-517, (1 May 2017). https://doi.org/10.2112/JCOASTRES-D-16-00014.1
Received: 26 January 2016; Accepted: 21 June 2016; Published: 1 May 2017
JOURNAL ARTICLE
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KEYWORDS
Coastwide Reference Monitoring System
hydrological basins
soil organic carbon sequestration
van Bemmelen factor
vegetation types
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