The effect of urbanization on soil properties and soil organic carbon accumulation in topsoil of Pruszków – a medium-sized city in the Warsaw Metropolitan Area, Poland

Open access


The objective of the study was to determine properties of soils located within a city, and to assess the effect of anthropopressure on the accumulation of carbon and nitrogen in soils of Pruszków . a medium sized town in central Poland. Surface soil layers (0.20 cm) were collected at 36 sites. A total of 12 samples from lawns, 11 from allotment gardens, 9 from fields and 4 from fallow lands were subject to analysis. Lawns and allotment gardens were treated as central zone I . under strong pressure of anthropogenic factors, fields and fallow lands were treated as zone II . with potentially low level of anthropogenic influence. The statistical analysis showed significantly higher (p=0.008) amount of organic carbon (Corg) in lawns (mean 20.5 g·kg-1) and allotment gardens (21.7 g·kg-1) . zone I, than on fallow lands (10.4 g·kg-1) and fields (1.27 g·kg-1) . zone II. The surface layer of soil from allotment gardens also contained significantly higher amount of total nitrogen (mean content 1.1 g·kg-1) than others. The amounts of Corg not depending on the soil texture and very high C/N ratio, suggests the anthropogenic origin of the carbon. The C/N ratio was the highest in the soils of lawns (mean value 26.2) and significantly differed (p=0.04) from C/N ratios in soils of fields and allotment gardens. This suggests low intensity of humus transformation. Other chemical characteristics as hydrolytic acidity (Ha), cation exchange capacity (CEC), exchangeable base cations (EBC) and EBC share in CEC were also higher in central part of Pruszków town (zone I), indicating the effect of urbanization on soil properties.

Beyer L., Blume H.P., Elsner D.C., Willnow A., 1995. Soil organic matter composition and microbial activity in urban soil. Science of Total Environment, 168: 267.278.

Bieliñska E.J., Futa B., Ligeza S., 2009. Relationship between organic carbon content and the activity of selected enzymes in urban soils. Roczniki Gleboznawcze . Soil Science Annual, 60(3): 12.17.

Brown S., Miltner E., Cogger C., 2012. Carbon sequestration potential in urban soils. Carbon Sequestration in Urban Ecosystems: 173.196.

Chuai X.W., Huang X.J., Wang W.J., Zhang M., Lai L., Liao Q.L., 2012. Spatial variability of soil organic carbon and related factors in Jiangsu Province, China. Pedosphere, 22(3): 404.414.

Edmondson J.L., Davies Z.G., McHugh N., Gaston K.J., Leake J.R., 2012. Organic carbon hidden in urban ecosystems. Scientific Reports, 2: 963, doi:10.1038/srep00963.

Gonet S.S., 2007. Protection of soil organic matter. [In:] The role of organic matter in the environment (Gonet S.S., Markiewicz M., Editors ). PTSH, Wroc³aw, pp. 7.29 (in Polish).

GUS, 2011. Road transport in Poland in the years 2005.2009. Information and statistical studies. Warszawa/Szczecin: 174.184.

Haumaier L., Zech W., 1995. Black carbon-possible source of highly aromatic components of soil humic acids. Organic Geochemistry, 23(3): 191.196.

Klejnowski K., Rogula P., B³aszczyk J., Rogula-Kozlowska W., 2010. Identification of organic and elemental carbon concentration in some area in Poland. Pol-Emis: 183.194. (in Polish).

Komisja V Genezy, Klasyfikacji i Kartografii Gleb PTG, 1989. Systematyka Gleb Polski, wyd. 4, Roczniki Gleboznawcze . Soil Science Annual, 40,(3/4): 132.133. (in Polish).

Kusiñska A., 1991. Transformation of organic matter in soils of greens and parks of the £ód. city. Roczniki Gleboznawcze . Soil Science Annual, 42,(1/2): 101.107.

Liu Y., Wang Ch., Yue W., Hu Y., 2013. Storage and density of soil organic carbon in urban topsoil of hilly cities: A case study of Chongqing Municipality of China. Chinese Geographical Science, 23(1): 26.34.

Lorenz K., Kandeler E., 2005. Biochemical characterization of urban soil profiles from Stuttgart, Germany. Soil Biology and Biochemistry, 37: 1373.1385.

Lorenz K., Preston C.M., Kandeler E., 2006. Soil organic matter in urban soils: Estimation of elemental carbon by thermal oxidation and characterization of organic matter by solid-state 13C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. Geoderma, 130: 312.323.

Meuser H., 2010. Assessment of urban soils. [In:] Contaminated urban soils. Environmental Pollution, 18: 243.246.

Ministry of Regional Development, 2010. The development of cities in Poland . introductory report of the Ministry of Regional Development, developed for the preparation of the OECD review of national urban policy in Poland. Warszawa, pp. 30.209 (in Polish).

Moretto L.M., Silvestri S., Ugo P., Zorzi G., Abbondazi F., Baiocchi C., Iacondini A., 2005. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons degradation by composting in a soot-contaminated alkaline soil. Journal of Hazardous Materials, B, 126: 141.148.

Norra S., Stüben D., 2003. Urban soils [In:] Global soils: Germany. Journal of Soils and Sediments, 3(4): 230.233.

Pouyat R., Groffman O., Yesilonis I., Hernandez L., 2002. Soil carbon pools and fluxes in urban ecosystems. Environmental Pollution, 116: 107.118.

Pouyat R.V., Yesilonis I.D., Nowak D.J., 2006. Carbon storage by urban soils in the United States. Journal of Environmental Quality, 35: 1566.1575.

Prokof.eva., Gerasimowa M., Lebedeva I., Martynenko I., 2013. An attempt of integrating the systematic of urban soils into the new Russian soil classification system. Soil Science Annual, 64(1): 24.29.

Quënëa K., Derenne S., Rumpel C., Rouzaud J.N., Gustafsson O., Carcaillet C., Mariotti A., Largeau C., 2006. Black carbon yields and types in forest and cultivated sandy soils (Landes de Gascogne, France) as determined with different methods: Influence of change in land use. Organic Geochemistry, 37: 1185.1189.

Rockne K.J., Taghon G.L., Kosson D.S., 2000. Pore structure of soot deposits from several combustion sources. Chemosphere, 41: 1125.1135.

Roth P.J., Lehndorff E., Brodowski S., Bornemann L., Sanchez- Garcia L., Gustafsson Õ., Amelung W., 2012. Differentiation of charcoal, soot and diagenetic carbon in soil: Method comparison and perspectives. Organic Geochemistry, 46: 66.75.

Rumpel C., Knicker H., Kõgel-Knabner I., Hûttl R.F., 1998. Airborne contamination of immature soil (Lusatian Mining District) by lignite . derived materials: its detection and contribution to the soil organic matter budget. Water, Air and Soil Pollution, 105: 481.492.

Van Reeuwijk L.P., 2002. Procedures for soil analysis (6th ed.). Tech. Pap. 9, ISRIC, Wageningen.

Vegter J., 2007. Urban soils . an emerging problem? [In:] Urban soils . An emerging problem? Journal of Soils and Sediments, 7(2): 63.

Wang M., Markert B., Shen W., Chen W., Peng Ch., Ouyang Z., 2011. Microbial biomass carbon and enzyme activities of urban soils in Beijing. Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 18: 958.967.

Yang Y., Mahler B.J., Van Metre P.C., Ligouis B., Werth C.J., 2010. Potential contributions of asphalt and coal tar to black carbon quantification in urban dust, soils, and sediments. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 74: 6830.6840.

Soil Science Annual

formerly Roczniki Gleboznawcze

Journal Information

Index Copernicus Value- 93.69 pkt

CiteScore 2017: 1.13

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.468
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2017: 0.781

Cited By


All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 580 580 81
PDF Downloads 257 257 49