Changes in Organic Carbon Pool in Agricultural Soils and its Different Development in Individual Agro-Climatic Regions of Slovakia

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Abstract

Soil organic carbon (SOC) is one of the basic parameters of soil productivity and quality. Generally soil has potential to sequestrate or release organic carbon depending on land use/management and climatic conditions. The main aim of this article is to show changes in SOC in agricultural land of Slovakia over almost the last 40 years on the basis of modelling data of SOC stock by the RothC model and unequal development of SOC stock on agro-climatic regions of Slovakia. The results received show that average SOC stock [t/ha] in Slovakia is higher on grasslands in comparison to arable land. However, total SOC pool (t) in top of 0.2 m of soil on the modelling area of agricultural Slovak land shows that a considerable part of SOC stock is located in arable land and is approximately four times greater than on grasslands because the arable land represents about 80% of the modelling area. In the first modelling period (1970-1994), the SOC stock gradually increased, but in the second modelling period (1995-2007) no significant changes in SOC stock on the arable land were observed. In the southwest part of Slovakia, increasing of SOC stock during all modelling periods was observed; however, in the northeast part a slight increase of SOC stock only in the first modelling period (1970-1994) was found and in the second modelling period (1995-2007) decrease of SOC accumulation was observed. The results of this statistical analysis show significant relationship between carbon input/SOC stock as independent variables and agro-climatic regions as dependent variable.

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