Last updated October 10, 2018

Predicting climate change effects on surface soil organic carbon of Louisiana, USA

  • Assesses the degree of potential temperature and precipitation change as predicted by the HadCM3 (Hadley Centre Coupled Model, version 3) climate model for Louisiana
  • Investigates the effects of potential climate change on surface soil organic carbon (SOC) across Louisiana using the Rothamsted Carbon Model (RothC) and GIS techniques at the watershed scale
  • Finds that for most of the next 100 years in Louisiana, monthly mean temperature under all three emissions projections will increase; and monthly precipitation will, however, decrease
  • Finds that under three emission scenarios, A1FI, A2, and B2, the mean SOC in the upper 30-cm depth of Louisiana forest soils will decrease from 33.0 t/ha in 2001 to 26.9, 28.4, and 29.2 t/ha in 2100, respectively; the mean SOC of Louisiana cropland soils will decrease from 44.4 t/ha in 2001 to 36.3, 38.4, and 39.6 t/ha in 2100, respectively; the mean SOC of Louisiana grassland soils will change from 30.7 t/ha in 2001 to 25.4, 26.6, and 27.0 t/ha in 2100, respectively
  • Finds that annual SOC changes will be significantly different among the land cover classes including evergreen forest, mixed forest, deciduous forest, small grains, row crops, and pasture/hay (p < 0.0001), emissions scenarios (p < 0.0001), and their interactions (p < 0.0001).