Effects of land use on soil inorganic carbon stocks in the Russian Chernozem

J Environ Qual. 2006 Jul 6;35(4):1384-8. doi: 10.2134/jeq2005.0151. Print 2006 Jul-Aug.


Little is known about changes in soil inorganic carbon (SIC) stocks with depth and with land use in grassland ecosystems. This study was conducted to determine SIC stocks under different management regimes in the Mollisol, one of the typical soils in grasslands. Four sites were sampled: a native grassland field (not cultivated for at least 300 yr), an adjacent 50-yr continuous fallow field, a yearly cut hay field in the V.V. Alekhin Central-Chernozem Biosphere State Reserve in the Kursk region of Russia, and a continuously cropped field in the Experimental Station of the Kursk Institute of Agronomy and Soil Erosion Control. All sampled soils were classified as fine-silty, mixed, frigid Pachic Hapludolls. Significant differences occurred in SIC stocks between cultivated and grassland soil. The inorganic carbon stocks in the top 2 m were 107 Mg ha(-1) for the native grassland, 91 Mg ha(-1) for the yearly cut hay field, 242 Mg ha(-1) for the continuously cropped field, and 196 Mg ha(-1) for the 50-yr continuous fallow. The SIC was in the form of calcium carbonate and was mostly stored below the 1-m depth. The largest difference between inorganic carbon stocks was observed between the continuously cropped field and native grassland. The increase in inorganic carbon in the continuously cropped field and continuous fallow was attributed to initial cultivation and fertilization. Soil inorganic carbon in Mollisols is not accounted for in the current global carbon estimates.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Agriculture*
  • Carbon Compounds, Inorganic / metabolism*
  • Conservation of Natural Resources*
  • Ecosystem*
  • Environmental Monitoring
  • Fertilizers
  • Russia
  • Soil / analysis*


  • Carbon Compounds, Inorganic
  • Fertilizers
  • Soil