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Title: Long-term nitrous oxide fluxes in annual and perennial agricultural and unmanaged ecosystems in the upper Midwest USA

Abstract

Differences in soil nitrous oxide (N 2O) fluxes among ecosystems are often difficult to evaluate and predict due to high spatial and temporal variabilities and few direct experimental comparisons. For 20 years, we measured N 2O fluxes in 11 ecosystems in southwest Michigan USA: four annual grain crops (corn–soybean–wheat rotations) managed with conventional, no-till, reduced input, or biologically based/organic inputs; three perennial crops (alfalfa, poplar, and conifers); and four unmanaged ecosystems of different successional age including mature forest. Average N 2O emissions were higher from annual grain and N-fixing cropping systems than from nonleguminous perennial cropping systems and were low across unmanaged ecosystems. Among annual cropping systems full-rotation fluxes were indistinguishable from one another but rotation phase mattered. For example, those systems with cover crops and reduced fertilizer N emitted more N 2O during the corn and soybean phases, but during the wheat phase fluxes were ~40% lower. Likewise, no-till did not differ from conventional tillage over the entire rotation but reduced emissions ~20% in the wheat phase and increased emissions 30–80% in the corn and soybean phases. Greenhouse gas intensity for the annual crops (flux per unit yield) was lowest for soybeans produced under conventional management, while for the 11 other crop 9 management combinations intensities were similar to one another. Among the fertilized systems, emissions ranged from 0.30 to 1.33 kg N 2O-N ha -1 yr -1 and were best predicted by IPCC Tier 1 and DEF emission factor approaches. Annual cumulative fluxes from perennial systems were best explained by soil NO$$-\atop{3}$$ pools (r 2 = 0.72) but not so for annual crops, where management differences overrode simple correlations. Daily soil N 2O emissions were poorly predicted by any measured variables. Overall, long-term measurements reveal lower fluxes in nonlegume perennial vegetation and, for conservatively fertilized annual crops, the overriding influence of rotation phase on annual fluxes.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [2];  [1];  [3];  [4]
  1. Michigan State Univ., Hickory Corners, MI (United States). W.K. Kellogg Biological Station; Michigan State Univ., East Lansing, MI (United States). Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center
  2. Michigan State Univ., Hickory Corners, MI (United States). W.K. Kellogg Biological Station; Michigan State Univ., East Lansing, MI (United States). Department of Plant, Soil, and Microbial Sciences
  3. Michigan State Univ., East Lansing, MI (United States). Department of Plant, Soil, and Microbial Sciences
  4. Michigan State Univ., Hickory Corners, MI (United States). W.K. Kellogg Biological Station; Michigan State Univ., East Lansing, MI (United States). Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center and Department of Plant, Soil, and Microbial Sciences
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23)
OSTI Identifier:
1290321
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1290323; OSTI ID: 1427682
Grant/Contract Number:  
FC02-07ER64494
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Published Article
Journal Name:
Global Change Biology
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 22; Journal Issue: 11; Journal ID: ISSN 1354-1013
Publisher:
Wiley
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; 59 BASIC BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES; corn; cover crops; crop type; forest; nitrogen fertilizer; no-till; rotation phase; soybean; succession; wheat

Citation Formats

Gelfand, Ilya, Shcherbak, Iurii, Millar, Neville, Kravchenko, Alexandra N., and Robertson, G. Philip. Long-term nitrous oxide fluxes in annual and perennial agricultural and unmanaged ecosystems in the upper Midwest USA. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.1111/gcb.13426.
Gelfand, Ilya, Shcherbak, Iurii, Millar, Neville, Kravchenko, Alexandra N., & Robertson, G. Philip. Long-term nitrous oxide fluxes in annual and perennial agricultural and unmanaged ecosystems in the upper Midwest USA. United States. doi:10.1111/gcb.13426.
Gelfand, Ilya, Shcherbak, Iurii, Millar, Neville, Kravchenko, Alexandra N., and Robertson, G. Philip. Thu . "Long-term nitrous oxide fluxes in annual and perennial agricultural and unmanaged ecosystems in the upper Midwest USA". United States. doi:10.1111/gcb.13426.
@article{osti_1290321,
title = {Long-term nitrous oxide fluxes in annual and perennial agricultural and unmanaged ecosystems in the upper Midwest USA},
author = {Gelfand, Ilya and Shcherbak, Iurii and Millar, Neville and Kravchenko, Alexandra N. and Robertson, G. Philip},
abstractNote = {Differences in soil nitrous oxide (N2O) fluxes among ecosystems are often difficult to evaluate and predict due to high spatial and temporal variabilities and few direct experimental comparisons. For 20 years, we measured N2O fluxes in 11 ecosystems in southwest Michigan USA: four annual grain crops (corn–soybean–wheat rotations) managed with conventional, no-till, reduced input, or biologically based/organic inputs; three perennial crops (alfalfa, poplar, and conifers); and four unmanaged ecosystems of different successional age including mature forest. Average N2O emissions were higher from annual grain and N-fixing cropping systems than from nonleguminous perennial cropping systems and were low across unmanaged ecosystems. Among annual cropping systems full-rotation fluxes were indistinguishable from one another but rotation phase mattered. For example, those systems with cover crops and reduced fertilizer N emitted more N2O during the corn and soybean phases, but during the wheat phase fluxes were ~40% lower. Likewise, no-till did not differ from conventional tillage over the entire rotation but reduced emissions ~20% in the wheat phase and increased emissions 30–80% in the corn and soybean phases. Greenhouse gas intensity for the annual crops (flux per unit yield) was lowest for soybeans produced under conventional management, while for the 11 other crop 9 management combinations intensities were similar to one another. Among the fertilized systems, emissions ranged from 0.30 to 1.33 kg N2O-N ha-1 yr-1 and were best predicted by IPCC Tier 1 and DEF emission factor approaches. Annual cumulative fluxes from perennial systems were best explained by soil NO$-\atop{3}$ pools (r2 = 0.72) but not so for annual crops, where management differences overrode simple correlations. Daily soil N2O emissions were poorly predicted by any measured variables. Overall, long-term measurements reveal lower fluxes in nonlegume perennial vegetation and, for conservatively fertilized annual crops, the overriding influence of rotation phase on annual fluxes.},
doi = {10.1111/gcb.13426},
journal = {Global Change Biology},
number = 11,
volume = 22,
place = {United States},
year = {Thu Aug 11 00:00:00 EDT 2016},
month = {Thu Aug 11 00:00:00 EDT 2016}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record at 10.1111/gcb.13426

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Cited by: 4 works
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