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Title: Landscape Age as a Major Control on the Geography of Soil Weathering

Abstract

Global-scale models of rock-derived nutrient availability often assume that physical erosion drives soils toward an approximate “steady state” over geologic timescales. By definition, steady-state models do not represent landscape age—that is, the time elapsed since soil formation is initiated by major erosional or depositional events. We hypothesize that this steady-state assumption has large consequences on estimates of soil fertility because landscape age can mediate the retention of mobile elements in soil, particularly in low-relief landscapes and humid climates. We quantified the effect of landscape age on soil fertility by estimating Na retention in soils across the United States and explicitly resolving landscape age in regions that experienced significant deposition or glacial retreat after the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). We then used a simple one-compartment model to simulate soil formation and weathering, comparing predictions that incorporated landscape age with those based on the steady-state assumption. We found that soils formed in LGM deposits in low-relief, humid settings generally retain 10 times more Na than soils formed outside of LGM deposits. Furthermore, the model that accounted for landscape age outperformed a steady-state model across the United States and increased globally averaged estimates of Na retention by 17%. These results reinforce the ideamore » that landscape age is a major control on weathering and should not be ignored in simulations of nutrient cycling.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [3]; ORCiD logo [4]
  1. Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
  2. Univ. of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN (United States)
  3. Univ. of California, Davis, CA (United States)
  4. Univ. of California, Santa Barbara, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
1603237
Report Number(s):
LLNL-JRNL-795534
Journal ID: ISSN 0886-6236; 996926
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC52-07NA27344
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Global Biogeochemical Cycles
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 33; Journal Issue: 12; Journal ID: ISSN 0886-6236
Publisher:
American Geophysical Union (AGU)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
58 GEOSCIENCES; Weathering; Rock‐derived nutrients; Pedogenesis

Citation Formats

Slessarev, E. W., Feng, X., Bingham, N. L., and Chadwick, O. A. Landscape Age as a Major Control on the Geography of Soil Weathering. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1029/2019GB006266.
Slessarev, E. W., Feng, X., Bingham, N. L., & Chadwick, O. A. Landscape Age as a Major Control on the Geography of Soil Weathering. United States. doi:https://doi.org/10.1029/2019GB006266
Slessarev, E. W., Feng, X., Bingham, N. L., and Chadwick, O. A. Fri . "Landscape Age as a Major Control on the Geography of Soil Weathering". United States. doi:https://doi.org/10.1029/2019GB006266. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1603237.
@article{osti_1603237,
title = {Landscape Age as a Major Control on the Geography of Soil Weathering},
author = {Slessarev, E. W. and Feng, X. and Bingham, N. L. and Chadwick, O. A.},
abstractNote = {Global-scale models of rock-derived nutrient availability often assume that physical erosion drives soils toward an approximate “steady state” over geologic timescales. By definition, steady-state models do not represent landscape age—that is, the time elapsed since soil formation is initiated by major erosional or depositional events. We hypothesize that this steady-state assumption has large consequences on estimates of soil fertility because landscape age can mediate the retention of mobile elements in soil, particularly in low-relief landscapes and humid climates. We quantified the effect of landscape age on soil fertility by estimating Na retention in soils across the United States and explicitly resolving landscape age in regions that experienced significant deposition or glacial retreat after the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). We then used a simple one-compartment model to simulate soil formation and weathering, comparing predictions that incorporated landscape age with those based on the steady-state assumption. We found that soils formed in LGM deposits in low-relief, humid settings generally retain 10 times more Na than soils formed outside of LGM deposits. Furthermore, the model that accounted for landscape age outperformed a steady-state model across the United States and increased globally averaged estimates of Na retention by 17%. These results reinforce the idea that landscape age is a major control on weathering and should not be ignored in simulations of nutrient cycling.},
doi = {10.1029/2019GB006266},
journal = {Global Biogeochemical Cycles},
number = 12,
volume = 33,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {11}
}

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    Works referencing / citing this record:

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    journal, January 1976


    Last Glacial loess in the conterminous USA
    journal, September 2003


    Geomorphic Controls on Andean Denudation Rates
    journal, January 2006

    • Aalto, Rolf; Dunne, Thomas; Guyot, Jean Loup
    • The Journal of Geology, Vol. 114, Issue 1
    • DOI: 10.1086/498101

    Factors of Soil Formation
    journal, January 1941


    Mountain ranges, climate and weathering. Do orogens strengthen or weaken the silicate weathering carbon sink?
    journal, July 2018

    • Maffre, Pierre; Ladant, Jean-Baptiste; Moquet, Jean-Sébastien
    • Earth and Planetary Science Letters, Vol. 493
    • DOI: 10.1016/j.epsl.2018.04.034

    The impact of humans on continental erosion and sedimentation
    journal, January 2007

    • Wilkinson, B. H.; McElroy, B. J.
    • Geological Society of America Bulletin, Vol. 119, Issue 1-2
    • DOI: 10.1130/b25899.1

    A framework for predicting global silicate weathering and CO2 drawdown rates over geologic time-scales
    journal, October 2008

    • Hilley, G. E.; Porder, S.
    • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 105, Issue 44
    • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0801462105

    Global patterns of plant leaf N and P in relation to temperature and latitude
    journal, June 2004

    • Reich, P. B.; Oleksyn, J.
    • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 101, Issue 30
    • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0403588101

    Slow advance of the weathering front during deep, supply-limited saprolite formation in the tropical Highlands of Sri Lanka
    journal, October 2013

    • Hewawasam, Tilak; von Blanckenburg, Friedhelm; Bouchez, Julien
    • Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, Vol. 118
    • DOI: 10.1016/j.gca.2013.05.006

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    journal, October 2007


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    journal, July 1999

    • Aslan, A.; Autin, W. J.
    • Journal of Sedimentary Research, Vol. 69, Issue 4
    • DOI: 10.2110/jsr.69.800

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    journal, August 2009

    • Huston, Michael A.; Wolverton, Steve
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    • DOI: 10.1890/08-0588.1

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    journal, February 1999

    • Chadwick, O. A.; Derry, L. A.; Vitousek, P. M.
    • Nature, Vol. 397, Issue 6719
    • DOI: 10.1038/17276

    Low rates of bedrock outcrop erosion in the central Appalachian Mountains inferred from in situ 10 Be
    journal, October 2012

    • Portenga, Eric W.; Bierman, Paul R.; Rizzo, Donna M.
    • Geological Society of America Bulletin, Vol. 125, Issue 1-2
    • DOI: 10.1130/b30559.1

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    journal, January 2010

    • Soetaert, Karline; Petzoldt, Thomas; Setzer, R. Woodrow
    • Journal of Statistical Software, Vol. 33, Issue 9
    • DOI: 10.18637/jss.v033.i09

    Global chemical weathering and associated P-release — The role of lithology, temperature and soil properties
    journal, January 2014


    Global land cover mapping from MODIS: algorithms and early results
    journal, November 2002


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    journal, January 2010

    • Lebedeva, M. I.; Fletcher, R. C.; Brantley, S. L.
    • Earth Surface Processes and Landforms
    • DOI: 10.1002/esp.1954

    Convergent evidence for widespread rock nitrogen sources in Earth’s surface environment
    journal, April 2018


    Understanding Earth’s eroding surface with 10Be
    journal, August 2011

    • Portenga, Eric W.; Bierman, Paul R.
    • GSA Today, Vol. 21, Issue 8
    • DOI: 10.1130/g111a.1

    Water balance creates a threshold in soil pH at the global scale
    journal, November 2016

    • Slessarev, E. W.; Lin, Y.; Bingham, N. L.
    • Nature, Vol. 540, Issue 7634
    • DOI: 10.1038/nature20139

    Future productivity and carbon storage limited by terrestrial nutrient availability
    journal, April 2015

    • Wieder, William R.; Cleveland, Cory C.; Smith, W. Kolby
    • Nature Geoscience, Vol. 8, Issue 6
    • DOI: 10.1038/ngeo2413

    Tectonic and climatic controls on silicate weathering
    journal, June 2005


    Strong climate and tectonic control on plagioclase weathering in granitic terrain
    journal, January 2011

    • Rasmussen, C.; Brantley, S.; Richter, D. deB.
    • Earth and Planetary Science Letters, Vol. 301, Issue 3-4
    • DOI: 10.1016/j.epsl.2010.11.037

    The role of phosphorus dynamics in tropical forests – a modeling study using CLM-CNP
    journal, January 2014


    Deformational Mass Transport and Invasive Processes in Soil Evolution
    journal, February 1992


    Evidence for nonlinear, diffusive sediment transport on hillslopes and implications for landscape morphology
    journal, March 1999

    • Roering, Joshua J.; Kirchner, James W.; Dietrich, William E.
    • Water Resources Research, Vol. 35, Issue 3
    • DOI: 10.1029/1998wr900090

    Hillslope soils and vegetation
    journal, April 2015


    A global model of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus cycles for the terrestrial biosphere
    journal, January 2010


    The role of reaction affinity and secondary minerals in regulating chemical weathering rates at the Santa Cruz Soil Chronosequence, California
    journal, May 2009

    • Maher, Kate; Steefel, Carl I.; White, Art F.
    • Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, Vol. 73, Issue 10
    • DOI: 10.1016/j.gca.2009.01.030

    Investigation of in situ weathering of quartz diorite bedrock in the Rio Icacos basin, Luquillo Experimental Forest, Puerto Rico
    journal, December 2003


    The soil production function and landscape equilibrium
    journal, July 1997

    • Heimsath, Arjun M.; Dietrich, William E.; Nishiizumi, Kunihiko
    • Nature, Vol. 388, Issue 6640
    • DOI: 10.1038/41056

    Nutrient Cycling in Moist Tropical Forest
    journal, November 1986


    Pedogenic Thresholds and Soil Process Domains in Basalt-Derived Soils
    journal, June 2013


    From a black to a gray box — a mass balance interpretation of pedogenesis
    journal, September 1990


    The role of climate-driven chemical weathering on soil production
    journal, January 2014


    Chemical weathering response to tectonic forcing: A soils perspective from the San Gabriel Mountains, California
    journal, March 2012

    • Dixon, Jean L.; Hartshorn, Anthony S.; Heimsath, Arjun M.
    • Earth and Planetary Science Letters, Vol. 323-324
    • DOI: 10.1016/j.epsl.2012.01.010

    Geomorphically based predictive mapping of soil thickness in upland watersheds: PREDICTION OF SOIL THICKNESS
    journal, September 2009

    • Pelletier, Jon D.; Rasmussen, Craig
    • Water Resources Research, Vol. 45, Issue 9
    • DOI: 10.1029/2008wr007319

    A gridded global data set of soil, intact regolith, and sedimentary deposit thicknesses for regional and global land surface modeling
    journal, January 2016

    • Pelletier, Jon D.; Broxton, Patrick D.; Hazenberg, Pieter
    • Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems, Vol. 8, Issue 1
    • DOI: 10.1002/2015ms000526

    Climate-driven thresholds for chemical weathering in postglacial soils of New Zealand: CLIMATE-DRIVEN WEATHERING THRESHOLDS
    journal, September 2016

    • Dixon, Jean L.; Chadwick, Oliver A.; Vitousek, Peter M.
    • Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface, Vol. 121, Issue 9
    • DOI: 10.1002/2016jf003864

    The Chronosequence Concept and Soil Formation
    journal, December 1970

    • Stevens, P. R.; Walker, T. W.
    • The Quarterly Review of Biology, Vol. 45, Issue 4
    • DOI: 10.1086/406646

    Temporal and spatial patterns of Holocene dune activity on the Great Plains of North America: megadroughts and climate links
    journal, May 2001


    The dependence of chemical weathering rates on fluid residence time
    journal, May 2010


    Competition between erosion and reaction kinetics in controlling silicate-weathering rates
    journal, April 2010

    • Hilley, G. E.; Chamberlain, C. P.; Moon, S.
    • Earth and Planetary Science Letters, Vol. 293, Issue 1-2
    • DOI: 10.1016/j.epsl.2010.01.008

    Lithologic controls on regolith weathering and mass flux in forested ecosystems of the southwestern USA
    journal, September 2011


    Effects of physical erosion on chemical denudation rates: A numerical modeling study of soil-mantled hillslopes
    journal, August 2008


    Topographic controls on erosion rates in tectonically active mountain ranges
    journal, August 2002


    The effect of time on the weathering of silicate minerals: why do weathering rates differ in the laboratory and field?
    journal, December 2003


    Erosion and landscape development affect plant nutrient status in the Hawaiian Islands
    journal, November 2004


    The convenient fiction of steady-state soil thickness
    journal, May 2010


    Response of mean annual evapotranspiration to vegetation changes at catchment scale
    journal, March 2001

    • Zhang, L.; Dawes, W. R.; Walker, G. R.
    • Water Resources Research, Vol. 37, Issue 3
    • DOI: 10.1029/2000wr900325

    Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES): An Earth Observing System Experiment
    journal, May 1996


    Long-term rates of chemical weathering and physical erosion from cosmogenic nuclides and geochemical mass balance
    journal, November 2003

    • Riebe, Clifford S.; Kirchner, James W.; Finkel, Robert C.
    • Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, Vol. 67, Issue 22
    • DOI: 10.1016/s0016-7037(03)00382-x

    Terrestrial Sediments of the Earth: Development of a Global Unconsolidated Sediments Map Database (GUM): TERRESTRIAL SEDIMENTS OF THE EARTH
    journal, April 2018

    • Börker, J.; Hartmann, J.; Amann, T.
    • Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, Vol. 19, Issue 4
    • DOI: 10.1002/2017gc007273

    Probing deep weathering in the Shale Hills Critical Zone Observatory, Pennsylvania (USA): the hypothesis of nested chemical reaction fronts in the subsurface: NESTED REACTION FRONTS
    journal, April 2013

    • Brantley, Susan L.; Holleran, Molly E.; Jin, Lixin
    • Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, Vol. 38, Issue 11
    • DOI: 10.1002/esp.3415

    A leaky model of long-term soil phosphorus dynamics: LONG-TERM SOIL PHOSPHORUS DYNAMICS
    journal, June 2013

    • Boyle, John F.; Chiverrell, Richard C.; Norton, Stephen A.
    • Global Biogeochemical Cycles, Vol. 27, Issue 2
    • DOI: 10.1002/gbc.20054

    Global Patterns of Groundwater Table Depth
    journal, February 2013


    The geochemical composition of the terrestrial surface (without soils) and comparison with the upper continental crust
    journal, January 2011

    • Hartmann, Jens; Dürr, Hans H.; Moosdorf, Nils
    • International Journal of Earth Sciences, Vol. 101, Issue 1
    • DOI: 10.1007/s00531-010-0635-x

    DIRTMAP: the geological record of dust
    journal, June 2001


    Solution and use of chronofunctions in studying soil development
    journal, August 1980


    Updated high-resolution grids of monthly climatic observations - the CRU TS3.10 Dataset: UPDATED HIGH-RESOLUTION GRIDS OF MONTHLY CLIMATIC OBSERVATIONS
    journal, May 2013

    • Harris, I.; Jones, P. D.; Osborn, T. J.
    • International Journal of Climatology, Vol. 34, Issue 3
    • DOI: 10.1002/joc.3711

    A bottom-up control on fresh-bedrock topography under landscapes
    journal, April 2014

    • Rempe, D. M.; Dietrich, W. E.
    • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 111, Issue 18
    • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1404763111

    Time evolution of the mineralogical composition of Mississippi Valley loess over the last 10kyr: Climate and geochemical modeling
    journal, November 2010

    • Goddéris, Yves; Williams, Jennifer Z.; Schott, Jacques
    • Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, Vol. 74, Issue 22
    • DOI: 10.1016/j.gca.2010.08.023

    The distribution of selected elements and minerals in soil of the conterminous United States
    journal, July 2015


    Weathering and soil Evolution
    journal, January 1949


    The impact of climate on the biogeochemical functioning of volcanic soils
    journal, December 2003


    Uplift, Erosion, and Phosphorus Limitation in Terrestrial Ecosystems
    journal, February 2007


    Linking chronosequences with the rest of the world: predicting soil phosphorus content in denuding landscapes
    journal, April 2010


    Rate control of mineral dissolution under Earth surface conditions
    journal, November 1978


    Tropical soil nutrient distributions determined by biotic and hillslope processes
    journal, January 2016


    A theoretical model coupling chemical weathering rates with denudation rates
    journal, February 2009

    • Gabet, Emmanuel J.; Mudd, Simon M.
    • Geology, Vol. 37, Issue 2
    • DOI: 10.1130/g25270a.1

    Earth is (mostly) flat: Apportionment of the flux of continental sediment over millennial time scales
    journal, March 2013

    • Willenbring, Jane K.; Codilean, Alexandru T.; McElroy, Brandon
    • Geology, Vol. 41, Issue 3
    • DOI: 10.1130/g33918.1

    Sources and paleoclimatic significance of Holocene Bignell Loess, central Great Plains, USA
    journal, July 2003


    The new global lithological map database GLiM: A representation of rock properties at the Earth surface: TECHNICAL BRIEF
    journal, December 2012

    • Hartmann, Jens; Moosdorf, Nils
    • Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, Vol. 13, Issue 12
    • DOI: 10.1029/2012gc004370

    Changes in Soil Phosphorus Fractions and Ecosystem Dynamics across a Long Chronosequence in Hawaii
    journal, July 1995

    • Crews, Timothy E.; Kitayama, Kanehiro; Fownes, James H.
    • Ecology, Vol. 76, Issue 5
    • DOI: 10.2307/1938144

    Nutrient limitation reduces land carbon uptake in simulations with a model of combined carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus cycling
    journal, January 2012