Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment (AGR ECOSYST ENVIRON )

Publisher: Elsevier


Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment deals with the interface between agriculture and the environment. Preference is given to papers that develop and apply interdisciplinarity, bridge scientific disciplines, integrate scientific analyses derived from different perspectives of agroecosystem sustainability, and are put in as wide an international or comparative context as possible. It is addressed to scientists in agriculture, food production, agroforestry, ecology, environment, earth and resource management, and administrators and policy-makers in these fields. The journal regularly covers topics such as: ecology of agricultural production methods; influence of agricultural production methods on the environment, including soil, water and air quality, and use of energy and non-renewable resources; agroecosystem management, functioning, health, and complexity, including agro-biodiversity and response of multi-species ecosystems to environmental stress; the effect of pollutants on agriculture; agro-landscape values and changes, landscape indicators and sustainable land use; farming system changes and dynamics; integrated pest management and crop protection; and problems of agroecosystems from a biological, physical, economic, and socio-cultural standpoint. Types of papers The Journal publishes original scientific papers, short communications, review articles, book reviews, special issues containing selected and edited papers dealing with a specific theme or based on a conference or workshop, and occasional editorials and commentaries at the discretion of the Editors-in-Chief. A section of this journal is now published as the companion journal Applied Soil Ecology.

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    Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment website
  • Other titles
    Agriculture, ecosystems & environment, Agriculture, ecosystems, and environment
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    Periodical, Internet resource
  • Document type
    Journal / Magazine / Newspaper, Internet Resource

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    • Publisher last contacted on 18/10/2013
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Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The highest wheat productivity was obtained on slightly and moderately eroded soils.•The mobility of potassium, which is expressed as increase of AK, Ex-K and Ex-K/AK ratio increased in eroded soils•The highest content of AP, AK and Ex-K was fixed in moderately eroded soil.•Negative impact of erosion was expressed in decrease of SOC, TP and TN .
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 02/2015; 200.
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    ABSTRACT: Total available N (TAN) of soil mineral N + mineralized N was assessed as N supply.•Effect of increasing TAN on agronomy and N loss of tomato was evaluated.•Using TAN, optimal N rate much lower than conventional with small potential N loss.•Good irrigation management limited NO3− leaching loss despite large excess of N.•Exponential increase in residual soil mineral N and potential N loss with TAN.
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 02/2015; 200.
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    ABSTRACT: Impounding rain water led to extensive loss of total and microbial carbon.•Prolonged water-logging induced severe stress on microbial processes.•Post-drainage, significant improvement in soil microbial biomass, C and N content.•Post-drainage, significant improvement in soil enzymes and N mineralization.•Rain-water conservation improved soil biological quality and fertility.
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 02/2015; 200.
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    ABSTRACT: A promising option to sequester carbon in agricultural soils is the inclusion of cover crops in cropping systems. The advantage of cover crops as compared to other management practices that increase soil organic carbon (SOC) is that they neither cause a decline in yields, like extensification, nor carbon losses in other systems, like organic manure applications may do. However, the effect of cover crop green manuring on SOC stocks is widely overlooked. We therefore conducted a meta-analysis to derive a carbon response function describing SOC stock changes as a function of time. Data from 139 plots at 37 different sites were compiled. In total, the cover crop treatments had a significantly higher SOC stock than the reference croplands. The time since introduction of cover crops in crop rotations was linearly correlated with SOC stock change (R2 = 0.19) with an annual change rate of 0.32 +/- 0.08 Mg ha-1 yr-1 in a mean soil depth of 22 cm and during the observed period of up to 54 years. Elevation above sea level of the plot and sampling depth could be used as explanatory variables to improve the model fit. Assuming that the observed linear SOC accumulation would not proceed indefinitely, we modeled the average SOC stock change with the carbon turnover model RothC. The predicted new steady state was reached after 155 years of cover crop cultivation with a total mean SOC stock accumulation of 16.7 +/-1.5 Mg ha-1 for a soil depth of 22 cm. Thus, the C input driven SOC sequestration with the introduction of cover crops proved to be highly efficient. We estimated a potential global SOC sequestration of 0.12 +/-0.03 Pg C yr-1, which would compensate for 8% of the direct annual greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture. However, altered N2O emissions and albedo due to cover crop cultivation have not been taken into account here. Data on those processes, which are most likely species-specific, would be needed for reliable greenhouse gas budgets.
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 02/2015; 200:33-41.
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    ABSTRACT: Species richness extends the growing season of riparian communities in agroecosystems.•The growing season of species-rich communities was, on average, 30 days longer.•The relationship was not driven by ground water, air temperature or aboveground phytomass.•Under dry conditions, plant diversity could account for a net carbon uptake gain of 900 kg C yr−1 ha−1.
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 02/2015; 200.
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    ABSTRACT: Uncontrolled land disposal of olive mill waste water (OMW) can potentially result in soil pollution as a consequence of its high chemical and biochemical oxygen demand and high concentration of phytotoxic phenolic compounds. Although both positive and negative effects of OMW on soil quality have been reported, no clear consensus regarding its direct influence on soil hydrophobicity or soil organic matter (SOM) quality is apparent. An improved understanding of any changes in SOM quality would benefit from expanding current characterization approaches to include the determination of SOM stability and physico-chemical properties. In this screening study we investigated topsoils of sites in West Bank and Israel which have been subjected to a significant OMW disposal for several years. In most cases, amounts and disposal method are unknown. In addition to properties such as water repellency and sorption capacity, novel approaches that included carbon isotope ratio (δ13C), thermostability index (TS) and contact angle tensiometry were tested. All polluted soils exhibited stronger water repellency and, in multiple cases, higher sorptive capacity for agrochemicals and were depleted in δ13C. This coincided with higher organic carbon and water extractable organic matter contents with the magnitude of effects clearly stronger than those generally reported for controlled OMW disposal. Extractable organic matter of polluted soils contained higher amounts of non-aromatic compounds like fatty acids and sugars than their controls. Thermal analysis indicated a relative reduction of the recalcitrant OM compared to the controls although interestingly, individual calorific values were higher than those of the unpolluted controls. Water repellency correlated with the isotopic carbon ratio and with the calorific value of the recalcitrant OM, which are both useful indicators for the degree of decomposition of OMW organic matter. The calorific value of recalcitrant OM may also help describe the hydrophobic potential of OMW polluted soils.
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 01/2015; 199:176–189.
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    ABSTRACT: NH3 volatilisation in urine patches is not directly reflected in δ15N of residual soil N.•NO3− isotopic enrichment depends on mineralisation, nitrification, and denitrification.•NO3− in grazed pastures can range from −10‰ to +15‰ (δ15N) and −5‰ to +5‰ (δ18O).
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 01/2015; 199.
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    ABSTRACT: Local farm inventory provided field specific N input to catchments.•Streamwater chemistry is sensitive to landscape scale variation in N input.•Agricultural N input determined streamwater NO3- concentrations.•DON contributes significantly to fluvial N export in grazed grassland catchments.
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 01/2015; 199.
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    ABSTRACT: Nitrate leaching has become a public issue worldwide, but little concern has been given to the intensive crop production system of the Guanzhong Plain in Shaanxi province of China, where excessive N would typically be applied coupled with high summer precipitation. The objectives of this study were to quantify the amount of nitrate leaching losses in croplands under conventional farmer practices and determine the characteristics of nitrate leaching as affected by water input and N fertilization. A consecutive 5-year lysimeter field experiment was conducted with a control (CK), conventional farmer N fertilization (CF-N) and optimum N fertilization (OPT-N) treatments. The results indicated that nitrate leaching mainly occurred after irrigation as well as after concentrated rainfalls in July–September, and varied noticeably between individual years. The annual nitrate leaching losses (ANLL) averaged 2.5(±2.0) kg N hm−2 y−1 for the control, 15.8(±5.6) kg N hm−2 y−1 for the CF-N treatment, and 10.1(±5.6) kg N hm−2 y−1 for the OPT-N treatment, respectively. The annual nitrate leaching factors (ANLF) averaged 2.82(±1.03)% for the CF-N treatment and 2.30(±1.61)% for the OPT-N treatment. In addition, both ANLL and ANLF showed weak correlations with annual rainfall, annual irrigation and even the sum of them. Actually, the ANLL and ANLF were just significantly correlated with the total water input in the months in which nitrate leaching occurred (P < 0.05), being only a small proportion of the annual total water input. Traditional N fertilization greatly exceeded the crop N uptake and inevitably resulted in massive nitrate leaching losses and low value of nitrogen (N) fertilizer use efficiency. In conclusion, optimal N fertilization management contributes to relatively high N use efficiency and reduced nitrate leaching loss, while maintaining high crop yields in this intensive wheat–maize production system.
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 01/2015; 199:34–42.
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    ABSTRACT: The effects of ambient ozone (O3) on wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) varieties HUW 510 and LOK-1 were studied at recommended and 1.5 times recommended NPK under natural field conditions using open top chambers under varying NPK levels. Ambient O3 was filtered out from air through charcoal filters for control plants (FCs), while non-filtered chambers received ambient O3 (NFCs). Twelve hourly mean concentrations of O3 varied from 10.3 to 110 ppb. Plants growing in FCs showed better growth performance and higher biomass accumulation compared to those in NFCs at both NPK levels. There were improvements in yield and its quality parameters in FCs compared to NFCs at both NPK levels with no significant difference in yield between FCs and NFCs at 1.5 times recommended NPK in LOK-1 and at RNPK in HUW 510. Nitrogen utilization efficiency increased in NFCs compared to FCs in both the varieties, but lower capability of N acquisition under ambient O3 led to higher magnitude of reduction in yield of LOK-1 compared to HUW 510 at recommended NPK. The results clearly showed that 1.5 times recommended NPK alleviated the negative effects of ambient O3 pollutant in LOK-1 variety whereas recommended NPK in HUW 510.
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 01/2015; 199:26–33.
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    ABSTRACT: Temperate pastures in the Northeast USA are highly productive and could act as significant sinks for soil organic carbon (SOC). However, soils under mature pastures are often considered to have reached equilibrium such that no further sequestration of SOC is expected. This study quantified changes in pasture SOC over nine years using micrometeorological (eddy covariance) measurements of net changes in ecosystem C and direct measurements of changes in SOC (soil cores). Eddy covariance estimates of C flux were made both with and without corrections for sensor self-heating. Change in SOC as measured by the soil core method was non-significant for the Low-N pasture (19 ± 105 g C m−2 yr−1, P = 0.89). However, a significant loss of −504 ± 91 g C m−2 yr−1 (P = 0.01) occurred for the High-N pasture with the amount lost increasing with depth in the soil profile. Eddy covariance measurements without the self-heating correction differed only slightly between pastures with a net flux of −9 and −20 g C m−2 yr−1 for the Low- and High-N pastures, respectively. Applying the sensor self-heating correction to the eddy covariance data increased the estimated loss of ecosystem C by 94 g m−2 yr−1 for the Low-N and 102 g m−2 yr−1 for the High-N pasture. Both soil cores and eddy covariance suggest that the Low-N pasture was C neutral over the nine years of the study. A large amount of C was lost from deep in the soil profile from the High-N pasture which could not be explained by fluxes measured with the eddy covariance system. Comparison of eddy covariance and soil core data was not useful for determining the appropriateness of using the sensor self-heating correction at this location.
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 01/2015; 199:52–57.