FAO Forestry Paper 168

Soil carbon monitoring using surveys and modelling

General description and application in the United Republic of Tanzania

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Rome 2012



The designations employed and the presentation of material in this information product do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) concerning the legal or development status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries. The mention of specific companies or products of manufacturers, whether or not these have been patented, does not imply that these have been endorsed or recommended by FAO in preference to others of a similar nature
that are not mentioned.

The views expressed in this information product are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of FAO.

ISBN 978-92-5-107271-4

All rights reserved. FAO encourages the reproduction and dissemination of material in this information product. Non-commercial uses will be authorized free of charge, upon request. Reproduction for resale or other commercial purposes, including educational purposes, may incur fees. Applications for permission to reproduce or disseminate FAO copyright materials, and all queries concerning rights and licences, should be addressed by e-mail to copyright@fao.org or to the Chief, Publishing Policy and Support Branch, Office of Knowledge Exchange, Research and Extension, FAO, Viale delle Terme di Caracalla, 00153 Rome, Italy.

© FAO 2012


Contents

(Download complete version - 756 KB)


Foreword
Acknowledgements
Acronyms
Executive summary
(Download - 324 KB)

Introduction (Download - 44 KB)

Need for soil carbon estimates
Soil carbon cycle
Conflicts at the human–wildlife–livestock interface
Challenges in monitoring changes in soil carbon
Methods of monitoring changes in soil carbon
Objective of this report

Soil carbon monitoring based on repeated measurements (Download - 95 KB)

Designing a soil carbon survey
Improving the efficiency of the sampling effort
Information needed to design a repeated soil carbon inventory

Between-site variation in soil carbon stock and number of plots to be measured
Within-site variation and determination of number of subsamples per plot

Uncertainties in soil carbon surveys

Sources of uncertainty
Sampling errors
Measurement errors

Quality control and quality assurance in soil carbon inventories

Need for consistency control
Soil sampling
Laboratory analyses

Model-based soil carbon monitoring (Download - 86 KB)

Model-based soil carbon monitoring system
Practical application of a model-based soil carbon monitoring system

Evaluation of soil carbon monitoring methods  (Download - 46 KB)

Soil carbon monitoring in the United Republic of Tanzania (Download - 187 KB)

Soil organic carbon stock inventory in the United Republic of Tanzania

Background and rationale
NAFORMA sampling design
Sampling design in first soil survey
Soil sampling
Observations at a sample point
Compositing soil samples
Feasibility of the soil sampling design and its practical implementation

Measurements needed for designing a repeated soil carbon survey in the United Republic of Tanzania

Number of soil sampling plots to be measured
Within-site variation and determination of number of subsamples per plot

Model-based method

Overview of the task
Soil carbon model choice
Reliability of model-calculated soil carbon estimates
Spatial calculation units
Litter input and litter quality estimates
Climate data
Land-use change estimates
Initial soil carbon stock
Simulation of soil carbon changes

Local measurements to support the model application

Purpose of local measurements
Soil carbon pool
Litter decomposition and litter chemistry
Litter production

Recommendations for soil carbon monitoring in the United Republic of Tanzania

References (Download - 246 KB)