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Wiesmeier M.,TU Munich | Barthold F.,University of Potsdam | Sporlein P.,Bayerisches Landesamt fur Umwelt LfU | Geuss U.,Bayerisches Landesamt fur Umwelt LfU | And 6 more authors.
Geoderma Regional | Year: 2015

Precise estimations of soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks at large spatial scales are a precondition for national SOC inventories but challenging due to the high spatial variability of SOC. In this study, a comprehensive data set of 1460 soil profiles completely sampled down to the parent material or at least to a depth of 1 m was used to spatially predict SOC stocks for the state of Bavaria in southeast Germany using a geostatistical modeling approach. The model predicted SOC stocks of the main land uses cropland, grassland and forest with an explained variance of 52% of the total SOC variability within Bavaria. The most important factors, which control the spatial variability of SOC storage, were land use, soil type, soil moisture (indicated by the topographic wetness index) and climate (precipitation, temperature). An analysis of the generated SOC map showed that low to medium SOC stocks within the largest part of Bavaria were explained by land use whereas areas of high SOC stocks in floodplains along rivers, bogs and mountainous regions in the Alps and low mountain ranges were related to soil moisture, soil type and climate. A total SOC stock of 760 Mt was calculated for Bavaria with 223 Mt (29%) in cropland soils, 125 Mt (16%) in grassland soils, 257 Mt (34%) in forest soils, 7-29 Mt (1-4%) in bogs and 159 Mt (21%) under other land uses. In view of high SOC stocks in floodplains and mountainous areas, major anthropogenic disturbances of respective soils (e.g. intensification of the land use) should be avoided in these regions. © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


Rappl A.,TU Munich | Wetzel K.-F.,University of Augsburg | Buttner G.,Bayerisches Landesamt fur Umwelt LfU | Scholz M.,Bayerisches Landesamt fur Umwelt LfU
Hydrologie und Wasserbewirtschaftung | Year: 2010

Groundwater represents about 30 % of the global freshwater resources. Due to the coverage of the groundwater bodies by rocks of different thickness, direct Observation of processes in aquifers is not possible in most cases. The indirect examination of groundwater bodies is the main subject of tracer hydrology. Today fluorescence tracers like Uranin and Eosin are the preferred markers in groundwater hydrology. The scope of their uses is wide. They are applied to delimit catchments, examine reservoir leakages, groundwater flow velocities and directions as well as hydrological aquifer characteristics. In the current study, the dye tracers Uranin and Eosin were applied to establish the catchment borders of the Partnach Spring in the high mountain karst system of the Zugspitze area. Further-more, the hydrogeological characteristics of the karst aquifer were examined by means of the tracer test. The study was made in the context of a prospective research programme on high-mountain hydrology in the area of the Wetterstein Range.


Wiesmeier M.,TU Munich | Schad P.,TU Munich | von Lutzow M.,TU Munich | Poeplau C.,Thuenen Institute for Agricultural Climate Research | And 6 more authors.
Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment | Year: 2014

The management of soils as well as the impact of land use or climate changes are often evaluated in view of the storage of total soil organic carbon (SOC). However, as soil organic matter (SOM) is composed of different compounds with different degrees of stability and turnover times, there is the need for a soil- and land use-specific quantification of functional SOC pools. In this study, the amount of active, intermediate and passive SOC pools was determined for major soil types and land uses of Bavaria in southeast Germany. At 99 locations, soil horizons down to the parent material were fractionated according to the method of Zimmermann et al. (2007). The results showed that in cropland and grassland soils around 90% of total SOC stocks can be assigned to the intermediate and passive SOC pool. High SOC stocks in grassland soils are partly related to a higher degree of soil aggregation compared to cropland soils. The contribution of intermediate SOC in cropland soils was similar to that in grassland soils due to an increased proportion of SOM associated with silt and clay particles. The cultivation-induced loss of SOC due to aggregate disruption is at least partly compensated by increased formation of organo-mineral associations as a result of tillage that continuously promotes the contact of crop residues with reactive mineral surfaces. Contrary, forest soils were characterized by distinctly lower proportions of intermediate and passive SOC and a high amount of active SOC in form of litter and particulate organic matter which accounted for almost 40% of total SOC stocks. As both the amount of intermediate and passive SOC were lower in forest soils, we conclude that cropland and grassland soils may be more advantageous for long-term SOC storage in Bavaria. The high amount of labile SOC in forest topsoils poses the risk of considerable SOC losses caused by wildfire, mechanical disturbances or increasing temperatures. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.


Fiebig M.,University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna | Herbst P.,GWU Geologie Wasser Umwelt | Drescher-Schneider R.,Schillingsdorfer Str. 27 | Luthgens C.,University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna | And 2 more authors.
Quaternary International | Year: 2014

The amount of glacial advances into the alpine foreland during the Pleistocene is still a matter of discussion. The big four glaciations of the classical approach were originally derived from outwash sequences. From glacial basins, only very few long records and studies are known. In the context of a geological mapping programme of the Bavarian Environment Agency, a research drilling through the Salzach foreland glacier area was undertaken. Continuous coring reached the base of the glacial basin sequence 117 m below surface. Geological and geophysical logging, pollen sampling and dating attempts of core material were conducted. While age constraints for the lower part of the sequence are still uncertain, the upper part can be ascribed to the Last Glacial cycle. The interpretation of diamictons from the early part of the Last Glacial cycle is discussed. A validation compared to other stratigraphic observations and interpretations from northern alpine Quaternary records is presented. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA.


Wiesmeier M.,TU Munich | Lutzow M.V.,TU Munich | Sporlein P.,Bayerisches Landesamt fur Umwelt LfU | Geuss U.,Bayerisches Landesamt fur Umwelt LfU | And 4 more authors.
Soil and Tillage Research | Year: 2015

Numerous studies have reported substantial changes of soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks after converting forests into agricultural land and vice versa. However, some studies suggested that agricultural soils might contain similar amounts of SOC as forest soils. Losses of SOC induced by cultivation might be overestimated due to shallow soil sampling and application of inaccurate pedotransfer functions. We investigated the impact of different land uses on total SOC storage down to the subsoil on the basis of 270 soil profiles in southeast Germany under similar climatic and pedogenic conditions using an equivalent soil mass (ESM) approach. Land use effects on SOC storage were strongly affected by soil class, which comprised soil types with similar pedogenesis. Both slightly lower (<20%) and even higher SOC stocks were found under cropland compared with forest land for different soil classes. A comparison of different soil classes under grassland and forest land also showed no considerable differences of SOC stocks. Soil cultivation may not generally be associated with a strong decline of SOC, as tillage probably promotes the formation of organo-mineral associations and a relocation of SOC with depth may decrease its decomposition. This finding should be taken into consideration when estimating and managing the emission and sequestration of C in soils. We assume that many studies based on topsoils alone may have underestimated agricultural SOC stocks, particularly when an ESM approach is used. Our results highlight the need for soil type-specific evaluations in terms of interpreting the effects of land use management on SOC stocks. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.


Wiesmeier M.,TU Munich | Sporlein P.,Bayerisches Landesamt fur Umwelt LfU | Geuss U.,Bayerisches Landesamt fur Umwelt LfU | Hangen E.,Bayerisches Landesamt fur Umwelt LfU | And 5 more authors.
Global Change Biology | Year: 2012

Precise estimations of soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks are of decided importance for the detection of C sequestration or emission potential induced by land use changes. For Germany, a comprehensive, land use-specific SOC data set has not yet been compiled. We evaluated a unique data set of 1460 soil profiles in southeast Germany in order to calculate representative SOC stocks to a depth of 1 m for the main land use types. The results showed that grassland soils stored the highest amount of SOC, with a median value of 11.8 kg m-2, whereas considerably lower stocks of 9.8 and 9.0 kg m-2 were found for forest and cropland soils, respectively. However, the differences between extensively used land (grassland, forest) and cropland were much lower compared with results from other studies in central European countries. The depth distribution of SOC showed that despite low SOC concentrations in A horizons of cropland soils, their stocks were not considerably lower compared with other land uses. This was due to a deepening of the topsoil compared with grassland soils. Higher grassland SOC stocks were caused by an accumulation of SOC in the B horizon which was attributable to a high proportion of C-rich Gleysols within grassland soils. This demonstrates the relevance of pedogenetic SOC inventories instead of solely land use-based approaches. Our study indicated that cultivation-induced SOC depletion was probably often overestimated since most studies use fixed depth increments. Moreover, the application of modelled parameters in SOC inventories is questioned because a calculation of SOC stocks using different pedotransfer functions revealed considerably biased results. We recommend SOC stocks be determined by horizon for the entire soil profile in order to estimate the impact of land use changes precisely and to evaluate C sequestration potentials more accurately. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


Korner S.,Bayerisches Landesamt fur Umwelt LfU | Reifenhauser C.,Bayerisches Landesamt fur Umwelt LfU
Kerntechnik | Year: 2012

In Germany radon exposure at certain workplaces has been regulated by the Radiation Protection Ordinance since 2001. However in Bavaria studies have been conducted since 1996. The radon exposure of all staff concerned was estimated and thereby several companies were identified where the exposure exceeded 6 mSv per year. Since then the exposure of the staff has been continuously monitored in these companies. Remediation measures specifically adjusted to local conditions led to a reduction of the exposure in many of these companies. Therefore only in 11 of the original 81 companies exposures of more than 6 mSv/a persist until today. As the Bavarian Environment Agency (LfU) oversaw the measurements and remediation measures there exists profound knowledge within the LfU of the local conditions mainly in water supply facilities as well as of the various remediation measures and their success. Furthermore, a few investigations concerning radon are carried out at workplaces not regulated by the Radiation Protection Ordinance. As an example we present a town hall where the measured radon concentrations led to a heated public dispute. Here the LfU successfully communicated factual information and the evaluation of the radon situation with regard to international recommendations. © Carl Hanser Verlag, München.


Due to new processes of biomass transformation, e.g., gasification, pyrolysis, or hydrothermal carbonization, there are coal-like residues or coal-like products. These substances are commonly called "biochar". The gasification of wood and subsequent conversion into electricity via gas engines is currently the system most in use. The recyclability of coal-like residues or coal-like products will have a considerable effect on economic viability and social acceptance of the technology. Specific rules to evaluate the possibilities of recycling or other types of recovery, in particular, for energy purposes are missing. Characterization of charcoal concerning organic and inorganic harmful substances was carried out. An initial evaluation of analytical data, also based on a comparison with values found at previous studies of "biochar", was carried out.

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