Next Article in Journal
The Identification of Iran’s Moisture Sources Using a Lagrangian Particle Dispersion Model
Previous Article in Journal
The Quasi-Biweekly Oscillation of Winter Precipitation Associated with ENSO over Southern China
Article

Closing the N-Budget: How Simulated Groundwater-Borne Nitrate Supply Affects Plant Growth and Greenhouse Gas Emissions on Temperate Grassland

1
Institute for Landscape Ecology and Resources Management, Research Centre for BioSystems, Land Use and Nutrition (iFZ), Justus Liebig University Giessen, Heinrich-Buff-Ring 26, 35392 Giessen, Germany
2
Center for International Development and Environmental Research, Justus Liebig University Giessen, Senckenbergstraße 3, 35390 Giessen, Germany
3
Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research–Atmospheric Environmental Research (IMK-IFU), Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Kreuzeckbahnstraße 19, 82467 Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany
4
Institute for Plant Ecology, Research Centre for BioSystems, Land Use and Nutrition (iFZ), Justus Liebig University Giessen, Heinrich-Buff-Ring 26, 35392 Giessen, Germany
5
School of Biology and Environmental Science and Earth Institute, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Atmosphere 2018, 9(10), 407; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9100407
Received: 7 June 2018 / Revised: 12 October 2018 / Accepted: 12 October 2018 / Published: 17 October 2018
European groundwater reservoirs are frequently subject to reactive nitrogen pollution (Nr) owing to the intensive use of nitrogen (N) fertilizer and animal manure in agriculture. Besides its risk on human health, groundwater Nr loading also affects the carbon (C) and N cycle of associated ecosystems. For a temperate grassland in Germany, the long-term (12 years) annual average exports of Nr in form of harvest exceeded Nr inputs via fertilization and deposition by more than 50 kgN ha−1. We hypothesize that the resulting deficit in the N budget of the plant-soil system could be closed by Nr input via the groundwater. To test this hypothesis, the ecosystem model LandscapeDNDC was used to simulate the C and N cycle of the respective grassland under different model setups, i.e., with and without additional Nr inputs via groundwater transport. Simulated plant nitrate uptake compensated the measured N deficit for 2 of 3 plots and lead to substantial improvements regarding the match between simulated and observed plant biomass and CO2 emission. This suggests that the C and N cycle of the investigated grassland were influenced by Nr inputs via groundwater transport. We also found that inputs of nitrate-rich groundwater increased the modelled nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions, while soil water content was not affected. View Full-Text
Keywords: biogeochemical ecosystem model; sensitivity analysis; uncertainty assessment; soil moisture; biomass production biogeochemical ecosystem model; sensitivity analysis; uncertainty assessment; soil moisture; biomass production
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

MDPI and ACS Style

Liebermann, R.; Breuer, L.; Houska, T.; Klatt, S.; Kraus, D.; Haas, E.; Müller, C.; Kraft, P. Closing the N-Budget: How Simulated Groundwater-Borne Nitrate Supply Affects Plant Growth and Greenhouse Gas Emissions on Temperate Grassland. Atmosphere 2018, 9, 407. https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9100407

AMA Style

Liebermann R, Breuer L, Houska T, Klatt S, Kraus D, Haas E, Müller C, Kraft P. Closing the N-Budget: How Simulated Groundwater-Borne Nitrate Supply Affects Plant Growth and Greenhouse Gas Emissions on Temperate Grassland. Atmosphere. 2018; 9(10):407. https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9100407

Chicago/Turabian Style

Liebermann, Ralf, Lutz Breuer, Tobias Houska, Steffen Klatt, David Kraus, Edwin Haas, Christoph Müller, and Philipp Kraft. 2018. "Closing the N-Budget: How Simulated Groundwater-Borne Nitrate Supply Affects Plant Growth and Greenhouse Gas Emissions on Temperate Grassland" Atmosphere 9, no. 10: 407. https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9100407

Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop