Interactions of Soil Hydrology, Land Use and Climate Change and their Impact on Soil Quality

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Resource or Project Abstract

The quality and characteristics of Irish soils are shaped not only by their parent geological material but also by climate and land use. This project has shown that the temperate, perennially-moist climate in Ireland has the effect of maintaining and sustaining Irish soils at elevated soil organic carbon (SOC) levels, high levels of porosity and lower levels of bulk density, than is the case in drier climates for similarly textured soils. We have found that this results in Irish soils having greater hydraulic conductivities than similarly textured soils in drier climates. Grassland is the dominant land cover in Ireland, and this enables Irish soils to be protected and, to some extent, insulated from serious erosion, loss of organic matter and landslides. In many EU countries, soil quality is under threat from a host of natural and anthropogenic activities. These threats include erosion, loss of organic matter (or SOC), compaction, surface sealing (or urbanisation) and landslides. The aims of this project were to attempt to quantify these threats across Ireland.

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Contact Information for This Resource

Prof. Gerard Kiely
University College Cork

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Attachment Name and Download Link
Att 1    7_bulk.xls   (0.03 Mb)
Att 2    1347_bulk.xls   (0.02 Mb)
Att 3    SoilC_FinalData_04.Sept.08.xls   (0.2 Mb)
Att 4    SoilH_Field_Data_Results.xls   (0.84 Mb)
Att 5    330_bulk.xls   (0.02 Mb)
Att 6    107B2A330_bulk.xls   (0.02 Mb)
Att 7    77_bulk.xls   (0.03 Mb)
Att 8    68_bulk.xls   (0.02 Mb)
Att 9    1333_bulk.xls   (0.02 Mb)
Att 10    975_Kells_bulk.xls   (0.03 Mb)

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Author(s)Kiely, G.
Title Of WebsiteSecure Archive For Environmental Research Data
Publication InformationInteractions of Soil Hydrology, Land Use and Climate Change and their Impact on Soil Quality
Name of OrganisationEnvironmental Protection Agency Ireland
Electronic Address or URL
Unique Identifiere6df65fa-e1b8-11e3-b233-005056ae0019
Date of AccessLast Updated on SAFER: 2024-07-16

An example of this citation in proper usage:

Kiely, G.   "Interactions of Soil Hydrology, Land Use and Climate Change and their Impact on Soil Quality". Associated datasets and digitial information objects connected to this resource are available at: Secure Archive For Environmental Research Data (SAFER) managed by Environmental Protection Agency Ireland (Last Accessed: 2024-07-16)


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Access Information For This Resource

SAFER-Data Display URL
Resource KeywordsSoil Threats; Soil Hydrology; Erosion; Loss of Organic Matter; Landslides; Compaction; Surface Sealing.
EPA/ERTDI/STRIVE Project Code2007-S-SL-1-S1
EPA/ERTDI/STRIVE Project ThemeLand-use, Soils, and Transport
Resource Availability: Any User Can Download Files From This Resource
Limitations on the use of this ResourceThe reliability, quality and completeness of data gained through SAFER-Data is intended to be used in an education or research context. These data are not guaranteed for use in operational or decision-making settings. The EPA and SAFER-Data requests an acknowledgement (in publications, conference papers, etc) from those who use data/information received with SAFER-Data. This acknowledgement should state the original creators of the data/information. An automated citation is provided below. It is not ethical to publish data/information without proper attribution or co-authorship. The data/information are the intellectual property of the collecting investigator(s). The data/information may be freely downloaded and used by all who respect the restrictions and requirements in the previous paragraphs.
Number of Attached Files (Publicly and Openly Available for Download): 14
Project Start Date Monday 1st June 2009 (01-06-2009)
Earliest Recorded Date within any attached datasets or digital objects Monday 1st June 2009 (01-06-2009)
Most Recent Recorded Date within any attached datasets or digital objects Friday 1st June 2012 (01-06-2012)
Published on SAFERThursday 22nd May 2014 (22-05-2014)
Date of Last EditThursday 26th March 2015 at 15:57:43 (26-03-2015)
Datasets or Files Updated On Thursday 22nd May 2014 at 14:51:22 (22-05-2014)

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Geographical and Spatial Information Related To This Resource

Description of Geographical Characteristics of This Project or Dataset
Sites were examined all over Ireland. For more detail please consult the data files.

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Supplementary Information About This Resource

In this section some supplementary information about this resource is outlined. Lineage information helps us to understand why this project was carried out, what policy or research requirements did it fulfil, etc. Lineage is important in understanding the rationale behind the carrying out of a project or the collection of a specific dataset etc. Links to web sites, applications, papers, etc are outlined to provide you with additional information or supplementary reading about the project or dataset

Lineage information about this project or dataset
We found no evidence of widespread soil degradation across the Irish sites that we examined in this project. This is in contrast to our EU neighbours, who suffer widely from the threats that we examined in this project. There is little evidence of widespread erosion or loss of SOC, and that which does occur is at a low rate by international comparison. Similarly, there is little evidence of widespread compaction of the Irish soils that we examined, and the naturally occurring perennial low-intensity rainfall and high levels of SOC, combined with the widespread land cover of grassland, seems to insulate Irish soils from compaction. Surface sealing (or urbanisation) has increased significantly, particularly since 1990, with urbanisation (plus suburbanisation and road infrastructure) now at ~ 2.1% of the total land area. However, the 2.1% is low on the international scale. Most EU countries are at levels twice this or more. Of the 136 landslides documented by the GSI, almost half are in peatlands and most are recent, and are attributed to climate effects, road construction and wind farm development. However, on the international scale Ireland has few landslides.
Supplementary Information
He Yaxin (2010). Estimating soil erosion and sediment yield with GIS, RUSLE and SEDD: A case study in Ireland. National University of Ireland, Galway. MA thesis.
Lewis, C. (2011). Measurement and modelling of soil hydrological properties for use in the distributed rainfall-runoff model GEOtop. University College Cork, PhD thesis.

Peer-reviewed papers published
Dao, L.G., Morrison, L., Kiely, G. and Zhang. C.S., 2012, Spatial distribution of potentially bioavailable metals in surface soils of a contaminated sports ground in Galway, Ireland. Environmental Geochemistry and Health 35(2), 227?238.
Khalil, I., Kiely, G., O?Brien, P. and Müller, C., 2012, Organic carbon stocks in agricultural soils in Ireland using combined empirical and GIS approaches. Geoderma 193?194: 222?235.
Koehler, A.K., Murphy, K., Kiely, G. and Sottocornola, M., 2008, Seasonal variation of DOC concentration and annual loss of DOC from an Atlantic blanket bog in South-western Ireland. Biogeochemistry 95(2?3): 231?242.
Lewis, C., Albertson, J., Xu, X. and Kiely, G., 2011,. Spatial variability of hydraulic conductivity and bulk density along a blanket peatland hillslope. Hydrological Processes 26(10): 1527?1537.
Lewis, C., Albertson, J., Zi, T., Xu, X. and Kiely, G. (2012). How does afforestation affect the hydrology of a blanket peatland? A modelling study. Hydrological Processes doi: 10.1002/hyp.9486
Liu, W., Xu, X. and Kiely, G., 2011, Spatial variability of remotely sensed soil moisture in a temperate-humid grassland catchment. Ecohydrology 5: 668?676.
Xu, X., Kiely, G. and Lewis, C., 2009, Estimation and analysis of soil hydraulic properties through infiltration experiments: Comparison of BEST and DL fitting methods. Soil Use and Management 25: 354?361.
Xu, X., Lewis, C., Liu, W., Albertson, J.D. and Kiely, G., 2012, Analysis of single-ring infiltrometer data: comparison of BEST and Wu methods . Agricultural Water Management, 107, 34?41.
Xu, X., Liu, W. and Kiely, G., 2011, Modeling the change in soil organic carbon of grassland in response to climate change: Effects of measured versus modelled carbon pools for initializing the Rothamsted Carbon model. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment doi:10.1016/j.agee.2010.12.018
Xu, X., Liu, W., Zhang, C. and Kiely, G., 2011, Estimation of soil organic carbon stock and its spatial distribution in the Republic of Ireland. Soil Use and Management doi:10.1111/j.1475-2743.2011.00342.x
Zhang, C.S., Tang, Y., Luo, L. and Xu, W.L., 2009, Outlier identification and visualization for Pb concentrations in urban soils and its implications for identification of potential contaminated land. Environmental Pollution 157: 3083?3090.
Zhang, C., Tang, T., Xu, X. and Kiely, G., 2011, Towards spatial geochemical modeling: Use of geographical weighted regression for mapping soil organic carbon contents in Ireland. Applied Geochemistry 26(7): 397?441.

GIS Shapefile layers are attached. A document describes the contents of these shapefiles.
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