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Soil and vegetation change on a coal mine 15 years after reclamation in the aspen parkland of Alberta

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Title: Soil and vegetation change on a coal mine 15 years after reclamation in the aspen parkland of Alberta
Author: Stanton-Kennedy, Tremayne
Department: School of Environmental Design and Rural Development
Program: Landscape Architecture
Abstract: To evaluate the outcomes of reclamation design, soil and plant community changes on an unmanaged, 15-year-old certified-reclaimed site were analysed and compared with an undisturbed reference location. Patterns were analysed using MRPP while change was measured with rmANOVA. Plant species were poor predictors of selected soil properties. Percent soil organic carbon increased (p = 0.032), while soil pH did not change. Overall plant community composition did not change in proportion of cover between a priori groups of seeded/unseeded species or between native/introduced species. Individual species did vary in amount of cover change between 1993 and 2007. A linear regression of richness versus area covered by native species determined that the Shannon index is not a suitable measurement for monitoring plant community change towards the reference ecosystem. These findings highlight the importance of initial design, and the potential additive role of landscape architects as part of reclamation planning.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10214/1890
Date: 2009-02-13


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