Mapping and monitoring soil organic carbon in the Clay Belt of Northern Ontario

Montano Lopez, Fernando de Jesus
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University of Guelph

The increasing population is demanding more food, fuel, fiber and energy. To meet this demand, an unwanted alternative could be the disturbance of natural ecosystems, which threatens natural processes that occur in soil, particularly affecting organic carbon (SOC). This SOC is vital in the maintenance of life in the world. The purpose of this research is to assess the status of SOC in the Great Clay Belt region of Northern Ontario, quantify its distribution and backward-predicting its change. Results showed that SOC predictions collected with a novel sampling approach performed better than existing soil data. Also, the use of space-for-time analysis was capable of detecting spatiotemporal changes in SOC from 1990 to 2020. This research project made use of digital soil mapping techniques and laboratory analysis. Information generated in this study could help to explore the potential of extending agricultural production while sustaining our environment.

Soil organic carbon, digital soil mapping, Great Clay Belt of Northern Ontario