Project goals

Project КП06-Н46/4 from 27.11.2020 г., financed by National Science Fund-Ministry of Education and Science, titled “Efficiency of erosion control agrotechnologies for improvement of soil quality and water regime and mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions”. Duration 2020-2023

Soil water erosion is the most widespread form of soil degradation with ecological, climatic and economic consequences. The aim of the project is to investigate the interrelationships between soil erosion and water balance, biodiversity, organic and nutrient storage of Epicalcic Chernozem and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions via field experiments and model simulations. The agrotechnical and soil protection efficiency of different soil tillage systems applied during winter wheat-maize crop rotation in the Experimental Station for Erosion Control of ISSAPP N. Poushkarov in the village of Trastenik, district Ruse, will be evaluated. It is envisaged to apply: conventional tillage along the slope; conventional tillage across the slope; minimum tillage across the slope using a pre-crop before the maize to be used for green manure. The efficiency of the applied agrotechnologies on the soil quality will be evaluated trough soil indicators based on physical , chemical and microbiological characteristics. The direct effect of the applied agrotechnologies on crops will be measured through biometric  and energy indicators  and modeled by deterministic simulation models (WOFOST, WinIsareg). The GHG (CO2 и N2O) emissions will be monitored after each soil tillage event. The time series of meteorological and soil moisture data registered by the automated stations will be used for assessing the dynamics of the components of soil water balance. Soil erosion analyses in extended temporal (long-term time series) and spatial (watershed) scales will be realized through hydrological model SWAT. The obtained experimental data will be used for statistical analyses, model calibration and validations, and risk analyses of the impact of soil erosion and the applied agrotechnologies on the cycles of water, carbon and nitrogen, and on soil biodiversity. The expected results will enhanced the knowledge for the mechanisms which lead to improvement of soil structure and soil moisture regime, increase of soil organic carbon and nutrient storage and reduction of GHG emissions by the applied erosion control agrotechnologies.