The Future Okavango
 
 You are here: HomeTFO ProjectsSoil & crops
TFO Projects
Visitors since 21 December 2010
 




Subproject

SP03 - Interactions of soil related ESF&S with land use practice under climate change



Contact

Prof. Dr. Annette Eschenbach
University of Hamburg
Institute of Soil Science
Allende-Platz 2
20146 Hamburg
Germany

Phone: +49 40 42838 2008
 a.eschenbach@ifb.uni-hamburg.de
Dr. Alexander Groengroeft
University of Hamburg
Institute of Soil Science
Allende-Platz 2
20146 Hamburg
Germany

Phone: +49 40 42838 4395
 a.groengroeft@ifb.uni-hamburg.de 
Dr. Ibo Zimmermann
Polytechnic of Namibia
P. Bag 13388
Windhoek
Namibia

Phone:  +264 612 072 461
 izimmermann@polytechnic.edu.na

Participants


Ongoing Research


Introduction

Within “The Future Okavango” this subproject focuses on the analysis and assessment of the soil related ecosystem functions, their interaction with land use management and their vulnerability to the predicted climate change. The research will investigate how to stabilise key ecosystem services and thus sustain human livelihood. In general, human or climate induced soil degradation caused by soil erosion, loss of carbon and nutrients among other factors lead to a reduction or loss of soil related ESF&S. Within the region, current soil degradation is predominantly associated to overgrazing, unsustainable cropping techniques and human induced fires. In cooperation with partners from Botswana and Namibia the subproject concentrates on five tasks:

  • Soil water availability and groundwater recharge: Here, the main objective is to analyse the soil as a prominent modifier of the local to regional water balance.

  • Influence of land use management and climate change on soil carbon pools and sequestration: This task aims to characterise the C-fluxes and pools and to balance C-turnover.

  • Nutrient dynamics: This task focuses on the role of macro- and micronutrients for
    • the biomass productivity of natural woodlands
    • the production of crop yields on different farming systems and
    • the potential impacts on the surface water phase of the Okavango river system in case of nutrient leaching

  • Interlinkage to the valuation of ecosystem services: This task focuses on the interlinkage between soil functions and the valuation of ESS

  • Agronomic benchmark sites: This task aims to identify and establish benchmarks of fields under dryland farming and irrigation that achieve optimum ecological functioning


Tasks

The tasks will be analysed on a selected set of study sites following a north-west to south-east climate gradient and representing the major natural landscape units. Within jointly selected sub-regions, sites differing in land use management (e.g. nature reserved woodland to irrigation farming) will be compared with respect to their soil related ecosystem functions allowing the identification of land use potentials. The results of this task will feed into the development of stakeholder oriented tools for management and decision making.



Photo gallery


Photo
Mahango field in the Kavango, Namibia
© Alexander Groengroeft
Photo
Large Kiat (Pterocarpus angolensis) tree in the Kavango woodlands, Namibia
© Alexander Groengroeft
Photo
After soil sampling on the acres of the Kavango, Namibia
© Alexander Groengroeft
Photo
Soil sampling and profile description in the Kavango, Namibia
© Alexander Groengroeft