Estimating and analyzing the spatial distribution of soil organic carbon in China

Chenghu Zhou*, Qiming ZHOU, Shaoqiang Wang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


Research on the terrestrial carbon cycle is an important component in the study of global change. Soil organic carbon, as the main part of the terrestrial carbon reservoir, plays an important role in the Earth's carbon cycle. To accurately estimate soil organic carbon storage, its composition and dynamic change must be determined. This presents a challenge to research on the soil carbon cycle, especially in China where the nationwide soil organic carbon reservoir largely remains unknown. This paper reports a research project that attempts to estimate the nationwide soil organic carbon reservoir. Data from 2473 soil profiles from the second national soil survey were collected and GIS technology was employed to quantify the national soil carbon reservoir. The analytical results show that the total amount of soil organic carbon is about 92.4 Pg (Pg = 1015 g) and that the average carbon density is about 10.53 kg C m-2. The spatial distribution of soil organic carbon was also analyzed and mapped. This study presents basic data and an analysis method for carbon-cycle studies and also provides scientific support for policy-making efforts to control CO2 emissions in China.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6-12
Number of pages7
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2003

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Ecology


Dive into the research topics of 'Estimating and analyzing the spatial distribution of soil organic carbon in China'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this