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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/se-2016-142
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/se-2016-142
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 18 Oct 2016

Research article | 18 Oct 2016

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It has been under review for the journal Solid Earth (SE). A final paper in SE is not foreseen.

Holocene erosion triggered by climate change on the central Loess Plateau of China

Gang Liu1,2, Puling Liu1,2, Hai Xiao1, Fenli Zheng1,2, Jiaqiong Zhang1,2, and Feinan Hu1,2 Gang Liu et al.
  • 1State Key Laboratory of Soil Erosion and Dryland Farming on the Loess Plateau, Institute of Soil and Water Conservation, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, China
  • 2Institute of Soil and Water Conservation of Chinese Academy of Sciences and Ministry of Water Resources, Yangling 712100, China

Abstract. Understanding changes in Holocene erosion is essential for predicting soil erosion in the future. However, the quantitative response of natural erosion to Holocene climate change is limited for the Loess Plateau of China. In this study, two soil profiles were investigated in Luochuan and Yanchang sites on the central Loess Plateau of China, and four climate indicators, i.e. magnetic susceptibility, calcium carbonate content, total organic carbon content, and clay content (<0.005mm) were analysed to describe climate change. The fitted equations using modern pedogenic susceptibility, precipitation, and temperature were used to quantitatively reconstruct paleoprecipitation and paleotemperature in the Holocene. The current relationship between soil erosion intensity and precipitation was determined and used to estimate historical erosion. Results indicated that the climate was coldest and driest between 12000 and 8500cal.yrBP, then became warmer and wetter during 8500 to 5500cal.yrBP. The warmest and wettest climate was from 5500 to 3000cal.yrBP and was getting colder and dryer over the last 3000cal.yrBP. Holocene erosion intensity changed with fluctuation of mean annual precipitation, and these changes were similar in both sites. However, the peak erosion values were 20790tkm−2yr−1 in 7500cal.yrBP and 21552tkm−2yr−1 in 3300cal.yrBP in Luochuan and Yanchang sites, respectively. Furthermore, more rapidly increasing and more severe soil erosion was predicted in Yanchang site than Luochuan with a range between 4090 and 15025tkm−2yr−1 during the last 1800cal.yrBP. This study proposed a new quantitative method to research historical soil erosion triggered by climate change, which can not only derive detailed soil erosion intensity change with variation of climate, but also provide a way to compare different areas.

Gang Liu et al.
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Interactive discussion
Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
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Gang Liu et al.
Gang Liu et al.
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