Modeling sediment accumulation in North American playa wetlands in response to climate change, 1940–2100

Metadata Updated: January 29, 2020

Playa wetlands on the west-central Great Plains of North America are vulnerable to sediment infilling from upland agriculture, putting at risk several important ecosystem services as well as essential habitats and food resources of diverse wetland-dependent biota. Climate predictions for this semi-arid area indicate reduced precipitation which may alter rates of erosion, runoff, and sedimentation of playas. We forecasted erosion rates, sediment depths, and resultant playa wetland depths across the west-central Great Plains and examined the relative roles of land use context and projected changes in precipitation in the sedimentation process. We estimated erosion with the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE) using historic values and downscaled precipitation predictions from three general circulation models and three emissions scenarios. We calibrated RUSLE results using field sediment measurements. RUSLE is appealing for regional scale modeling because it uses climate forecasts with monthly resolution and other widely available values including soil texture, slope and land use. Sediment accumulation rates will continue near historic levels through 2070 and will be sufficient to cause most playas (if not already filled) to fill with sediment within the next 100 years in the absence of mitigation. Land use surrounding the playa, whether grassland or tilled cropland, is more influential in sediment accumulation than climate-driven precipitation change.

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License: No license information was provided. If this work was prepared by an officer or employee of the United States government as part of that person's official duties it is considered a U.S. Government Work.

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Metadata Date March 25, 2019
Metadata Created Date January 29, 2020
Metadata Updated Date January 29, 2020
Reference Date(s) August 11, 2012 (publication)
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Harvested from DOI Open Data

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Resource Type Publication
Metadata Date March 25, 2019
Metadata Created Date January 29, 2020
Metadata Updated Date January 29, 2020
Reference Date(s) August 11, 2012 (publication)
Responsible Party (Point of Contact, Author); Great Plains Landscape Conservation Cooperative (Point of Contact)
Contact Email
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Bbox North Lat 43.52374621880881
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Bbox West Long -105.29584836508695
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Frequency Of Update
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Harvest Source Id 5b7e4031-1e2d-428b-92e2-56554bbd7371
Harvest Source Title DOI Open Data
Licence Copyright.
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Metadata Type geospatial
Progress completed
Spatial Data Service Type
Spatial Reference System
Spatial Harvester true
Temporal Extent Begin 2012-08-11T05:00:00.000+00:00
Temporal Extent End 2012-08-11T05:00:00.000+00:00

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