MASCC - Mediterranean Agricultural Soils Conservation under global Change
Damien Raclot, Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, France
Soil vulnerability to erosion, Soil-properties evolution Modelling, Agriculture techniques for soil conservation, Innovative agricultural practices, On- and off-site effects of soil degradation
MASCC aims to address mitigation and adaptation strategies to global change by assessing current and future evolution of Mediterranean agricultural soil vulnerability to erosion in relation to projected land use, agricultural practices and climate change.
It targets to i) assess the similarities/dissimilarities in dominant factors affecting the current Mediterranean agricultural soil vulnerability by exploring a wide range of Mediterranean contexts; ii) improve the ability to evaluate the impact of extreme events on both the current and projected agricultural soil vulnerability and the sediment delivery at catchment outlet; iii) provide benchmarks regarding the vulnerability of agricultural production to a combination of potential changes in a wide range of Mediterranean contexts, iv) and provide guidelines on sustainable agricultural conservation strategies adapted to each specific agro-ecosystem taking into consideration both on- and off-site erosion effects and socio-economics issues.
To reach these objectives, the MASCC project will gather researchers from 6 Mediterranean countries (France, Morocco, Tunisia ; Italy, Spain, Portugal) that monitor mid- to long-term environmental catchment and that get mutual knowledge due to previous projects and network. The major advantages for the project are: i) the availability of an unrivalled database on soil erosion, (innovative) agriculture practices covering a wide range of Mediterranean contexts, ii) the capacity to better evaluate the impact of extreme events on soil erosion, iii) the availability of the LANDSOIL , a catchment-scale integrated approach of the soil-landscape system that enables to simulate both the sediment fluxes at the catchment outlet and the soil evolution properties, iv) the multi-disciplinarity of the involved researchers with an international reputation in the fields of soil science, modelling changes in soil properties, erosion and sediment transport, agronomy and socio-economy.
The MASCC project will be conducted through a coordination and dissemination workpackage and three scientific work-packages : WP1 will consist in elaborating plausible scenario (climatic, land use and adaptative innovative agricultural practices) for the future (20 to 50 years); WP2 will simulate soil vulnerability for current conditions and scenarios from WP1; and WP3 will focus on the comparative evaluation of present and future on-site and off-site effects of soil erosion on agriculture sustainability.