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AT1-3: Critical Zone Science in Natural and Managed System.

Conveners: Alida Perez-Fodich, Universidad de Chile. Pamela Castillo-Lagos, Universidad de Concepción. Marco Pfeiffer, Universidad de Chile. Tania Villaseñor, Universidad de O’Higgins.

Description: The Critical Zone (CZ) is the Earth’s most external layer supporting life. Extending from the tree canopy down to the base of groundwater, the CZ is where the lithosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere, and biosphere interact. The time-integrated history of the CZ compartments – e.g., soils, bedrock, aquifers, streams – influences how ecosystems respond to perturbations; while at the same time, ecosystems can shape the evolution of the CZ’s compartments at short and long-term timescales. This session focuses on landscape and ecosystem evolution processes from weathering and erosion, pedogenesis, and the source and fate of nutrients, solutes, and sediments. We welcome investigations of natural and managed systems studying surface processes at the mineral, pedon, hillslope, watershed, and global scales in the following disciplines: soil science, geomorphology, hydrology, geochemistry, biogeochemistry, ecology, and surface geophysics. We expect contributions from field studies and laboratory experiments to numerical modeling research at single and multi-site comparisons at various temporal and spatial scales. The aim is to bring CZ scientists working across disciplines to the XVI CGCh for the first time.