Caister Academic Press

Climate Change, Microbial Communities and Agriculture in Semiarid and Arid Ecosystems

Felipe Bastida, Alfonso Vera, Marta Díaz, Carlos García, Antonio Ruíz-Navarro and José Luis Moreno
from: Climate Change and Microbial Ecology: Current Research and Future Trends (Second Edition) (Edited by: Jürgen Marxsen). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2020) Pages: 71-106.


Soil microbial communities perform critical functions for the maintenance of ecosystem services and planet's sustainability. Climate change strongly impacts soil microbial diversity and their ecosystem functions due to changes in the physical and chemical environment in soil. In arid and semiarid ecosystems, which are commonly water and nutrient limited, agricultural activities may enhance the effects of climate change. Thus, the maintenance of agricultural productivity under arid and semiarid climate often requires the application of nutrients in the form of organic amendments and fertilizers, as well as the utilization of alternative water sources for irrigation. In some cases, these practices can be accompanied by contamination of soils with heavy metals and pesticides. Overall, these practices have strong impacts in the composition, biomass and activity of the soil microbial communities. However, the knowledge on the effects of desalinated seawaters and wastewaters in the soil microbial community is still limited. Future studies should focus on the impacts of emerging contaminants in the soil microbial community and its mediated functions read more ...
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