Assessing soil-like materials for ecosystem services provided by constructed technosols

Ivashchenko, Kristina; Lepore, Emanuela; Vasenev, Viacheslav; Ananyeva, Nadezhda; Demina, Sofiya; Khabibullina, Fluza; Vaseneva, Inna; Selezneva, Alexandra; Dolgikh, Andrey; Sushko, Sofia; Marinari, Sara; Dovletyarova, Elvira


Urbanization results to a wide spread of Technosols. Various materials are used for Tech-nosols’ construction with a limited attention to their ecosystem services or disservices. The research focuses on the integral assessment of soil-like materials used for Technosols’ construction in Moscow megalopolis from the ecosystem services’ perspective. Four groups of materials (valley peats, sediments, cultural layers, and commercial manufactured soil mixtures) were assessed based on the indicators, which are integral, informative, and cost-effective. Microbial respiration, C-availability, specific respiration, community level physiological profile, and Shannon’ diversity index in the materials were compared to the natural reference to assess and rank the ecosystem services and disser-vices. The assessment showed that sediments and low-peat mixtures (≤30% of peat in total volume) had a considerably higher capacity to provide C-sequestration, climate regulation and functional diversity services compared to peats and high-peat mixtures. Urban cultural layers provided ecosystem disservices due to pollution by potentially toxic elements and health risks from the pathogenic fungi. Mixtures comprising from the sediments with minor (≤30%) peat addition would have a high potential to increase C-sequestration and to enrich microbial functional diversity. Their implementation in urban landscaping will reduce management costs and increase sustainability of urban soils and ecosystem.