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Environmental Pollution
Volume 273, 2021, 116478

Mitigating N2O emission by synthetic inhibitors mixed with urea and cattle manure application via inhibiting ammonia-oxidizing bacteria, but not archaea, in a calcareous soil

Rui Tao1, Jun Li1, Baowei Hu1, Guixin Chu1

School of Life Science, Shaoxing University, Shaoxing, 312000, PR China.


Synthetic inhibitors and organic amendment have been proposed for mitigating greenhouse gas N2O emissions. However, their combined effect on the N2O emissions and ammonia-oxidizer (ammonia-oxidizing bacteria and archaea, AOB and AOA) communities remains unclear in calcareous soils under climate warming. We conducted two incubation experiments (25 and 35°C) to examine how N2O emissions and AOA and AOB communities responded to organic amendment (urea plus cattle manure, UCM), and in combination with urease (N-(n-butyl) thiophosphoric triamide, NBPT) and nitrification inhibitor (nitrapyrin). The treatments of UCM + nitrapyrin and UCM + nitrapyrin + NBPT significantly lowered total N2O emissions by average 64.5 and 71.05% at 25 and 35°C, respectively, compared with UCM treatment. AOB gene abundance and α-diversity (Chao1 and Shannon indices) were significantly increased by the application of urea and manure (P < 0.05). However, relative to UCM treatment, nitrapyrin addition treatments decreased AOB gene abundance and Chao 1 index by average 115.4 and 30.4% at 25 and 35°C, respectively. PCA analysis showed that UCM or UCM plus nitrapyrin notably shifted AOB structure at both temperatures. However, fertilization had little effects on AOA community (P > 0.05). Potential nitrification rate (PNR) was greatly decreased by nitrapyrin addition, and PNR significantly positively correlated with AOB gene abundance (P = 0.0179 at 25°C and P = 0.0029 at 35°C) rather than AOA (P > 0.05). Structural equation model analysis showed that temperature directly increased AOA abundance but decrease AOB abundance, while fertilization indirectly influenced AOB community by altering soil NH4+, pH and SOC. In conclusion, the combined application of organic amendment, NBPT and nitrapyrin significantly lowered N2O emissions via reducing AOB community in calcareous soil even at high temperature. Our findings provide a solid theoretical basis in mitigating N2O emissions from calcareous soil under climate warming.

Keywords: Synthetic inhibitors, Nitrous oxide emissions, Organic manure, Ammonia-oxidizer communities, Temperature.

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