Submitted as: model description paper
10 Feb 2022
Submitted as: model description paper | 10 Feb 2022
Status: a revised version of this preprint is currently under review for the journal GMD.

Soil Cycles of Elements simulator for Predicting TERrestrial regulation of greenhouse gases: SCEPTER v0.9

Yoshiki Kanzaki1, Shuang Zhang2, Noah J. Planavsky3, and Christopher T. Reinhard1 Yoshiki Kanzaki et al.
  • 1School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA 30332, USA
  • 2Department of Oceanography, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843, USA
  • 3Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06511, USA

Abstract. Regulation of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) is an urgent issue—continuously increasing atmospheric CO2 from burning fossil fuels is leading to significant warming and acidification of the surface ocean. Timely and effective measures to curb CO2 increases are thus needed in order to mitigate the potential degradation of natural ecosystems, food security, and livelihood caused by anthropogenic release of CO2. Enhanced rock weathering (ERW) on croplands and hinterlands may be one of the most economically and ecologically effective ways to sequester CO2 from the atmosphere, given that these soil environments generally favor mineral dissolution and because amending soils with crushed rock can result in a number of co-benefits on plant growth and crop yield. However, quantitative evaluation of CO2 capture by ERW in terrestrial soil systems to date has been conducted with tools that are mechanistically very simplified and/or allow limited flexibility. With the goal of working towards a more mechanistically grounded understanding of the geoengineering potential of terrestrial ERW, we developed new 1D reactive transport model — SCEPTER. The model is designed to: (1) mechanistically simulate natural weathering, including dissolution/precipitation of minerals along with uplift/erosion of solid phases, advection plus diffusion of aqueous phases and diffusion of gas phases; (2) allow targeted addition of solid phases at the soil-atmosphere interface, including multiple forms of organic matter (OM) and crushed mineral/rock feedstocks; (3) implement a range of soil mixing regimes as catalyzed by soil surface fauna (e.g., bioturbation) or humans (e.g., various forms of tilling); and (4) enable calculation of solid mineral surface area based on controlled initial particle size distributions coupled to a shrinking core framework. Here we describe the model structure and intrinsic thermodynamic/kinetic data, provide a series of idealized simulations to demonstrate the basic behavior of the code, and evaluate the computational and mechanistic performance of the model against observational data. We also provide selected example applications to highlight model features particularly useful for future prediction of CO2 sequestration by ERW in soil systems.

Yoshiki Kanzaki et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on gmd-2022-8', Anonymous Referee #1, 10 Mar 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Yoshiki Kanzaki, 16 May 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on gmd-2022-8', Anonymous Referee #2, 14 Mar 2022
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Yoshiki Kanzaki, 16 May 2022

Yoshiki Kanzaki et al.

Yoshiki Kanzaki et al.


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Short summary
Increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is an urgent issue in coming century and enhanced rock weathering in soils can be one of most efficient C capture strategies. On the basis as a weathering simulator, the newly developed model SCEPTER implements bio-mixing by fauna and tilling by humans and enables organic matter and crushed rocks/minerals at soil surface with an option to track their particle size distributions. Those features can be useful to evaluate the carbon capture efficiency.