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Biophysical processes: from biological soil crusts to macro process (co-organized)
Co-Conveners: J. Turowski , S. Rice , M. Stoffel , S. Lane 
Oral Programme
 / Thu, 26 Apr, 08:30–12:00  / Room 22
Poster Programme
 / Attendance Thu, 26 Apr, 17:30–19:00  / Hall XL
Poster Summaries & DiscussionsPSD12.5 

Situated at the atmosphere-soil boundary, biological soil crust (BSC) plays an important role in the ecology and microbiology of ecosystems. It plays an important role in C and N cycling and plant germination. But it also plays a seminal role in geomorphological processes such as eolian, hydrological, and pedological processes. BSC may effectively impede wind erosion or water flow. Yet, due to hydrophobic properties or extra cellular polysaccharides that act to clog the surface, the crust may also trigger runoff, which may result in nutrient and sediment translocation. The crust may also affect pedological processes either as a result of its organic matter content or due to microorganism-mineral interactions.
Focusing on abiotic-biotic relations, this session will examine the abiotic variables responsible for crust establishment and will explore the crust properties and the crust effect on ecogeomorphological and pedological processes responsible for shaping our environment.