Dr. Yang Yuhai and the research group, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, CAS analyzed the distribution and reserves of soil organic carbon under nine different vegetation conditions including alpine meadow, meadow steppe, typical steppe, desert steppe, temperate coniferous forest and so on, in the Ili River valley, Xinjiang during the period of 2008-2009. They found that that soil organic carbon content in the Ili River valley varied with the types of vegetation. In 0–50 cm soil horizon, the soil organic carbon content was the highest under alpine meadow and meadow steppe, and the lowest under the intrazonal vegetation and desert vegetation types. The soil organic carbon content showed basically a tendency of decrease with soil depth increases under various vegetation types except for the intrazonal vegetation. Soil organic carbon density showed the similar trend. They also found that the organic carbon content and density in the topsoil of meadows in the Ili River valley are high.
Therefore, they suggested that protecting the meadows in the Ili River valley especially the topsoil should be benefit to maintain the stability of the soil carbon pool. The results had been published on Journal of Geographical Sciences (doi: 10.1007/s11442-010-0807-4).