Adopting sustainable land management practices is essential for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and minimizing carbon footprint. Sequestration of agricultural fixed carbon is one such practice you should learn about. Additionally, understanding the importance of salting and burying biomass crops in dry landfills is also essential for storing carbon in the soil.
Sequestration of Agricultural Fixed Carbon: A Key to Sustainable Farming
You might be wondering what is meant by the sequestration of agricultural fixed carbon. The answer here is that when plants do photosynthesis to create food they remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. In turn, they also create the oxygen that we humans and animals need. Due to this chemical process, the plants can store or sequester carbon in the soil.
Now this soil mustn’t be disturbed by plowing or tilling or else the sequestered carbon in the soil can escape into the atmosphere again. So farmers, therefore end up playing a very important role in the climate change battle. The following methods pave the way for sustainable soil health by implementing useful carbon farming practices.
- After a harvest, the residual biomass should be used as an organic cover for the soil rather than being burned.
- There should be reduced tillage or no tillage to make sure the carbon remains trapped in the soil.
- Cover crops should be grown in the off-season rather than leaving the field bare.
- There should be crop rotation. High-diversity crops and alternating monoculture practices should be used one after the other.
- Instead of going heavy on chemical fertilizers, the farmers should focus more on integrated nutrient management and precision farming which is how soil also can be revitalized.
- Introduced trees to the cropland.
- Allow livestock into crop production as they help with nutrient cycling.
- Protect the carbon-rich soils which play a part as a natural carbon sink.
- Periodically it would be good for the grassland if livestock was rotated.
- Use compost so that you can restore the fertility of the soil and increase the storage of carbon in grassland.
If you just stick to these ideas then you could easily carry out the sequestration of agricultural fixed carbon.
Salting and Burying Biomass Crops in Dry Landfills
Greenhouse gases are not a small temporary issue but a big problem that needs to be dealt with effectively at once. So storing carbon in the soil temporarily is not a long-term solution. A more effective and long-term solution is required. And that comes in the way of salting and burying biomass crops in dry landfills.
Reducing global greenhouse gas emissions is not just tough but expensive as well and if not dealt with in time then a climate disaster awaits us. The current methods are expensive and not as effective as we would have liked and so a new simple and inexpensive way of dealing with this problem has been put forth by the University of California, Berkeley.
Under this method, the job would be to grow biomass crops which would capture carbon dioxide from the air. After that, the harvested vegetation will be engineered in dry landfills. The biomass will be kept dry with salt, which will suppress microbials and keep decomposition at bay.
This will ensure stable sequestration of all biomass carbon. This method will not be dining for net carbon neutrality but net carbon negativity. For every square metric ton of dry biomass, 2 metric tons of carbon dioxide could be sequestered.
The process of capturing and storing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions through the use of biological materials, like plants and trees is known as biomass sequestration. In this process, the CO2 is taken by the photosynthetic organisms during their growth and then that carbon is stored long-term in the form of biomass, soils, etc.
Agro-sequestration is the process of carbon sequestration through agricultural practices, specifically by enhancing carbon storage in soils and vegetation. It does not involve the salting, growth, and burial of biomass crops in dry landfills.
So these are a few ways sequestration of agricultural fixed carbon can take place. No matter what method is opted because in the end what matters is saving the planet and if in the process money can be saved then well and good.