Scientists Find Grasslands Important as Carbon ‘Sinks’

Environmental scientists found that California grasslands are better at storing carbon from the atmosphere than fire-prone trees and forests, which have transitioned from carbon sinks (reserves) to carbon generators. Researchers said their discovery could help shape similar carbon offset programs around the world, particularly those in semi-arid environments, which cover about 40 percent of the planet.

With New Carbon Farming Project, Boulder County Could Become Massive Greenhouse Gas Sponge

Interest in carbon farming is blossoming throughout the U.S. and many local farmers, land owners and land managers are already using carbon farming techniques. Boulder County and the City commissioned the Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory (NREL) of Colorado State University to conduct a feasibility study. They wanted to assess the potential for a large-scale carbon farming project in Boulder, similar to the Marin Carbon Project.

Plant Diversity Enhances Productivity and Soil Carbon Storage

Soil carbon sequestration plays an important role in mitigating anthropogenic increases in atmospheric CO2 concentrations. Recent studies have shown that biodiversity increases soil organic carbon (SOC) storage in experimental grasslands. However, the effects of species diversity on SOC storage in natural ecosystems have rarely been studied, and the potential mechanisms are yet to be understood. The results presented here show that favorable climate conditions, particularly high precipitation, tend to increase both species richness and belowground biomass, which had a consistent positive effect on SOC storage in forests, shrublands, and grasslands.

Supporting Local Ag Could Fight Climate Change

Agriculture is Michigan’s second largest industry, making it a major contributor to the state’s economy. Agriculture also contributes significantly to global greenhouse gas emissions, roughly 25 percent according the USDA. Thankfully, agriculture can also be a major part of the solution.

The Crop of the Future

Whether you call it global warming or climate change, the emotionally charged topic generally associated with greenhouse gases brings an array of reactions – from genuine concern to belief in a conspiracy. Earth’s average surface temperature has increased 1.3ºF. over the past century and is projected to increase by an additional 3.2ºF. to 7.2ºF. over the 21st century. It is happening at a faster rate than ever before.