- Agro-Ecosystems and Grasslands - Benefits of CO2 - Carbon Dioxide
Our mission is to educate the public on the positive effects of additional atmospheric CO2 and help prevent the inadvertent negative impact to human, plant and animal life if we reduce CO2
 
Home
 
    
Why CO2 is Good
 
    
Climate Change
 
    
Politics are Not Green
 
    
News & Media
 
    
Stay Informed
 
    
About Us
 
    
 
  Agro-Ecosystems and Grasslands

<< Back

Forests

Since atmospheric CO2 enrichment results in increased photosynthetic fixation of carbon, in an elevated-CO2 world of the future more carbon should be stored in the soils of farmers' fields and natural grasslands.  This sentiment is shared by many researchers; and it has been succinctly stated by Sombroek et al. (1993) in their analysis of tropical and subtropical agriculture:

"The CO2 fertilization effect is likely to have a significant impact on plant growth in the humid tropics in a CO2 enriched atmosphere, yielding extra soil organic matter through litterfall and crop residues, and especially through a more vigorous root growth .  The CO2 antitranspiration effect would be of particular significance in the semiarid regions of the tropics and subtropics: plants would grow more vigorously with the same amount of water, and some plant growth would become possible where hitherto the land surface [has been] bare, due to climate- or salinity-induced aridity. A better ground cover would be the result, limiting soil-erosion hazards, lowering the soil-surface temperatures and providing fresh organic matter for incorporation in the soil."

As research in this area has progressed, CO2-induced carbon sequestration has been observed in the soils of several agro-ecosystems, while other studies have demonstrated the potential for this phenomenon to occur on abandoned agricultural land and natural grasslands and savannas, especially in conjunction with the CO2-enhanced nitrogen fixation that is provided by grain and forage legumes. 

Reference
Sombroek, W.G., Nachtergaele, F.O. and Hebel, A.  1993.  Amounts, dynamics and sequestering of carbon in tropical and subtropical soils.  Ambio 22: 417-426.

 
Print Print    Email Email
  Share link on Twitter Tweet  

 
** For additional peer-reviewed scientific references and an in-depth discussion of the science supporting our position, please visit Climate Change Reconsidered: The Report of the Nongovernmental Planel on Climate Change (www.climatechangereconsidered.org), or CO2 Science (www.co2science.org).
 
 
RELATED CONTENT

More Videos & Media ...

Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere is essential to life on earth and is directly responsible for the food we eat and the oxygen we breathe.


CO2 Myths

Plants need CO2 addresses the myth that purveyed the public dialog around CO2

Read more >>