The Carbon Sequestration Potential of Regenerative Farming Practices in South Carolina, USA | regenagscience

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The Carbon Sequestration Potential of Regenerative Farming Practices in South Carolina, USA

Resource type
Authors/contributors
Title
The Carbon Sequestration Potential of Regenerative Farming Practices in South Carolina, USA
Abstract
Current production agriculture systems typically focus on yield outcomes at all costs. By shifting to best management practices based on regenerative farming principles, however, agricultural systems worldwide could maintain or even improve yields while sequestering atmospheric carbon (C) into soil organic matter (SOM). To demonstrate the effectiveness of regenerative principles at simultaneously benefiting agriculture and reducing greenhouse gasses, their C sequestration potential was examined through SOM data from 486 soil sampling locations from multiple farms throughout the coastal plains of South Carolina. These data were compared over varying multiple-year periods between 2013 and 2017 as their land management practices shifted from conventional methods to those based on the regenerative-based practice of cover cropping. The implementation of cover crops in crop rotations resulted in statistically significant mean SOM percentage increases of 0.11 (p ≤ 0.001), 0.11 (p ≤ 0.001), and 0.55 (p ≤ 0.001) for sampling sites converted into rotations utilizing cover crops for two, three, and four years, respectively. When averaged out per year for each sampling group, this results in an average of 622, 425, and 1584 lbs./acre/year of C fixed from the atmosphere and retained in the soil as organic matter. Increases were observed across all soil types sampled in the study with soil texture not significantly influencing a soils’ ability to increase soil OM or sequester atmospheric C through cover crop implementation. The calculations based on the coastal plains’ soils studied here demonstrate the promising potential of the application of regenerative farming principles to not only restore degraded biodiversity, recycle nutrients, improve farm profitability, and reduce chemical inputs, but also to sequester atmospheric C and simultaneously help reduce the effect of global climate change while creating healthy soils.
Publication
American Journal of Climate Change
Volume
8
Issue
2
Pages
157-172
Date
2019-04-08
Language
en
DOI
10.4236/ajcc.2019.82009
Accessed
2019-07-05T06:13:57Z
Library Catalog
Citation
Kenne, G. J., & Kloot, R. W. (2019). The Carbon Sequestration Potential of Regenerative Farming Practices in South Carolina, USA. American Journal of Climate Change, 8(2), 157–172. https://doi.org/10.4236/ajcc.2019.82009
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