Deep soils store up to five times more carbon than first thought: study

“Deep soils store up to five times more carbon than is commonly reported, a new study by Murdoch University and Cranfield University in the UK has found.

Soil locks in greenhouse gases by storing carbon, making it a crucial player in the fight against global warming. Greenhouse gases are released when soils are exposed to air by farming, peat drainage and deforestation.

Current estimates of soil organic carbon are based largely on measurements to depths of 30 cm. This approach has evolved in North America and Europe, where soil is generally more shallow.” …

This is currently being discussed on the international biochar-policy group, latest comment here…

I found a nice back-ground document on soil carbon in NZ, Co/ Prof. Louis Schipper’s Waikato University page… scroll to…

“Soil Carbon and Nitrogen

If you are interested in learning about soil carbon or soil nitrogen, two non-technical articles published in the New Zealand Science Teacher can be found here – Soil carbon, Soil nitrogen.”

I’m not sure how old this article is… but it seems to imply that NZ soils under current farming practices are unlikely to become a useful carbon sink. Does this article need to be revisited with biochar application in mind?

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