Welcome to the CarbonSense section of ILSoyAdvisor.com. The ILSoyAdvisor team designed this as a third-party resource for farmers and ag professionals to understand how carbon markets work, which practices sequester carbon and how to implement those practices on your farm.
Many companies and countries have committed to carbon neutrality and carbon negativity within the next decade.
Carbon offset trading through carbon markets is just one tool that will be utilized to reduce GHG emissions in the coming decades.
A carbon offset is defined as an instrument representing the reduction, avoidance, or sequestration of one metric tonne of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) or greenhouse gas (GHG) equivalent.
Row Crop Agriculture and Carbon Sequestration
This video from US Soy (a collaboration between USB and USSEC) demonstrates how soybeans can be utilized to sequester or trap carbon dioxide in the soil. However, a conventional tillage, corn and bean field in Illinois sequesters less than 0.10 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide per acre according to the COMET Model which estimates agricultural carbon sequestration.
No-Till & Cover Cropping
According to work by the Illinois Sustainable Ag Partnership implementation of no-till and cover crops could allow for additional carbon to be sequestered in the soil.
|Practice||National Average Sequestered tonnes CO2 per acre||Illinois Average Sequestered CO2|
|No-Till (NT)||0.49 tonnes CO2 per acre||Intensive Till to No-Till
0.74 tonnes CO2 per acre
|Reduced Till to No-Till
0.57 tonnes CO2 per acre
|Cover Crop (CC)||0.37 tonnes per acre||Legume Cover Crop
0.68 tonnes CO2 per acre
|Non-legume Cover Crop
0.5 tonnes CO2 per acre
1 Swan et al., 2019, available at http://comet-planner.nrel.colostate.edu/COMET-Planner_Report_Final.pdf and http://comet-planner.com/, ranges provided for general reference and should not be considered additive or field-specific
Cover crops allow the soil to continually receive CO2 from the atmosphere.
No-till prevents carbon dioxide from leaving the soil.