Submitted to: ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract only
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/2/2007
Publication Date: 11/5/2007
Citation: Franzluebbers, A.J., Johnson, J.M. 2007. Crop residues: A resource for whom [abstract]? ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting, November 4-8, 2007, New Orleans, Louisanna. CD-ROM. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Crop residues represent an important on-farm resource, which are now being considered a harvestable commodity contributing to bio-fuel production. This review of literature looks at how crop residues contribute to soil properties and processes, water conservation and quality, on-farm forage availability, and as a harvestable bio-fuel component. Competing needs for this resource could cause serious environmental or economic consequences without sufficient knowledge of their potential impacts. Crop residues are critical for providing surface cover to protect soils against erosion, provide the organic inputs to support below-ground ecosystems, and provide the building blocks for soil organic matter. The amount of biomass needed to remain in the field for maintaining soil organic matter in many instances exceeds that needed for erosion control. Achieving a balanced outcome will require scientific evidence, as well as well-designed government policies, for crop residue utilization schemes to contribute to a sustainable agricultural approach.