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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


Location: Range Management Research

Title: Carbon sequestration and sink resources in grazed lands

item Brown, Joel

Submitted to: International Rangeland Congress
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/1/2008
Publication Date: 6/15/2008
Citation: Brown, J. 2008. Carbon sequestration and sink resources in grazed lands. In: International Grassland Congress and International Rangeland Congress Translation Group. People and Policy in Rangeland Management: A Glossary of Key Concepts. Hohhot, Inner Mongolia, China. Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. p. 240-247.

Interpretive Summary: The movement of carbon from the atmosphere and storage in the soil and vegetation (sequestration) is seen as an important contribution that agriculture and forestry can make to mitigate one of the drivers of global climate change. Fixing atmospheric carbon into more stable soil compounds via naturally occurring processes is relatively well understood by scientists and land managers. Proven livestock grazing practices designed for sustainability are usually compatible with the desire to store C. Many rangelands are susceptible to undesirable increases in shrub cover as a result of inappropriate livestock hygiene practices and alteration of fire regimes. The policies and programs at all levels of government that provide incentives or penalties for the implementation of specific management practices will have significant impact on the amounts of carbon stored in rangeland ecosystems.

Technical Abstract: Carbon storage in terrestrial sinks is attractive as a policy alternative in that 1) results can be achieved quickly 2) technologies for enhanced sequestration can be implemented without major economic impact and are generally associated with improved management of resources and more efficient production systems and 3) delivery infrastructure (extension, conservation programs) are in place and proven successful. However, the design and implementation of policies and programs to accelerate and realize the potential of terrestrial sequestration requires analyses that examine regional land use patterns, human activity systems and economic development objectives.

Last Modified: 06/25/2017
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