Submitted to: Agronomy Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/30/1997
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Cultivation practices of the last 100 years have caused soil organic matter levels to decline. Much of the C in this organic matter was released to the atmosphere as CO2 when tillage stimulated C mineralization. This paper addresses the issue of whether or not decreased tillage and intensified cropping systems will cause the soil to become a sink for atmospheric CO2 with the ultimate restoration of at least a portion of the soil organic matter that was lost due to cultivation. Data from long-term experiments in Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota, and Texas were used in the analysis. A combination of reduced tillage and more intensified cropping systems has increased the opportunity for C sequestration in soils, but the rate of C storage is slow.