Pastureland use in the southeastern US: Implications for carbon sequestration

Conant, RT, Paustian, K, & Elliott, ET (2002) Pastureland use in the southeastern US: Implications for carbon sequestration. In Kimble, JM, Lal, R, & Follett, RF (Eds.) AGRICULTURAL PRACTICES AND POLICIES FOR CARBON SEQUESTRATION IN SOIL,International Symposium on Agricultural Practices and Policies for Carbon Sequestration in Soil, COLUMBUS, OH, JUL, 1999, July 1999.

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More than 13 Mha of nonfederal land in the southeastern U.S. are devoted to pastureland. Between 1982 and 1992, pastureland increased by 100,000 ha, with nearly 70% converted from cultivated land. We examined the potential for carbon (C) sequestration with improved pasture management and conversion into pastureland from cultivated land. Improved pasture management techniques, such as intensive grazing, fertilization, introduction of improved grass and legume species, and better irrigation systems can lead to sequestration of atmospheric C in soil. Literature values for the influence of changes in pasture management on soil C were summarized for several potential management changes in the Southeast. Soil C sequestration estimates for the Southeast were based on current pasture management practices and evaluated for a range of different adoption rates of improved practices. Conversion into pasture can also potentially sequester significant amounts of atmospheric C in soils. Land-use data from the National Resources Inventory and literature estimates of soil C changes following conversion to pasture were used to estimate historical (1982 to 1992) soil C sequestration in pastures. Potential future sequestration was estimated based on extrapolation of land-use trends between 1982 and 1992. With continued conversion into pasture and improvement of pasture management, southeastern U.S. pasture soils may be a significant C sink for several years.

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ID Code: 37785
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: International Symposium on Agricultural Practices and Policies for Carbon Sequestration in Soil, COLUMBUS, OH, JUL, 1999
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES (060000) > ECOLOGY (060200)
Divisions: Past > Institutes > Institute for Sustainable Resources
Deposited On: 07 Oct 2010 06:08
Last Modified: 07 Oct 2010 06:09

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