Soil carbon sequestration: myths and mysteries

The balance between carbon sequestration (or storage) in various sinks like soils and vegetation, compared to that released to the atmosphere as carbon dioxide is currently very topical given the future greenhouse/climate change projections. However, there is a considerable degree of uncertainty surrounding what options are available, how realistic they are and more specifically (from a soils’ perspective), what role does soil carbon play in mitigating the effects of carbon dioxide emissions. This paper tries to place soil carbon in a global perspective and assess how realistic it is for significant soil carbon sequestration to occur in different land use systems. Authors: Mike Bell and David Lawrence, Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, 2009.

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