Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Carbon sequestration on U. S. rangelands offers promise, but not profit

Date:
September 5, 2012
Source:
Allen Press Publishing Services
Summary:
Nearly 239 million hectares of land in the United States are devoted to pastures and rangeland. Worldwide, rangelands cover about 3.6 billion hectares. Harnessing the potential for carbon sequestration from these lands could have a global impact on reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Nearly 239 million hectares of land in the United States are devoted to pastures and rangeland. Worldwide, rangelands cover about 3.6 billion hectares. Harnessing the potential for carbon sequestration from these lands could have a global impact on reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

The current issue of the journal Rangeland Ecology & Management examines carbon sequestration in western U.S. rangelands from an economic perspective. It finds that revenues from voluntary carbon offset programs are not likely to generate enough incentive to encourage participation from rangeland managers.

Soil organic carbon in rangelands can contribute to the environment in positive ways. Increased carbon can reduce erosion and improve soil quality, soil water-holding capacity, and nutrient cycling. Although the potential for carbon sequestration on rangelands is lower than that of agricultural and forest lands, modest changes in carbon storage on rangelands hold promise to affect the carbon cycle worldwide.

Activities such as adjusting stocking rate, interseeding alfalfa, burning, fertilizing, and restoring degraded pastures can improve carbon sequestration on rangelands. Like agricultural commodities, however, carbon yields and carbon credit prices can vary widely from year to year. On the other hand, climate exchange contracts can run from 5 to 100 years, introducing another element of risk to rangeland carbon sequestration.

Carbon offset programs, such as the Chicago Climate Exchange, offer voluntary trading of carbon credits based on a cap-and-trade system. Farmers, ranchers, and foresters who conduct mitigation practices on their lands have been included in these offset programs. However, these programs have seen a downturn during the global financial crises.

This study estimated revenues for both short-term voluntary offsets and 100-year offsets that meet international standards. Prices were projected based on potential cap-and-trade legislation and on historical data. This simulation found that the carbon market does not yet offer a sufficient return on investment for rangeland managers to adopt practices that improve carbon sequestration.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Allen Press Publishing Services. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. John P. Ritten, Christopher T. Bastian, Benjamin S. Rashford. Profitability of Carbon Sequestration in Western Rangelands of the United States. Rangeland Ecology & Management, 2012; 65 (4): 340 DOI: 10.2111/REM-D-10-00191.1

Cite This Page:

Allen Press Publishing Services. "Carbon sequestration on U. S. rangelands offers promise, but not profit." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 September 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120905141618.htm>.
Allen Press Publishing Services. (2012, September 5). Carbon sequestration on U. S. rangelands offers promise, but not profit. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120905141618.htm
Allen Press Publishing Services. "Carbon sequestration on U. S. rangelands offers promise, but not profit." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120905141618.htm (accessed September 29, 2014).

Share This



More Earth & Climate News

Monday, September 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Balloon Descends to Bottom of Croatian Cave

Raw: Balloon Descends to Bottom of Croatian Cave

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) An Austrian balloon pilot has succeeded in taking a balloon deep underground, a feat which he believes is a world first. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Bodies Recovered from Japan Volcano Eruption

Bodies Recovered from Japan Volcano Eruption

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) Rescue crews finished recovering the remaining 27 bodies from atop Japan's Mount Ontake Monday. At least 31 people were killed Saturday in the mountain's first fatal volcanic event in modern history. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Japan's Mount Ontake Erupts

Raw: Japan's Mount Ontake Erupts

AP (Sep. 27, 2014) A volcano erupted in central Japan on Saturday, sending a large plume of ash high into the sky and prompting a warning to climbers and others to avoid the area. (Sept. 27) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
California University Designs Sustainable Winery

California University Designs Sustainable Winery

Reuters - US Online Video (Sep. 27, 2014) Amid California's worst drought in decades, scientists at UC Davis design a sustainable winery that includes a water recycling system. Vanessa Johnston reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins