Read the full post at State of the Planet.
Farmers have, for years, known about their theoretical ability to offset carbon emissions by managing their land in a way that captures carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and stores it in the soil — a set of practices sometimes referred to as regenerative agriculture. But measuring the carbon drawdown within the soil as a result of such practices has proven difficult and nuanced over time, and farmers have generally eschewed these practices, which require more labor than conventional agriculture.
But thanks to a wave of new technological developments, there is hope that the incentive structure might change for farmers, who collectively can make a significant dent in reducing carbon emissions. By some estimates, if the 1.2 billion acres of American agricultural land (more than half of the U.S. land base) transitioned towards regenerative farming practices, it could sequester up to 20 percent of the carbon required to reach the Biden administration’s goal of fully offsetting America’s carbon emissions by 2050.